Uber pays $1,000 to ditch your car for 5 weeks! Experiment tests car-lite lifestyles in 7 N. American cities. Sign up starts June 27. Pexels

Tired of forking out for petrol and car maintenance of your car? Well Uber has a tempting offer for you: They will pay you $1,000 to ditch your car for five weeks.

This is because Uber unveiled a new trial called "One Less Car" on June 27. They're looking for 175 participants across the US and Canada to give up their cars for five weeks. In return, you'll get a cash reward and credits to use on alternative ways of getting around.

Some critics might call it a publicity stunt, but Uber insists their "One Less Car" trial is all about showing us the true cost of owning a car. The company wants to show people just how owning an expensive vehicle impacts not just wallets but also health and the environment in cities.

Ironically, Uber itself has been linked to more traffic congestion in the past, according to studies. Uber's new trial follows a similar experiment the company ran in Australia last year with the Behavioural Insights Team. Back in 2023, dozens of Aussies took part in a challenge where they ditched their cars for four weeks.

Ditch Your Car, Earn $1,000: Here's How

Taking their Aussie experiment stateside, Uber's bringing the "One Less Car" trial to North America! If you're a car owner in Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington D.C., Miami, San Francisco, Toronto, or Vancouver and fancy ditching your wheels for five weeks, you can sign up online.

The trial runs from July 22 to August 25, and Uber will pick 30 participants from each city to take part. They'll be giving each participant $1,000 – that's the average monthly running cost of a car in the US - to spend on all sorts of travel options.

Think Uber rides, bike and scooter rentals, car rentals or carsharing programs, and even public transport. So, how will this $1,000 be dished out? Here's the breakdown:

$500 Uber Cash: This can be used directly in the Uber app for rides or even for getting around on Lime bikes and scooters.

$200 Voucher: This voucher can be redeemed for car rentals or carsharing services.

$300 Public Transport Credit: Need to hop on the bus, train, or subway? This credit will help cover those costs.

Uber sweetened the deal with a free one-month Uber One membership as an added bonus. This membership lets you earn 6% in Uber Cash for qualifying rides, plus you'll score free delivery fees on eligible food, groceries, and more.

Who Is Eligible to Participate in the Trial?

Thinking of joining the trial? Here's what you'll need.

  • Participants should be 18 years old or older.
  • Must have a valid driver's license.
  • Own a car that you use at least three times a week.
  • Possess a bank card.
  • Be willing to share your experience during the trial.

The first week acts as a baseline. Uber will ask all participants to track their usual travel habits during this "control period."

There are a couple more things to remember:The $500 Ub er Cash can only be used for Uber rides, Lime bikes, and scooter rentals. For the remaining $800 (car rental voucher and public transport credit), Uber would like you to keep receipts for any car-sharing trips or public transport fares you use. They'll likely be reimbursing you based on these receipts.

While the trial is called "One Less Car," Uber understands that going completely car-free might not be feasible for everyone. They're looking to see how people adapt to using fewer cars, not necessarily none at all. So, if you have two cars, you'll only need to ditch one for five weeks.

"Many Uber riders tell us they want to live a more car-light lifestyle with a variety of ways to ride, including public transit, shared bikes and scooters, walking, and rideshare," Adam Gromis, global head of sustainability policy at Uber, said in a statement. "This research is critical to help us figure out how to make car-light living possible for more people who want to save money, emissions and time in traffic."