UberX announced Monday that it will deliver a half-dozen paczkis from Do-Rite Donuts to your door from 7 to 11 a.m. Tuesday for $20. It will also throw in some "festive Uber Mardi Gras swag" for Fat Tuesday, as well as free workout passes from Go Cycle for Lenten atonement.
Uber Regional General Manager Andrew Macdonald insisted their generous offer is not intended to influence Chicagoans in light of the recent City Council hearing and the proposed crackdown on so-called ride-sharing networks, as well as the lawsuit filed against the city over the issue.
"This is something that's been on the roadmap for a couple months," Macdonald said Monday.
"We're pretty plugged into the food scene here in Chicago," Macdonald added. "Restaurants and food providers are often a natural partner for us." Uber has previously offered free rides to the Eataly opening and has offered deals during Chicago Restaurant Week as promotional devices.
The Uber smartphone app will have a special button Tuesday to schedule paczki deliveries.
Uber has a service to hail taxis, but also provides transportation through its own drivers via UberX. Critics have complained such a "ride-sharing" service is actually just a taxi that should be subject to the same licensing and regulations. Mayor Rahm Emanuel, however, has proposed an ordinance creating a separate license for ride-sharing firms.
Macdonald said Uber was "pleased with the outcome" of last month's City Council committee hearing, in that it took no formal action and continued the debate. He said the firm continues to monitor possible council action. But Uber took no formal part in the hearing, he said, because it "was a bit of a sideshow orchestrated by longtime proponents of the taxi industry to frankly attack ride sharing." He called it "a taxi-oriented bash fest," but welcomed the public support of Ald. Joe Moreno (1st).
"We want to state our case in a forum that is receptive to hearing it," he said.