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Uber to get to and from wineries?

Houston, Texas
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60 posts
12 reviews
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Uber to get to and from wineries?

As I posted about before, my boyfriend and I will be spending next Monday in Napa. We've chosen wineries fairly close together (St. Helena area) and were wondering if Uber was a feasible option to get around.

Because it's just the two of us and we want to go to pretty specific vineyards it seems like our only other option if we don't want to worry about drinking and driving is hiring a driver which seems pretty pricey. ($35/hr was the cheapest we found, they would drive our rental car)

Thanks in advance for the answers.

138 replies to this topic
San Francisco, Ca
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1. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

I would contact them and ask how many drivers they have in the Napa Valley, and what the average wait time is when requesting a pickup. Given the size of the valley, I suspect you would have to plan ahead and request a car 30 minutes or so before you actually wanted to be picked up.

St. Helena...
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for Napa Valley
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2. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

Uber only started up in Napa Valley in April. Coverage is still very spotty. Uber drivers focus on the weekends; there are fewer drivers weekdays. One of the biggest complains from riders is that few drivers know where they're going ... because many of them drive in from San Francisco and Sacramento for the day and are clueless about where the wineries are. This is exacerbated by the fact that GPS, Google Maps, etc. are often inaccurate here. It's a well-known problem.

If you find yourself stranded, you can always call one of the local taxi companies, but don't expect instantaneous response or immediate pick-up, especially the further away you get from the town of Napa.

Looking at Uber car availability right now on the Uber Rider App - 12:40pm on a Tuesday in high season - in St. Helena, there is:

UberX - 1 (5 mins away)

UberXL - 0

Black - 0

SUV - 0

In Yountville:

No cars available

In Napa:

UberX - 1 (9 mins away)

UberXL -0

Black - 0

SUV - 0

So, I would not depend on Uber as your primary source of transportation. Can you rent a car, with one of you as DD? If not, you may have to compromise on your itinerary, or hire a DD, a private guide or take a join-in group tour.

Edited: 3:45 pm, August 19, 2014
Houston, Texas
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60 posts
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3. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

Thanks - yeah I saw an article that Uber wanted to focus more in Napa, but wasn't sure how that has been going since they started. We are planning on renting a car for other portions of our trip, but didn't really want to have to worry about one person being the DD. Thanks for the info!

Washington DC...
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4. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

Has anyone had any experience using Uber on the weekends? I'll be staying in Calistoga in mid-September and was hoping to rely on them for transportation.

St. Helena...
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for Napa Valley
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5. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

You can test it out yourself. This coming weekend, log on to the Uber Rider App, search for 'Calistoga, CA' and see how many Uber cars are available.

Most Uber drivers cluster around Napa and eventually make their way up valley over the course of the day. There are 2-3 Uber drivers who live in St. Helena, park their cars at home, turn on the Driver App and wait for a ping. So far, I have not noticed any Uber drivers anywhere around Calistoga, because that's not where the action is. If they do a drop off at one of the Calistoga wineries, they head back down valley asap to get within range of the next ping.

I wouldn't rely on Uber as a transportation strategy here. If you think you want to risk it, then register for Lyft and Sidecar as well. Between the 3 services, you might be able to stitch together enough options so that you won't get stranded. Also, have the phone numbers for the local taxi cab companies available as well.

san francisco, ca
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6. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

Did you use uber? I was thinking of trying that this weekend. How did it go?

Houston, Texas
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7. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

No. We went on a Monday and it ended up being too difficult as the majority of the valley doesn't have many drivers around. We went with a driver who drove our rental for $25/hr. Highly reccomend that. May be easier to arrange cabs/uber on weekends though. DM me w/ any questions!

8. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

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Houston, Texas
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9. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

I used http://www.napasonomawinetastingdriver.net/ . My driver, Mike, was very knowledgeable and reliable. Highly recommended.

Portland, OR
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10. Re: Uber to get to and from wineries?

Glad to find this thread. I'm looking for a reasonable way to get from either St. Helena or Napa to Santa Rosa on Wed., 10/8, later afternoon. Uber routes right now seem focused on Napa to Yountville. I'm flying into and out of Santa Rosa, driving w a colleague on winery business to St. Helena, but then we part ways.... I have plans to visit some winery friends around. Santa Rosa, but it' spooking hard to get there.... Thanks in advance (I have a separate thread on this as well.)

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