More legroom, less conversation for Uber riders who pay

In this May 10, 2019, file photo a banner for Uber is draped on the front of the New York Stock Exchange before the world's largest ride-hailing service holds its initial public offering. Uber is letting passengers request a more comfortable ride if they’re willing to pay. The ride-hailing giant launched “comfort” rides Tuesday, July 9. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Uber is letting passengers tell their driver in advance that they’d like a little less conversation, and more legroom, if they’re willing to pay.

The ride-hailing giant launched “comfort” rides Tuesday. Riders are guaranteed a minimum amount of legroom in cars less than five years old and can use the app to tell drivers they don’t want to talk. Comfort rides cost 20% to 40% more for time and distance than standard Uber rides.

Uber says it’s responding to requests from business travelers and other riders.

The move could help Uber boost revenue, which could nudge the company closer to profitability.

Uber has yet to turn a profit and lost $1 billion in the first quarter of 2019. Executives have said it could take years to turn a profit.

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