I had heard a lot of buzz about Uber and I am now glad to say that I just had a first-hand experience using the transportation app on a recent trip to New York. I was about to take a cab into the city when my friend Stevie suggested that I use Uber, he said “Uber is paramount to the invention of the wheel in terms of an advance in modern transportation”. I gladly listened to his advice. It took less than five minutes to download the app, put in my credit card info and like magic (BAM!) an Uber car appeared. For those of you who don’t know, Uber is an incredible taxi/car service which fully functions via an app.
- When you open the Uber app, you choose between a taxi, a black car, or an SUV.
- The base price, price per mile and price per minute will then be displayed. The app will also give you a price quote based on your destination.
- Uber uses GPS to show your location as well as the closest car option. Based on your car choice and location, it will give you a fairly accurate time estimate of the driver’s arrival.
- Uber will then display a picture of the driver you choose along with his/her rating (five stars being perfect) so you know exactly who is coming.
- Should you need to contact the driver, you have the option to either call or text message the driver.
- Once the driver is on his way, you can watch as a small car inches towards your location on the map.
- A text message alerts you that your driver has arrived.
- The best part comes next: When you reach your destination, simply exit the car and your credit card is charged the fare + 20% tip. You do not need to sign anything, make change, or even show your credit card.
- Immediately after the trip has ended, you will receive a text message receipt of the exact amount charged.
As a result from the rating service, the drivers are all very courteous and pick you up in extremely clean cars.
Here is the bad news. Although Uber wants to come to Miami, our current taxi/car service regulations do not allow for the service to operate here. I say if it is good enough for NYC and if it is good enough for San Francisco, then let the service operate and have the market decide! The taxi situation in Miami is a disaster, particularly at peak times and busy weekends which is exactly when Uber is most useful. It is well known that Miami has a bad reputation for dirty taxis and equally as many rude drivers. Uber is the yelp of transportation and forces accountability on a broken industry.
This is not just a blog post about a great service but a call to action for anyone in Miami who has ever waited over an hour on a rainy night for a taxi, for anyone who has ever had to walk 30 block on New Year’s Eve and for anyone who has sat in a foul-smelling cab with no AC and a rude driver. Please follow Uber Miami on twitter and support them in their quest to bring this great service to Miami.
If there is one food I pride myself as an expert with, it has to be pizza! During my college days, I even wrote an in depth research paper on the history of pizza. Although NYC has us beat on the best slice, Miami Beach does have some great options!
Bella Napoli Pizzeria is a Hertzberg family favorite. Since 1980 Bella Napoli has been bringing in the locals and it’s a known hang out for Miami Beach police officers and south beach locals. It’s a delicious go-to hole in the wall spot, family owned and operated. I like their pizza and they have a good chicken cacciatore but the real highlight is their minestrone soup, they make it from scratch. Plus the pizza seems to travel well with delivery. So that’s Bella Napoli, nothing fancy, plastic checkered table cloths and that kind of thing.
Piola, really good salads. Cool place to eat. Have a glass of wine and a pizza. Their pies are thin, crispy and come right out of the wood burning oven. The pizza is best eaten at the restaurant as it doesn’t seem to travel very well. Maybe because it’s so thin? Who knows, but it is good!
I also like Pizza Fusion. Similar to Piola with good salads and GREAT pizza that also does not travel well… at all. However, on the plus side they only use organic ingredients and even have a gluten free option!
Primo’s south of fifth is a Miami Beach original and is open until 5am on the weekends. Primo’s boasts that their pizza is a “Product of Brooklyn” and the big (greasy) New York style slices are great.
Pizza Rustica first opened on Washington Avenue and has now grown to a couple of locations nationwide. Not my style but I have to put it on the list just because they have such a large cult following. You’ll find square pieces done in an almost Chicago like style. Pizza Rustica is open nearly 24 hours and seems to be enjoyed by locals and tourists alike all day (and night) long.
Lucali is a very new addition to the pizza scene, recently opening a second location straight from Brooklyn to Miami Beach’s growing Sunset Harbour area. Very cool décor, cool vibe, cool place, but that is an expensive pie! It’s a 27 dollar pizza and an extra three dollar charge for each topping so I think I ended up with a 33 dollar pizza. It was a pretty good pizza and I enjoyed it but the jury is still out on this one.
- This last spot to make the list isn’t exactly on South Beach but if you are up to a short drive, Anthony’s Coal Fire Pizza is hands down the best pizza in Miami. It’s crispy and can be complimented with great sides, great salads and they make amazing baked chicken wings…the chicken wings are really really good, on par with the pizza. I don’t think they deliver but they do take out. Perfect Sunday night kind of spot.
Enjoy your new found pizza joints and as always please leave comments and suggestions, I will be glad to see them!