Ride-sharing services such as Lyft and Uber will soon be required to pay fees to operate at the Martha’s Vineyard Airport.


Uber, the smart phone-based ride sharing service, has announced its official launch on Martha’s Vineyard. In a press release the company said the ride sharing option is available on the Vineyard and other “beach towns across the East Coast” as of 5 p.m. on May 22.

Uber provides an experience different than most taxi rides. The first clue, when an Uber driver arrived at the Harbor View Hotel Tuesday evening for a trip to the Steamship Authority terminal, was an enormous chocolate Labrador riding shotgun.

Current town regulations governing taxicabs do not extend to riding sharing networks such as Uber, the West Tisbury town counsel said.

Island taxi drivers appealed to local government this week to address Uber, a ride sharing service they said could dismantle their industry. A letter signed by 11 taxi drivers asked selectmen to “protect the public from unlicensed and unregulated taxis operating within Edgartown.”

Ride-sharing service Uber is testing the waters on Martha’s Vineyard. While there are no firm plans to expand Uber service to the Island, the company began advertising for drivers this week. Local cab companies said they fear Uber would quickly put them out of business.