Uber is taking a punt on river trips in Cambridge in the UK running trials this week on 40-minute tours which can be booked using its app. Picture: AP

London - It has changed the way we hail taxis for good, and has started to sink its teeth into takeaway food home deliveries.

Now Uber is taking a punt on river trips in Cambridge in the UK running trials this week on 40-minute tours which can be booked using its app.

The trips for up to eight take in the university city’s most popular sights and cost £10 (about R185) a boat. 

They are being run in conjunction with local firm Tyrrell’s Punting, with proceeds going to charity.

But rival boat firms dismissed the offer as a gimmick, saying chauffeured trips usually cost from £15 per person, while self-guided punts are around £30 an hour. 

Ivan Krushkov, booking manager at 110-year-old Scudamore’s, said: "They are pretty much giving it for free. It would be a different price if they are going to do it seriously."

The punts trial is part of a recent expansion into new areas for Uber, which added a London public transport option to its app in April and then launched Jump electric bikes in the capital.

Uber’s Fred Jones said: "What better way to finish the summer than punting boats booked through the Uber app?"

For now this does seem as a once off promotion and its not been extended to any Uber services outside of the UK or Cambridge.

The e-hailing service operates in over 60 countries and 400 cities worldwide with and expands it's services on a monthly basis including in Africa. 

Daily Mail