Thursday, November 06, 2014

Sidecar Drivers are earning more per mile than Lyft and UberX drivers

Sidecar drivers are receiving better compensation than their ridesharing counterparts. According to a post, past trip numbers were crunched and this showed that Sidecar drivers are earning on average of $3.29 per mile. This is much higher than Lyft and Uber per mile averages, which this article stated their drivers are earning $2.40 per mile and $2.95 per mile, sequentially. How are Sidecar drivers making more per mile than Lyft and Uber?

Sidecar features a driver marketplace where prices can be set without depending on PrimeTime and Surge Pricing to increase trip prices. Nevertheless, Sidecar drivers know to set the right prices and avoid overcharge future riders; otherwise they risk not getting a ride request. They won't charge $40 to drive a rider a mile.

In this marketplace, riders can choose the closest driver, best vehicle and select a driver they may like. It is all up to the rider. The cost of this ride is known ahead of time, so there are no surprises in the end like a nearly $500 ride home.

On Uber, surge pricing of 5X may cost a client $26 or more to travel 1 mile. Uber activates surge pricing whenever demand (clients) exceeds supply (vehicles). Special events, morning and evening commute, holidays, sporting events, busy airport times, and other factors may lead to high surge pricing. The higher these prices are, the more Uber makes in commission.

On Lyft, PrimeTime pricing will request passengers to tip 50% of the trip to their driver. Lyft won't take a cut of this 50% tip, which is noble of this ridesharing company to do this. Therefore, Lyft drivers can earn good money working during high demand hours.

Sidecar allows their drivers to make the price determination. It is up to the driver to set their personal prices. However, this driver knows that trying to overprice rides will result in no business. Occasionally, riders may request expensive rides to reach a destination much faster. The closer the driver, the greater chance they will have to land a trip.

One scenario where Sidecar drivers can earn more than UberX drivers is having ride filters. UberX drivers will receive multiple ride requests from far out, even outside of San Francisco such as San Rafael and other Marin County cities that peg this driver closest and the only available. Sidecar keeps their drivers in San Francisco via ride filters, where the majority of the ride business is thriving.

Sidecar drivers can set ride filters to accept ride requests within a specific radius after drop-offs and before pick-ups. There are also Back-to-Back settings to receive a ride request the moment a trip ends to reduce downtime. Sidecar matches their drivers with riders within a reasonable distance.

On UberX, driver may travel the entire city and through the surged areas, and not get a ride request. Clients are getting much smarter, knowing to wait until this surge passes to request rides. However, UberX drivers lose out since there is no in-app tipping feature. Clients want to tip drivers using their credit cards. This can't be done on the Uber client app. Moreover, drivers have no access to set ride filters to prevent distant ride requests from as far out as an 1-hour away. It happens quite often, and drivers are reluctant to ignore these trips or risk getting penalized with a low acceptance rate.

Additionally, ignoring ride requests may disqualify UberX drivers during promotional hourly guarantees. Enacting a poor cancellation policy to allow clients a free pass on no-shows and cancellations influence per mile earnings. Clients tend to play games with UberX drivers, almost the same strategy used on Lyft to request and cancel rides to influence business.

For example, a client requests a ride and is a no-show. They never respond to text messages and phone calls. Once this ride is cancelled 20 minutes later as a no-show, this client is given a free pass. Then, the client requests this driver again and inputs a rider destination. Before 5 minutes, this client cancels the ride. The games continues on, as the same client requests a third ride at another pickup address. They don't answer the phone to confirm whether they need this ride. The UberX driver cancels the ride, realizing this client is playing games. No compensation is given and valuable time is lost.

Uber has a poor GPS system. Pin drops are far off from client locations. A lot of time is wasted waiting for clients, whereas these two parties are miles apart. The drivers do their part with sending text messages, and calling a client after a reasonable amount of time has passed. If and when clients are located miles away, their driver must input a new address and travel to this location. All in all, 30 minutes is wasted and money is lost. In-app navigation is a problem area. It provides an inefficient route that clients question as being longer. A great UberX driver will use their personal phone, launching Google Maps to receive far better directions.

Technical problems make ending trips a challenge. Even if drivers perform the proper steps, the app is unresponsive. No rides can be accepted until this trip is ended. Finally, after 10-20 minutes of troubleshooting, the trip can be ended. UberX drivers experience problems ending trips in poor cell coverage areas. They are tasked with driving out to better coverage areas to end trips and reviewing whether any additional time added to this trip in order to perform a fare review. More time is wasted.

On the Lyft platform, some drivers are matched with ride requests between Twin Peaks and the Marina. It can take a driver 25 minutes to reach this pickup address. The Lyft driver communicates with this passenger the entire time. Once this Lyft driver reaches the Marina address, the passengers are no-shows and already took a taxi. They didn't inform the driver that they didn't need this trip. On the phone, this passenger refused to cancel the ride on their own. As a result of this action, the driver loses valuable time and money.

This brings us back to Sidecar. Sidecar recently updated their app to feature a countdown clock at the pickup address. If the rider doesn't show up in 5 minutes and can't be reached during this time, they are automatically charged a cancellation fee. Drivers are getting fairly compensated for their time.

Sidecar and Lyft drivers have a tipping feature so riders can leave additional money for a tip. Uber is lacking in this department, where their UberX drivers have no ideal way to receive tips on the ride app. Clients have requested to tip UberX drivers. However, Uber hasn't addressed this issue.

Sidecar has little app issues. Their drivers make as much as $3.74 per mile in San Francisco. San Francisco is probably the most competitive ridesharing market in the United States. Their ridesharing drivers (Lyft and UberX) make the most money in this market, though NYC is another great market to making excellent trip earnings. Sidecar is an efficient app that is transparent and lucrative.

UberX and Lyft drivers are banging out more rides to increase hourly earnings. In past emails, Uber claims that reducing fare costs will increase earnings and boost business. Lyft is also focusing on the hourly earning dilemma, as well. This article is right that working harder to make more per hour translates into spending more on resources such as gas. Drivers are glued to their seats, completing trip-after-trip with little rest between these busy hours.

It is like working overtime to earn what you once made in a typical shift. No person will want to work overtime to earn back what they lost and think this is a much better model. We choose to work overtime to make additional money. This flawed model of reducing pricing until they bottom out, hurts the driving community. It kills personal cars and increases gas consumption.

Sidecar has it all figured out. This is why their drivers are less stressed and make better per mile earnings. Furthermore, Sidecar riders are far more tolerable. The worst riders are on UberX, and then Lyft is close behind. Expect disrespectful riders on UberX and Lyft ride platforms.

UberX clients ignore seating requirements and want to stack additional riders into vehicles. These clients use ratings as an advantage to convince drivers to exceed maximum capacity. Clients hang outside of windows, vomit inside and outside of vehicles, tell drivers to run red lights, ask them to be more aggressive and speed, break doors, steal phone charging cords and deny this right in front of drivers, and many other forgettable events. It is not a positive environment driving on UberX. These risks put UberX drivers in an unfair position.

Sidecar is it! Make more for your time. Make each mile count. Drive passengers who care about you. See for yourself whether this article on is right about Sidecar.

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