Before Uber existed, getting a ride home required a special skill. Passive people would take longer to reach home because they allowed aggressive taxi hailers to steal their rides. Innovation improved technology, creating a reliable ride platform to secure rides in real-time and monitor this status.
Why would this person struggle to get a ride home? On New Year's Eve, taxi services are usually in extremely high demand. There is no guarantee to find a cab ride home. Limited supply of taxis/cabs and high demand for ride would mean that many riders got stranded and/or waited longer to reach home.
With UberX, Lyft and Sidecar, riders on these platforms have access to many vehicles. If there are no vehicles within the intermediate area, this ride app will send out a request to the closest driver in furthermost regions.
This ridesharing driver has 20 seconds to accept the ride request. Therefore, an unclaimed ride request can continue to repeat in the system until a driver accepts it. It may time time to secure a ride, but at least riders now have multiple options to get a ride.
Imagine life before these ride apps hit the transportation scene. One previous UberX client shared that he would hail a cab until his arm got numb. Then, this client would move into another area to repeat this same process again. It was like a working a job to secure a cab ride.
Uber, Lyft and Sidecar make getting a ride much easier. As competition continues on, the cost of rides and new promotions will drive down prices. Riders are the real winners.
Be thankful there are additional alternatives to get a ride. The cost of a trip is historically at an all-time low. The same ride that would cost $100+ would now run you $60, give or take $10.