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Monday, January 25, 2016

Cost to Pickup Clients

Uber drivers may travel far to retrieve their clients. There is no compensation between ride acceptance and client pickups. Upon reaching pickup address, most drivers sit and wait outside. As a result of this extra waiting, Uber clients influence overall driver earnings.  

In retrospect, Uber drivers may invest 20-30 minutes to make a minimum fare of $5.35, $3.20 after $1.35 safe ride fee and 20 percent and/or 25 percent are deducted out of this total. Some airport fares net drivers only $4-$6 after airport fees, Uber fees, and safe ride fee. Nevertheless, airport fees represent the dark side of airport rides. A Berkeley to SFO trip cost $35 now, but only pays the driver $20 after all expenses are deducted. In the Summer of 2014, Berkeley to SFO cost clients $60. Surged SFO rides could net drivers $78 after fees. Those days are far gone.

Uber drivers spend a large percentage of time retrieving clients. These Uber clients usually make drivers wait longer at pickup addresses. They're rarely waiting at pickup locations to enter Uber rides. Given all this time to get ready, clients show no respect keeping drivers waiting outside.

After 10-50+ minute pickup times, you'd think clients would stand outside and/or at least notify their drivers. It doesn't happen that often in which clients enter Uber rides within a few minutes or less. Despite Uber clients holding their drivers to high standards, they don't reciprocate identical standards.

A lot of trips involve longer than expected pickup times. Typically, San Francisco requests range from 1 minute to 19 minutes (depends on time and supply of vehicles). Outside of San Francisco, ride requests increase from a few minutes to as high as 50 minutes. Of course, skilled Uber drivers would never accept a 30-50 minute ride request. However, promotions require 90 percent acceptance rates to activate guarantees. It is risky to reject requests that may impact promotion requirements.

Uber significantly reduced fares to stimulate business. They assume that lowering fares will increase ride requests, thus helping Uber drivers to earn more money. This perspective is deeply flawed.

Uber doesn't seem to care whether clients make their Uber drivers wait. They don't take into account the time and distance drivers travel before starting trips. All this time is invested into minimum fares.

January 2016 is the worst month ever. An Uber driver reported earning less in the past 5 weeks than they earned in 4 days in November and/or December. Driving with Uber with these restricted guarantees is awful. At least 67 percent of all trips must originate from San Francisco, otherwise Uber drivers will be given "Outside of San Francisco" guarantees.

Back-to-back ride feature complicates the acceptance rate. According to Uber help, drivers can ignore back-to-back ride requests while on current UberX trips. But ignoring ride requests will penalize drivers, reducing acceptance rates to initiate warnings and potentially disqualify them from promotions.

Retrieving clients, waiting outside, inputting wrong addresses and ignoring pin drop issues impact driver earnings. Even though clients get great deals on rides, they don't return the favor to help accommodate drivers.

Clients make drivers wait, wait, wait. At the end of trips, rude clients rush drivers to end trips while still occupying vehicles. They overlook their costly mistakes that cause drivers to lose valuable trips.

At this current time, UberX and UberPool fares are rock bottom. If fares are short, don't expect to make a lot. Uber clients are fully aware of surge pricing, another incentive that Uber vows is helpful to increase driver earnings but is underutilized by price-conscious clients.

The losers of ridesharing are Uber drivers.