Wednesday, March 23, 2016

3 UberPool riders to airport undermine total trip cost

Have you taken 3 riders to the airport? Do you know the airport charges every client the $4 fee? Take two clients to the airport and pay $8. Take three clients to the airport and pay $12. It is in no way a profitable trip for Uber drivers serving UberPool.

If UberPool riders are on surge pricing, this can help withe the bottom line. However, Uber drivers receive a small portion of the total trip cost on multiple rider trips. It appears that connecting riders pay a smaller share of the total trip cost. First UberPool riders initiating the UberPool trip foot the bill for a majority of the ride.

Why else should an Uber client take an UberPool trip if they will ride longer and pay a little less than an UberX? The only reason to get multiple connections from the East Bay is to use the carpool lane. If time is a factor, then riders can enter the bridge much faster with additional riders.

Otherwise, an UberPool trip from Berkeley to SFO may cost a rider $30. An UberX trip without traffic can cost a rider $34-$37. It really depends on which part of Berkeley a client is traveling from to take their trip to SFO. Not much is saved and the total time of UberPool rides increase the cost for first connecting riders starting the trip.

The travesty in driving multiple clients to airports is the $4 fee. A single client cost $4. Two clients cost $8. Three clients cost $12. Assuming the total cost of the trip is $30, Uber drivers are not left with much money after airport fees, booking fees and Uber commission are fully deducted.

Clients riding solo and/or with another co-rider are the best UberPool trips. We've heard of a connecting rider piggy-backing on an UberPool ride only paying $9 to get into SF. She shared a small portion of the fare, paid the $1.55 booking fee and split the cost of the toll, all which is included in the $9 cost.

Know that drivers receive much less money with airport fees being charged for multiple clients. If they accept close fares, they are seeing fare less of the total trip cost. At times, the airport will receive as much as drivers.

How can Uber revise this process? They should have minimum airport rides set in place. Drivers delivering UberX service are known to receive $4-$5 after all fees are deducted on close airport rides. As a result of this, drivers receive 50% and/or less of the total trip cost.

Airport rides are no longer good fares unless drivers travel far and away from bridge tolls. Accumulating too many bridge tolls can get drivers into serious trouble. Beware that airport fees apply to all clients entering the airport. The moment a trip ends, a $4 fee is deducted per client.

UberPool to SFO and Oakland Airport is not the best way to make money. Too many fees undermine the bottom line. Clients get a steal on UberPool trips to the airport. Drivers spend more time on these trips; they make less than on UberPool trips than on direct UberX rides.