20 Uber Secrets You Should Know
While governments and their citizens are still debating in many countries how they are going to deal with Uber drivers, this service’s figures are just increasing around the world. They are present in 58 countries at the moment, and Uber Technologies, the company behind the app, is already an over US$ 51 billion company with only around five years of age.
It puts them side by side with Facebook, the only other venture-backed startup to break the US$ 50 billion valuation so far – and yet the most famous social media network did it in seven, not in five years. But this is just one of the things you should know about Uber, so you can make the most of the app and enjoy a ride for less anywhere you go.
1. A baby has born inside of an Uber car
Maybe there are more out there, but at least one baby was born inside of an Uber car. A pregnant woman from Brooklyn gave birth to a baby girl in the back seat of a Nissan Altima. Ela Melanie, the 7-pound newborn girl, got a onesie from Uber; and the driver, Germaine Allen, took home tickets to the Knicks and a free car-wash.
2. The cars must meet some requirements
It isn’t any car that can be used to drive people around with Uber. The vehicle can’t be more than 10 years old, must have at least four doors, and pass through a personal inspection done by another Uber driver (with the title of “Pro Driver”) to check for exterior damage, cleanliness, wear and tear. They also verify the insurance and driver’s license.
3. The driver might be using a rented car (and phone)
If they don’t have a car that will pass the inspection, a driver who wants to join the Uber team is allowed to use a rented car. Of course, they will have to find a company willing to accept it or use Uber’s leasing program that acts as a middleman between drivers and dealerships. The company also offers a program so they can rent an iPhone for US$ 10 per week.
4. Tip is never included
Even if you are using UberX, you should be aware that the tip isn’t included in the fare, which is calculated based on time and distance and nothing else.
5. There is a rating system for you too
It is not only the driver who might not get 5 stars. Drivers can also rate passengers at the end of the ride – but you don’t have to worry much about it as most of the drivers will be happy to take a rude passenger instead of no passenger at all. Of course, if your rating is too low, you might get banned from the system.
6. A driver with a low rate might be “fired”
On the other hand, if the rating system accuses that a driver is scoring less than 4.6, his account will be deactivated until further discussion (or forever).
7. Drivers are encouraged to drive as many hours as possible
Uber drivers get a bonus if they exceed the expected number of working hours per week. And yet, most of them prefer to work only an average of 15 hours per week according to Uber data.
8. They don’t know where you are going beforehand
Despite the fact that you add a destination to your Uber app, the driver doesn’t have access to it. They only know where you are going when you tell them.
9. They are the favourites of many criminals
It seems that the areas with the highest number of prostitution, burglary, thefts, and else, have the highest numbers when it comes to Uber requests.
10. Celebrities take Uber too
An Uber driver has claimed to have taken Dr. Dre to a private party.
11. Some cities pay less
Some of the U.S. cities have a low-cost option for Uber services, which reflect on a reduction of almost 30% in the fare depending on the area.
12. You should try to make your location as accurate as possible
Don’t rely only on your phone’s GPS to pin your location. Depending on where you are in your house, it might lead the driver to the wrong street. So if you know the address where you want to be picked up, always enter it. If you don’t, drag the pin to the nearest intersection.
13. The navigation system isn’t accurate
As many drivers use the Uber app to pick up clients and a different navigation system in the same phone to find directions, it is possible that you get some weird information on your Uber’s navigation system. So don’t worry if you notice anything like this, it is just a lack of technological accuracy.
14. They don’t have your phone number
Despite the fact that they can call you to know how to find out your exact location, Uber drivers don’t have access to your phone number, just to a general one through the system.
15. Cancellations are bad for the driver
Some people call different ride services at the same time so they can pick whoever arrives first. The problem with it is that other drivers won’t get paid and waste their time and petrol trying to find you.
16. Get free credit through their referral program
If you manage to get a good number of people to sign up for Uber, you will receive around US$ 30 that you can use on your next ride.
17. You can get a refund
If you aren’t happy with your ride, you can call Uber support and make a complaint. Depending on the case, you might get a ride credit within 24 hours.
18. They can bring you a kitten or a puppy
On National Cat Day in October, Uber delivered cats for a play-date in Austin, District of Columbia, Chicago, and New York for US$ 30 per each 15 minutes (all money was donated to shelters). Same happened (but with dogs) on other 10 cities during the Puppy Bowl.
19. Safety standards have been improved
After a few incidents, Uber upped its safety standards creating a new Safety Advisory Board and Incident Response Team.
20. Travis Kalanick is a college drop-out and already went bankrupt
Travis Kalanick, Uber’s CEO, dropped out college to join a company which went bankrupt after being sued for a quarter of a trillion dollars. It didn’t make him give up of entrepreneurship, and he made of Uber a new digital marketing trend, inspiring many other similar services. His net worth is US$ 5.3 billion nowadays.
To sum up
Uber is a great system so you should enjoy all its features. Enjoy the tips above and if you want to know more just ask one of their drivers. They have a lot to share with you.