To whom it may concern,
My name is XXX. I wanted to write and express to you why I have chosen to leave Uber Columbus and turn in my iPhone. When I read the ad's on Craigslist for Uber seeking drivers, I was drawn to the $1100 a week that was listed. Knowing that I only wanted to work part-time, I took that number in half and that was my expectation. I went out, spent several hours in Columbus and on some days, even after being out in the busy areas for 9 hours only have gotten 3 rides for under $25 bucks total. As you can see, that makes it really not worth it. I do not live in Columbus but commute there for work, I have a job in Columbus so some days I would work sometimes 8-9 hours before I had to go to my real job, which made for long days and little reward, and some of that time was during surge pricing.
There are a few other deciding factors in which I must explain why I am leaving. I had intended to stay and just work when I can, making a few bucks here and there is better than no money, but I have to feel that the compensation is fair, and with the new lowering of rates this past week I do not see it as fair. I have had more $5.00 rides which in reality is only $3.20 after Uber gets its $1,00 safe rider fee (which goes to what? I have to pay for background check and vehicle inspection due to Columbus regs) and also the 20%. In some cases, I drove for 10 minutes or more to pick up a ride that turned into a $5.00 ride, which is not worth my time. Also, I find Ubers advertising to be deceptive. Uber advertises that partners have no monthly fee, but in reality there is a fee. I am required to use your iPhone and your charging me $10 a week/$40 a month for its use, on top of the safe rider fee, on top of the 20%. If there was more of a use than just the Uber network it maybe worth it, but if I have to call/text a rider for any reason I have to use my own phone, so in reality I am paying 2 phone bills a month when with for example Lyft I only need one. I would much rather use my own personal phone, which has a bigger screen, and a much faster data network which would get me directions/navigation much faster to the client over your iPhone which the navigation cuts out and the screen flickers and on a few occasions froze and I could not end a ride and had to spend time with the client waiting for the ride to end. I think the driver app should be updated to show the driver exactly what they are getting paid, when the driver sees a ride and it says $45.00, it really should say $35 as that is what the driver is getting, also I think if the rider enters a destination into the app, the driver should be able to see it before arriving, because if I am 20 minutes away and get a ping and its a $5.00 ride, why would I drive there? I think the continuous lowering of fares that I have read about is a huge mistake. Iv never had a rider complain that Uber was expensive, they actually usually tell me they would pay more for the service because the drivers are clean, the cars are clean and its a much better experience than a cab, so why short change the drivers? Also, tipping, Uber does not support it yet the competitors do. I have passengers all the time telling me they would tip me if they could but Uber does not allow it in their app, that is costing me money that the riders are willing to give because they are happy with the service but they have no way to give it to me. I also find it crazy that a rider can request a ride, driver show up, click arrive and then the rider click cancel ride and the rider not be charged, that happened to me a couple of times. If a driver shows before they cancel, they should pay the fee for that.
Finally the final reason is the city of Columbus licensing regulations. I have to pay for a car inspection (yet Uber says the safe rider fee goes towards that partly) and another background check (which again safe rider fee covers according to uber, but with my current full-time job, I have about as strict as a background check as one can get) and a license in order to drive in Columbus. With inspection and everything that is $100 out of my pocket, or if you look at my last invoice, Id only net $35 bucks if I paid for the license. I understand Uber is going to give those completing it before X date X amount of dollars but Uber is requiring those drivers to have 150 rides in a month, might be easy for some, but those of us working regular full-time jobs would have a very hard time doing so.
In closing, I have enjoyed my time driving for Uber, I met some really great people in my short time driving, I met some interesting people was paid for doing so. But the compensation, after Ubers Fees, plus gas and taxes really has me breaking even and not making it worth my time as I am working for free. If Uber would consider paying the licensing cost for the drivers and either change the fares or lowering the Uber commissions, plus making it honest advertising as Uber gets much more than 20% per ride when you fact in the safe rider fee and data connection fee then I would consider coming back and I would be able to promote the business. Right now, I have to refer people to Lyft, who gives the drivers a good wage, who does not charge extra fees and who seems to value the drivers. I do not drive for Lyft nor do I plan to, but I do suggest my friends use them when they ask who I would use.