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My First and Last Day with Uber Flex

5446 Views 25 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  FAC
Uber Flex just arrived in Denver yesterday and today was my first and last day! I showed up with a pile of 80 boxes I was supposed to deliver. Som how I got them in my car. I asked them how they expect me to deliver all these in time. They said they are all close by. Which they were kinda. I had a group of packages in one area then drove 7 miles to deliver another batch of boxes. Then directed back to the same area 7 miles away where I started. Had a delivery where the person doesn't live there anymore. Wasted 30 min on phone with support finally told to return the box to amazon at the end of day. I mentioned there is no way I'll be able to complete all the deliveries. I was told to finish my deliveries.

Returned to the Amazon that's 20mles from me two hours on the dot after my block was finished to deliver my final non-deliverable package. I was told I'll only get paid for the four hour block. So I argued that I was told by support to complete my deliveries and come back to warehouse. So technically I should get paid. The guy mentioned he'd contact someone about it but can't promise anything.

Over 75 miles driving delivering packages for 6hrs. And stuck in rush hour on the way home. On one the hottest days of the year and my AC went out. Oh yeah the gps had me take the toll roads so had to pay additional $7. So I averaged less than $10/hr before expenses.

Flex makes Uber look like a dream job!
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1st day can be difficult, but some great tips have been posted here by the users.

How to read the app and navigate it helps a lot. Check the map for deliveries close in the area and do those.

It takes some time, but after you do it 4-5 times you definitely get the hang of it.

I would give it another shot before quitting and ask for some advice on here

Thanks for the advice. Curious, most people were not home. Do they tip?
Sounds about par for the course for a first day. Fortunately (or unfortunately:(), you got to see some of the zingers that get thrown at you out there. Just because it's packages instead of passengers, it's not all cake. Support is.....well, something else. Warehouse staff is a mix of adept and inept. Customers are similar to pax in that they're seldom there when and where you expect them. Most deliveries are unattended (left at door).

They're usually a little happier than a rideshare pax because you're bringing them a bit of instant gratification, they don't intend to offer a gratuity of any kind (they're somewhat happy about that), and if they do interact with you it's only for a brief few moments. Most say thank you.

Try it again and see. Next run might not be as bad.
After the letter I got from support today, I'm done! They make uber look ethical!

As my dad would say, you get your good judgement from your bad. $10/hr to haul their packages and refusal to pay me when I not only am told to stay late, but they added a delivery requiring me to return to warehouse! Grrrr!

Maybe flex is great for others not for me.
Without any identifiable details please, in a nutshell what did support tell you ?
I knew they weren't going to pay 6 hours for a 4 hr block, but I'm curious how
they broke the news. What was the scope of their bu;lsh't this time ?
Response #1:
Thank you for contacting Amazon Flex!

Thanks for the question regarding incremental payment for exceeding the duration of your assigned block.

Earnings for Amazon Flex are computed on the basis of a block of work, not hourly compensation. While all blocks should be completed within their allocated time, some blocks may finish earlier or later. The allocated amount of time is computed using Amazon's sophisticated forecasting and mapping technologies. The earnings associated with the block are not contingent on the actual completion time. If you finish early, Amazon does not adjust your earnings down and likewise if you finish late, Amazon will not adjust your earnings up.

As stated in the Terms of Service, Amazon requires that all delivery partners comply with all laws, rules, and regulations pertaining to the delivery service they provide, including, but not limited to, all applicable traffic laws, rules and regulations. You are responsible for understanding the local laws in your area, including parking regulations.

Please note that you will not be reimbursed for mileage, parking, or tolls. As an independent contractor, you are responsible for your own expenses.

My reply:

Not only was yesterday my first day, it was my last day. Im told by support to stay late and finish my deliveries but now Amazon refuse to pay me for my time? Especially when I go out of my way to return a non deliverable package to Amazon as instructed?

Re tolls I followed your GPS which directed me on a toll road. Parking expenses I understand. Tolls I do not. At least Uber and Lyft pay tolls. Your ethics or lack thereof is unbelievable.

I was also an early adopter when it came to Amazon. I opened my account around 1998 when no one heard of you guys and you sold only books. I find it challenging to even do business with you anymore.

I expected better from Amazon.
Response #2

Thank you for submitting feedback about Amazon Flex.

We are sorry to hear that you have had a negative experience with Amazon Flex. We want to provide an exceptional experience for Amazon Flex delivery partners and greatly value feedback from our delivery partners.

We appreciate that you took the time to write to us, and we've passed your feedback along to the appropriate team for review.

Thank you,
The Amazon Flex Team

My Reply:
I'm confused by your response. I was told by Amazon support to complete all the deliveries even though it would exceed the time block. In addition I wasted about 30min+ calling support re an undeliverable package. I couldn't proceed until I was told what to do. Which was return the box to the Amazon warehouse. Which added additional time as returning the box was essentially my finally delivery your system didn't account for. Support also told me to complete all deliveries and no one at the warehouse told me to return at the end of the block if I didn't finish the deliveries.

I did exactly what Amazon directed me to do only to be told later I won't be paid for the extra time or to return to the warehouse even though I didn't finish my deliveries.

The error was on Amazons side but you refuse to take responsibility for that error. I did the honest and honorable thing to take the extra time to return a package with the incorrect address on it. You are penalizing me by not paying me $36 for following Amazons instructions. I would have expected this by Uber who eventually makes it right. But never by Amazon. I really believed Amazon operated with ethical outstanding business practices I experienced as a customer. I had no idea you treated people who work for your company so unfairly.

Is it worth $36 to be right and to lose a long time customer and newly acquired driver?

Also please send me a copy of the TOS so I can review them again.
Still waiting for a response.
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If you want to quit that's fine, but reading and understanding + applying experience is very important. You could have taken all the packages back at the 4hr mark and still got paid..... Come online and ask for advice, in a way that is why everyone is here. If you quit at every problem you run into life you're not going to get far.......

My suggestion , give it a few more trips, learn some tricks and ask for advice. If it still isn't for you then it's fine to leave, but don't just give up at any and every problem you run into as life is going to give you a lot of them.........

My $00.02 this job is VERY EASY, only problem is securing full-time hours which is why I decided to pursue a more stable job with benefits

I appreciate your feedback. I love the forum because of the reasons stated above. People on here are awesome with sharing their experiences and wisdom so others can learn and be more successful.

As for Flex, you all can have my blocks. Delivering packages isn't for me. Even if I didn't have the issues I experienced.

Since I only drive uberSelect, I average $25-30/hr before expenses but after uber takes their cut. Not only that, I really enjoy driving pax. I've had one bad and very scary incident in all the rides I've given. My pax got violent in the car punched the seat, sucker punched his buddy riding in front then grabbed me. I didn't file charges because i wasn't injured. The pax gave me $15 tip. And filed a serious incident report. Other than that I've met some of the most interesting people and engaged in great conversations. I also enjoy being of service of another to help them safely get from A to B. Especially if that means they don't drive drunk.

Flex just isn't my thing. Especially how I was treated by support. Uber support leaves a lot to be desired but eventually they make it right. Even if it takes 5-6 emails. I just don't see Flex making it right. Don't want to work for a company that treats their workers so indifferently.

I wish you all the best and hope you all are successful driving Flex. It's just not the gig for me.
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You should really reconsider. You had a bad route or bad first day. In the 30 routes or so that I've done, only 3 have lasted 4 hours or more. That includes the second I pull up to check in to the very last package. The majority lasts roughly 2.5 to 3 hours.

My first week recap was posted here: https://uberpeople.net/threads/my-amazon-flex-experience.77697/

My longest day was when I had 22 packages. Took about 4hrs and 20 mins and ended up in 4 towns. The most packages ever was actually today: 67 packages and took 3 hours and 3 mins (from check-in to returning to warehouse for undeliverable package).

Get the packages in the car quickly and get out of there. No clue how people spend 40+ minutes loading their car. Typically, start on the bottom right of the cart and work backwards and up. The top left of the cart is usually the first drop offs. Each route will have 5-8 chunks. Look at the numbers in top right of label, 0895, 0900, 0905, 0910, 0920, etc. The lowest will be the first set of deliveries and so on. All of the packages with these numbers will be delivered before the next chunk.

And for God's sake, stop knocking/ringing door bells. Simply select "left at front door". Of all the packages I've delivered, only 2 actually required signatures. Just leave them at the door, like every other package you've ever received.
I got 80 packages my first day! I even mentioned to the guys at the warehouse this seems excessive. How they possibly believe I can make so many deliveries in a few hours. Never once told I could come back at the end of the block with packages I didn't have time to deliver.

Figured out quickly not to ring the doorbell when UPS was delivering an Amazon package to same place at same time. Took their lead since they are professional delivery drivers.

I organized my packages by location in my car. What frustrated me is I had a bulk of deliveries in one area, then taken 7 miles to deliver another bulk, then directed back to the same area to make more deliveries to location I started. Then taken back to the other area for one more delivery before directed back on the highway.

I might try it one more time. Probably not. Just not my thing.
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Also, their navigation system does suck. At time it will give you inaccurate directions. At other times it will forget a package until the end to deliver that should have been delivered 2 hours prior. You will easily figure out how to detect these, look at the summary list, etc.
You nailed it! Thank god I had my iPhone with me so I could use waze. Is it possible for me to jump ahead if I look at my itinerary and notice they have a screwed up route and deliver packages later in the list before completing ones before them so I'm not wasting time and gas going back and forth?
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UTX1 thanks for the nice response. I do my best to be thoughtful and honest and treat others with respect. Considering yesterday was their 2nd in operations in Demver, I'd thought they would be more supportive as their team was new too while working out the kinks. Uber is far from ethical but eventually I end up with someone from support who does care about their drivers even though Travis doesn't. I don't see that happening with Flex.

I guess I'm angry because as a customer, Amazon wouldn't think twice about refunding me $36. Always been treated great the very few times I've had an issue with an order over the nearly 20years I've been a customer. I guess I expected the same courtesy as a driver. I was sadly disappointed. Knowing now how they treat their delivery people, makes me want to think twice before making another order as a customer. I really expected more from Amazon. At least I knew going in Uber was unethical. But at least eventually Uber makes it right. If Flex makes it right, I will consider driving again for them. But I'm not going to hold my breath.
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I have an idea.....

(remember how Lucy would say this to Ethel on I Love Lucy
just before the zany antics would commence ?)

What if you gave it another shot, FAC and they gave you just a few packages,
something that would take say about 2 hours to complete and get paid a 4hr block?
Would that be enough to make it "even", at least in your position and the way
this has made you feel about the process and the gig ? If you think that might do the trick,
just schedule another block, preferably on a late afternoon or early evening route,
be the last one in line or close to it and see if your route isn't a bit less burdensome.

Just an idea, mind you. You have to be okay with it in order for it to be okay, you know ?
I'm sincerely thankful to all you guys for your time and encouragment to help out a stranger. You guys rock. I'll give it another try and let you know how it goes!
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'Atta Gal ! I was hoping you'd at least think about it.

Guys, our work is done here. Let's go pester the sh;t outta somebody else .:D:D:D

Somewhere out there it's a sad story. Midget driving Uber is about to give up !
He's tired of sitting on phonebooks all day for 85c/mile. We have to try and save the day......
(queue superhero music)
Your awesome and funny too UTX1
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