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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I finally got my TNC here in Houston. In between jobs and figured this could cover majority of my bills without draining savings. Went online at 6:30 AM in Galleria and got a ping at 7 for a ride to the airport, not bad I thought.
I hung around the airport area for about 15 mins with no ping. Remember hearing something about Uber not allowing pickups there, not sure, so went to downtown area. I drove around then parked for about 30 mins, no pings. Moved over to Midtown area and I've been sitting here for at least 30 mins. No pings aside from the first one. Is this normal?
I'm not expecting to make a killing, work all day or anything. I'm doing this for side money and people interaction mostly. I don't expect to get pings nonstop either. But one ping in 3 1/2 hours?
What expectations should I have? Do I need to have the app open only or can it run in the background (open as I write this parked)? Should I keep moving and driving around or is it fine to park near (busy) areas? Kind advice is welcome. Thanks!
 

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First of all, the airport allows pick ups, but you must get a separate permit in order to pick up. (it's free) and you get in Terminal A - IAH. This permit is good for both Hobby and Bush. ) Just takes a few min. Bring all the paperwork you have left over from your TNC (that the city did not take, or provided you with) insurance, registration, TNC license. You do not need another physical or drug test because the airport uses your status with the city.

There is a separate lot for TNC to stay at. (on your map you will see airports are purple) Purple = No ping allowed. However, you may be waiting a few hours at that lot now to get a ping because they have initiated FIFO at IAH, and there are always at least 100 cars there. Sometimes it passes by faster, after all, a plane carries more than 100 people, (potential riders) and planes are coming in every minute at IAH. Hobby, is more about luck, Hobby does have a TNC lot, is at the cell phone lot, but you do not need to be in there to "get in line", like IAH.

To go 3 1/2 hours without a ping inside the inner loop is unheard of. You can expect a upward of 30 min wait sometimes, but not more than an hour. The drawback with the inner loop is you are more likely to get shorter rides. As you can tell already, longer rides are more lucrative.

To drive around is a waste. It is always better to park and wait for your next ride. Bring something to do. You can use your phone with the app running in the background, but make sure you go back to it every few minutes to make sure it didn't crash.

Every day is different and you will start to see patterns. Today, it sounds like you had better luck in the galleria. Even though I said to park and wait, you may want to hang out by the same spot you picked up the rider earlier from.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you so much Trebor! Very informative answer. I was hoping my luck was just down after that first trip because I couldn't see people sticking with Uber for very long getting one ping in 4 hours. Do you feel there are better morning than others for travelers? I will only be doing some mornings until I get a job (anticipating two offers within the next week) but I'm used to waking up around 5:30 or so, so the time doesn't bother me. Thanks for clearing up the app use. I started to wonder if I was doing something wrong by not getting a ping.
 

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Thank you so much Trebor! Very informative answer. I was hoping my luck was just down after that first trip because I couldn't see people sticking with Uber for very long getting one ping in 4 hours. Do you feel there are better morning than others for travelers? I will only be doing some mornings until I get a job (anticipating two offers within the next week) but I'm used to waking up around 5:30 or so, so the time doesn't bother me. Thanks for clearing up the app use. I started to wonder if I was doing something wrong by not getting a ping.
In the mornings, you will have more of a chance of picking up a rider heading to the airport. Of course, nothing is guaranteed, and there are many people who just commute to work via Uber.

As far as the app, it will allow you go get a ping if your using your phone, but as we know, mobile signals are not that reliable. They come off and on, and if your using it, your phone may reply back to Uber as "no signal" because for that split second, you are using all the bandwidth your phone can handle. Because of this, I have a tablet I play with on the Wifi's, and my phone just sits there waiting for a ping.
 

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Oh goodie! A newbie. Best thing to remember. Don't expect to much. And when a good day happens make it count. Other then that.

The office for that airport sticker is outside Terminal A at IAH down the sidewalk around the corner heading out bound.
 

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How ya digging that 28% commission? IAH is a 2 hour wait today. Hobby is always hit and miss. After a couple weeks you will discover hot spots, then you can find quiet spots you can park to masterbate in peace until that ping comes in. ;)
 

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Thank you so much Trebor! Very informative answer. I was hoping my luck was just down after that first trip because I couldn't see people sticking with Uber for very long getting one ping in 4 hours. Do you feel there are better morning than others for travelers? I will only be doing some mornings until I get a job (anticipating two offers within the next week) but I'm used to waking up around 5:30 or so, so the time doesn't bother me. Thanks for clearing up the app use. I started to wonder if I was doing something wrong by not getting a ping.
People are not sticking with uber very long. 3.5 hours seems a bit weird but it's possible you were between a ring is drivers. There are way too many.
 

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Start with this premise ... to get earnings of $40,000 you will need to drive ~40,000 miles. Sobering thought isn't it?
having said that driving around in the hope of getting a ping is a waste of time. research areas to wait.
parking close to Hotels (Marriott's and others ) that have a high percentage of business travelers are a good bet.
During wait times, get a good book or porn or something to pass your time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yea, I noticed that 28% grab today for sure. Bless your hearts for the people trying to make a living off this. Something interesting (frustrating) I noticed this afternoon after being parked next to Minute Made for 45 minutes, and within the "Surge" area going from 1.7x to 2.2x for the whole time, I got zero pings. I say interesting because as a user, I always assumed it surged when the demands started to get close to the supply of drivers. Well, that clearly can't be the case. I was online from 6:30-10:30 and then again from 3:30-6:30. I got 3 pings. But at least two were long distances. But yeah, that 28% is very noticeable. Yet the company can't turn a profit.
 

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Yea, I noticed that 28% grab today for sure. Bless your hearts for the people trying to make a living off this. Something interesting (frustrating) I noticed this afternoon after being parked next to Minute Made for 45 minutes, and within the "Surge" area going from 1.7x to 2.2x for the whole time, I got zero pings. I say interesting because as a user, I always assumed it surged when the demands started to get close to the supply of drivers. Well, that clearly can't be the case. I was online from 6:30-10:30 and then again from 3:30-6:30. I got 3 pings. But at least two were long distances. But yeah, that 28% is very noticeable. Yet the company can't turn a profit.
I had 8 pings between 3PM and 7PM. Although I was in surge areas a few times, I didn't get any pings while in those areas. It was just an average day as far as net goes. I missed my goal by 11 cents.
 

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Yea, I noticed that 28% grab today for sure. Bless your hearts for the people trying to make a living off this. Something interesting (frustrating) I noticed this afternoon after being parked next to Minute Made for 45 minutes, and within the "Surge" area going from 1.7x to 2.2x for the whole time, I got zero pings. I say interesting because as a user, I always assumed it surged when the demands started to get close to the supply of drivers. Well, that clearly can't be the case. I was online from 6:30-10:30 and then again from 3:30-6:30. I got 3 pings. But at least two were long distances. But yeah, that 28% is very noticeable. Yet the company can't turn a profit.
That is how surge works, but when surge comes on, so do drivers and riders know now to wait a few min. It is good to learn early, it is not worth "chasing the surge"

The trick is, find the hot spots that no one else knows about. It used to be you could only get a surge in the inner loop, but now you can get it anywhere.

When you are a rider, Uber came really fast right? It is a sign of too many drivers, not enough riders in that one spot.

So when you get a ping and the rider is 2 minutes away, it is safe to assume there are a lot of drivers in that area.
 

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I got a ping in Pearland on my way to the gas station this morning. I was one minute away. Sometimes, by random chance, a pax and driver will be co-located.
 

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I got a ping today downtown where the pax and I could see each other immediately. It was a 2.8 surge to IAH. Great way to finish the day.
 
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