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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
A few nights ago, I pick up these two old ladies from a concert venue in the area. They were first time riders, as they'd indicated to me upon getting in the car. It was only their second time using Uber. As they both got situated in the backseat, the lady whose name was on the account was basically bragging about the service to her friend on how great it is, and easy to use. Anyway, as we start to pull off they both ask me how much is the ride going to cost? At this point I know its a surge (2.8), and the ETA was about 13 mins, but I honestly didn't have a clue how much it would be so I told them such. That's when the one lady spurted out "28 dollars! That's what it told me on the app." I said well "If that's what it told you, then I guess that's what it is." Now I've been driving for awhile, and I'm certainly not naive enough believe what everyone tells me, but it did sound like they were telling the truth. Long story short, we arrive at the destination, and the trip ends up being $53, of which I'm sure my rating was affected afterwards. It really got me thinking at that point. Is Uber blatantly lying or withholding information from customers during surge, and making drivers take the blame for it? When you think about it its the perfect scam, and not really that far fetched because anytime a customer believes they've been ripped off its always the driver's fault. No one ever even remotely thinks to blame Uber! What most people don't realize is aside from going a totally inefficient route, we have zero control over what is charged at any given time. We don't have meters we can turn on or off. So why aren't passengers educated on this so our ratings aren't affected by it? And why is Uber letting drivers continually suffer from wrath of riders when it comes to this? Obviously, Uber doesn't care. This is where the "churn and burn" model comes into play. Uber, can essentially rip off customers while letting drivers take all the blame. If a driver gets deactivated, we'll just replace him with a new one. It's almost like they know at some point we'll all eventually be deactivated and replaced. Some may survive, but most won't, and that's apart of their whole strategy. It's a classic "Boiler Room" way of running things.
 

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It would not be beyond the realm of technology to put a trip meter on the rider app during the trip - giving current (or near current) cost of trip so far.

I know arguments against it would be about too much like livery etc..
 

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It would not be beyond the realm of technology to put a trip meter on the rider app during the trip - giving current (or near current) cost of trip so far.

I know arguments against it would be about too much like livery etc..
I've gotten that question many times during a trip regarding the fare "What are we up to now?". Ine I blatantly told "I really don't know but keep in mind this is 1/2 the price of a cab"
 

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It says miles to destination on the map. Just take miles times per mile rate. Estimate minutes times the minute per minute charge and add them up. Depending on the length of ride, I add about $5 to that, and so far the fare has always come pretty close to my estimate. I try to overestimate, so they're happy when it's less, and usually say it's still less than a cab, like Oh My stated above.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It says miles to destination on the map. Just take miles times per mile rate. Estimate minutes times the minute per minute charge and add them up. Depending on the length of ride, I add about $5 to that, and so far the fare has always come pretty close to my estimate. I try to overestimate, so they're happy when it's less, and usually say it's still less than a cab, like Oh My stated above.
Actually, at 2.8 surge it's not, but that's not the point I was trying to make. Customers believe they are actually paying one price, and Uber is charging another. Doesn't matter how much cheaper it is at that point.
 

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Actually, at 2.8 surge it's not, but that's not the point I was trying to make. Customers believe they are actually paying one price, and Uber is charging another. Doesn't matter how much cheaper it is at that point.
i think what happened was she was a noob and did a fare estimate during no surge or just guessed to look good in front of her friend.
 

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Actually, at 2.8 surge it's not, but that's not the point I was trying to make. Customers believe they are actually paying one price, and Uber is charging another. Doesn't matter how much cheaper it is at that point.
I've only ever seen the passenger app show a range for the fare estimate, like $25-$53. It won't quote a set fare because of traffic, detours, etc. So it's likely your passenger didn't look at the complete estimate. I don't know if it adjusts during a surge but it might not and just be telling the passenger they are going be paying 2x the estimated price. That may also have been what happened to your passenger.
 

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When Uber is part of the conversation I am quick to let pax know that Uber sets all fares and has algorithms that figure out surge. Whether that helps or not I don't know, but if one out of every three pax believes me or remembers what I tell them about fares & surge at least it's a start.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I've only ever seen the passenger app show a range for the fare estimate, like $25-$53. It won't quote a set fare because of traffic, detours, etc. So it's likely your passenger didn't look at the complete estimate. I don't know if it adjusts during a surge but it might not and just be telling the passenger they are going be paying 2x the estimated price. That may also have been what happened to your passenger.
I know all that, but $25-$53? That's a really wide range for an estimate!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Like another poster said, if she thought it was $28 and it was a 2.8 surge, she probably got that mixed up.
If that's really the case, then why isn't Uber educating the riders on surge pricing as well? At the end of the day all drivers are affected by the Pax's inability to understand how exactly the system works. Uber by not doing anything is actually perpetuating the problem.
 

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I firmly believe riders must acknowledge surges over 2.0
A 1-star and a fast quick $50 ALL DAY LONG
Where do I Sign up.
 

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Legally, the app has to give an estimate, but it can't unless it has a destination put in, then it will give a range that can vary depending on route and traffic. I make rough estimates for my self by using a number between the miles and minutes it takes according to Google maps.

I always tell them we don't know until the trip ends because the app calculates once the trip is over, there are probably some legal issues too if you quote a price and it ends up being something else, so better to not say anything.

They probably assumed that the ride back would be the same as the ride there and didn't factor in the surge.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Legally, the app has to give an estimate, but it can't unless it has a destination put in, then it will give a range that can vary depending on route and traffic. I make rough estimates for my self by using a number between the miles and minutes it takes according to Google maps.

I always tell them we don't know until the trip ends because the app calculates once the trip is over, there are probably some legal issues too if you quote a price and it ends up being something else, so better to not say anything.

They probably assumed that the ride back would be the same as the ride there and didn't factor in the surge.
And Uber is capitalizing off their ignorance while we take the fall with our ratings hit. I mean...am I completely off base for thinking this way?
 

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If that's really the case, then why isn't Uber educating the riders on surge pricing as well? At the end of the day all drivers are affected by the Pax's inability to understand how exactly the system works. Uber by not doing anything is actually perpetuating the problem.
Uber won't educate Rider's on the difference between a 4 or 5 rating either on the driver. So good luck with surge pricing education.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Deceptively withholding information to mislead a customer is just as bad as lying. I learned that a long time ago.
 
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