If there’s one thing I’ve learned as a rideshare driver these two past years it’s this: never take advice from a YouTuber. Specifically, advice on driving for Uber or Lyft.
Unaccompanied Minors has been a hot-button issue with many YouTube Uber and Lyft drivers. The YouTube channel Dustin is Driving published a video entitled, “Uber-This Is What Happens When Unaccompanied Minors Try To Scam Drivers For A Ride.” It features a video from Dave the Uber Slave, another Uber driver who makes YouTube videos.
Just how does the unaccompanied minor attempt to scam Dave? By requesting a ride using his Lyft app and then expecting to be driven to his destination. In other words, doing what millions of other people do when they request a ride. This is somehow a “scam.”
In the video, Dustin said Dave handled the situation perfectly. I strongly disagree. Dave displayed terrible customer service skills in dealing with the unaccompanied minor. He speaks to the minor through a slightly open window while the 15-year-old stands in the rain. The minor cannot hear him. Dave speaks to him in a condescending, passive-aggressive way, recording the entire encounter for his YouTube channel.
Do not call passengers names
Dave says things to the rider you should never say to a customer. At one point, he calls him a brat. That’s not right. There’s a way to deal with an unaccompanied minor that’s both professional and not at all combative.
All Dave had to do was explain the policy, apologize for the inconvenience, cancel the ride, and leave. That should all take no more than 30 seconds.
When canceling, he should have canceled due to an unaccompanied minor. It’s one of the reasons Lyft presents to you when canceling a ride. Did he do that?
Dustin incorrectly states that Dave had to sit there for five minutes to get a cancellation fee. This is false.
When canceling an unaccompanied minor request, do not commit fraud
When you cancel a ride because of an unaccompanied minor but fail to select the correct reason, instead indicating the rider did not show up, you are attempting to defraud Lyft. This is against Lyft’s Terms of Service. From section 10 – Driver Representations, Warranties, and Agreements:
f. You will not attempt to defraud Lyft or Riders on the Lyft Platform or in connection with your provision of Services. If we suspect that you have engaged in fraudulent activity we may withhold applicable Fares or other payments for the ride(s) in question.
Drivers attempt to defraud Lyft because it pays an automatic cancellation fee to the driver when a rider is not where they said they would be. The driver must wait at least five minutes before canceling to collect this fee.
Lyft will still pay you for canceling because of an unaccompanied minor, but you will need to contact customer service to get the fee.
Contrary to what Dustin said in the video, don’t lie when you cancel a trip. Remember, driving for Lyft or Uber is a privilege, not a right. You are an independent contractor. They can deactivate your account for almost any reason.
You should always strive to do better
You should always be thinking about how you can do things better. I replay trips in my mind and try to find ways I could have done them better. Guess what? I almost always find things I could have done better. That’s because I’m not perfect. I’m a human being.
Once I find something I could have done better, I try to incorporate it in future trips. I like to think it’s one of the reasons I have high feedback ratings in both Lyft and Uber.