Uber rolled out a new feature sometime last week that allows a driver to know when a passenger requests a long ride (rides that take over an hour) when the request is sent to the driver, before the driver accepts the request.
This new feature rolled out for me Friday afternoon. Unfortunately, I didn’t understand it so I couldn’t take advantage of it. Uber didn’t publicize this new feature before they implemented it. As far as I know, they still haven’t announced it. I haven’t received an email from Uber about it. Normally when Uber rolls out a new feature that’s part of its 180 Days of Change, they send out an email to its drivers.
I had a long trip request on Tuesday and the request looked the same as all the others. I had a long trip request on Friday and the request looked like the one shown above.
This is a fantastic feature. One of the benefits of driving for Uber is you decide when you’re going to drive. If you have a couple free hours, you can always jump on Uber and make some extra money. Before this new feature rolled out, you never knew where a passenger wanted to go until you picked them up. Once they got in your car and you began the trip in the app, Uber then told you were you were going.
If you found out a passenger was going to require more time than what you had available, you could always just cancel the trip and tell the passenger to get our of your car and try again. That could potentially get awkward very quickly.
Now that this new feature has been rolled out, I feel a lot more comfortable driving when I only have an hour or two. I don’t have to worry about accepting a trip that I cannot take because of my schedule.
Why not always tell the driver where the passenger wants to go? Because if a passenger only wants to go a few miles away, a lot of drivers wouldn’t accept the trip request. This behavior, in my opinion, is problematic. It’s not good for Uber if passengers get the impression requesting a short ride is not something they can count on.
Passengers should feel as though they can always count on an Uber driver getting them promptly and safely to their desired location, even if it’s only a few miles away. Some of the most enjoyable trips I’ve had were with passengers going a short distance. Now that Uber has added the ability for passengers to add a tip, you never really know how much money you’ll make from a trip, even it’s short drive. The first day I drove after in-app tipping was added to the app, I had a passenger add a $2 tip to a five buck trip, making it a lot more profitable.
Knowing that Uber is not done with its 180 Days of Change. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next.