Uber says it has “completely reinvented the way drivers accept rides” with a feature called “upfront rates,” which shows drivers exactly how much they’ll be paid for a trip and where they’ll end up after dropping a rider off. . In the announcement on Friday, the company says the change is part of its drive to make driving more flexible for its rideshare service. Uber also plans to roll out a feature that will allow drivers to see other ride requests in their area so they can choose specific rides they want to take.
For drivers, the changes, which have been tested in selected locations, could mean fewer trips canceled because a driver doesn’t really want to get to the destination, or realizes it won’t be a very profitable ride.
According to a prepayment support document, the amount shown to drivers before accepting a trip is based on “various factors, including base rates, estimated trip length and duration, pick-up distance, and price increases.” The document states that if the rider changes the delivery address or if there is “unexpected traffic” along the route, the fare will be adjusted. The number also doesn’t include things like tips or waiting times.
The document does warn that the move to prepaid fares, which will be rolled out “to most of the US” in the coming months, could mean that some types of rides will be less rewarding for drivers. Examples include “long and relatively fast (traffic-free) journeys” and “travels to areas of high demand”. However, it also states that the new system will help drivers earn more on short trips, high-traffic trips, trips that end up in an area with fewer riders, or trips that require them to travel a long way to reach the rider.
Uber did not respond immediately The edge‘s request for comment on which areas of the US would not receive advance payments.
In addition to prepaid fares, Uber says it will roll out a feature called tripradar more widely, which will give drivers a list of nearby ride requests. Drivers can pick the rides they want from the list, and if Uber decides it’s a good match, it gives them the job. (An article from Uber says it will pick which drivers will get their pick based on the average wait times for drivers and drivers.) Uber also says drivers will still get individual ride requests, but they can use trip radar to “see a different trip.” find something that might work better for them’.