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You’ve likely taken countless Lyft rides by now and understand how the system works. You book a ride, drive to your destination, and then rate your driver after exiting the vehicle. But did you know that drivers are also giving you a passenger Lyft rating after every ride?
If you’ve ever opened Lyft and requested a ride, you’ve probably looked at your profile and wondered how to improve your rating. Your Lyft rating tells future drivers what type of passenger you are — they’re more than just an interesting stat you can check out on your app. They actually have an impact on how quickly you’ll be picked up on your next ride.
In this article, we’ll discuss what your Lyft passenger rating means, how it impacts the level of service you receive, and where you can check your rating. We’ll also go over what’s an acceptable Lyft rating and how you can improve if your rating is tanking.
What Is Your Passenger Lyft Rating?
Your passenger Lyft rating is an overall grade of how exceptional you are as a passenger. Passenger ratings live on your profile for all of your drivers to see.
Passenger ratings are used to maintain a high level of safety and comfort on the Lyft platform. They encourage good behavior on the behalf of the passenger and weed out the disruptive passengers who are frequently unruly.
Drivers are asked to rate their experience with you as soon as they drop you off. They consider several factors — like timeliness, cleanliness, and politeness — and then provide an assessment that’s factored into your cumulative passenger rating.
Likewise, you’ll have the opportunity to rate your driver to reflect how positive the interaction was. This is your chance to provide honest feedback regarding your ride.
Your Lyft rating is more than just an interesting statistic that lives on your profile. It can actually affect the level of service you receive on the Lyft platform.
Why Are Lyft Ratings Important?
You may be thinking, “Does my Lyft rating even matter?” — it does. Your Lyft rating has an impact on how quickly you’ll be picked up.
When you put out a request for a ride it will be sent to the nearest driver in your area. This driver will be able to see your rating and has the option of accepting or declining.
Since it’s implied that riders with lower ratings have been problematic with previous drivers, your potential driver will be less inclined to accept a request from a low-rated passenger — especially during peak hours. They’re almost sure to pass on a passenger who has a 4.5 rating when they could just as easily accept a passenger who has a 4.9 rating.
If that driver decides to decline due to a low rating, your request is then sent to the next nearest driver. This driver also has the option of accepting or declining, and so on until you find a match.
When a driver finally decides to accept your request, they could be several miles away which means a longer wait time for you. If you want fast service, be a good passenger and drivers will be jumping at your ride request as soon as they see it come through.
So what’s the magic formula to how Lyft calculates your rider rating?
How Is Your Lyft Rating Calculated?
Lyft ratings are calculated on a one to five-star scale rating system, with five being the best. Your driver will rate you after each ride, which is then added to your cumulative average rating.
Your Lyft rating is the average grade from your last 100 rides. If you haven’t taken 100 rides, then it’s the average of the rides you’ve taken.
New riders who have few rides under their belt may notice substantial fluctuations in their rating if they receive unsatisfactory feedback. This may seem alarming at first, but as long as you continue to be a responsible and polite passenger your rating will stabilize once you’ve taken more rides.
Now that you understand how Lyft ratings work, let’s look at how you can check out your rating on your app.
How to See Your Lyft Rating
Lyft makes your rating easily accessible in your profile so you can monitor your rider performance.
Your profile can be found by tapping the menu button in the top left corner and selecting “View profile.” You’ll then be able to see your rider rating and other statistics — like how many rides you’ve taken, ride history, and how long you’ve been riding with Lyft.
In the early days, you were unable to see your passenger rating on the Lyft app or website. The only way you could hack the system was to ask your driver what your rating was since they could see it.
Luckily, Lyft followed Uber’s footsteps and this isn’t the case anymore. Passengers are now reminded that they’re being rated after every ride which encourages better behavior and positive interactions with drivers.
Head to the app and take a look at your rating. Here’s how you can tell what type of passenger you are.
What Is Considered a Good Rating?
The best Lyft rating is five stars, but it’s next to impossible to maintain a rating this high. You shouldn’t sweat it if your rating isn’t perfect. In fact, drivers consider ratings that are slightly below five to be the ideal passenger.
A five-star rating is what you should strive for. It’s the highest rating you can receive. However, a five-star rating typically means you’re a new or first-time Lyft user.
That’s at least what drivers will be thinking when they see your request. It’s very rare that a rider can maintain a perfect five-star rating after using the service for an extended period of time.
4.9 to 4.8 Stars
Drivers love passengers who are in this range. This rating means you’re a fantastic passenger that has plenty of rides under your belt. You’ve been able to maintain a high rating even though you’ve taken your fair share of rides.
Drivers don’t expect you to be perfect. They’ll understand that you know how the game works — be respectful to them and they’ll return the favor.
4.8 to 4.7 Stars
You’re still not in bad shape in this range, but it does mean that you’ve had multiple mishaps along the way. Probably nothing too serious, besides for a few too many drunk nights out with your friends or multiple late arrivals at the pick-up location.
Change a few things around and you should be able to lift your rating in time. No worries for you yet since drivers should still accept your ride requests most of the time.
4.7 to 4.6 Stars
This is where you start to slide into the danger zone. Unfortunately, this means you’re not a very good Lyft passenger. You’re a repeat offender when it comes to getting under the skin of your driver.
Whatever you’re doing wrong, fix it so you can keep getting prompt service on the Lyft platform. Otherwise, drivers will continue to decline your requests and your wait times will be unbearable.
4.6 to 4.5 Stars
Unfortunately, you must be a pretty unpleasant passenger if your rating is this low. It’s time to take a good hard look in the mirror and figure out why you’re receiving bad review after bad review.
Start changing your ways because Lyft drivers will gladly pass on your request the moment they see it come through. It’s almost guaranteed that you’ll have longer wait times every time you try to request a ride.
Plus, you risk account deactivation if your rating drops to a dangerous level. Lyft hasn’t openly advertised deactivating rider accounts for poor reviews, however, Uber will kick you off their platform if you consistently receive low ratings. It’s best to play it safe and assume Lyft could follow suit.
Tips for Improving Your Lyft Rating
Have your ratings slipped to the point where you need to start improving? Here are a few tips for raising your ratings and getting back on track.
Improving your Lyft rating doesn’t require much effort. Passengers who are on time, follow the rules, and are respectful to their drivers will improve their ratings without a problem.
Most drivers hand out five-star ratings like candy on Halloween. The trick is to avoid behavior that results in a bad rating.
So what gets under a driver’s skin that they feel inclined to rate you poorly? Here are a few ridesharing no-no’s you should avoid:
Show Up On Time and At the Right Location
Drivers love passengers who show up on time. Their time is money and the longer they have to wait, the less income they bring in. Being on time will start your trip off on the right foot.
This also goes for being at the correct location. Make sure you’re at the same pick-up location that you plugged into the app. Drivers that have to drive down a few blocks because you’re not at the right spot will not be too happy.
This applies to everything in life, but especially when you enter a Lyft vehicle. Mind your manners and remember to say please and thank you.
Also, make sure that you don’t dirty your driver’s vehicle. Don’t just hop in the vehicle if you have muddy shoes or leave behind garbage from your late-night snack. The little things go a long way.
Follow the Rules
Follow the rules Lyft has put in place — it’s that simple. Don’t bring open alcoholic beverages, smoke, or vape during your ride.
You should also avoid trying to cram too many people into the vehicle. This won’t go over well with your driver.
Tip Your Driver for Great Service
Tips make up a substantial portion of a rideshare driver’s income. Tips aren’t mandatory, but it’s a nice gesture to tip if they provided high-quality service.
Put yourself in their shoes. They’re working long hours and a generous tip could make their night.
Stingy tippers risk receiving a low rating. Drivers are able to edit passenger ratings within 24 hours of the drop-off. Although this is unlikely, drivers could look at their ride receipts and connect the dots as to who tipped what for each ride during their shift.
Don’t Get Too Disorderly
This might be the most unpleasant encounter drivers have with riders. Passengers who are inebriated, obnoxious, and disruptive are likely to receive a poor rating.
A driver shouldn’t have to worry about you asking them to blare your favorite song at an obscene volume. They most definitely shouldn’t need to worry about someone throwing up in their back seat.
Rideshare platforms play a huge role in getting people home safe after a night out on the town. Be as respectful and in control as possible and your driver will happily give you a lift.
Glowing Reviews = Fast Service
Lyft ratings maintain the status quo on the Lyft platform. You rate your drivers to ensure only the best drivers remain active employees. The same goes for you. Drivers are rating you to let other drivers know what type of passenger you might be.
You have nothing to worry about if you’re a respectful and responsible passenger. You’ll continue to receive glowing reviews. However, if you’ve broken the rules a few too many times, you’ll see your ratings drop and you’ll experience longer wait times.
Follow our recommendations above and you’ll happily enjoy quick service every time you book a ride.
Brett Helling is the owner of Ridester.com. He has been a rideshare driver since early 2012, having completed hundreds of trips for companies including Uber, Lyft, and Postmates. In 2014 he acquired Ridester.com to share his experiences with other drivers. His insights are regularly quoted by publications such as Forbes, Vice, CNBC, and more. He is currently working on a book about working in the Gig Economy, expanding his skill set beyond the rideshare niche. Read more about Brett here.