Once you’re a Lyft or Uber driver, it’s necessary to never get complacent and keep up with new trends. In short, there are plenty of ways to go even beyond what you can learn in these videos.
We understand that a video program designed to go nationwide couldn’t possibly teach you everything you’ll need to know. That’s because so much of what will help you is local information. Local tips and tricks. Local secrets! And those really can only be had by knowing and talking to other drivers in your area.
A national educational program for drivers like this one, can teach you broad outlines and general principles that will make you a much better rideshare driver. But we can’t teach you all the details and tips and tricks about your local area.
So, Sam helpfully gives some suggestions on how to get in touch with those from whom you can learn that kind of information.
You may be watching the Ridester videos because you’re considering becoming a rideshare driver and you want to learn more about what all is involved. If that’s the case, then one of our tips about getting more local information might not be available to you. But if you are already a driver, this tip will definitely help you.
Meeting Drivers in Your Local Area – is Key
If you’re a new-ish driver who wants to learn even more about driving especially as it is specifically related to your local area, there are two ways you can do that. One is, you can connect with drivers in person and the other is you can connect with drivers online.
Each method, in person or online, is actually as useful as the other. You might think you’ll get more info in person – but that’s not necessarily true. The online communities that have sprung up around the country for each local area really have grown into communities of real relationships between drivers. Friendships can even develop in these online communities. The advantage to online communities is that you can access them anytime, you’ll also have access to information from far more drivers online than you could ever possibly meet or talk to in person. So you’ll have a broad group of drivers to draw information from and to learn from.
But don’t discount the importance of meeting drivers in person as well. It’s amazing what kinds of tips guys will share with a total stranger who they’ve met in person just a few minutes ago! So you’ll get a different kind of information in person that you might not ever get online. In person a more senior driver can talk to you for a couple of minutes, get an idea of where you’re at and really give you tailored and personalized advice. He can also see your car and give you advice on that.
But you say, ‘How can I meet drivers in person? I don’t know any drivers!’ Well, there’s a very easy answer to that. If you are already a driver, head to the airport! Most cities now have rideshare queues at the airport. So, just head into the parking lot where the queue is held and get out of your car, walk around and introduce yourself to other drivers… all in person!
It’s really a good experience if you haven’t done it already. If you’re on the sky side, you might be surprised at how open other drivers are to talking to pretty much anyone and everyone is willing to talk to them!
How Can You Connect to Uber Drivers Online?
In the first few years of Ubering, it was literally impossible to find any information online from other drivers. But today things have improved dramatically on that score. Today there are literally thousands of online driver groups all around the country – and the world for that matter.
A lot of groups are on Facebook. Just search on “Uber drivers” and the name of your city on Facebook, like “uber drivers atlanta” or “uber drivers miami”.
In these forums, drivers brag, complain, commiserate, analyze and try to come up with ideas to make things better.
They often brag about how much they made in a day or week or on a single trip. They’ll often show screenshots of their earnings. And sometimes, if you’re a careful observer, you’ll be able to pick up clues about where they were and when they were there when they got that great trip. Or had that great week.
Other times they bitterly complain about low pay, working conditions, changes to the apps and things like that. You can also pick up some good tips and information from those complaints – if you’re a careful reader!
You’ll also often see them analyzing new changes to Uber and Lyft’s apps. It’s amazing how many times they get it right. I’ve seen drivers come up with a theory about why Uber is doing this or that and I’ve thought, ‘Hmm… maybe, but we don’t really know.’ And a few months later an article will come out where Uber admits that’s exactly what they’ve done.
A good example of that is “upfront pricing”. We began to see drivers noticing that their passengers were being charged higher amounts than Uber was telling drivers the passenger was paying. And of course Uber was paying drivers a commission on the lower amount.
“Upfront pricing” is a scheme whereby Uber gives passengers the total and final price – upfront. When a passenger enters their pickup location and destination, Uber’s computers will calculate a price and present it to the passenger. They’ll say, ‘the total cost of this trip will be $8.60’. And at the end of the trip, that’s exactly what the passenger will pay.
But, if the driver is able to complete the trip in a quicker amount of time by using a shorter route than the one Uber based the price on, Uber will pay the driver, not a commission on what the passenger paid – as they did for their first few years in business. But they’ll pay them based on the mileage and time rates they have assigned to drivers in each city.
So in this example where the passenger was charged $8.60, the driver may have only racked up true charges of $6.36. The driver will then be paid 75% (usually) of the $6.36 instead of the $8.60.
Well, these stories started popping up online with more and more frequency over the course of many months. Then, suddenly one day news reports start coming out where Uber admitted that’s exactly what they were doing! The drivers, meeting together in online communities were able to spot it, and alert other drivers to it – long before Uber ever made a public statement on it.
Examples of LOCAL Information You Can Get Online
We can talk to you from here and give you some great advice and tips on how to be a great driver and earn more money. But, we can’t tell you where the queue lot is at the Miami Airport!
For that, you need to talk to local drivers. And here’s a typical recent conversation from the Miami forum on a popular driver’s website.
One driver starts off a thread complaining about the dirty conditions of the restrooms at the MIA staging lot.
Another driver follows up a little later, saying:
“Can someone tell me where this staging lot is even located? I attempted to do MIA exactly one time but gave up because I couldn’t find the staging lot after circling like 5 times. Called Uber, no help…..and then I had an airport employee tell me it was the “cell phone lot” on the outskirts of the airport…..which said I can park there for up to 30 minutes….”
Obviously, that question was from a new Miami driver who needed some help from fellow local drivers. After you weed through all the joking responses that are sure to follow, you eventually get to the answer! But you might have to weed through responses like this, first:
“On the corner of Never Go St. and Stay Away Ave.”
Obviously, that’s a joke, but as in all good humor, there is a lot of truth in it as well. This driver is trying to tell the newbie – don’t waste a lot of time hanging out at the airport.
Finally, someone responded with this helpful map from Lyft:
Okay, how do you go beyond the scores? I mean, like I’ve said before, this is a crash course. I gave you the bare basics and probably a little more.
But how do you get better? How do you go to the next level? Now, this is going to be a shameless plug, another one: Get my other courses.
I worked really, really hard on them. Get “The Elite Driver 101.” It has everything. You’ll save a lot of money. But if you can’t get that or an addition to that, this is some of the best things.
Go to RideShareGuy.com. Really great resource. Harry’s a great guy. He cares about drivers. Lots of information there. Read everything you can find.
Go to Facebook. This is probably the most important thing, and I’ll say it again in my other courses. This is the most important thing you can do.
Go to Facebook, Google your area. So let’s say you live in New York: New York Uber Drivers, New York Lyft Drivers, New York Rideshare. Look at all the different groups that you can find.
Join them and learn from them. Look at the questions, ask questions. First just go back months and months and months of history. Read all the comments, read the questions, read the trolling, read the snarkiness.
But you’re going to get a lot of gems out of that. And that’s going to be one of the most important things you can do because those are specific to your context.
There are a lot of things I’m going to say that is going to be applicable for everybody, but there’s a lot of things that are unique for Minneapolis-St. Paul, which is where I’m at, that wouldn’t be true for you if you’re in OKC.
So know your context, do that. So do Facebook groups, meet up with other drivers, interview them, get to know them, learn from them, go on YouTube. There’s a lot of great guys out there.
There’s “Rideshare Genius,” “Rideshare Professor,” “The Simple Driver,” all great resources. Okay. I’m not the source of all of it, but I hope I created the most conclusive course that I learned a lot from these guys.
So learn from them, too. And there’s a host of resources out there for you to continue to go to the next level.
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