Lesson 3: Refreshments, Music And Conversation

Hello and welcome to third lesson of course 4 at the Rideshare Academy. In this lesson, we will cover appropriate refreshments, music and conversations during the ride and how to deliver the most comfortable atmosphere to your passenger. This lesson is broken down into three parts.

Whether you have completed lesson two or are just jumping in now, make sure to review the courses previous material so that you have a clear understanding of the terms and topics being covered.

Refreshments For The Rider

During their ride your passenger may be thirsty or want something to snack on. It is common to put off these needs when you have someplace to be and you can make the ride for them much better if you can provide these things!

But which refreshments are okay? Lets start with the obvious one: Water.

Water is always a good thing to have readily available, especially if you drive in a city that gets a little toasty during certain times of the year. Cold water is usually preferred, so buy a 24 pack of bottles and keep them in your fridge at home if you can then unload them before you go online.

We wouldn’t recommend driving around with a cooler in your trunk, though it’s not uncommon. However, what if a passenger needs to store something in the back? They won’t be able to ride with you if you cannot accommodate that. Play it safe and use your fridge.

Of course they will become look warm over time. You can compensate for this by freezing half the pack and storing them together in your trunk. Most people don’t mind room temp water on the other hand. Just make sure that you don’t let water sit in your car for days at a time. Warm water is gross wouldn’t you agree?

Here are some other beverages you can safely keep in your car:

  • Iced Tea
  • Black Iced Coffee
  • Gatorade or Powerade

As far as food goes, you want to stick to prepackaged snacks that have a long shelf life. Consider common allergies and avoid snacks that are made on the same equipment as tree nuts or soy products. Not to say nuts aren’t a good food to have available but the last thing you want is an accidental allergic reaction in the middle of traffic!

Safe foods to keep in your car:

  • Individually packaged nuts
  • Small packages of cookies
  • Small packages of crackers
  • Small bags of chips
  • Gum
  • Individually wrapped chocolate or candy

Pump Up The Jams

Music can vastly change the atmosphere of the ride, whether that be in a good way or a bad way. Few and far between passengers want complete silence so always have music playing when you pick them up.

Ask them if the music is okay before you start the drive. If they say they would prefer a certain genre then use a playlist generator like Pandora or Spotify to pick something and let it choose the music for you.

The Uber app has an integrated Pandora player that customers can use to pick their own Pandora playlist during the ride, through your phone. You can inform them of this before hand and let them be the DJ! Just make sure that your phone is hooked up to the cars Bluetooth or via aux cable.

If the rider leaves the music choice up to you, be mindful of what kind of music you play. Illicit graphics or loud, chaotic sounds are not everyone’s cup of tea. A safer bet would lo-fi hip hop or trance music. Jazz is always classy and most people enjoy it.

Avoid things such as classical music as well. That can come off as to serious and you want to keep things light.

Conversation Is Key

The larger chunk of your rides will be with people who are open to conversation. This can intimidate some people, but we are here to tell you that it is easy and you can follow a simple formula!

First, lets look at some of the typical conversation topics that you can initiate:

  • Talking about the weather.

This can be a little dry, but sometimes the weather is unusual or a inconvenience to the majority of people. This is a safe, easy topic that anyone could comment on.

  • Asking the passenger if they are from the local area.

Many people who use ridesharing services are tourists who may not know the area well. Enlighten them on your favorite places in town. This is a great conversation starter because even if they are from the area, you have a common place to speak about local goings on.

  • Asking about the passengers weekend.

Be careful asking personal questions. As with most people your passenger doesn’t want to feel like the driver is prying. But you can ask about someone’s weekend in a fun and innocent way.

For example “It was really nice out this weekend, did you get to enjoy it at all?” is an appropriate question that lets the rider give as much or as little information about their weekend as they want.

Here are some examples of inappropriate conversation topics:

  • “Who did you hang out with this weekend?”
  • “Do you have a boyfriend/girlfriend?”
  • “Where do you work?”
  • “Who did you vote for in the election?”

Things that are personal, or involve personal details should never be breached. As the driver you need to maintain a professional report with your passengers.

Politics are almost always a bad idea. They may be common place in most peoples lives but it often involves deep personal opinions. Don’t risk it! Keep things fun, light and professional.

Refreshments, Music And Conversation Recap

Before moving on to the next lesson, reflect on the following questions and answer them in your head.

  1. What beverage should I always have ready for passengers?
  2. Which foods are best to avoid allergens?
  3. What kinds of music are inappropriate for a ride?
  4. Can the passenger pick their own playlist?
  5. How can I initiate a conversation with my rider?
  6. What topics are appropriate for discussion?