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I often get asked by passengers what they can do to raise their Star Rating, which is situated below their photo in the passenger app. This is the Uber GPA for passengers. If it drops low enough, they’re unable to drive.
The last thing an Uber driver wants to deal with before a trip is opening their driver account only to learn that an Uber deactivation has happened to them.
Uber sometimes sends out an email before they disable a driver account, but more often than not, the driver tries to log in with no luck, only to find out from support that they’ve been disabled.
We’ve gotten quite a few questions about Uber drivers being deactivated recently, and after finding out about Uber’s deactivation rampage in New York, we figured we would put together a guide about what to do if it happens to you.
My Uber account has been canceled a few times in the past three years, and I can tell you, it’s a frustrating process. Whether you’re trying to go online, or just taking a ride, it’s never fun.
The Uber partner deactivation process is pretty straightforward: Either a support representative will reach out and let you know your account has been disabled, or you just won’t be able to log into the Uber Partner driver portal. Either way, you can’t get online.
Common error messages displayed in the Uber Partner app if you’ve been deactivated will include:
- “Your driver account has not been activated”
- “The partner account you drive under has been disabled”
- “You are waitlisted”
- “Your account has been placed on hold”
- Your profile status gets stuck as onboarding or waitlisted
If you see a message like this displayed in your Partner app, that is not a good sign and means you’ve probably done something wrong that Uber didn’t like.
If you get deactivated, don’t freak out. There are plenty of things that an Uber driver can do to get deactivated, but luckily many of these are simple problems to solve and if you go about contacting Uber correctly, a resolution can hopefully be reached.
Before we dive into Uber driver reactivations, it’s good to be aware of the different reasons a driver can be deactivated. According to the Uber driver deactivation policy, all of the following are reasons you can get taken off the platform:
- Ratings: If a driver’s average rating falls below a certain point, they can be deactivated. UberX drivers must have a star rating above 4.6, UberSELECT above a 4.7, and UberBLACK above 4.8. If your ratings fall below these numbers for your Uber type, you risk deactivation.
- Unsafe Driving: Driving in a manner that endangers passengers is a one-way ticket to deactivation. Obey traffic laws at all times.
- Background Check Changes: If Uber becomes aware of a change in your criminal background or driving record, they can deactivate you. The company isn’t constantly checking these things (that would be expensive and impractical), but they do perform random checks.
- Inactive Status: Drivers are encouraged to give at least one ride every 90 days. If you can’t make that quota, reach out to support to ensure good account standing.
- Serious Complaints: Serious complaints like sexual harassment and driving under the influence are not tolerated by Uber, who has a zero tolerance policy for these issues. These offenses will lead to permanent deactivation. Refer to Uber’s Code of Conduct for more examples of violations of this nature.
- Post-Ride Contact: There are a surprising number of drivers who contact riders after a ride. Stalking a rider post-trip is creepy and can get you banned quick.
- Expired Documents: Letting important documents such as vehicle registration or proof of insurance expire makes your vehicle not street legal, which is a very common reason for Uber Partner deactivation.
- Terms of Service Violations: Violations of Uber’s Terms of Service is a very easy way to get banned from driving. Whether it’s riding with an extra companion, advertising another rideshare service during a trip, falsified trips, or something similar, you may get banned.
Most of these reasons for deactivation are pretty obvious, but as a driver, you may very well be doing some of these things without realizing them. Little things that you don’t think are a big deal are sometimes a big deal to Uber, so keeping these items at the front of your mind can help keep you active.
It’s pretty obvious when a driver account is deactivated. You’ll either receive an email or text from support, see one of the messages from above displayed in the Partner app, or simply not be able to log into your account and go online.
If you suspect you were deactivated by Uber, the easiest way to confirm this suspicion is to contact Uber driver support teams and ask.
Keep in mind it could take them a little bit to get back to you about the issue. Support staff must identify the issue, see what happened, and then reach back out. Stay patient with them and be as helpful as possible without giving into emotions like anger and frustration.
For most issues, getting Uber to reactivate your driver account is fairly easy.
In my case, the three times my account fell victim to Uber deactivation was either due to a technical glitch or some type of problem in the system. I outlined the problem in as much detail as possible in my initial email then was as helpful as possible, which resulted in a timely and friendly reactivation all three times.
@Uber_India @UberINSupport @travisk you don’t care for yourcustomers. Account deactivated due to your technical fault, still not activated. pic.twitter.com/cQBDl3gCIE
— Ashish Sharma (@ashish7579) April 14, 2017
Sometimes the cause of your deactivation can be easily fixed. In these cases, reactivating your Uber account is simple.
- Documents: Upload necessary documents
- Low ratings: Email Uber and ask if you can take a class to be reactivated
- Inactivity: Email support and let them know you’d like to drive again
- Other reason: Ask Uber to reactivate you — sometimes this works
However, there are a couple instances where an Uber account reactivation may not be feasible.
Uber takes a very hard stance against sexual harassment and driving under the influence, among other issues. If you’ve been deactivated for an issue related to either of these, your future driving with Uber is incredibly bleak.
- Driving under the influence
- Stalking a passenger
- Outright trip or referral fraud
- Other serious passenger complaints
My Uber Rating
If you aren’t deactivated yet, it’s important to stay that way. All drivers should periodically check their ratings to ensure good standing.
Checking an Uber rating is pretty simple with the new update to the app.
Open the Uber app, then look at the bottom menu bar, then look for the tab titled “Ratings.”
Clicking on that tab will pull up a bunch of information related to your rating, including the overall driver rating, acceptance rate, and cancellation rate. This section also includes other feedback such as rider compliments, rider feedback, and tips for best practices on how to improve your rating.
Uber Deactivation: My Take
I may get roasted for saying this, but overall I think it’s pretty simple to maintain a good account standing and avoid Uber deactivation on your driver account. A lot of the most common reasons for getting deactivated are common sense, and with a little foresight, drivers can avoid most problems.
If you do find yourself on the wrong side of the spectrum, however, it’s important to remain calm and reach out to Uber for clarification. After all, customer service is here to help and will do everything they can do get you reactivated and back on the road.
Have you been deactivated by Uber? What are your thoughts on Uber deactivation tips? What did you do to successfully reactivate your account?
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.