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How To Effectively Deal with Common Rider Issues

While working as an Uber or Lyft driver can be an extremely rewarding and lucrative job, it always pays to be prepared. Any customer-facing job will inevitably involve unexpected situations which means equipping yourself with as much knowledge as possible to keep both you and your riders safe and satisfied. Here’s a selection of the most common issues and how you can deal with them.

My Rider Is Late – How Long Should I Wait?

Both Uber and Lyft are recognized for offering an efficient service to meet rider needs, which is why riders are advised not to request a ride until they’re ready to take it. With both Uber and Lyft, after you arrive, you can cancel the ride after two minutes on shared rides, or five minutes for regular rides, if the passenger has not arrived. Riders will be charged a cancellation fee which is paid to you as compensation. While on Uber, you can cancel a ride at anytime, on Lyft, you now have to call the rider before you are allowed to cancel the ride. If they do not answer, you can access the pop-up option to mark them as a no-show after five minutes of waiting.

On Lyft, you are paid wait time from the moment you arrive to pick up your passenger. On Uber, you are paid wait time two minutes after you arrive to pick up your passenger. However, the waiting time rate on both Uber and Lyft are very low in every market. It simply doesn’t pay to keep waiting more than two minutes on shared Uber (UberPool) and Lyft (Lyft Line) rides, or five minutes on regular rides.

I Believe That My Rider Or Riders Are Underage

In the vast majority of cities, drivers are not permitted to take unaccompanied riders under the age of 18.

From Lyft.com:

The Lyft Platform may only be used by individuals who can form legally binding contracts under applicable law. The Lyft Platform is not available to children (persons under the age of 18) or Users who have had their User account temporarily or permanently deactivated. By becoming a User, you represent and warrant that you are at least 18 years old and that you have the right, authority and capacity to enter into and abide by the terms and conditions of this Agreement. You may not allow other persons to use your User account, and you agree that you are the sole authorized user of your account.

From Uber.com:

In most cities, a rider must be at least 18 years of age to have an Uber account and request rides. Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by someone 18 years of age or older on any ride.

If you think that the person requesting the ride is under 18, request they cancel. If they refuse, cancel the request yourself. Uber makes this simple in certain markets, as their cancel screen includes various reasons why a driver would cancel. Simply pick “unaccompanied minor”, complete the cancellation process and be on your way. You should receive a cancel fee shortly.

If this reason doesn’t appear on your Uber cancellation screen, wait the required five minutes, select no-show, and cancel. To be safe, send a quick email explaining the rider was a minor.

Uber driver cancel screen

With Lyft, you have to call the passenger first, then cancel the ride, and then email Lyft to tell them why. They’re usually quite receptive and will issue the cancellation fee. However, they could make the process a whole lot easier if they handled this situation like Uber.

My Rider Has Changed The Destination During The Trip Or Has Cancelled The Trip

If your rider changes the destination during the journey, that is completely acceptable. We suggest double-checking that you have picked up the right passenger if they make this request early in the journey. As Uber states: “Both driver-partners and riders can edit a trip’s final destination at any time before the driver-partner swipes End Trip.” This feature is not available on uberPOOL trips. As good practice, some drivers like to confirm the destination with riders at the start of every trip – and during the journey again if needed.

If a passenger cancels the ride during a trip, they are probably attempting to scam Uber or Lyft for a free ride. Sometimes, a driver won’t even notice when this happens until they arrive at the destination. If your ride cancels, pull over as soon as it is safe to do so, and ask the passenger to re-request or exit the vehicle. After the passenger is out, immediately email Lyft or Uber and explain what happened. Generally, neither company is big on passengers trying to scam free rides.

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My Lyft Or Uber Passengers Are Trying To Fit More Passengers Than Legally Allowed

Both Uber and Lyft only allow as many passengers as there are available seatbelts. Do not allow more than the permitted number of riders to enter the vehicle. Tell them you can take up to the number of available seatbelts, and they can call a second car for the rest of their party. Alternatively, they can cancel and order a larger vehicle that can fit their entire party. If neither is acceptable, cancel the ride. On Uber, select the “too many riders” option, and you’re good to go. On Lyft, you have to cancel, and then email Lyft and briefly explain the situation. A two or three line email should suffice.

My Lyft Or Uber Passengers Are Trying To Bring Infants Or Toddlers Without A Car Seat

Riders are allowed to bring a car seat with them to install and use in the car. However, on both Uber and Lyft, drivers are always within their rights to decline a rider who attempts to bring a toddler or infant in the car without a car seat. In fact, there’s a mantra that’s becoming common among drivers – No Car Seat, No Ride.

If a rider shows up with an infant or toddler, but no car seat, cancel the ride. On Uber, select the appropriate option from the cancellation screen. On Lyft, send them a quick email.

My Rider Has Made A Mess – How Do I Get A Cleaning Fee?

If your riders have made a significant mess in your vehicle, Uber requires photographic evidence within 48 hours of the end of the trip. You can request a cleaning fee from within the app. In the lower right hand corner, select “Account”, then “Help”, then “Trip Issues and Refunds”. Select the trip in question, and then click “Rider Feedback”, followed by “Fare Adjustment: Request A Cleaning Fee.

For Lyft drivers, you must submit at least two clear photos of the damage. From your driver dashboard, select “driving history”, select the trip in question. On the trip detail screen, select “Help” and choose the option, “My Car Was Damaged”.

In all cases, provide as much information as possible including the name of the passenger, the pick-up and drop-off locations, days and times, and any further information about how the mess occurred. On both Uber and Lyft, you can receive a cleaning fee of up to $250. However, the cleaning fee depends on the extent of the mess or damage. For most incidents, drivers usually get a fee of around $75.

We hope that this helps to cover some of the most common issues that may arise when working as a driver for Uber and Lyft. If you have any further queries or would like more information about any of the issues described above, please click here to contact us. Wishing you safe travels! And remember, personal safety always comes first.