Everything You Need to Know About UberPool
Uber has made travel easier than ever before. At the click of a button, you’re able to secure a ride to any destination in your area. One of the company’s offerings, UberPool, further extends the rideshare giant’s reach. This style of transportation is affordable as well as convenient. If you’ve never used Uber Pool before, take a closer look at what you need to know about it below.
What Exactly Is UberPool?
UberPool is one of the most efficient and affordable ride options offered by Uber. Unlike UberX, the service is inspired by a traditional carpool in which multiple people in the same area share a ride. However, with Uber Pool, you get to select your pickup and drop off location from the app and the service automatically configures the best route to meet the needs of multiple riders. By sharing your ride, you’re able to reduce your travel costs substantially. Here’s a quick UberPool video walkthrough from Uber India (the service works the same everywhere though).
Unfortunately, UberPool isn’t available in all locations. The only way to know if it’s an option for you is by going through the process of requesting a ride. If it isn’t listed as one of the ride styles, then it’s not available in your area.
Pros and Cons of Using UberPool
UberPool offers many advantages, but it’s unlikely to completely replace the traditional UberX ride options. Here are some of the pros and cons of this rideshare service:
Sharing your journey with other riders is incredibly cost-effective. Uber designed the service so that the operational costs for drivers are much lower and the overall cost is split between multiple riders. This method allows them to provide the service for much less than traditional Uber offerings. If you’re budget-minded, then UberPOOL should jump to the top of your list of travel options.
UberPOOL drivers undergo the same background checks and vetting process as other Uber drivers. Riders are also monitored. While you may be sharing a journey with strangers, there are accountability measures in place that don’t exist with traditional public transportation options, like buses and subways. This arrangement gives riders and drivers alike peace of mind during rides.
Compared to other forms of transportation, UberPOOL is extremely convenient. You can order a ride at the click of a button instead of waiting for a scheduled train or bus. Plus, you’re still picked up and dropped off at your desired location, so you won’t have to walk to get to your destination.
Con: Journey Time
While the process is convenient, Uber Pool trips will take longer than other rideshare options. The slight detours involved to pick up multiple passengers as well as the waiting period for each person to arrive increases the overall journey time. If you’re in a rush, UberPool may not be the best option for you.
Con: Seating Restrictions
Another disadvantage of UberPool is the seating restrictions. Typically, you can ride with three to four other people you know, but this doesn’t work well with the design of UberPool. Instead, you can only book two seats in the vehicle at a time. If you’re traveling with more than one person, an UberX or UberXL is a better option.
Con: Locked Route
With other Uber ride options, like UberX, you can add stops along your journey to pick up a friend or drop off an item. To keep the prices down and avoid inconveniencing other riders, your UberPool route is locked from the get-go. This makes it challenging if you have errands to run back-to-back because you’ll have to order a ride multiple times.
What’s the Difference Between Regular UberPool and Uber Express Pool?
Express Pool is technically an offshoot of UberPool. The service is still reflective of the carpool model, but it’s a more efficient process. Similar to a bus route, Uber Express Pool creates a central meeting and drop-off location for multiple Uber riders in the same area. While you’ll still be riding with other people, you won’t face as many detours along the way. You also won’t face the additional wait time for each pickup.
Some of the benefits of opting for Uber Express Pool include:
- Savings: The streamlined process of Uber’s Express Pool service allows you to save even more money than you would with a traditional UberPOOL.
- Shorter journeys: Since your Uber driver doesn’t need to make as many stops or detours, you ride is completed much more quickly.
The only real downside to Express Pool is walking to and from the designated meeting points, but this is only a disadvantage if you’re uncomfortable or unfamiliar with the area. In such a situation, simply choose the option with which you’re the most comfortable.
How to Request an UberPool Journey
How It Works
- Enter your destination
- Select the ‘uberPOOL’ option and tap ‘Request uberPOOL’
- Choose your pickup location and confirm
- Choose how many seats you need. Tap ‘1’ if you’re riding solo, and ‘2’ if you need a seat for your friend!
- Check your trip fare upfront for the ride
- Confirm your seats and you’re ready to go!
You can request an UberPOOL or Express POOL ride in the exact same way that you request any other Uber service option. After you’ve entered the pickup and drop off location in the app, you’ll simply toggle over and tap “UberPOOL” or “Express POOL” among the ride selections.
For the express option, you’ll be given a prompt to wait while they determine the right pickup spot based on other riders. Once it’s chosen, you’ll be directed where to go to meet the other riders to wait for your driver.
Unlike sharing an Uber ride with friends, you don’t need to send invitations out to your fellow riders. You also won’t have to choose any additional options after requesting your ride, which makes the process incredibly user-friendly. You still have the option to rate your driver as well as reward them with a tip after your journey.
What Drivers Need to Know About UberPool and Express Pool
Riders aren’t the only ones affected by UperPool and Express Pool; the service also differs from traditional Uber rides for rideshare drivers.
Here’s a closer look at some of the advantages and the one disadvantage of driving UberPool and Express Poll.
Achieve Less Downtime
As an Uber driver, as long as you have a passenger, you’re making money, and with the carpool options, you’re able to service more riders. When people in the area request an UberPool or Express Pool, the app will automatically add them to your route. As a result, you’re not missing out on valuable rides and you’ll spend less time waiting for your next trip.
More Consistent Earning Opportunities
While passengers are able to pay reduced costs, Uber drivers are likely get more trips with UberPool and Express Pool. Less downtime means that you’re able to serve more riders, and in turn, you’re able to make more money. Plus, if a rider doesn’t show up at a designated stop, you only have to wait two minutes before moving on to the next rider. They’re automatically charged a cancellation fee, so you’re still compensated for your time.
Hands-Off Navigation for Multiple Riders
Uber also eliminates the stress of navigating for multiple riders. The app automatically sets the pickup and drop off spots as well as the order in which they take place. This means that you can skip the stress of self-navigation and simply follow the directions of the in-app navigation tools.
UberPool and Express Pool Pay Less
This is the big disadvantage to taking Uber Pool rides if you’re a driver. The rides pay less per mile, and overall. Because of the additional stops, they also take longer to complete. Although UberPool and Uber Express Pool have become popular with riders, many drivers hate them. Some Uber drivers even refuse to take UberPool or Uber Express Pool rides unless they are trying to complete a bonus or quest requirement, or there is surge pricing in effect.
In addition to the pay issues, Uber also had a problem with UberPool riders rating drivers lower than passengers taking UberX. Uber recently addressed this issue by changing the UberPool rating system.
Take Advantage of UberPool’s Benefits
Both UberPool and Express Pool offer perks, so in the end, both riders and drivers win. If you’re new to the rideshare world and ready to try it out, use our Uber promo code to save up to $20 on your first few Uber rides.