As the Rideshare Guy, I get a lot of questions from new drivers for advice on being a better driver and ways to make more money. Do you want to know my number one piece of advice for new rideshare drivers? Check out this video for my best advice for new AND experienced drivers!\
I get a lot of questions from new drivers and experienced drivers and this advice really applies to anyone. I’m going to focus on new drivers, because I think that they often have the most questions and a lot of them can be solved by doing this one thing. Now, if you’ve been following my site, you probably already know what it is. But if you’re new to the site or new to the YouTube channel, I’m going to let you know right now.
Take a ride as a passenger!
My number one piece of advice is to take a ride as a passenger. You might be thinking that it’s a little counter-intuitive. “If I want to be a great driver, why would I want to go out and take a ride as a passenger?” The thing that a lot of drivers don’t realize is that the passenger experience starts before you even pick someone up. This is one of the things I first learned taking Uber, because I actually started off as an Uber customer. There are so many things that you can actually learn as a passenger once you’re a driver.
Passengers just go through the motions; they call a ride and they go. But if you’re a driver, you’re a lot more in tune with how the app works and unfortunately, you don’t know things like when notifications arrive to the passenger’s phone. For example, Uber passengers regularly don’t come out on time. You get to their location, and you can’t start the ride yet and you have to wait three to four minutes, and that’s all time that you’re not getting paid.
Better way to get your passenger’s attention
In the passenger app, they actually get notifications when you’re on your way and when you’re close to arriving. You want to know when these notifications are coming in and what it looks like from the passenger’s side. Maybe these notifications aren’t causing their phone to vibrate or go off. You might learn that sending a text message will be more effective.
More Tips for Drivers:
These are the type of things that you can learn from taking a ride as a passenger, and I can give you another quick example. One of the first things I learned from starting to do more rides as a passenger once I was driving was that a lot of passengers actually call for an Uber, and as soon as they call for it, they watch the driver’s icon in the app. They’re following them to see, “Are they just sitting there in a parking lot?”
Because the passengers can track the drivers on the GPS, they wonder, “Hey, I want to know if this driver is coming.” They want to see if you’re actually on your way or not. If you get lost, they might cancel. So, that’s something to consider. The passenger experience starts before they even get in the car, and that’s one of the things I learned from taking a ride as a passenger. Just in general, the coolest part about taking a ride as a passenger is first, you get your first ride free. Up to $20 bucks off of your first ride.
Why not try a ride as a passenger? The first one is free
There’s really no excuse not to be doing at least one or two rides as a passenger. You might even be able to talk to your CPA, and see if you can write off future rides as market research. I know that I will, and do. Uber is always adding things to the app. It helps to understand this passenger process if you keep up to date with all the changes to the passenger side of the app. I know that on Lyft for a while there, when the tipping process was a little bit confusing, a lot of passengers would ask me, “Hey, how do I give a tip?”
As a driver, if you’ve never taken a ride as a passenger, it might be a little hard for you to explain how to leave a tip. It was pretty confusing there for a while, until Lyft revamped their tip screen. I know that me, I got higher tips than other drivers because I went through the process from the passenger’s perspective and discovered that there are a couple of little tricks to know.
If they just closed out the app from there, you wouldn’t get a tip. There are little things like that, that you really want to be sure of. I actually saw this first-hand, big time with Postmates. As you guys know, I did a big series on Postmate to see if there is some opportunity there for Uber and Lyft drivers. When I went to my orientation, I would say that 90% of the questions that were asked, could have been solved or answered if all of these drivers had ordered a delivery with Postmates.
Trying Postmates as a customer made me a better driver
Before I even signed up to be a driver with Postmates, I did two deliveries as a customer. They give you $10.00 free. So, for meals, kind of a no-brainer. I ordered a chicken tostada, so I got to see first-hand how tipping works, how the app works from the customer’s side, what the driver has to do, what the driver was dressed like and everything.
You learn a lot about the drivers, too, because let’s say I’m an Uber passenger. I call for a driver and there are 4.9 rated drivers. I say, “Wow, I can learn a lot from this guy. What does he do that I’m not doing?” Let’s say you get into the car and you’re used to bombarding the passenger with a bunch of questions, maybe he doesn’t say anything. They let you get settled first and then they say, “Hey, would you like me to change the radio station?”
A few minutes later they say, “Hey, are you interested in a bottle of water?” Instead of bombarding you with all of these questions all at once, which I know that some drivers have done in my experience as a passenger and it’s really quite annoying. These are just some of the things you can learn as a passenger, especially because we all know that it’s very difficult to get feedback from Uber in regards to ratings.
For example, I know some Uber drivers get a weekly summary. But for whatever reason, I’m one of the drivers who has never gotten a weekly summary. So, I’ve never seen one piece of feedback from one of my riders. Luckily, I’m a pretty high rated, 4.93 star Uber driver, but let’s say I was 4.6. Let’s say I was 4.7 and I’m risking deactivation, I don’t even know what I’m doing wrong. It’s very difficult to find out, and to turn that around if you don’t know what you’re doing wrong.
See why some Uber drivers have good ratings and others don’t
When you take a ride as a passenger, you may get matched with a driver with a 4.6 or a 4.7. You’ll be able to see why they’re consistently getting rated low, and you might notice that they are doing something that passengers don’t like. For example, one thing that I see all the time when I get into Uber cars is drivers don’t have their phones mounted. It’s something very simple, but all of these drivers are looking down at their crotch every time they need to make a turn, or every time that they need to see where they’re going.
It’s unsafe. A phone mount only costs $10-$15, and when you have one you probably won’t get one complaint from passengers because you’re not paying attention.
It’s just very simple little things like that that you might not think about, since you’re a driver and you’re used to doing it every single day. When you start taking rides with other drivers, you start to notice these very little things that maybe you didn’t think had a big impact, but you can start to develop. Notice trends and things like that. Hopefully, you guys understand the importance of taking a ride as a passenger, and I mean it is convenient, too, if you’re out there and you use it once in a while.
There’s no substitute for firsthand experience!
There’s plenty of opportunities where you can use it. You can refer new passengers and get free credit that way, and that way you don’t even have to pay for it. And then just think about, “I’m a huge fan of continuing education.” This is one way that you can really learn from other drivers, first-hand. Obviously, you can read about it and watch videos on my site and other people’s channels, but I really think there is no substitute for first-hand experience.
This is a great way to get first-hand experience, by going out and taking a ride as a passenger. Seeing what other drivers do well, but also seeing what they don’t do well. Hopefully, you guys enjoyed this video. If you have any questions let me know. Feel free to like, comment, subscribe to the channel and I’ll be here.
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