Can Uber drivers get deactivated for canceling too many rides?

Every once in awhile, you’ll need to cancel a ride. But can drivers get deactivated for canceling too many rides? It’s a confusing topic because Uber’s policy specifically states the drivers can’t get deactivated for low acceptance rates, but they don’t specifically say anything about cancellation rates.

Check out my video to see the answer, then read the transcript below to see everything I cover in the video at a glance.

You can get deactivated for cancelling too many rides

You can’t get deactivated for acceptance rate requirements, but you can get deactivated for canceling too many rides. Your cancellation rate is determined by Uber: They take the number of trips that you canceled, divided by the number of trips that you accept.

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Let say in a typical night you go out and get 12 requests. You accept 10 of those 12 requests and then you cancel one of those 10. Your cancellation rate is going to be 10%. Uber doesn’t want you accepting a bunch of requests and then canceling on them because now passengers who were expecting a driver to be there in a certain ETA now have to go and re-request a ride. You can imagine that it’s a pretty bad experience. Yyou know it’s going to happen once in a while, but if you start canceling on passengers a ton, hurts the whole entire experience. That’s Uber’s reasoning behind why they don’t want too many cancellations.

There’s no specific cancellation rate that triggers deactivation

Knowing when you’ll get deactivated for your cancellation rate is sort of trial and error, and that’s why I try to create these videos. Because I talk to so many drivers about these issues, I know the exact cancellation percentages of where some drivers are getting deactivated.

There’s no set cancellation percentages that you need to stay under, but I would recommend two things. If you want to be super safe, try to stay under that 10 to 20% mark. You never want to cancel more than 10 to 20% of rides. If you accept 10 requests and then never cancel more than one or two of those rides, you’re probably, like 99% of the time, going to be safe. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten an email from a driver who had a 20% cancellation rate or lower and gotten deactivated. Is it possible? I’m sure it’s possible, but I’ve never personally encountered someone.

Watch out for warnings in emails and texts

The second thing that you really want to keep in mind is notices from Uber about your cancellation rate. They’ve been known to text, email and, and nearly every single driver I’ve talked to has at one point gotten an email or texts warning them that their cancellation rate’s too high compared to other drivers in your city. That’s typically how Uber deactivates drivers for cancellations. They look at how many rides you’re canceling and compare it to the averages in your city.  So if the average cancellation rate is 10 or 20%, then you’ll never deactivate you for 10 or 20% because you’re right in the average. If you’re at 30, 40% cancellation rates, you’re canceling a lot more rides than other partners. Like I said, that hurts the Uber experience, so that’s the reason why they’re sending these warnings.

We all know that you should probably take Uber’s warnings with a grain of salt because sometimes they’ve been known to send things that are in their own best interests and may not actually represent what’s going on. I think with cancellations that’s definitely a possibility, that they’re just sending it to everyone because they just don’t want you canceling rides, period.

Make sure that you’re opted in to those text and email notifications. If you’re getting one or two notifications every single week from Uber saying you’re canceling too many rides compared to other drivers, or if they’re emailing and texting you multiple times a week, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if you end up getting deactivated from Uber because of cancellations.

Cancellation percentages that have triggered deactivations

I recently talked to two drivers and I asked them specifically what percentages they were at. One driver told me that he got deactivated at 37%, another told me at 48%. This does happen on Lyft, too. Lyft will also send out these notifications.

The thing you really also want to watch out for is passenger cancellations because I’ve heard and also seen that passenger cancellations in some instances can also affect your cancellation rate. If you’re trying to think, “Oh, I’m going to get around this loophole. I’m not going to cancel, I’m going to ask the passenger to cancel.” Believe it or not, for a while Uber wasn’t counting those cancellations. They figured out what drivers are doing, so now they include those. Remember, they compare it to the averages, so if you’re doing it more than other drivers, then that’s when you’re probably going to get a notification.

How to get reactivated if you were deactivated for a high cancellation rate

What happens if you do get deactivated for cancellations? I’m not going to say you’re completely screwed and you’re completely out of luck but, unlike getting deactivated for low ratings, there’s no course that you can take. There’s nothing that you can officially do to get back on the platform. Anecdotally, I’ve heard from drivers who emailed Uber, and went into in-person office hours to nicely ask for their jobs back.

Do everything you can to get in contact with Uber, tell your side of the story, ask them, apologize, say, I didn’t really realize what was going on. Maybe there’s a unique situation where a lot of passengers were canceling on you for some reason. I have heard of a few drivers being able to get back onto Uber that way.

If you’re unable to get back on for whatever reason, obviously you do have other options with other services, Lyft, Postmates, DoorDash, etc. Hopefully this video was helpful if you guys are having trouble with your cancellation rates or have any further questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. If you enjoyed this video, feel free to like, comment, and subscribe to the YouTube channel. We release new videos every single week. Take care.

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