If you are looking for more from your hustle here are some easy tips to be a better driver and maybe score some better tips too.
Being in the service industry is not easy. Easy tips to be a better driver for Uber/Lyft will give you ways to improve your business, daily rituals and stress.
I’ve been driving for a couple years now and maintain a 4.97-4.98 rating (knocking on something).
Using these tips has got me the 50 five star streak for Excellent Service and Great Conversation.
So, let’s get into what is first.
What Does Your Car Look Like?
If that question makes you nervous you’re not going to like step one.
This is the easiest win you will get.
Keep it clean bro.
Riders. Are. Judging. You.
How do I know? Riders tell me, everything that was wrong with the ride before.
If this isn’t practical, just keep it as tidy as possible inside.
If you live in a large city find a deal at your local car wash, like $14.95 a month for unlimited wash and vacuums.
I get great car reviews on cleanliness and it literally takes a few minutes without a vacuum.
Buy disposable glass wipes and keep them stashed away.
With four kids I’m always wiping down finger prints anyway. Having these around makes tidying up easier.
I quick wipe down between rides can help pass the time too.
Get the pick ups, navigation and drop offs correct you’ve met all your obligations as a diver.
Sometimes in a group we’ll play the ride notification sound just to watch someone jump. The notification lets you know it’s time to do some pick ups.
KNOW THE RIDERS NAME
To help make the experience more personal I memorize the riders name before I pick them up.
Using their name when I pick them up and drop them off removes the impersonal feelings that can come from the experience.
Having a phone mount makes driving easier. If you mount your phone on your windshield this makes your rider feel safe too.
I have many riders look at my phone and suggest a faster route or relay an arrival time to someone on the phone.
So, while your passenger is buckling up load the trip (and verify the destination).
Determine if the destination is a residential or business if you cannot tell by the address.
This is a good conversation starter and usually leads to more information. Like, “No, actually I am going to…”
You can find out if they are local or visiting too.
You can relax more if they are visiting, mistakes are less likely to be noticed.
Easy tips better driver = do not mess with your phone while you are driving.
I have heard countless tails of deactivation for this very reason.
You get this right and the rest is chill.
My two favorite tips:
- Use Waze and
- learn the distance of 0.1 miles.
Download the Waze app.
Benefits of Waze: the fastest routes, tips on traffic, police alerts and potential traffic issues.
Disadvantage of Waze: it will not help with closures because of a major disaster (e.g., Hurricane Harvey) or event road closures (e.g., Houston Rodeo).
Easy tips better driver = No one wants to sit in traffic.
Using this app is the closest you’ll come to avoiding it.
THE 0.1 MILE
Knowing this will help you find your rider, drop them off and navigate upcoming turns.
Note: missing a drop off destination by feet has resulted in a rating ding.
If you miss a turn, just keep driving.
Don’t freakout or jack the brakes.
Waze will adjust the route and most riders won’t notice or will give you the benefit of the doubt.
Just keep driving.
A queue to start counting in the Waze app is in 0.1 miles.
Count like you learned to do back in the day. You remember: 1-1,000, 2-1,000, 3-1,000.
If you are going to make a turn without stress you should be in the lane of your destination by 7-1,000.
The more you do this the easier your visual learning will get, and navigating traffic and time.
Traffic will change timing.
Subsequently, if there is traffic the counting trick will not apply because, you are not moving at the same pace.
Visually you will learn to look ahead and know you are two traffic lights away from your turn in 0.1 miles.
On the note of traffic, don’t follow Waze if you can see traffic!
Remember what I said, no one wants to be stuck in traffic. NO ONE.
People will appreciate not being stuck in traffic and your rating will show it.
Yes, Waze will sort out the fastest route for you; not always the best route.
If I see a freeway/road is backed up I will zoom out on the map to look for a potential route or upcoming street I can take to avoid the mess.
This is not considered messing with your phone.
Yes, Waze tries to immediately put you back in traffic; I continue on the exit I took to give it time to catch up.
You will feel smarter too.
If you weren’t able to sort out the drop offs at the pick up, get your question ready on the drop off street.
You can ask them if they’d like you to pull in the driveway.
The rider usually replies with some detail like, “yes, just ahead by the house with the trash can outside” etc.
If it’s a business straight ahead or a strip mall I ask where they would like to be dropped off.
That’s it. Keep your car clean, use Waze (and understand the 0.1 mile) and get your navigation in order for a smooth ride.
For the drop off formulate some questions: where do you want me to drop you off, etc.
Most of all, be yourself. It gives people room to be themselves.