Gone are the days I used to take a taxi. Living in LA I relied on apps like Uber and Lyft to take me to the airport, pick me up after a night at the bar, even help me avoid expensive parking at sporting events and concerts. In the dozens and dozens of times I’ve used the ride services, I’ve never had a bad experience with a driver. It’s simple, cost-effective and now, it’s in New Hampshire!
To be honest, I like Lyft a little better, but as far as I know it hasn’t made its way to Nashua yet. But what both services offer is a seamless ride, no fumbling over cash, credit or receipts and it’s far more transparent than a taxi, you can even watch your route on your app. Uber drivers are supposed to go above and beyond to offer you a pleasant experience. Their cars are clean, they usually offer you water or a snack and they play the music you like (or no music at all – which is my way!). Here are some tips on how to use this service:
- Download the Uber app (it’s free) from your app store
- Register – you can connect to your Facebook profile and set up your payment method
- When you need a ride, you’ll be able to see all the Uber cars around you, and an estimate of how long it will take for someone to get to you. Uber automatically connects you to the closest driver.
- Request a ride. Enter the address of where you’re going (You’ll see the Uber’s driver profile at this point. Don’t want to use that person? Feel free to select a different driver.) The app will display your driver’s name, photo, vehicle make, model, and plate number.
- Hop into your driver’s car and get to where you need to be!
- When the ride is over, just hop out! Your driver will end the ride through the app, give you a rating, and you’ll receive an emailed receipt. The payment is automatically charged to your card on file. You also get to rate your driver.
Fares: Fares are generally higher on the weekend and during busy times. To check what your fare will be, there is a “fare estimate” you can check through the app. So simple! Sharing a ride? The app also has a split payment feature for friends sharing the ride. Which is great for those nights you’re not um, so clear-headed in your math skills.
Tipping: So Uber makes it very clear you’re not REQUIRED to tip, however, most drivers expect gratuity. Uber doesn’t have a function to tip in their app (Lyft does, which is why I like it better), so if you have a few dollars on you just hand it your driver at the end of the ride. When you sign up for Uber you might think you’ve signed up for automatic tips, because it asks you how much you’d like to leave as a tip, but this is only for UberTaxi – a different service. You’re not signing up to leave a tip for regular Uber, which is most likely the service you’ll be using.
Rating: After each ride, both the driver and passenger have the chance to rate their experience. This is done to ensure everyone is respectful, etc. (You can be blocked from using Uber if you’re a jerk.) You will never see your specific rating, but you can get your “general rating” through the app.
Requesting for someone else: Friend too drunk to drive? Yes, you can request rides for other people through the app. Uber suggest giving your driver a call (another benefit of the app) and just filling them in about who they’re picking up.
Age: You must be at least 18 years old to use it. Sorry, 16-year-old party hoppers.
Want to be a driver? They’re currently hiring Uber drivers, which is a great way to earn extra income on your schedule. You can head to their website for more info.
I’ve had so many regular taxi experiences where 1. I didn’t understand what I was being charged 2. I wondered if they were going a longer route on purpose 3. They asked me to use cash instead of card at the end. 4. The car was icky! I’ve also had plenty of experiences asking for rides to the airport… I love that there are no questions with Uber. After a ride, you can see exactly what you were charged for, your history of rides and best of all, you can expect a pleasant ride each time with no worrying about payment at the end.