After having a nice comfort food on 18th street in Washington, DC, I saw some people fighting over cabs outside my window of the restaurant. As usual, I opened by Uber and saw that there were many black cars within 4 min distance. I finished my dinner, asked for check, checked some emails and called for a black car as the waiter was getting my check back. I got up, put on my jacket and went out and the black was there outside waiting. It was a huge SUV, all black, clean, and the driver was very friendly and welcomed me. This is how Uber works.
You don’t have to talk to anyone, find any numbers on Google, stand in a long line for cabs, or worry if your next cabbie takes your specific card or not. I was in a new city, going to a new place, in DC where cabbies don’t take cards and prefer cash all the time. Uber picks your location, gives your phone number to the driver and you get your driver’s full info and ratings. The GPS is mostly accurate and they know which hotel, airport terminal, or mall complex entrance you are in. Once you sit, you tell the driver where you want to go, and if it is short distance like in major cities, you are charged by the minute.
I have almost never paid 15-20% more than cab. I always get clean black car, sometimes Bentley (in Singapore), and there is no question of security concern. I would be comfortable sending my loved ones alone in the cab in new city as you have full information about the driver. Same secured way for the drivers to take passengers at any time of the day. Raja told me that he no longer worries if the drunk passengers would pay him or not as the payment gateway is the mobile app. Based on the time or distance, your mobile app pays your driver. Best part of it is No TIP :). There is never am unsatisfied driver.
Raja said that after his full time job, he goes home, gets freshened up, eats dinner, and takes his flashy new black SUV out by 7p. He works only 3-days a week during the weekends, and mostly the evenings to late night for about 15 hours weekly, and pulls about $1,000 in revenue. After paying 20-28% to Uber, his car payments, $400 insurance premium, and gas, he makes over $1,000 for spending evenings out.
What a great way for Raja to make extra money and send his kids to better school and colleges. Great way for me to get reliable cabs and in time always and use my business card (Amex) instead of cash and collecting receipts.
Uber has really made this overall user experience very friendly and amazingly smooth by both serving and helping its entire ecosystem. Every Uber driver tells me that Uber is from your city and that makes me proud for some weird reason 🙂