As the world’s most popular ride-sharing service, Uber offers a platform that many people use for both one-off and recurring journeys. While Uber’s safety standards are set very high and unwanted incidents are rare, being aware of the extra precautions available can reinforce your confidence that your journey with Uber will be as comfortable and secure of an experience as can be. If you are in urgent danger, call emergency services immediately.
Before Your Ride
1Consider taking an UberPOOL. Ride-sharing can be made safer by doing just that: sharing your ride. UberPOOL is a service that seeks to find riders traveling in the same direction who are willing to share their journey with other riders. To take an UberPOOL:
- Open the Uber app.
- Drag the sliding button at the bottom of your screen to the word POOL.
- Proceed to request an Uber as you normally would.
2Conserve your battery. Some Uber riders are familiar with the experience of ordering an Uber and having their phone die before the car arrives, thus canceling the Uber request and leaving the rider unable to order another. To reduce your risk of draining your phone battery before your Uber arrives:
- Close the app as you are waiting for your car. You will receive an automatic notification when your driver is arriving.
- Turn down the brightness on your phone’s screen.
- Turn off Bluetooth.
- Close any apps you are not using.
Wait inside for your Uber. As Uber can take up to 20 minutes to arrive at your pickup location, it’s worth trying to try to find somewhere to hang out while you wait for your car. The Uber will proceed to the location you originally set when booking the trip, so you don’t need to worry about the car not being able to find you.
Identify your driver and their car. After your Uber request is accepted, you will see a circle just below your app’s map that cycles between an image of your driver and their car. Tap on this icon to see both displayed at once. Take note of the driver’s face, the model of their car and the car’s license plate. This will help ensure that the car you get into is the one that you ordered.
5Check your driver’s rating. On the screen that displays your driver’s name and their car, you will also see a star rating underneath their face. This is the rating given to them by other riders, and can be used to gauge the experience that other riders have had with this driver.
- Although Uber’s standards for driver quality are much higher than the bar that most of us would set as “safe”, it is worth noting that drivers whose average rating drops below 4.6 stars are at risk of being suspended until they complete a re-training program.
During and After Your Ride
Check in with a friend or personal contact. Send a text to somebody who you trust in order to keep them in the loop about your whereabouts. Commit to letting them know when you have arrived safely at your destination.
2Know how to cancel your trip. If you find that your safety has been compromised before your driver arrives, you can cancel your trip:
- Tap on the circular image of your driver’s car and face to bring up more information.
- Tap the “Cancel” button on the bottom-right corner of the screen.
Ask your driver to end the trip. If you are concerned that your driver is driving unsafely, tell them you would like to end the trip early and you will only be charged for the distance you have travelled.
4Call emergency services. If your driver does not pull over when you ask them to, call emergency services immediately.
5Report your concerns to Uber. If you take a trip that makes you feel unsafe, be sure to hold your driver accountable for the experience. After your trip is complete:
- Open the Uber app, where you will be asked to give your ride a number of stars.
- After giving a star rating of less than 4, you will be asked what was lacking in your experience. Tap on the option that corresponds to your concern and type in a description of your journey to send to Uber support.
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