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Author Topic: First Uber learning experience  (Read 906 times)

Tom

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First Uber learning experience
« on: January 19, 2020, 10:04:50 AM »
One of our adult sons drives part time for Uber in the MidWest, and I've talked to him about the process several times. I'd installed the app on my phone, thinking I might need it one day, and my son made sure it was set up correctly.

Last week I had to make a trip to UCSF and, since I haven't driven in the city (refuse to) for many years, I opted to take a BART train. The fact that we had heavy rain that day reinforced my decision not to drive. Chris dropped me at our nearest BART station, and it was a non-stressful ride into the city.

Opened the Uber app, chose my ride options and confirmed the pickup point (both in words and on the map). Their app lets you know the color, make and model of the car, registration number, name and history of the driver, and included his photo. I saw my ride approach from the far side of the intersection, and I was waving frantically as he made the turn, drove by me, and continued a couple of hundred yards down the street. I crossed the street and ran down the sidewalk, and the guy drove off before I got to him. The driver canceled the trip.

Second try, different driver. I saw him stop at the red light across the street. I crossed, approached his car (waving), the light turned green and he drove off, turned the corner, and stopped a couple of hundred yards down the street (on the opposite side from the first driver). Ran down the sidewalk, crossed the street and was able to get in the car. The driver explained that he stopped where his Uber app told him to stop.

Maybe my error, but a lady standing alongside me had her ride cancelled twice, apparently for the same reason. She eventually called and said "pick me up at the Chase Bank with a big blue sign", which the next driver did.

My return trip was quite different. The driver pulled up across the street, wound down his window, and asked "Tom?"

I didn't want to complain per se, but thought that Uber might need to change whatever was sending 4 drivers to the wrong place. I made it clear that I wasn't looking for a refund or an adjustment, but I received a courteous response and a small credit.

My takeaway from this ... next time, I'll get off BART at a different station, away from a busy intersection. A slightly longer Uber ride beats running down the street (twice) in the pouring rain.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2020, 05:17:46 PM by Tom »
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Chakara

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2020, 10:53:11 AM »
I often use UBER when traveling for work and pleasure - especially in big cities.  What I usually see is that in busy areas many cities or venue's have setup a specific area for the Uber/Lyft pickups.   Denver airport for example has them come in a separate tunnel - I think mainly used by limo's and private cars rather than mass transport. 

Usually the app tries to tell you where to go, but that can be confusing sometimes.....

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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2020, 11:00:48 AM »
Aye Chak, my son has talked about assigned Uber waiting/pickup/dropoff locations at airports where he picks up & drops off. In my case, I had chosen the SF Civic Center BART station, thinking it would be a "regular" Uber pickup location. Didn't realize it was a busy intersection, compounded by some construction. That's one reason I'll get off at a different BART station next time.

The Uber app did suggest a different pickup location, but I had no idea where that was, and confirmed my current location. It sounded like the lady alongside me was going through the same thing.

All a learning experience, and I have no doubt I'll be using Uber on future trips.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2020, 05:20:01 PM by Tom »
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LarsMac

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2020, 11:06:07 AM »

I had a similar first time experience as you did, Tom.
You can actually make changes to the location that Uber specifies on your map.
Now, I always pick a specific location, to wait, and verify that location is showing up on the map on my phone.

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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2020, 11:43:41 AM »
Quote from: LarsMac
You can actually make changes to the location that Uber specifies on your map...and verify that location is showing up on the map on my phone.
That's what I thought I did  ??? Obviously, I didn't do what I thought I did  :-[
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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2020, 11:56:51 AM »
The rest of this somewhat self-deprecating story...

The day before my Uber experience, my cardiologist's office attached a "patch" to my chest to continuously monitor heart rate. They gave me a booklet and told me that, any time I experience "an event/condition", I should press the button on the monitor, and write info in the booklet (date, time, what I was experiencing, and what I was doing).

Although I didn't feel anything at the time, I suspected my heart rate went up. So, when I got home that day, I opened the booklet, inserted the approximate times, and explained I was running down the street on both occasions, and I had no time to stop, press the button, and write in the book in the pouring rain.

I'm sure I'll have an interesting discussion with the cardiologist at the follow-up visit. He doesn't appear to have my sense of humor  :(
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SargeW

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2020, 09:42:42 AM »
We have used Uber a few times and have had great experiences. But we usually get picked up at the RV park, which really makes things simple.  We love that you get to see the driver and the rate before the pickup, exchange no cash, and don't have to chat if we don't want to.  That being said, not every Uber driver is squared away either.  We have just been fortunate so far.
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Isaac-1

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2020, 10:36:05 AM »
We too have used Uber on occasion, mostly with positive experience, except on our last trip when we were left sitting in the arts district in Santa Fe, in the late afternoon as all the shops were closing and it was getting dark.  We had 3 Uber drivers in a row cancel our pickup for no apparent reason, each several minutes after they were dispatched, but before they arrived, this was followed by multiple no cars available notices.  Finally almost an hour later when we were just about the only ones left on the street we were able to get an Uber back to the RV park.
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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2020, 11:20:17 AM »
Quote from: Isaac-1
... except on our last trip when we were left sitting ... Finally almost an hour later when we were just about the only ones left on the street we were able to get an Uber back to the RV park.


I hate that "left stranded" feeling  :(

 On one of our return trips to SFO, the limo driver called me as we were picking up bags at the carousel, and told me "I'm parked with the other limos on the median outside". When we exited the building, all the limos had their trunks open, ready to put passenger bags in... but one limo had the hood open, and it was ours. Driver said "engine won't start and I've called for help".

A local mechanic turned up (his business is taking care of limos at the airport). He had a hammer and a piece of wire and said "if the hammer doesn't work, I'll jumper the solenoid", which he eventually had to do. The car started, and the limo driver left without us, saying another driver was on the way. Almost 2 hours after exiting the building we were on our way home.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2020, 11:22:03 AM by Tom »
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jackiemac

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2020, 06:08:09 PM »
We have had really good experiences with both Uber and Lyft mostly in Las Vegas.  The drivers are usually friendly and the fare definitely a bit cheaper than the usual taxi.

Steve wasn't too impressed though when I pressed the wrong buttons and signed him up to be a driver, he got a few emails and then I managed to sort it on the app  ;D ;D ;D
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jackiemac

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2020, 06:08:53 PM »
The rest of this somewhat self-deprecating story...

The day before my Uber experience, my cardiologist's office attached a "patch" to my chest to continuously monitor heart rate. They gave me a booklet and told me that, any time I experience "an event/condition", I should press the button on the monitor, and write info in the booklet (date, time, what I was experiencing, and what I was doing).

Although I didn't feel anything at the time, I suspected my heart rate went up. So, when I got home that day, I opened the booklet, inserted the approximate times, and explained I was running down the street on both occasions, and I had no time to stop, press the button, and write in the book in the pouring rain.

I'm sure I'll have an interesting discussion with the cardiologist at the follow-up visit. He doesn't appear to have my sense of humor  :(

Hope its nothing serious Tom.  Good that you are running now though.  ;)
Jackie n Steve - Happy Scottish Travellers

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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #11 on: January 20, 2020, 06:12:45 PM »
Quote from: jackiemac
Hope its nothing serious Tom.
Me too. Part of the Doc's routine "keep an eye on Tom" regimen.

Quote
Good that you are running now though.

Not by choice  :(
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jackiemac

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #12 on: January 20, 2020, 06:17:28 PM »
Glad they are keeping a close eye on you.  Maybe you need to do a few marathons, I have heard they are really good for you!!
Jackie n Steve - Happy Scottish Travellers

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PopPop51

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2020, 06:01:45 AM »
I used Uber and Lyft for the first time last week during a business trip to Austin. Normally I get around town quite well using Austin's excellent bus system and hotel<->airport shuttles, but three times on this trip it made more sense to try ride share.
I had great experiences. I was picked up right where I stood within 2 minutes every time. The cars were clean and nicer than any cab I've ever been in. It's my nature to chat with strangers, and the drivers were amiable and seemed to enjoy the conversation. But I get the feeling I'd be left alone if I hadn't initiated the conversation. Perfect. The drivers either knew the route well or weren't hesitant to pull up Waze or Maps to plot the route. They drove swiftly but smoothly. Again, perfect. The fares were reasonable, even with a generous tip.
The sole hitch, if you can call it that, came during my first trip, an 11:30PM airport arrival after the hotel shuttle had shut down for the night. Uber showed no cars available, but Lyft had a driver in front of me within 1 minute. Lesson: Subscribe to both apps.
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Laura & Charles

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2020, 06:40:13 AM »
(Tom’s remark about running reminds me of this.)

I don’t run with scissors. (The last two words are unnecessary.)
« Last Edit: January 21, 2020, 06:41:46 AM by Laura & Charles »
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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2020, 07:53:36 AM »
Many years ago I would listen to my kids talk about going out and partying (bar hopping) and the great time they had. I always worried about them being stopped by the police for DUI. So one day I expressed my concern and they both looked at me curiously and said "Dad we never drive, we Uber everywhere when we go partying." Still today they Uber when going out and apparently all their friends do too.
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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2020, 01:30:21 PM »
Quote
.. I was waving frantically as he made the turn, drove by me, and continued a couple of hundred yards down the street. I crossed the street and ran down the sidewalk, and the guy drove off before I got to him. The driver canceled the trip.
I've made that eBART/BART/Uber trip two more times. All the BART stations are on Market Street, and San Francisco recently decided to ban cars on that street. Given my prior "cancelled trip" experience I decided to change the BART station and pickup point for the last two visits to UCSF. No more cancellations on the outbound trip. Just when I thought I had it figured out, I had one return trip cancelled when the driver arrived at the wrong location  and I was charged a $10 cancellation fee.

I need to make this trip 4 more times, so let's see how many more times I'm left stranded.
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Tom

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Re: First Uber learning experience
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2020, 01:34:25 PM »
Quote
The day before my Uber experience, my cardiologist's office attached a "patch" to my chest to continuously monitor heart rate. Although I didn't feel anything at the time, I suspected my heart rate went up.

I was expecting an interesting discussion with the Cardio yesterday as he reviewed the results of the heart monitor. He couldn't see anything obvious until I told him the date and times of my "chase the Uber" experiences, then he commented that it (heart rate) had up gone slightly.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2020, 01:53:42 PM by Tom »
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