uber-etiquette

To the jubilation of its drivers, rideshare king Uber issued a set of “community guidelines” for customer behavior this month. To wit: Advising passengers they are not permitted to have intercourse during a ride, to carry a gun or an open container of alcohol while en route. Common sense, surely, and yet?

Other banned behaviors include being verbally abusive to a driver or damaging the property of a fellow passenger during a shared ride.

I’d like to think most individuals who use services such as Uber, Lyft and Via know better than to engage in any of the actions above. That being said, I’ve witnessed my share of miscreant habits during my time as a rider. With that in mind, I’ve put together a list of my own community guidelines…common-sense thoughts that should make the journey more pleasant for everyone.

Be Prompt
Be sure you’re ready when your driver arrives. Don’t keep him or her waiting. This is particularly important when you are ride-sharing, as with UberPOOL, Lyft Line or Via.

Be Polite
Introduce yourself to your driver upon entering the vehicle so he or she is certain you are the right passenger. Say hello to any passengers already in the car, too. You don’t need to engage in a rip-roaring conversation, but when two or more fellow human beings occupy such a compact space, basic courtesy dictates you acknowledge the individual(s) in your midst. If you want a completely talk-free commute, wait a few years…self-driving cars are on the horizon.

Keep the Car Neat
Carry-in, carry-out. As is the case in the rest room on an airplane, politeness begs consideration of the next passenger. Don’t leave behind your water bottle, newspaper, gum wrapper or—worst of all—ABC gum.

Don’t Slam the Door
Whether by accident or on-purpose, slamming a door is a rattling experience (literally and figuratively) for the driver and any remaining passengers. Close the door gently and fully so everyone can get to the next destination safely and in peace.

Give Feedback
Drivers need positive reviews to keep their jobs; too many negatives and they get the boot. That’s not to say you should give every driver five-stars, but if the driver got you to your destination politely, safely and efficiently in a car that was clean and odor-free, be sure to affirm that service experience. Of course, if the driver did not deliver in those areas, it’s essential you share that feedback, too.

Safe and swift journeys, everyone!