I took my first Uber right last night. Here’s the best quote from the Uber driver:
“Taxi drivers are Uber’s best advertisement.”
Without a doubt that is true. Why? Because I’ve had so many forgettable or down-right poor taxi rides that when one switches to Uber, the contrast is startling.
As the driver pulled up to a intersection, we stopped beside a taxi-cab which had the following sign painted on the outside of the passenger door: “This is a metered taxi. Haggling is prohibited.” What’s so hilariously funny about this is that the taxi driver’s have never noticed this large obvious sign (or could it be they disregard it willingly? No!). I don’t believe I’ve ever had a taxi ride in Malaysia by meter. Every time I pop in the cab and say “meter” the guy says “no meter” and has some great excuse. Then the haggling begins and by the time I get to my destination, I’m grumpy as anything, feeling like I was beat into submission to pay exorbitant rates. (Yesterday, I flew to KL for 50RM. The taxi ride to my hotel was 45rm.)
So last night, after the show, I pulled up my Uber app and ordered a car.
It arrived in around 8 minutes. Four minutes before arrival, I got a call, “Mark, I’m on my way.” Personable. I watched the car on the Uber app as it approached. The Uber app had already sent me a photo of the driver and the license plate of the car. I knew exactly what to expect and when. As I got into the car, the driver was friendly, courteous, and got me to my destination in an efficient manner.
There’s no cash exchange. All paid via credit card on the app. Wonderful!
The driver’s WANT to be there. They chose the hours they want to drive. They are motivated to make extra money, so it’s greatly in their interest to provide excellent service.
Ratings. Both drivers and customers can rate each other. If a driver’s rating falls to low, he or she might lose the privilege of driving for Uber.
Uber is a revolutionary service that provides the most safe, efficient, and convenient service for customers. It provides additional money for whomever wants to use their car to provide rides.
I’m completely sold. However, big government is not about to let Uber out of its site. Even certain Democratic US Presidential candidates who call themselves progressives are up in arms about Uber and how the government needs to look into regulating it to make sure the customer has a good experience. Please! This is one progressive idea that doesn’t need the government to mess it up! The politics about this has NOTHING to do with protecting customers and everything to do about protecting constituencies of voters. Anyone who doesn’t support unique and innovative start-ups like Uber, AirBnb, etc… are by definition decidedly the opposite of progressive. These companies are harnessing technology to provide unparalleled service and choice, and I for one am on the bandwagon.
Way to go, Uber!