How do I talk to my pax?

Sleepless Driver

New Member
I have been driving for 2.5 years now and deal with anxiety a lot and just freeze up and nothing good ever comes to mind. What can I say to get a conversation going again? I used to be good at it but my self esteem is so shot these days I've just been driving in silence and it's starting to affect my rating and tips.

Tldr; what do I say to save myself from the awkward silence sometimes?
 

Invisible

Well-Known Member
If it’s a Monday, I ask how their wknd was. If it’s a wknd, I ask them what they’re doing for the wknd.

If there going to the airport, I ask where they’re going. If they’re in business attire, I ask where they travel for work.

If they have a accent, that’s not midwestern, I ask where they’re from.

If it’s an evening drive, I ask them if they’re doing anything fun. If it’s a day ride, not a morning, I ask them if they have the day off.

If I pass a new restaurant or venue, I ask if they’ve been there. If so, I ask what they thought of it.

If I see them with a earpiece (a lot wear one), I don’t say anything, unless they speak to me.

If they have their head down, I also don’t say anything, unless they speak to me.

If I ask a question, I can normally tell if they’re not receptive to talking. Most people want to talk about themselves.
 

The Gift of Fish

Well-Known Member
I have been driving for 2.5 years now and deal with anxiety a lot and just freeze up and nothing good ever comes to mind. What can I say to get a conversation going again? I used to be good at it but my self esteem is so shot these days I've just been driving in silence and it's starting to affect my rating and tips.

Tldr; what do I say to save myself from the awkward silence sometimes?
Au contraire, mon frere; pax prefer it when you STFU and just drive. When the pax gets in I say hello and ask them how they are. They say "hi", tell me "fine, thanks" and ask me how I am. I say "fine, thanks" and that's it. Socially required pleasantries over and done with, I get on with the ride and everything's fine.

If the pax is a chatterbox and their conversation interests me then I will engage them. If they are dull ("where do you live" / "is it busy tonight" / etc) then I will shut them down with one word answers so that I can enjoy the rest of the ride in silence.

One thing about social anxiety - it's only a problem because you worry about it. It's a self-perpetuating cycle. However, when you cease to give a flying duck about it then the problem disappears as if by magic.
 

OldBay

Well-Known Member
I have been driving for 2.5 years now and deal with anxiety a lot and just freeze up and nothing good ever comes to mind. What can I say to get a conversation going again? I used to be good at it but my self esteem is so shot these days I've just been driving in silence and it's starting to affect my rating and tips.

Tldr; what do I say to save myself from the awkward silence sometimes?
Get a copy of this book. Its actually really good.

 

sellkatsell44

Well-Known Member
I’m a socially anxious, shy/awkward person that’s been made to be more talkative.

What really helped me was:
1. Most likely you’re never going to see them again (unless you’re in a town of 2k or 20k or so, then disregard this)... so whatever. Talk about the current events. Compliment them on something they’re wearing if you recognize or heck, ask them where they’re heading to.
2. Don’t care but don’t make a point to drive that home by saying you don’t care.
3. They’re probably just as self conscious if not more, I mean... they’re in your car and you’re in the driver seat aka control.
 

mbd

Well-Known Member
On my notes I have stored hello and goodbye in
Vietnamese, Korean and Chinese and few other languages ... ? I butcher the words, but pax like it
Rest of the public very simple
First 1-2 minutes say hello by name ,how is your day
Then last 2 minutes, just talk about generic stuff
Middle minutes let them listen to music
Have clean car inside
One pax today
had a Back handed compliment
She said, your car does not stink... she did
Not say it smelled good? she took 4-5 short trips last 24 hours(out of towner) and said all cars had smell to it.

Also when you drive, just concentrate on driving, don’t have other thoughts
 
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rkozy

Well-Known Member
Tldr; what do I say to save myself from the awkward silence sometimes?
The important thing is to be friendly when they enter and exit your vehicle, and be yourself.

If that means you're a person of few words, then so be it. Just make sure the few words you offer are done so with the friendliest tone you can muster. Let them lead the conversation. Your focus should always be the road first, and the passenger's entertainment level second.
 

UberBeemer

Well-Known Member
I have been driving for 2.5 years now and deal with anxiety a lot and just freeze up and nothing good ever comes to mind. What can I say to get a conversation going again? I used to be good at it but my self esteem is so shot these days I've just been driving in silence and it's starting to affect my rating and tips.

Tldr; what do I say to save myself from the awkward silence sometimes?
Try reading the newspaper in the morning. There is bound to be something that you could talk about. Sports, weather, local events, etc. Or, just ask people about anything they bring up. Some of the best conversationalists are just adept at getting others to talk about themselves.
 

Vud124

New Member
I understand where you’re coming from i always try to remember that chances are you wont see them again right? So just say what comes to mind and even if you freeze up or something its not like anyone else will see it besides you and them.
 
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