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Should you tip your Uber/Lyft driver?

Discussion in 'Articles' started by Mista T, Sep 29, 2018.

By Mista T on Sep 29, 2018 at 11:25 AM
  1. Today roughly 1/3 of the US workforce is categorized as somehow being in the “service” industry. But tipping is not clear cut across the board. It seems odd that someone would get tipped for making coffee, but not for spending half an hour helping you pick out a pair of comfortable pants. Why would you tip a flight attendant when he/she sells you a beverage, but not when they bring you a pillow and blanket?

    It is customary in the USA to tip most minimum wage (equivalent) service people. The general population recognizes that trying to survive on minimum wage is an utterly ridiculous notion. The word TIPS is commonly said to mean “To Insure Prompt Service”. This implies that if someone does NOT provide a normal level of service, then they would not deserve a tip. We have all had the rotten waiter/waitress, and thought to ourselves about giving them nothing because we felt they were horrible.

    So the question is, should you tip your driver?

    Often times this question is tossed about on the driver forums, and the discussions can get quite lively! What commonly occurs in these discussions is a comparison of Uber and Lyft drivers to other service people in society. What if your driver were a…..

    Taxi driver

    Taxi drivers are the closest comparison to Uber and Lyft drivers. Cab drivers are usually driving a company vehicle that they rent, so their expenses are rent + gas, vs an Uber driver, who is usually responsible for gas as well as maintenance and repair. People who have taken a cab will often tip the driver, AND the ride costs more to begin with! Do you tip your cab driver? I know, some of the readers are too young to have ever seen the inside of a Crown Vic, lol. If you believe that comparing Uber and Lyft drivers to taxi drivers is a fair comparison, then YES you should tip your driver.

    Pizza Delivery Driver

    Someone brings a hot pizza to your place and you slide them a few bucks. If they took an hour to get it to you, they are probably getting nothing. The tip is “To Insure Prompt Service”. Yes, it is their job, but whether they do a good job or a lousy job will affect your happiness. Even if you only give $1 of $2, you still give something, right? I hope….

    The pizza delivery driver is likely using their own vehicle, and they get paid a small portion of the delivery fee. But at 50 cents per delivery, that does not cover the cost of a new set of tires or brakes. The tips cover the difference.

    As an Uber driver, there is nothing extra that drivers earn per delivery. Uber and Lyft keep 100% of the Booking Fees.


    This person brings you a menu, gets drinks for you, takes your order, brings your food, brings extra napkins or ketchup, refills your drinks, takes additional orders perhaps (dessert anyone?), goes back and forth to your table over and over, and may end up cleaning up after you. The amount of work they do is tremendous for a minimum wage job. Without the tip, it is just a miserable job.

    If the tips dry up in the food business, the service people are gone. The cooks and owners will stick around, but without tips waiters and waitresses leave that line of work.

    Uber drivers get NO minimum, so when business “dries up” and there are no rides, they get paid NOTHING, not even minimum wage.

    Barista or Bartender

    These fine people stand in one area and make your drinks. Depending on the establishment, they may be cleaning up after you as well. Do you tip them? If you tip your bartender but not the barista, what is the logic behind that? Both of them bring you a tasty beverage, and have to clean up their work area when they are done. Both have to deal with people who may be picky about what they want, and who may leave a mess behind.

    Your driver may have to clean up after you (hopefully not). Your driver most definitely needs to keep their vehicle clean, which means spending money and time for car washes and vacuum, dust, etc. If the driver is providing any amenities (water, gum, vomit bags) they are paying for it out of pocket. The driver needs to make sure the car is in good running order on a regular basis, which means paying for oil changes, tires, brakes, gasoline, etc. And, if you make a mess then they have to take time out of their day to stop and clean, which means lost income during that time.

    A little history

    Lyft began when Uber started their Uber X service, they were within one week of each other. They took opposite approaches to tipping. Lyft put the tip option right up front – when the ride is over you get a screen asking if you wanted to tip the driver, and THEN it asked what rating you wanted to give. Uber, on the other hand, LIED to the public and claimed that tips were included! They are not, obviously, and it took a class action lawsuit to get them to rescind that lie. $28 million dollars later they changed the wording to say that tips are “not required”. In 2017 when the former CEO was kicked out Uber did an about face on tipping and allowed tips to be input via the app.

    Unfortunately, the damage from the first lie was tremendous, and people had gotten the idea that they didn’t need to tip their Uber driver. To this day Lyft is still “in your face” about a tip, while with Uber you have to make an effort to find the place to leave a tip.

    Arguments against tipping

    One argument against tipping is that driving is their job, and they are already paid by the companies. If they don’t like the pay they receive, then they should go find a different line of work. Why should you have to pay a bribe to someone in order to get them to do the job they are paid to do in the first place?

    A counter argument is that this line of thought would apply to ALL tipped jobs, and tipping ANYONE becomes a waste of money under this reasoning. You could argue that people just need to do the jobs they were hired for, and this includes ANY job that has a reasonable expectation of a tip. If you feel that a tip is a bribe, then why should you have to tip anyone, anywhere?

    In some countries, businesses charge a bit more and pay their service workers a fair wage. This completely eliminates the need for tipping. This system seems much more fair, however that is not the system we have. In the United States, one of the ways that a business keeps prices low is by skimping on paying the workers. The customers make up for the income shortfall by providing tips. This way the worker gets paid more fairly, and the prices stay low overall. The debate of having the customers subsidize the low prices by tipping the workers has been going on for a long time. Will it change any time soon? Probably not. You have a better chance of getting the US to convert to the metric system than to give up the tipping culture.

    I urge you to do a little research and find out for sure what service people (who expect tips) really make per hour, and I bet it is very close (before tips) to minimum wage (across the board). Try looking up what Uber and Lyft drivers make. You will find that their earnings are in the bottom 10% of all earners in the United States! When Uber and Lyft talk about how much drivers earn, they lie by inflating figures and quoting gross earnings instead of net earnings. The companies are relatively new to the world, and so the regulations and lawsuits to prevent this have not yet really taken hold. And there are always the drivers who are trying to get a bonus by recruiting more drivers, and they lie about how great the earnings are (but that is another article).

    Another argument against tipping, is why should you tip unless they do something special or give extra service? A valid point, and once again you could make that argument about ANY job. Why do you tip the bartender, all they do is pour you a beer, and that’s their job, right? Again, the answer is, money. We all know the pay is so low in certain jobs that tipping is what makes the difference between eating McDonald’s every day and having money for groceries for home cooked meals. Tips allow a parent to take one day a week off to be with their children. If the bartender did not get tipped by anyone, you would see a new bartender working there every single week. After experiencing some good service and some lousy service, you might realize that it is worth paying an extra dollar or two in order to keep one of the better ones around. The same is true of drivers, do you want to get into a vehicle expecting good service, or do you cringe at the thought of getting into an Uber?

    My philosophy on tipping

    My beliefs have changed over the years as I have aged. We tip service people who are the lowest paid people in society. The lowest paying jobs in society are a stepping stone to help individuals get by, until they can move up the economic ladder, and a tip makes it sustainable while they are trying to get ahead.

    When it comes to a tip, I ask myself a simple question: Do I want to see this person succeed at this job? If so, I will tip. If they have a good attitude, or bring something extra to the encounter, or can do their job in a satisfactory manner, then yes, I would like them to serve me again, and I show that by leaving a tip. Not leaving a tip is sending them a message that you don’t care if they quit, in my opinion.

    What do you think? Feel free to comment!
    Cableguynoe, TDR, Ziggy and 16 others like this.
Pitying fools
You better drive that car, fool! Make that money, sucka! I PITY THA FOOL that don't leave a tip!!


Discussion in 'Articles' started by Mista T, Sep 29, 2018.

  • Tags:
    1. tohunt4me
      As a Pizza Driver
      If i have 5 deliveries in my car
      And 1 is a KNOWN non tipper

      Guess who is getting their pizza Last ?
      Even if they are first in my direction of travel.
    2. Texie Driver
      Texie Driver
      my thoughts and practice on tipping in general is somewhere in the middle
      i know a lot of people who just tip their servers a set % because that is what they do.
      if you bring my food with a shit attitude. you didn't verify my order was complete after slamming it on my table and disappearing. my drink sat empty. i had to look for my check.
      and you know you depend on tips to survive.
      find another line of work, i am not rewarding this behavior.
      and it is not a set percent.
      a low tip means, you put in minimal and barely adequate service. take it as a hint to shape up or you ain't gonna make it.
      i work hard for my money too, after all.
      DocT and Mista T like this.
    3. Jay Dean
      Jay Dean
      I always tip well because the economy is not right here, you have people with mansions that do nothing or sports stars that carry a ball or put it in a hoop and they are “idols” it will take hundreds of years before we get out of being stupid to each other, especially economically ...lol I had a long reply but it said I wasn’t logged in lost my train of thought
      Ziggy, MHR and tohunt4me like this.
    4. Crosbyandstarsky
      Yes. We make 3.00-10.00 on each ride then have to drive to it then to the next spot. Pay for gas and car repairs. It basically is taking money out of your until it’s destroyed . Some rides I made 2.88 and drove 5 miles there then drove home because there were no rides after so for the whole day I got 2.88
    5. Tequila Jake
      Tequila Jake
      Absolutely yes! Transportation drivers provide the same type of service as taxi drivers.

      On baristas, I say probably yes. If they just pour a cup of joe from a pre-made container, maybe not. But if you’re ordering a crafted beverage, then definitely yes.

      You should also tip your food delivery driver, whether it’s the in-house driver or for a delivery service like DoorDash.

      And you should absolutely positively tip your grocery delivery driver who picked up, drove to your house, and lugged dozens of bags and boxes from his car to your front door.
    6. Jay Dean
      Jay Dean
      What I originally was responding with is, usually people that "do not" need to survive off of tips and make a solid 10-12 bucks an hr at least have health insurance where, someone with tips is stuck with a 300,000 medical bill. So Yeah..it is kinda silly to tip when you have that actual reality that sets in but I still tip 100% on all tip based work, I have to be careful though, because if I am at a bar and tip cash that way, it usually pisses off the person next to me so I try and be slick with the square card machine but I usually fail and have some looky loo behind me huffing or even making a comment when I tip. I am about to start using envelopes to put tips in because people are so stupid.

      I just wanna post this, because yeah it is related.

      If you want more to explain this, we had a local teacher with a huge medical bill that was lowered BECAUSE of social media only, not because it was the right thing to do.
      Ziggy likes this.
    7. Doc 2u
      Doc 2u
      Great informative article
    8. Capone
    9. Capone
      I thought I posted this already... Not sure. Anywho, I have an awesome system that has DOUBLED/TRIPLED my % of customers who tip and the amount of the tip has DOUBLED/TRIPLED as well. I hope this info helps out another person who is frustrated by the lack of tips on Lyft/Uber rides. It works best with Lyft.

      1) The basics; clean car, smells good (vanilla yellow trees), phone chargers for Android (reg. & new C-Type- $1 at the $1 Store and Apple). I let them know they can roll down the window. I always make conversation with the pax, but recognize when they want a quiet ride. Music- whatever they want to hear and I usually keep the volume low so we can talk. I read one guy's analysis and he said his tips were directly coralated to whether or not he had engaging conversation. Plus it's the funnest part of the job. Meeting new people and learning about them makes the time fly by, as a bonus.

      2) The extras; Water, Soft Mints, Dum Dums, Lifesaver Mints and a free gift- a $2-$5 value wallet magnifier I buy in bulk for $.10/each. It will even start a fire or light up a smoke. 90% 20180930_043853.jpg 20180930_043853.jpg of people LOVE them.

      3) I send a text through the app's relay number just before the ride is over that gives the pax coupons for free food delivery services, Airbnb and more (which earn me free credits from $5-$20 and possibly $800 if I get a new driver onboard)... and note in the text that says "Tips are appreciated but if money is tight, don't worry about it, I understand. I try to go the extra mile on every ride ride and EARN any tip I may get. Even just a buck is greatly appreciated." I rarely get $1 tips because of this one line. It is KEY. Also, letting them know it's okay not to tip takes the pressure off and makes the tipping process less like begging for money. Earn your tips.

      4) A small descreet "Tips are appreciated" sign near my LED lit up bottles of water and one in front.

      Bottom line, take the extra steps. Open the door for the pax if you can. Provide exceptional service. Don't be afraid to say "It's not required but tips are GREATLY APPRECIATED". If they ask you how much you make always add "Tips help a lot and I try to EARN them."

      Here's some proof, because like they say, "No screenshot, it never happened!" LOL.

      Have fun out there. Spend $20, earn $100. It adds up to THOUSANDS over the course of a year .

      Let me know if you try my method and how it works out for you, if you feel like it.



      Screenshot_2018-09-30-02-15-38.png Screenshot_2018-09-30-02-15-38.png Screenshot_2018-09-30-02-15-38.png Screenshot_2018-09-30-02-15-53.png

      Attached Files:

      Ziggy, Clarity and Mista T like this.
    10. Listen41
      UBER and LYFT driver deserve tips. Airport or customer with baggage should be mandatory minimum $2.00 tips
      Capone likes this.
    11. Dammit Mazzacane
      Dammit Mazzacane
      Whatever car model this is, I'm sorry to say but the glovebox portion of the dashboard looks unimaginative and dated considering I assume it is a 2008 or newer model. '90s really. Punch the car interior designer.
    12. CarpeNoctem
      Crown Vics? I remember Checkers with the HUGE back seats. :)

      As I said in another thread, why certain people have been deemed to get tips is confusing to me. The waitress behind the counter at Denny's gets a tip but the girl behind the register taking orders at McD's doesn't? They are doing basically the same thing. Exactly the same if you don't need a refill. Also, the cooks are likely making minimum wage so why aren't they tipped? They have more skill and more control over your experience than the waitress. No matter how good the service is someone is not going back if the food is crap. An antithetical example of this would be the soup nazi (the avatar of someone here).

      It's not just minimum wage. Some tips are outright bribery like in the instance of a maitre'd and for doing very little.

      It is also customary to tip your barber or hair stylist. I don't know if you have checked but some of them are rolling in dough (oops mixed metaphor). I have a nephew that makes $200 a head and people still tip...

      At to tipping Uber and Lyft, absolutely yes. That we are considered cabbies should qualify us for the same type of tipping.
      Mista T likes this.
    13. Ride Hail Alliance
      Ride Hail Alliance
      It's kinda funny because Uber HQ is the party responsible for driving the message into the public's mind that rideshare drivers don't need to be tipped. I stand my cab at an area where people are usually stranded. Some ignore me. Others walk up to my cab holding their cell like it's a bomb detonator and announce "I'm about to order an uber - but how much do you charge- I always default to "UberX price match" (most of the time it's $1.75 to $2.00 a mile - my meter is only $2.50 so the UberX rate is my general off meter "flatrate") They always hip in. They always hip. Usually very well.
      As long as rideshare drivers (and alot of taxi drivers) are blocked from buying independent operator permits from their local gov Not much will change. There is a reason Uber went for accommodation rather than deregulation. It was all about Creating a fleet of dependent instead of independent contractors. Once drivers figure that out and start demanding independent operator permits nothing will change.
    14. Clarity
      Wow, I admire your dedication. How do I access getting pax coupons? I would like to try this.

      I do have one of those signs hanging on the backseats that encourage 5 star ratings and tips that aren't required.

      When I first started, I used to open the car for people but I got a vibe that they weren't really feelin it. One pax even repeatedly told me "it's okay" as her way of saying please don't. Also it's not exactly a sexy fancy car, so maybe opening doors just didn't really look right? I dunno.
    15. backcountryrez
      It looks like a Chrysler product. Possibly a Jeep. That's what you get when engineers design a product.

      Also, CaponeCapone what market are you in? That could explain the increased incidence of tips. Also, you are on Lyft, where they encouraged tipping from Day 1.
      mrpjfresh likes this.
    16. Castaneda7189
      Something that boggles my mind is this. I’ve worked as a Starbucks barista, and as a team we’ve shared the tips. When I visit another Starbucks I always tip $2 extra. It is customary for me. I am grateful for the tippers from Lyft and Uber. Here is the shocker. I’ve driven many people that do lyft and Uber themselves. They are the least likely bunch to tip. In the ride we talk about how the gig is and how great it can be. Sometimes we both complain about how crucial tips are. In the end I make sure to jot down those people and see if they tipped. With Uber and lyft automatic 5 star as an fellow driver, if they leave no tip, well then good luck to you my friend and God bless you. I believe that tipping has become widely known, even to those that don’t tip. Especially as a driver. To those who use rideshare as means of a side job and also a passengers it should already be customary to tip. I didn’t expect this from my fellow drivers.
      mrpjfresh, Mista T and Clarity like this.
    17. Clarity
      I noticed this a few times too. I don't know how often this occurs because I don't always pay too close attention. I do remember one pax who was also driver left me a nice tip months ago though.
      Castaneda7189 likes this.
    18. Capone
      Exactly, my car is OLD. I got it new in 2006
    19. Capone
      Yes, it's a 2007 Dodge Caliber, which I think is a good looking sport wagon/maybe a stretch dare I say "Crossover"? You pretty much nailed it though. They sold it from 2007 to 2012 along with the Jeep Compass which was almost identical, but I think they still sell the Compass, with an updated design... But yes, many people think it's the Pontiac Aztek, a la "Breaking Bad"... I get compliments on it a lot but honestly this car was bought new in 2006 as a 2007 early model release so it's freaking really 12 years old and I have two kids who trashed the interior and it's got dirt that I can't get out no matter how hard I try... The speaker grills are especially dirty but it's got 135k miles on it and I hope to get 200-250k out of this this diamond in the rough- Calibers are well known for failing transmissions at 50k miles so I got lucky as all heck.

      I'd like to make the point that even with a dirty "ugly" ride, you can still get the tips. Lyft riders used to tip at 20%-%30% but then it went down to like 10%-15% last year. You've seen my screenshots and you can see the dates- with all I do and also not being shy about saying "I like to go the extra mile bit I do have an ulterior motive- by offering a I can, I hope to earn a tip but if you use Uber/Lyft to commute, please don't worry about it.

      Good call on my outdated ride, but the tips are real and you should try my method IMHO.

      The screenshots do not lie... This is from today $17 in tips $5,$5,$5,$2 on 7 rides. No $1 tips as promised and 4 tippers on 7 rides... And yes, that's Uber. You can't argue with the screenshots! Proof is proof dude. Wouldn't you spend $600 a year to take home $3,000 or $4000 more?

      Water, mints, Dum Dums, and a $4.99 value gift, a sign, a text... It freaking works. I'm not trying to brag, I'm trying to help my fellow drivers and my ultimate goal is to get it in the consumers minds that they SHOULD TIP... Reverse the damage Travis did, it's an injustice. We are in a service industry and tips should be the norm! Join me my friend! Sorry one $5 tip got cut off but I assure you it was 4/7... 57% tip. On UBER. UHa en't I proved to you my system works... Even with a dirty ugly ride (I do try my best to keep it clean but 12 years and two kids will eat up an interior believe me. Please try my system and I hope to hear back from you that your tipping customers DOUVLED and your tip amounts DOUBLED... At least! Peace. Capone, AKA Mark. Oh and I know the real reason women make less than the men and it's not the neighborhoods they service or how fast they go... It's all about when and where we men relieve ourselves... Am I right? See you on the side of the road! What tamesus 30 seconds is a 30 min break for the ladies. No offense ladies! Men are pigs. I am man. :)

      Sordyforanyrypos/frammar... I'm bear. 12 hour day! Screenshot_2018-10-01-16-28-13.png

      I always tip a buck.
      Ziggy likes this.

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