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Starting out as a favourable rider (unique circumstances here)

Discussion in 'Advice' started by Caturria, Jun 13, 2018.

  1. Hello readers.
    I'm about to ask you something that I know is pretty subjective and opinion based, so I realize you can only give me subjective and opinion based answers here.
    In a nut shell I want to ask how you guys would personally rate and interact with me if I were your passenger given my personal circumstances, and if you can, tell me how I can improve my rating and/or interactions with you and drivers like you. Apologies in advance that this is pretty long, but I truly appreciate you reading it.
    I want to try Uber or Lyft for the first time. The catch? I happen to be blind. The possible problem for you as a driver is that I have to ask you for assistance at both ends of the trip. Hopefully the upside is that I can make up for it through ratings, tips and overall conduct. So here's how I'm going to sell myself. Please rate me as if I really was your passenger and you had this experience with me.
    First, the assistance I would have to ask for.
    If you were picking me up at a public place, I would need you to come inside, go to the nearest available seating area to the door and call my name at which point I'd stand up. If you were picking me up at home you'd just have to knock at my front door and I'd come out. I'd hold on to you arm and have you lead me to your vehicle. At the end of the trip, I would ask you to lead me to my front door (if you're dropping me off at home, school or work), the counter (if you were dropping me off at a restaurant or cafe) or reception desk (if you were dropping me off at an office of some kind).
    The upsides:
    *If you went above and beyond to assist me, I'm absolutely going to show utmost gratitude and be polite;
    *You're pretty much guaranteed a five star from me,
    *I will tip as much as I can.
    The perhaps less pleasant realities:
    *As soon as the app matches me with you I'm going to text, explain the above situation and ask politely if you'd be willing to assist in the aforementioned manner.
    *If your answer is no, obviously I have no choice but to cancel (there's no point in having you come when there's no way I can know you're there and get to you).
    *Likewise, if your answer is maybe/ we'll see/ some other vague response or I can't reach you, I'm naturally going to cancel before the five minute grace period elapses.
    *In the unlikely event you say yes, but decide to wait in your car for five minutes and then leave anyway, I'm going to dispute the cancellation fee, using the text messages as evidence.

    So you came in to the cafe, saw me at the closest table to the door, called my name and assisted me to your car. Now you're wondering how I'd rate you. I would give either a five star rating or a one star rating, nothing in-between. Before you dismiss this as harsh sounding, please allow me to qualify it by saying that the latter would be extremely hard to get. In fact I can think of only two situations in which I would rate one star:
    *You took me the very long way home -- a few miles in the wrong direction-- thinking I wouldn't know. I would know.
    *You left as soon as I got out of the car instead of assisting me to my door, leaving me stranded outside for potentially hours.
    *Otherwise you're guaranteed five stars and a tip no matter what.
    That's about it, so where do I stand? Would you agree to give me a bit of a hand to and from your vehicle? Say no and allow me to cancel with no hard feelings? Say yes but then leave on me anyway for a quick and easy cancel fee?
    What do I need to adjust about my proposed conduct and rating policy?
    Since paratransit rides are really hard to get sometimes, I'd like to try Uber when I'm in a pinch. I have to ask for the help, but I can imagine you get more than your share of annoying riders and the last thing I want to do is be one of them. Please rate, critique, chriticise, whatever you feel is appropriate. If I need to stay off your platform altogether, you can say that to.

    negeorgia, melusine3, kbrown and 2 others like this.
  2. Nobody is getting out of their car to play Marco Polo.
    This is a automatic shuffle. Easy money as you really couldn't find me.
  3. New2This


    DC Area
    I Longhaul whenever possible regardless of disability. In case you didn't know, Uber charges you Upfront Pricing so whatever you pay is unrelated to whichever route I take. I'll take the longest route in the same timeframe. Most riders like it because it's smoother highway miles rather than stop and go city traffic.

    As for the walking in to get you/walking you to the door, I personally would have no issue with it on one condition: I won't get a parking ticket or similar issue. If it's rush hour and you're downtown at an office building then sorry but you're S.O.L. and that goes for anybody not toes to curb in rush hour.

    Otherwise I would, and probably would refuse your tip. I'm a harlot but I (despite my ******* persona here) do have a nice side. I'd consider it good karma and God knows I could use it.
  4. Are you saying that you would state in a text message that you would help me (to prevent me from cancelling within the grace window) and then you wouldn't follow through?
    I would hope that Uber would see that for what it is to be honest.
  5. reg barclay

    reg barclay Moderator

    rockland/westchester NY, new jersey
    I wouldn't cancel. I would help you to and from the car to the door, assuming there was a legal place to park at each end, otherwise I'd still do what I could to help. This has little relevance to Uber, and more to being a decent person. Unless you were rude or nasty, I would give you 5 stars. Unfortunately, I can't say how typical any of this is of other rideshare drivers, so I can't really give advice as to whether or not you should use the service.
  6. reg barclayreg barclay , no rude or nasty here. I give as good as I get.
    If you did as you say you would, I'd make sure you enjoy riding with me. If you did what Iann proposed (agree to help and not do so to steal a cancellation fee), it wouldn't end well. It would end with a report to Uber and mugshots going in to the local newspaper. I know that sounds like uber jackass, but I know how to defend myself.
  7. New2This


    DC Area
    Not sure who you're talking to. If to me, if I got your text I'd reply back that I couldn't due to parking concerns and would cancel/do not charge rider.

    By the way, and I'm not being a smartass or disrespectful here, how are you reading the forum and answers? I'm genuinely curious.
  8. Cdub2k


    New Orleans
    Sorry not for 72 cents a mile and 12 cents a minute.
    You need a real professional private chauffeur not some Uber Driver if you want all that extra care.
  9. SEAL Team 5

    SEAL Team 5

    Your best bet would be to find one driver and hire them out directly. Give that driver your weekly schedule and see if that fits for him. I don't know Canadian laws, but see if that drive could apply for a handicap placard. This will be a win/win situation for you both. I know that there is the insurance issue, but if you two can become "friends" then the driver is just helping you out for a little gas money.
  10. Uber's Guber

    Uber's Guber

    United States
    Sign up for "Uber Assist." We will know when we accept the ride that there will be a special-needs requirement. I go out of my way to offer what services I can for somebody who is dealing with any sort of disability that may make their situation somewhat arduous.
    A tip will not be necessary.
  11. New2ThisNew2This, no, that reply was directed at Iann.
    As for your other question, there is software available called a screen reader. It uses text to speech to read text, and to indicate where the cursor is and what's being typed and interacted with.
    If you have a PC, the best commercially available screen reader is called Jaws and it goes for about $1000, or a free and open source alternative called NVDA. If you have a Mac (*raises hand), the option is called voiceover and it's baked right in (press command F5 and your computer will start talking). I don't know about Android, but IPhones being also Apple devices have Voiceover built in, and Linux offers a free and open source option called Orca.
    comradev, Julescase, MoreTips and 2 others like this.
  12. @Uber's Guber yeah, Uber Assist is definitely something I'd go for. I've heard that the number of drivers who do it is such a small percentage as to be almost non-existent, so it might not work so well in the kind of pinch I'm talking about.
    Normally I use paratransit (a municipally funded extension of the public transit system which cators to riders with disabilities). That works well enough most of the time, but it requires significant advanced booking on a first come, first serve basis, and sometimes you're just not fortunate enough to be the first to come.
    When that happens, it's a taxi, an option like Uber, or thou shall not exit thy residence today.
  13. So, kc ub'ing!, how to avoid being a pretentious ween?
    Rakos likes this.
  14. New2This


    DC Area
    Very cool.

    SEAL Team 5SEAL Team 5 had the best idea. Finding one, or a few, drivers that would do it might be your best bet. At least in my area the quality of drivers decreases every week, so if you find someone competent hold onto them.

    As much of a Surge Harlot as I am I'd look at it as community service and not the kind the judge and my probation officer keep talking about...
  15. Seems some messages are getting flagged for approval and some aren't. Have I tripped a spam word trigger?
  16. Uber's Guber

    Uber's Guber

    United States
    C’mon man, have a heart. He’s trying to be thorough in his explanation because he’s looking for an honest answer. He’s just wants to know if his disability is going to cause undue grief should he attempt to utilize the service. No doubt he’s listened to some of the heartless comments that are written in this forum, and he has legitimate safety reasons to be concerned regarding the service of rideshare operators.
    Look, we all come in here to piss & moan about “this-pax-did-this” or “this-pax-said-that,” but that doesn’t negate that fact that some people will need some special assistance for reasons that are beyond their control. Are any of you heartless enough that you would readily spit in the face of a person dealing with a disability?
    You may want to reflect on the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:31–46 when He speaks regarding people in need.
    5231XDMA, Marlo, negeorgia and 11 others like this.
  17. Fuzzyelvis


    I've picked up blind people. I've never had to go get them or help them to their door. I used to deliver pizza to a blind guy in an apartment complex we couldn't enter. He met us on the street and went back through his complex with the pizza. Didn't even have a cane.

    I'm not blind and if you blindfolded me and left me outside my house I wouldn't be "stranded for hours." And I could definitely find my way to the curb without making the driver knock on my door.

    I'll help you find the door to my car. That's about it. You sound like the least self sufficient blind person I've ever met. Is there more to the story?

    You'll get shuffled. Or canceled on as soon as the driver receives the text and decides it's too much hassle for MAYBE a tip. Not by all, but some. FYI most pax who say they'll tip don't. And I don't know what "I'll tip as much as I can." means. If money is tight that week you won't tip? Or 50 cents?

    As an aside I don't go more than 2 feet from my car while picking up pax for safety reasons. I'll check luggage isn't packed badly or my car scratched, but that's about the only time I get out with a pax around.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
  18. Much appreciated, Uber's Guber. To be honest though I'm more worried about Iann's comment than the one you referenced (post no. 2).
    Iann technically implied that scamming would be appropriate. If I misunderstand, please chime in and clarify.
    I've seen everything from unbelievable kindness to unbelievable cruelty, so this is a curiosity quest as much as it is a practical one.
    In the unbelievable cruelty department, we have a paratransit driver who intentionally left me on a stranger's door step at midnight because I said I waited outside in inclement weather to protect myself from drivers who would leave me a no show and say they couldn't find me. This was not a taxi driver, not a ride share driver, but paratransit; a service which exists strictly for riders with disabilities.
    In the unbelievable kindness department, you have five gentlemen who spent hundreds of hours of their own time painstakingly writing specific instructions for me so I could play and beet a Legend of Zelda game on my own! Ocarina of Time!
    I'd die for another experience like that with another of my all time favourite video games, but alas it may not happen.
    I'd post a link to the CNN story that triggered, but since my account is still new and triggering moderator approvals for possible spam I'd better not post a URL. If you're interested, search up blind gamer beets Ocarina of Time on good ol' youtube.
    So yeah, it's an interesting world out there, and I'm really enjoying this conversation. I hope it lasts for a while.

    @Fuzzyelvis if you dropped me outside my own home, no, I wouldn't be stranded for hours. That's familiar territory. If you dropped me outside my home, but you accidentally were at a neighbours address and it was late at night, it could happen. The stranded for hours remark describes a worst case, a perfect storm of sorts.
    Coming out to your own curb to receive a pizza is one thing (again, familiar territory. Finding you in a large parking lot is another. Knowing you've arrived means spotting you by looking out the window as you pull in, again not plausible. Standing outside waiting for you after dark with a smartphone in my hand is asking for a crime to happen. I hate to say it, but would be robbers looking for a drug fix would see me as zero risk where they might otherwise go home empty handed or choose a riskier mark.
    but yes, there are blind people who would feel more at ease getting themselves out of a completely unfamiliar location than I might do. Other than that, I do fairly well for myself, getting myself around campus independently and that sort of thing.

    Sorry Fuzzyelvis, I overlooked your question about what I'll tip as much as I can means.
    I try to shoot for 25 percent. I know I'm comparing apples to oranges, but I know in the restaurant industry standard good etiquette is 15 percent. If you stand out, I'll shoot for more like 25. If you stand out in a bad way, I'll shoot for more like 0 (and no, I don't penalize a waiter/ waitress for a bad meal, it's not their fault). If you're willing to help out when your job doesn't mandate it you stand out to me, and I never forget.
    That said, I'm definitely not rich, and might not be able to guarantee 25 percent in all cases especially if I have to go a long distance. Paratransit is covered by a regular monthly public transit pass, so of course I try my best to use that as much as humanly possible. What we're talking about here is a once or twice a month kind of thing, so 25 percent shouldn't be an issue.
    Rakos and SibeRescueBrian like this.
  19. Uber's Guber

    Uber's Guber

    United States
    There are different levels of legal blindness, from partial to complete. Even with complete blindness, the ability to eventually convey oneself is manageable within learned areas.
    Moving about in known areas becomes an eventual learned trait for a person who is unable to rely upon eyesight, as they begin to become accustomed to sound, touch, and feel while maneuvering known territory. Being subject to unknown areas makes the situation different. If you were blind folded and placed near the edge of a cliff, would you feel as confident?
    Maybe there is more to the story…. Maybe the blindness is a new disability, and the person is trying to learn to adapt in a new phase of life.
    Most pax probably don’t tip you anyway. If your life situation is so dire that your survival depends on receiving a tip from somebody who is dealing with a disability, then your existence on this earth is probably less viable than the disabled person that you refuse to offer services to. I pity you.
    How noble of you. Blind people are on their own, but be sure to provide due diligence to avoid a scratch on your pos vehicle. :rolleyes:
    Marlo, Julescase, Ulikedew and 4 others like this.
  20. merryon2nd


    Philadelphia, PA/Wildwood, NJ
    Eh, a little kindness goes a long way. And while I can, if you read some of my previous stuff, be a real harda$$, I don't mind doing a little extra for someone who isn't a @@@@@@ who's in a tight spot and might need a little more help than usual. Especially if the circumstances are explained in advance so I know what I'm walking into. Nor do I believe that such things are automatic down rates. The problem with society, after all, and most of the reason for my agitation with humanity, is that there is no compassion anymore. And an overwhelming sense of superiority over others without base.
    Someone like you, who comes along with not only a heads up, but also gives me an option? Yeah, I'll give you a hand. You treated me like a human and not a servant. So I'll give you the same dignanty.

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