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XL Ride w/ 4.5x Surge and 4 different pax destinations....$$$$


Active Member
So, I clock out of my real job after a 10 hour shift and immediately log-on to Uber. The first ping of the evening was a nice fare to downtown which is where I was hoping to end up. The ride includes a small 1.3x surge and I make $26 in 32 min. Not a bad start. I then proceeded to grind it out downtown with a lot of short pick-ups and drops. It's starting to look like it's going to be a long, slow, slog of an evening. After a couple hours of this, I finally get pinged for a longer trip, however, it's 15 minutes one way to a slow part of the city. Most likely this means no pax on the return trip back to my zone which sucks. I'm not happy about it but what can you do? Luckily, I do end up getting pinged on my way back, only problem is, its in the opposite direction and 15 min to pick up. I arrive at the pick up location only to realize it is right in the middle of the highway, so of course I have to call the pax. He's down the street at the gym and I end up wasting another 10 minutes making u-turns across the highway to get to him. Turns out it's cold and he doesn't feel like walking the 2 minutes to his house from the gym. My efforts are rewarded with a paltry $2.40 for 30 minutes of my time and 12 miles in gas. Adding insult to injury, it's starting to snow and I see my zone is now surging at 3.5x but i'm 30 minutes away thanks to this detour. As I make the long drive back downtown, I'm steaming at having just wasted a good hour of drive time. I can't help but to feel overly irritated, it's funny how much one bad hour of driving can negatively affect you. When I finally arrive back downtown the surge is still on and it's starting to snow heavily. Huge flakes are flying, it's 28 degrees and the roads have turned into ice skating rinks. I'm almost back to the heart of my zone when the surge jumps to 4.5x (I live in Salt Lake City, Utah and 5x is about as good as it gets). Bam! I get the ping, 4.5x surge and pax is 3 min away. Turns out it's an older, affluent, lady who I've had the pleasure of driving before. She remembers me, and after exchanging pleasantries, she lets me know we will need to make 4 stops along the way to drop off her and her friends. Sweeeeet! Things just went from bad to great. It takes me 30 minutes and 8.5 miles of driving through blizzard conditions to get them home safely. As you can imagine, I'm excited to check the fare total as soon as I end the ride. That's when I realize it was also an XL. Somehow I missed that when I accepted the ping. Nice! This trip just got even better. But for some reason, at that exact time, my app froze while calculating the fare total. I fretted and cursed at it for over 5 minutes, imagining all the possible ways I could get screwed out of this monster ride. Finally, after what seemed to be an eternity, the app figured it out and there it was. My biggest single ride to date! The rest on the night kicked ass and I ended up having my most profitable session ever. If I hadn't driven the crappy $2.40 fare, I most likely wouldn't have been in that exact right spot at the exact right time to accept the monster fare. The moral of the store is this. Don't get too frustrated with the bad streaks because they are a necessary component of our job. One never knows when the tide will turn. Stay positive, serve others, make that $$$ and Uber on!

There's a lot of negativity on these forums. Hopefully my little antidote will help inspire you to stay positive when times get rough. Got a similar story? Post it here. Lets feed off each-others positive energy!
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Well-Known Member
Most of us get boned every time we go out now days.
I would tend to believe you, it is that bone they throw you that conditions a driver to accept the BS, label criticism negativity as opposed to the product of objective observation. The bone or carrot, pick your metaphor conditions drivers to keep coming back, it is a great example of intermittent reinforcement. The bone/carrot is fine if you can afford to truly knock off the entire rest of the time and don't mind the need to remain vigilant and on the ready. For for people for whom it is more than a hobby are a system to game, it simply isn't helpful, it isn't good for the long haul, the promise of the occasional high surge ride is ultimately paid for by other drivers - those who need to work at base rates which do nothing but drop below competitive rates/mile.