How to request a Ride using Uber app - Guide and FAQs

This article will try to provide a detailed explanation of all the features and services that an Uber customer may require for arranging a trip. It has been conveniently arranged in a logical order with links to specific pages that will provide extra details when needed. We will also provide the occasional insight that has been gleaned from many years of participating in Uber rides.

We expect you are already a customer and have downloaded the app if not, register to Uber and download the app. It's free, and you can review the app as you read this article.

Uber app: Request a Ride

  1. Open the Uber app and enter your destination in the "where to" section, try to give an accurate an address as possible. If you had already traveled to this destination before you can go-to the shortcut section and the bottom of the app screen and press "saved places" which will list all your visited rides.
  2. Your current location is set as your default pick-up point, so if you are not going to be at the point of GPS as you are when you make the request, input your pickup location so that the driver will arrive at the correct place.
  3. If you want to pick out a specific vehicle type, or service type, go-to the bottom of the app screen and toggle the slider between the various options. These can include all the Uber services available in your area, such as UberX, Uber-Black, Uber-SUV and more.
  4. After you have completed these actions, press "request," sometimes the app will ask for confirmation of your pickup area, so confirm if asked.
  5. You now need to wait until a driver accepts your request, you might see a few drivers in your area if you are on the sidewalk, it doesn't mean that they are free. As a rule, drivers need to confirm a request within 15 seconds, so if you don't receive a request within 15 seconds, it means that there are fewer drivers in your area and your waiting time might be longer.
  6. Once you have been accepted, you will see your driver's location on the map and the expected pickup time. You must ensure you are waiting at the spot-on time, the last thing you want is to keep your driver waiting. If you are going to be late, contact the driver and let him know. By waiting at the appointed spot, you ensure a fast pick up, also, if the area you picked is a congested area or an illegal stop zone, your driver might contact you to ask for a better location to pick you up. The last thing you want is to pay the parking fine or police fee or get into a car when everyone is honking and shouting.
  7. Once the driver is close to your pick-up location, the app will send you a notification.

Requesting Multiple Stops

Sometimes passengers require multiple stops, such as shopping, picking up things and maybe just frog-leaping with kids to their various after-school activities. Whatever the reason, Uber provides this service too.

Go into the app and do the following:

  1. Press the "where too" option box.
  2. Tap the plus sign to the right
  3. Press "add a stop" to input your first stop
  4. The Press additional stops again by tapping "add a stop."
  5. You are limited to 2 extra stops only
  6. Press "save."

Your stops will be reached in the same order they were made if you want to remove a destination just press the X symbol.

Try to keep stops to a minimum of three minutes otherwise, the fare rate will change. If you want to split the fare, you can, but not per section, only per during ride. So, if you need to give a business a section of the ride, work out the individual cost and make the split that way.

One last thing, multiple destinations is not allowed in UberPool rides.

How to get an uber fare estimate:

If you want to know what your ride will cost before you take it, there two ways to estimate it, we present the Uber app way:

  1. Input your destination in the "where to" option
  2. If your pick-up point is where you are then you can continue, if not since the Uber app uses GPS, you will have to input your pick-up address. So, tap in your pickup location on the map.
  3. If you want to pick out a specific vehicle type, or service type, go-to the bottom of the app screen and toggle the slider between the various options. These can include all the Uber services available in your area, such as UberX, Uber-Black, Uber-SUV and more.
  4. The final fare estimate is shown under each car option. This estimate will include dynamic pricing. The estimates don't include promotions or bonuses, even those active in the passenger's account.

The Uber Fare Breakdown

To understand the fare properly, here is a breakdown of the various parts that make up the total fare:

Base Fare : this is the flat fee that Uber charges for each ride, it varies according to the car category UberX, Uber Black, SUV, etc.

Cost per Minute : This is what Uber charges for every minute from the moment the ride begins. It takes into account traffic and other circumstances that can cause a ride to take longer than expected.

Cost per Mile : This is what Uber charges for every mile drive. Drivers usually take the fastest route, but when traffic or other instructions are foreseen, they will choose a different route. Uber charges for the shortest distance in a pre-quote fare.

Booking Fee : This is an extra fee that Uber charges to cover its operational costs. It is not included in Uber Black and SUV fares.

Surge Price : This is an additional multiplier that is added when there is a lot of strain in the system, basically a supply and demand function. So if you are in a surge area, your overall fee can multiply by up to x3.

Tipping : This is purely optional, while there is an Uber tipping platform, the passenger can give the driver cash at their own discretion.

The Fare is calculated like this:

  • Base Fare + ((Cost per minute x time of the ride) + (cost per mile x ride distance) x surge boost multiplier) + booking fee = Passengers Ride Fare

Minimum Fare

There is a minimum fare rate that is set to assure a certain level of income for the Uber driver. This varies per city and is based on the above calculation being no lower than the minimum fee. If the total is lower, then you will be charged the minimum price.

Last word on Fares

You need to note that the fare does not include surge prices and other boosts that can affect the final price as and when the ride occurs. The fare estimator will only give a basic fare for the optimum driving conditions. It will also not be the same as an upfront quote that you might receive since the pre-quote will take into account the various surges and boosts and weather conditions into account.

Where is Uber Available?

Uber is the world's largest ride-share company with offices in thousands of locations globally. For a full list, it is best to check out the city list on Ubers site, here is the link: UBER CITIES

Take into account that the list changes frequently, so if you are traveling, it's worthwhile checking the site out before you go. Also, you can book Uber rides in any of the supported cities.

How to arrange a large group ride

Sometimes a passenger will want to arrange for a large group to ride if this group is larger than the accepted number of maximum passengers allowed in any single large SUV or XL vehicle than you will have to ask someone in the group that has an Uber account to order together with your request. If the order is for a large group that fits into one car, then you just book a large car. One of the perks of arranging a large group ride is the option to refer a passenger to open an account in Uber. If you do manage to make this happen you select "Free Rides" in the app menu and when your friend takes their first ride, you get a referral award.

Scheduling a ride

There is now a pre-scheduled ride option available. This option is available in every city where Uber operates. You can also schedule a trip to an airport or from an airport, and the option is available for any time of day and night.

Uber Scheduled Rides

  1. Tap "Where to" and put in your destination.
  2. Choose the "set pick up time."
  3. If your pick-up point is where you are, then tap "current location," if not since the Uber app uses GPS, you will have to input your pick-up address. So, tap in your pickup location on the map.
  4. If you want to pick out a specific vehicle type, or service type, go-to the bottom of the app screen and toggle the slider between the various options. These can include all the Uber services available in your area, such as UberX, Uber-Black, Uber-SUV and more.
  5. Input your destination.
  6. Check the fare estimate and press "schedule."

Fare Rates

Uber states that their rates are dependent on the time of pickup, which is sensible and reasonable. You understand that rates are dynamic and can change during the day. This way you have no real idea what this ride will cost until the moment of the pickup.


When your ride is within the pickup time range, you will get a notification reminding you of the ride. Uber does not charge a special cancellation fee, but the usual cancellation fees of any ride are relevant.

  • In the app, choose "Upcoming."
  • Choose "Edit Time" or "Cancel Ride"

The Driver

Drivers of Uber don't see the scheduled rides at the time of booking, the system stores them in the memory and then releases them some minutes before the ride should take place. Drivers, treat the request as a standard request, which means all the same rules apply.

Viewing fares and accepting them

Since fares are dependent on the city and the category, you will see the fares displayed on the app under every car option you selected for the destination.

To accept the suggested fare, press the "request" button (black). Fares can change during a trip if you make the driver wait too long or if you make any stops or extra stops during the trip. Fares will also change if you change the destination too. The fare displayed is based on the demand and other factors determined at the time you place the order. You can always check the trip fare at a later time. If it is lower, you can cancel the original request and make a new one.

What if the app doesn't show any fares?

This sometimes happens, and it doesn't mean that there are no rides available, it just means that the system cannot calculate an accurate fare. The request will still be made, but the fare will be calculated during the ride, as all standard ride fares are. If you are seeking an estimate without requesting a trip, then go to the site trip estimator and check the prices online.

Remember, any changes in your actual ride will be reflected in the price you actually pay, so when you schedule a ride, or estimate a fare and then request a ride, take the estimation as the base value.

Can a passenger request a specific driver?

The Uber app does not allow for this to happen; it sends the driver that is closest to the passenger at the time of the request. Although, if you know the driver, you can always call him up and ask him to come to you, once you are next to the car, put in a request. This usually does the trick.

Long Trip Rules

There is no limit to long distance rides. However the app might end the ride after 4 hours, the driver is usually notified by Uber via the driver's app. When this happens, you make a new request, and the new trip starts with you in the car. You will be charged for the first trip, and the new trip will generate a new fare.

If you intend to make a long trip and think or know it will cover a long distance, let the driver know beforehand. Some drivers might be at the end of a shift and if they don't know the ride is long cannot decide whether to accept the request or not.

Uber at the Airport

Uber supports rides from most airports in the countries they are operable. There are two kinds of Airport rides, going to an airport and coming from an airport.

Outgoing Flights

If you have to reach an airport at a certain time to catch a flight, make sure you order the ride a little earlier to compensate for traffic, obstructions and any possibilities for the delay. Once a driver has accepted the ride, you should send him the flight details; this helps him check the status of your flight and know if there are any delays in its status.

Incoming Flights

If you are landing at an airport and want to request an Uber ride, you can either schedule a pick up before the flight and send your driver the flight details so he can check to see the flight status and arrange to be ready for pick up at the right time. Or, after you land and are in the airport, place a standard request. Take into account that sometimes Uber drivers are waiting at the busier airports and please factor into your request your actual status; are you through border control and are you waiting for luggage or not. Sometimes luggage pickups can take longer than expected and it is not good for a driver to wait too long at any given point in an airport. Try to calculate our pick-up point and a maximum ten-minute wait for the driver. If you can narrow it down to less than five minutes, would be better. If the airport is a major international one, you won't have a problem getting a ride, if the airport is a smaller one, you might consider pre-scheduling a pickup.


Pets and Uber Rides

Service pets are a federal requirement by law, so Uber will never turn down a ride with a service pet. However, if your pet is not a service animal, then you should notify the driver of the pet, which kind of animal, how big, etc. This is important since not all drivers will take pets if they could be considered as problematic with the interior of the car, such as scratching the leather seats in an Uber Black or SUV service. Text the driver that accepts the ride, some drivers are pet-friendly and might even have a blanket for pets in the trunk.

How to select a specific car type

The Uber app allows customers to request a specific car type, not an actual model and make, but a group of cars that make up a specific group of models and makes that fit the ride type.

The Uber car types are:

  • UberPOOL is a share riding option for individuals or groups of people being picked up at different locations but all seeking a similar or identical destination. This option is the cheapest one but comes with its own issues.
  • UberX; These are regular sedans and are the standard ride cars; they can carry up to 4 passengers. Car models and makes include Toyota Prius, Honda Accord and more.
  • UberXL: These are SUV's or minivans and can carry 6 passengers. These rides cost more than UberX.
  • user select: This is Uber's base luxury service, and cars carry 4 riders. This category will include upholstered leather models of BMW, Mercedes, Audi and more.
  • UberBLACK: This is Ubers highest level of Sedan comfort. It is a commercially registered service with a professional limo or livery licensed driver, and the cars are all high range luxury sedans with black exteriors and black leather interiors. This service includes such cars as Infiniti, Lexus, Jaguar, Mercedes Benz and more.
  • UberSUV: Similar to the UberBlack highest level of SUV comfort. It is a commercially registered service with a professional limo or livery licensed driver, and the cars are all high range luxury SUVs with black exteriors and black leather interiors. This service includes such cars as Porsche, Lexus, Jaguar, Mercedes Benz and more.

To select a specific car group, tap the "where to" button, input your destination and then choose from the list of car group options at the bottom of the screen which car grouping you want. You cannot choose a specific model or make.

Each group will show you their fare as estimated by the ride features. Once you decide on a specific group, press the black "request" option to make the order.

What is ETA?

ETA is Estimated Time of Arrival; this is the time your driver is expected to arrive at your pick-up location. Once you are picked up the app will then show you the ETA for your destination. This can change during the ride since it directly relational and linked to the ride status as it unfolds. ETA's are built-in features of all GPS apps such as Waze and Google maps; Uber incorporates this feature in its map.

When you request a ride, and as you go down to choose the car group option, apart from the fare price you will also see the ETA. Remember that ETA's are estimates, usually quite accurate but not 100%.

How to change your Pickup Point

When using Uber's app, it employs GPS coordinates to pinpoint your location, if you are requesting a ride with a different pickup point from where you make the request, then you must do the following:

  1. Select the pickup location option on the map
  2. Input the new address or specific point
  3. Pick out one of the apps suggested locations

If you made a request and the driver is on the way, and you decide to change your pickup point, you can do this:

  1. Select the "edit" option next to your pick-up location
  2. Input the new address or pull the pin over to the new location within the grey circle
  3. Press confirm to accept the new coordinates

Note, that after making a request you cannot move the location from outside of the grey circle. If you are in a different location, outside the circle, then cancel the request and make a new one.

Remember that you cannot change a pick-up location in UberPool rides, this is due to the navigational nature of the ride, it's a multi-stop ride, and all the stops are arranged according to the pick-up points, changing one might cancel others, so Uber does not allow for pick-up edits.

How to contact a Driver

Sometimes passengers will need to contact their designated driver for long destination rides, pickup or pet issues or just to ask a general question. This can be done easily through the Uber app:

  1. Press the bar that shows your drivers information at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Press "contact" which will direct you to choose "call" or "message" the driver.

Most drivers will not reply to a text message when driving, so if you asked a question, you might not get a reply. If you only sent directional information don't expect a reply. The driver will read and process the information.

All About Canceling Rides and Cancellation Fees

There are two options to canceling a ride request, and they depend on whether your ride has been matched with a driver or not. Here are the two options:

How to Cancel a ride before driver matching:

  1. Press the info bar (white) at the bottom of the screen
  2. "Press "Cancel"
  3. Confirm the action by choosing "yes" or "no."

If your ride has already been paired with a driver:

  1. Press on your driver's info bar on the bottom of the screen
  2. Press "Cancel Trip"
  3. Confirm the cancellation
  4. Pay the cancellation fee if it applies

Cancelling or stopping a ride early

If you already entered a car and the ride has started, you can stop it at any given moment before the destination point has been reached. You might have to pay the minimum fee rate if your ride generated a fare that is less than the minimum fare.

Passengers occasionally play with their apps during rides and cancel rides while still in them. That's not a problem; the driver will continue to the destination and make a fare adjustment.

Cancellation Fee Issues

Cancellation fees are in place to compensate drivers time, consider a driver is driving for ten minutes to get to your pick-up point, and you cancel the ride.

If you have an issue with the cancellation fee, you can always contact Uber and place a request. If you did not receive a cancellation fee credit then it is most probably due to one of these reasons:

  1. The cancellation fee was correct
  2. No cancellation fee was made
  3. You already received the cancellation fee back

If you want to check for a cancellation fee, then do the following:

  1. Go to the menu screen "Your Trips."
  2. Select the "canceled trips" option
  3. Choose "Receipt"

The receipt will show you if you were charged for a trip's cancellation, if it shows up as zero, then you were not charged. In many instances when you cannot find a specific canceled trip on the list is because you were never charged a fee and as such the trip never happened, so it was not recorded.

If you need to check your credits, where you received your cancellation fee's back after a request was accepted, then you can do so this way:

  1. Select the menu option "Payment."
  2. Scroll to the "Uber Credits."

You will see all your credits in this screen including the refunded cancellation fee credits.

Cancellation Fee Rules

On some occasions, a passenger will cancel a ride, if this happens within 2 to 5 minutes of the request and so long as a driver has not accepted it. Once a driver has accepted a ride request there will be a cancellation fee.

If you arrive late to a pick-up location, that is anywhere between 2 to 5 minutes in some instances, then the driver can cancel the ride, and you will be charged the cancellation fee. Drivers will only cancel a pickup late arrival if it is in a congested or illegal pick up zone and usually only after they have contacted the passenger notifying them that they are waiting. When picking up passengers from their home or in rural areas where there is no traffic, drivers tend to be a bit more patient.

UberPool rides will generate a cancellation fee automatically after a driver accepts the ride. If the passenger is over 2 minutes late, the driver will drive off and charge the rider a cancellation fee.

It is imperative that you contact the driver f you think you will be late, this way the driver can help you decide what is best. In instances where the pickup location is problematic, drivers will help you choose an alternative pickup point.

Requesting Rides for Other People

Uber customers can request rides for friends and family and for other people, such as business employees or visitors. Here is how you do it:

  1. Choose the "where to" option
  2. Enter the person's pick-up location
  3. Choose the option "someone else."
  4. Enter the person's details including their mobile phone number or take their info from your contacts information choice.
  5. If you choose from the contacts information choice, select the person by choosing the contact with the arrow on their icon.
  6. Enter the destination
  7. Press the "confirm rider" button
  8. Tap "Request" to place the request

The moment the ride is accepted the riders mobile phone will receive an SMS message from Uber detailing all the ride information and the drivers ETA, name, car make, and model and car license plate number. The driver will also receive the person's name and number as typed in or chosen to form the contacts list.

Note, if you make a ride for someone else, you cannot request another ride until that one is over. So, if you need to travel too, consider all the options open to you.