It's time to understand what UberPools and LyftLines are. Are they ride-sharing sharing rides…confused? Don't be; it means two or more passenger will accept a ride with each other and split the ride fare between them. This means you take more people for the same price. It might seem cool to the customers, and for some drivers, it's OK when driving in a particular direction, adding more potential future customers can pay off. However, with UberPool and LyftLine you have no idea how all these passengers will react when together in a confined space. So we collated a list of negatives that put us off driving pool rides.
Most new pool passengers don't realize that a pool ride means that the driver is going to zig-zag around like a school bus, picking up passengers along the way, but not exactly along the shortest route to the final destination. The new fares get frustrated with this and vent it out on the driver and make the whole ride uncomfortable. It also leads to bad ratings.
Same Income More Work
Since it is effectively only one ride, as all the fares are joined together to pay on the final amount. Sure, you do get a bigger income, but per fare, you are getting less, and you are driving around for a long time having to deal with irate passengers and traffic. The other factor is the parking for each pickup, finding a place to park or stand for every passenger is not as easy as it sounds, especially when police are prowling around and also weaving in and out of traffic can be problematic. The driver has to concentrate more, look out more and be aware of everything while dealing with a growing load of passengers.
The customer enjoys paying less, but unless you are the last passenger picked up, you end up driving around for a long time waiting to get to your destination. This always leads to bad ratings.
Since the UberPool is priced at public transport levels, it creates more congestion on public lanes as more and more pool cars converge with their loads. More cars and added to the same level of public transport lead to more congestion.
The big "what if." What if everyone is happy and sing "kumbaya," sure, never happens. Since these are a group of different people, converging together in a confined space, it can lead to some heated discussions. Especially when discussing political issues, although you do get some interesting heated arguments on any number of subjects such as religion, technology, sex, sport, it just takes one jerk to be stubborn and loud, and the whole situation will spin out of hand. Guess what, you get blamed, and your ratings take a hit.
Safe driving is a must, but when your concentration is split between a herd of angry passengers and an ever-increasing traffic jungle, add to that your apps and entertainment system, you need to know where your eyes and hands will be at every given moment. Now, consider you need to change lanes in all of this. Pool riding is not for a beginner, it even taxes the most experienced driver, unless you were a bus or van driver in your past life.
As you can see, or maybe you already felt in real life, pool driving is not for the faint of heart. The stress levels are high, and you have to consider that every pool ride is going to be the same. One scenario which may have been in is the late pickup cancellation when you arrive at a pickup, and there is no place to park. You are double parked, causing traffic problems, the cops are not there, but angry drivers are, honking and cursing at you. You call the passenger; maybe he is #4, and tell him that he must cancel if he doesn't get in within 5 seconds, the fare refuses to cancel, and won't be ready for another 3 minutes. The other passengers are now irate too; they hate to wait as much as you do. So, you cancel the ride and drive off which is added to your cancellation rate as well as leaves that untaken fare a "bitter enemy," that only remembers you as the driver that abandoned them at rush hour.
The UberPool and LyftLine algorithm
The reason many pools are bad is partially due to the algorithm that pairs ride. While the program tries to juggle all the pool factors into a satisfactory pairing, some can be problematic, since the balancing and weighting are happening on a constant update. Also, the algorithm cannot take into account the wide variety of social, cultural and physical differences between customers. So, getting a cologne bathed actor with a cigarette infused executive and a morning drinking retailer can produce some interesting smell combinations that make driving in the rain a serious issue.
Solutions and Conclusions
A lot of new drivers still decide to be pool drivers, this partially due to their ignorance and the fact that they don't read up about it:
- Most drivers don't know that you cannot ignore more than two to three pool rides, its part of the acceptance rate rules. So once they are in the Pool, they have to deal with all the shit that comes with it.
- Sometimes drivers like to chase guarantees, and Pools are part of the package they offer more fares in a shorter period.
We suggest you don't take pool rides if you want a quiet and uneventful ride. Just imagine this; a pool ride of drunks from different bars and strip joints. Either you are asking for it, or you are as drunk as they are.