animal style

animal stylei was sorta asked to write a piece for about uber for a site i love and respect

but instead of telling all the weird funny sexy things that happen,

what i wanna do is make a detailed list for how to be a great uber passenger.

heres my outline

1. make calling Uber the last thing you do. we will get there, usually fast. making us wait will only insure that you will have a bitter angry driver. just do what youre gonna do, get yourself together, and as youre about to walk outside, then summon the driver. we will be there in 3-4 minutes. and we will be soooo happy when we see you out there waiting.

2. dont ask for gum. sure we could have it available, but lots of people dont know what to do with gum after theyve used it. and often we wont know until the next day: the hard way. bring your own gum, we’ll provide the water and the safe ride.

3. tip. maybe once upon a time tipping was included in the price. but because of the price war with lyft, that trip from downtown to the beach has dropped significantly. it’s now about 1/4 that of a taxi. most of that is coming out of the driver’s pocket. if they gave you good safe service in a clean comfortable car, $2 is a nice way to say thanks.

4. give the address to the driver as soon as you get in. we’re parked, we want to figure out the best route, we have our GPS ready, so just tell us. youd be shocked how many people want to give directions in the back seat and then their phone rings, or they want to start texting. then we miss a turn. there shouldnt be a mystery, just tell us. we’ll get you there as you sit back and relax.

5. making stops to pick up your date or friends is fine, being the way your run errands is less fun. yes the meter is running, but barely. so if you really want to go through the drive through and then go to the liquor store and have your driver wait and you browse, a $5 tip at the beginning of the ride will ease the tension youre about to bring to the driver. we like to drive, not sit and sit and sit.

6. dont ask if you can smoke. not only is it against uber’s rules, but it’s not cool for the next passenger. in any other situation we might let you smoke in our car, but most uber drivers will go on dozens of rides a week, people really dont want to slide into a car that reeks: of anything. please dont make us have to tell you no. use the app to get an uber, light up, and when you’re done we will probably just be arriving.

7. if you have 5 people who want a ride, you really shouldnt use UberX: it’s dangerous, the driver cant see out of the back,  the cops will likely ticket the driver, and it’s abusing the very low price of the ride. just get an Uber Black car or SUV and split it using the app. come on, now.

8. if you really are sorry that it’s a short trip: tip a buck or two. unlike cabs which you typically hail at the side of the road, uber drivers go to your location. sometimes it can take more than 10 minutes. if you really want a ride 3-4 blocks away, we’ll do it, but we wont be thrilled about it. give the driver a buck and your karma will be restored.

9. dont bring open containers of booze into the car. not only will you probably spill it, but it’s possibly going to get the driver in trouble with the law. drink before you call uber, or as your’re finishing your beer summon your ride and by the time we have arrived you’ll be finished. theres more beer where youre headed.

10. if the uber driver was nice enough to give you a bottle of water, dont throw the empty under the seat or anywhere in the car. not only is it disrespectful to the driver and next passengers, but it is a good sign to the driver that maybe we shouldnt hand out water any more.

i know these seem negative. but the uber experience is so fun that these things are really the only things that bring them down. and theyre so easily avoidable.