How does the Uber driver app work?

Uber Driver App 2019

How does the Uber driver app work?

Since its initial release, the Uber app has evolved tremendously.

Back in 2009, the Uber App was effectively used for one thing & one thing only: to find & accept rides (i.e. remotely locate nearby drivers) and process final payments.

Today, circa 2019, Uber’s App has expanded into a veritable portal of information & functions. Now, the App not only allows riders to access basic account information, but also offers a range of new valuable resources which may be useful for users who are actively on-the-road.

This guide is intended to break down the Uber app, helping Uber drivers enhance efficiency, achieve app fluency & and ensure total usability.

Uber App Features — Here’s What You Need to Know

Although the Uber App may seem straightforward most of the time, life isn’t. You may run into fare issues, have questions about your pay, or any other aspects of your everyday role as an Uber driver. In that sense, you’ll want to know the Uber App in its totality — i.e., inside and out.

Here’s the Uber app explained — let’s break it down.

Home Tab

From the home tab, you can locate the app’s map. Using your map, you can explore real-time surge activity to increase your earnings. On your home screen map, you will see where you are — and where local surge areas are. One disadvantage of this is, you cannot see where other drivers are (* meaning, you may drive into a crowded / high-Uber-density area). To support your efforts, download the Uber Passenger App — allowing you to see some of the other drivers nearest to you.

Online status 

When you press the ‘ go online’ toggle button, you will do just that — go online. You’ll press this when you’re ready to receive requests and begin driving passengers. If you are having trouble activating your app (or getting ‘online’ successfully), it could mean that your account has been deactivated (or has some other outstanding issue). In that case, you’ll need to submit a question within the help center.

Determine destination 

Uber’s destination filter can help you set a specific destination (i.e., allowing you to only accept ride requests when you’re heading in a certain direction). Using the ‘determine destination’ feature makes the most sense if you’re heading home at the end of the day – allowing you to maximize earnings…and not waste ’empty miles’ on a passenger-less trips. You can access Uber Destination Filet by pressing on the ‘checklist’ icon (located in the upper-left hand corner of the driver app’s home screen).

Please note: You can only use this feature twice in a single day (so…use it wisely). Most drivers use the Destination Filter during their daily commute period (i.e. as they head in and out of that day’s shift).

Latest news and info 

Uber’s ‘announcement blog’ is also found on the app’s homescreen (allowing drivers to better understand Uber’s most current information and up-to-date promotions). If you’re in-between rides, it doesn’t hurt to review this information so that you’re better prepared.

You will see announcements regarding the latest promotions — such as one-time bonuses for working certain days, or extra ‘boosts’ for drivers who work at specific times, etc. Although this is a great place to look, it’s not always a comprehensive list. That is why it’s recommended that all drivers actively check all app messages and Uber-related emails.

Account Tab 

As you might expect, the Account Tab covers all topics related to your personal profile, your vehicle, payment methods, etc. You will find the following info within this tab:

  • Documents — This will show you what documents are active (*and you can also upload new documents).
  • Help — Under ‘Help’, you will find articles and FAQs that answer most of your questions. You can also access support, payment options, etc.
  • Music — This section offers personalized music settings, provided via the Pandora app
  • Payment —Under ‘Payment’, drivers can enter new account info. If you’d like to edit pre-existing information, head over to vault.uber.com.
  • Settings — Manage your accessibility; affiliations; contact; navigation; settings.
  • Waybill — Under ‘Waybill’, you can access detailed information about your last trip & trip history; as well as view insurance info.
Earnings Tab 

Although you may enjoy driving for Uber, we all work for one main reason — to make money. When you’re working hard, you’ll want to keep tabs on your earnings to make sure everything is accurate. Once you select the earnings tab, you will see how much you’ve earned each day of the week. This information is displayed in a bar graph — making it easier to view & analyze quickly.

Better yet, when you tap on each bar, you’ll instantly see your earnings — and, when clicking on each day’s value, you will see the breakdown of those earnings. Lastly, based on your schedule and earnings, you will see an estimated payout for the week, displayed at the bottom of the graph.

To maximize your earnings, you’ll also want to pay attention to any special announcements or promotions. This information will also be found under the earnings tab, which highlights any pertinent bonus info and promotion-related news. If you want to stay on-top of these active promotions, continually check your app messages and Uber emails.

Some other payment related features include:

  • Statements — This will show a list of your payment statements. You can view this information in greater detail, including the promotions earned, earnings per day, etc. If you think there are any errors in your payment statement, click Earnings Help – Payment Review Request – My total payout is wrong.
  • Trip history — This is helpful when you want to view recent trips and their associated earnings. You’ll also want to check-in to your history to ensure that no issues have occurred with individual rides. To report an issue: Tap on the ride in question, then press the ‘Help’ button.
Ratings Tab 

Your rating is, obviously, very important, as you will need to maintain a 4.6 star rating in order to continue driving with Uber (check out our article on how to be a five-star Uber driver here). Within this tab, you will see the number of 5-star ratings you have achieved, as well as the following three stats:

  1. Current rating — This is based on your 500 most recent rides.
  2. Acceptance rating — This is calculated based on ride requests accepted/ ride requests received. Although you can get a warning for a low acceptance rate, you will not get deactivated. (*In 2016, Uber lowered their ‘trip acceptance’ requirements – so drivers no longer face the same punitive consequences if they turn down too many trips).
  3. Trips canceled — If you cancel too many rides, however, you can get deactivated.

Within this tab, drivers will also be able to view:

  • Driving rewards — These generally come in the form of small discounts, which can be used on third-party services. From H&R Block to Jiffy Lube, these services directly benefit Uber drivers.
  • Ride compliments — Comments from your riders.
  • Rider feedback — If a rider leaves a comment regarding issues such as navigation or safety, this is where you will see related feedback. Pay attention to these issues in order to improve your rating.
  • Pro Tips — You will be able to find informative articles here, including topics on how rating work and how surge works.

You can learn more about the Uber app here. Get as familiar as you can with each feature, so that you can maximize both your efforts and earnings when you’re driving for Uber.

Happy and safe driving!

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