The first time I heard about Uber was while I was at leader Dogs getting my awesome dog luna. I wasn’t sure about getting the app for my phone since I was in the States and at the time I wasn’t aware that they were also just starting up in Ottawa. But, much to my surprise when I got home in October I learned they were hear and I’ve been using them ever since!
Here’s why I prefer Uber over the other taxi companies:
1. They have an app that goes along with their service.
The downside to this is that if you don’t have a cell phone like an IPhone and maybe an Android. Maybe sometime they can fix this if it hasn’t been thought of already.
Advantage of the app. I’m not having to sit on hold waiting for someone to pick up the phone and listen to horrible on hold music.
2. I can see how close a car is to my location before even making my trip.
This can be helpful in letting me know…ok, should I book the trip now or get ready first and then book the trip. Yes, sometimes it can change form a driver being 4 minutes away to maybe 20 in a blink of an eye, but still better than what you get with regular cab companies.
3. I can see when a driver has picked up the trip, their name, their license plate, their rating and again most important, how far away they are.
Regular cab company always says, “oh it will be there in 15 minutes” even though no driver has picked up the trip. Then when time comes and goes you call them back and they still tell you, “oh the car will be there soon” or “we’re still waiting on a car to take the trip.”
4. I have direct contact with the Uber driver.
With Uber I can tell them either by a phone call or send them a text message to look for a female in a purple jacket with a guide dog and I’m at this location.
Regular cab company you can tell them you’re blind and have a guide dog, but that message does not always make it to the driver. If your place is hard to find you also can’t communicate this directly with a regular taxi driver. You just have to hope for the best while standing around wondering where they are.
5. With Uber if I get a driver that was totally unprofessional in any way at all I could provide feedback on the trip and depending on the rating I give the driver I will not get that driver again.
I don’t know how many times I’ve had trouble with regular taxi companies being unprofessional by driving off because they don’t want to take my guide dog, driving recklessly while talking on the phone or just plain being rude cause they are having a bad day. I have asked so many times not to be sent certain drivers due to their attitudes or reckless driving just to get that same driver some other time down the line.
6. Uber is definitely cheaper.
Uber trip to Carleton University around $$17 to 20.
Regular taxi to Carleton University around $30.
Hmm, which would you choose?
Uber definitely has some bugs they need to work out, but since I’ve been riding with them from October until today I’ve had only 4, count them 4 trips that weren’t to my liking. Each time I explained to Uber what happened and they were quick to get back to me or refund my money if that was the case and I have not, repeat have not had any of those drivers again to this day!
Regular taxi companies still get my business if Uber happens to be really busy or if I’m in an area they are not, but my choice will always be Uber first as long as they are around.
Many cities such as Ottawa are trying to shut them down, why? They are afraid of the competition!
I think instead of hounding Uber and making fake trips just so they can hit them with a fine the city could be using their resources to help make the other taxi companies more reliable. Uber is trying, are the other taxi companies?
Listen to what riders such as myself have to say. Hell, better yet maybe close your eyes one day and call for a cab and see what it feels like waiting around for a cab just to find out it came and left without you. Call for a regular cab just to get in and see that it smells like the person hasn’t had a shower in about a week. Check in with the regular taxi companies are they really making sure their drivers don’t discriminate on who they pick up? Do they really pull drivers from their routes that drive off because they see a person with a guide dog?
These are things the city and those that want to attack Uber should be looking at instead of waisting time.
Uber all the way for me!