Opinion: Uber Beats Taxi Any Day

February 25, 2020

Opinion%3A+Uber+Beats+Taxi+Any+Day

Courtesy of BBC

Uber is on its way to global domination. In recent years, Uber has become a vital aspect of society. Uber feeds off of society’s laziness and the need for convenience. This ride-sharing app has provided a cure to anxiety from finding a ride home.
Let’s pretend it is 2008 and Uber has yet to be an option. You are at a party, having fun with friends until the clock hits 11:30 and the host is sending everyone home. What do you do now? How do you get home? Nowadays, this problem is non-existent. Before Uber, you would find yourself sitting outside a party in 30-degree weather, waiting for the seemingly lost taxi that you called 25 minutes ago. Fast forward a few years and within minutes you would be sitting in the heated backseat of a Honda Civic on your way home with your Uber driver, Dan, asking about your night.
Instead of chasing a taxi down the street or waiting countless minutes for a car service to acknowledge you, e-hail apps, like Uber, allow you to order a reliable car to the exact location that you desire and have it arrive within minutes. Similarly to the aspect of convenience, utilizing Uber allows users to become worry-free, as they do not need to bring a significant amount of cash in their ride, which taxis require. Upon registering for the app, the individual must link their credit card to Uber, allowing the user to pay, with the option to add tip, through card upon order.
This sense of convenience is lost when using a taxi. Some taxi drivers still do not accept credit or debit card, which can be seen as a major inconvenience to many who do not wish to carry loads of cash in their pockets. Similarly, there is not a set price for the trip. When using Uber, the exact price is displayed BEFORE ordering the ride. It seems to be a common occurrence within taxis that drivers cheat riders by giving them an inflated price.
Although safety concerns are prominent controversies surrounding Uber, the app was made specifically to serve as a safer and more convenient alternative to taxi-like services. Within the app, many precautions are taken in order to ensure a safe trip. These precautions include the face, name, license plate number and phone number of the driver. However, upon ordering a taxi, there is no system that provides the user with a name, number, license plate or photo of their driver before entering the car, assuming they inserted themselves in the correct vehicle. Uber has added a significant amount of safety features to its app. These features include the ability to share your exact location with loved ones, calling 911 with the click of a button directly through the app, and an alert that sounds when the driver is driving too fast.

feel free to enjoy the endless possibilities of your night without the burden of finding a ride home.”

— Remy Abrams ('21)

Though the idea of “Stranger Danger,” which has been engraved into our minds since childhood, is an obvious concern, Uber provides users with a sense of tranquility upon utilizing its services. Although the rider has most likely never met the person driving him or her, it is hard to consider the driver as the outright ‘stranger’ our parents warned us about. The Uber driver is not a man in a white van offering you candy. The user that ordered the ride has all of the information that they need to ensure they are entering the correct, reliable and safe car. It is utterly vital that any user of this app thoroughly reads through the information provided to them about their driver. That being said, Uber is not a flawless company with impeccable service. Although Uber is a positive alternative to the previous ride-sharing services, it is not 100% perfect. Uber has taken the precautions that it deems necessary to protect drivers and users; however, unsuspecting situations are still possible. With that, it is crucial that the rider also partakes in such safeguards to guarantee the safest experience feasible for both parties. On that premise, feel free to enjoy the endless possibilities of your night without the burden of finding a ride home. At the end of your night out, remember to call an Uber for a safer, more reliable and better-smelling car ride with Dan. Don’t forget to chat up the driver, apparently they LOVE that.

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