If you use a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft on a daily basis, you understand how difficult it can be to communicate with your driver. From uncertainty about pick-up spots to language barriers, these communication issues can impact your experience using these services. To combat these issues, Uber is taking greater steps to improve correspondence between riders and drivers.
Uber’s New Translation Feature
One of the major barriers that both Uber drivers and passengers face are language barriers. Whether the driver and passenger do not speak the same language or the passenger is a tourist visiting a new country, a lack of translation services can make it difficult to use Uber in these contexts.
However, Uber is introducing a new translation feature to its mobile app that allows the driver and passenger to communicate via text. Each person has a preferred language set in their app, and when a driver uses Uber’s in-app text feature to communicate to a passenger who speaks a different language, the app will automatically translate the message.
All a user has to do is tap “Translate” under the message, and the words will appear in their preferred language. However, this feature limits the communication solely to text; while riding in the vehicle, the passenger and driver may continue to face language barriers.
Clear Pick-Up Instructions in the Uber App
One of the most difficult parts of an Uber ride is clearly communicating with your driver as to where he or she can pick you up. To reduce confusion and make pick-up instructions clearer, Uber is rolling out a series of features to make this portion of the ride more efficient.
Uber will begin sending out a series of actionable notifications prior to pick-up that may include the following information.
- How many minutes it will be until the Uber driver arrives at the pick-up location
- The exact location where the passenger should meet the driver
- Detailed instructions for passengers at locations with Uber pick-up points, such as airports or sports arenas
- Suggestions regarding obvious landmarks where the passenger can wait for an Uber driver to pick him or her up, especially if the passenger is in an unfamiliar city
Tips for Staying Safe While Using Uber or Lyft
The changes that Uber is implementing within its app can help improve rider-driver communication greatly, but some correspondence may still be difficult. To increase the safety and efficiency of your Uber ride, follow the tips below.
- Always check your Uber ride details before entering a vehicle. Make sure the license plate number, vehicle description, and driver picture match the information that the Uber app gives you.
- Stay indoors if you can when waiting for an Uber driver and exit the building once the driver arrives, especially at night. If you have to wait outside, try to choose a well-lit, high-traffic area. This will make it easier for the driver to see you and help you stay safe while waiting.
- If you are visiting an unfamiliar city and are unsure of the area, keep the Uber or Lyft app open while you ride and follow your vehicle along on the map. This will help ensure that the driver is taking you to your destination, and not using your uncertainty of the area to take you to another location.
While Uber may be taking steps to improve communication between its drivers and riders, dangerous acts still occur in rideshare vehicles every day. Sexual assault, physical violence, and reckless driving are situations Uber passengers find themselves in all too often.
If you are the victim of violence at the hands of a rideshare driver, contact an Uber sexual assault lawyer with experience assisting rideshare passengers and drivers with civil lawsuits. By filing a claim against the person responsible for your injuries, you can collect the compensation you need to recover.