How Far Should You Go For Riders?: What Drivers Should and Shouldn’t Do for Pax

Some drivers swear by going the extra mile to receive better tips and more pleasant experiences. Other drivers want to do the bare minimum of picking up and dropping off so they can maximize their time on the road. Follow RSG contributor Tyler Philbrook below as he shows what you should and probably shouldn’t do as drivers. 

As a passenger, I’ve had drivers take my luggage and almost throw them into their trunk. As a driver, I’ve had passengers seem terrified that I was getting out of the car to help them with their luggage. Is it required to help people with their luggage? Should we do it? Will they tip more if we do more for them, and if so, what else can we do to get more tips?

Quick Summary: 

  • Get the added benefit of getting out of the vehicle for a quick stretch by offering to load and unload luggage.
  • Make passengers (and family members) happy by having the right charging cables on hand for a quick recharge. 
  • If you keep bottled water and other goodies on hand, don’t expect higher tips. If someone is not going to tip you anyway, having more is not going to change their mind.

Things You Can Do For Passengers

Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft value customer service. They hope that all of their drivers are giving their passengers the best experience possible so the passengers will use the app again.

However, we are also considered independent contractors and are not required to do anything outside of providing a safe ride from one point to another. We do not have to play the passenger’s favorite music, help them with luggage, have car chargers for them, or anything else. However, we can, and in some cases, we should.

Loading Luggage

This is a big one. Many people are going to and from the airport, so many drivers offer to help with bags. In addition to it being a nice gesture, there are a few other reasons you may want to do it.

First, you get out of your car, which you may be in for 4, 8, or more hours in a day just sitting. The minute or less it takes to load the bag may not seem like much, but it can do wonders in getting you to stretch, and not feel as horrible at the end of the night.

Check out more tips on how to stay healthy as a driver here: How To Stay Healthy As A Lyft & Uber Driver

It also protects your car. Who is going to care more about hitting your bumper, or destroying your trunk, you or the passenger that will never see you again? A lot of drivers state they put people’s luggage in so that they can make sure no damage is done to their car.

Having Chargers in the Car

A nice thing to have in your car is a phone charger that can charge all people’s phones.

These are relatively cheap and can make a huge difference to your passengers. What’s odd to me is that I’ve had many people actually ask if they can charge their phone, with a phone charger right in front of them, and a sign saying to feel free to charge it.

I have had people take the charger in the past, which is why the one that I let my passengers use is a double pack, and pretty inexpensive.

I also find this helpful when I have friends in the car or my wife and I are fighting over the charger in the car. Spoiler alert, she always gets it. So, having these chargers in your car helps not just when driving rideshare.

Even more things drivers should have in their car here: 10 Items ALL Uber And Lyft Drivers Should Have In The Car

Having Water or Snacks

I rarely offer anything to my passengers in the way of food or drinks, but I have in the past, and I always find they appreciate it.

I always have water bottles in my trunk, but they are for me to refill my Yeti so I stay hydrated. If someone is thirsty and asks, I’ve given it to them. I’ve also bought gum or other candies and offered them to passengers in the past; I personally didn’t see my tips go up enough to continue dealing with it.

Hand Sanitizer

Finally, having bottles of hand sanitizer, especially in a post-covid world, is a small thing you can have in your car that costs next to nothing and will be appreciated. I just have a bottle and keep it in the cup holder in the back for my passengers to use if they’d like.

Make More in Tips

We are out driving to make money, so the hope is that these extra things we do get us to that end goal.

The truth is that if people aren’t going to tip, then no amount of extras will get you more tips; however, those who tip will tip more because of these extras.

Is it worth it to do all these things just to make extra tips? Probably not. But at least a few of them help, so it may be best to do them anyway, and hope you get a tip because of it. If you don’t, it isn’t that big of a deal.

How Far Do You Go For Your Passengers?

Our job as a rideshare driver is to drive; that’s it.

At the same time, we also tend to be good people, and want more tips, so by doing extras, we get benefits like getting a good stretch when we load someone’s luggage or having extra charging cables in a car for the family trip.

As an independent contractor, you’re the one that gets to decide how far you’ll go.

Driver Takeaways

As a driver, you want to find the right balance for yourself. You can keep the trunk of your car from getting banged up if you offer to load and unload luggage. You’ll also help ensure the passengers take all of their belongings this way.

You don’t need to waste the money having treats and goodies available for your passengers, but feel free to do so if it makes you feel better. Some people give better tips because you offer more amenities than the average driver.

Ultimately, it’s your choice as the driver how much or little you’re willing to do to make your passengers/customers happy. Find the sweet spot for you and enjoy!

What extras do you do for your passengers? Share in the comments! 

-Tyler @ RSG