Last week, we covered a new program Uber has rolled out to some drivers across the country called Uber Pro. Now that some drivers have been driving under Uber Pro for a week, we wanted to provide an update on everything we’ve learned about Uber Pro from drivers currently in the program who provided us with screenshots and their perspective on the roll out so far.
Are you a driver in the Uber Pro program? Reach out to us and let us know your thoughts! We’re planning on covering Uber Pro in the coming months to see if it’s living up to its hype – or not.
Thank you to all of the drivers who submitted their initial thoughts (and screenshots) on Uber Pro!
- Do drivers start from zero or are previous driving habits taken into account?
- When is this coming to my city?
- How will I know if I’m included in the Uber Pro beta test?
- What will happen to Quests?
- Will Uber take a commission from Uber Pro drivers? Will Uber take a commission on the extra 3-6%?
- Will part-timer’s be eligible for this?
- What are the exact terms for Uber Pro?
- How does Uber Pro work in my specific city/state?
- Does the extra 3-6% only apply to time/distance?
- How do we know what our acceptance rate is?
- How do I maintain my Tier status?
- How are star ratings and cancellation rates calculated?
- Will I Get Points for UberEATS deliveries?
Initial Feedback from Drivers on Uber Pro
Drivers feedback on Uber Pro has been mixed, as is expected with a new program as ambitious as Uber Pro. We asked drivers in our Facebook group (and via email) about their thoughts on Uber Pro, and here’s what we heard:
Will this work for drivers in smaller cities? Chris from Florida isn’t sure (via email):
I’ve been on Uber Pro for a week now. In 24 hours online, I have gotten 10 rides and 12 points. My rating is 4.95. This program might work in a big city but in Central Florida, you are lucky to get more than 3 rides a day, and there is no such thing as surge pricing. Also, when you do go to a large city like Jacksonville or Orlando, Uber and Lyft drop the mileage rate from 90 to 60 cents per mile.
Reader and driver in New Jersey, Dan, believes Uber Pro will overall be beneficial for drivers, putting extra money into their pockets and retaining good drivers for Uber (via email):
“Since the kickoff… I have noticed less wait for rides [and] actually better clientele also. At the Diamond tier, it is so nice to see trip duration and distance as well as direction. I have received the 6% extra for Diamond tier… a short pool trip as well as a longer UberX trip.
I do travel into Philadelphia often and this particular trip paid .90 cents extra. I am sure some readers will look at this as too little, but I have run 15 to 20 trips in one weekend into Philly. So it amounts to an extra $ 15-20 dollars more.
I think Uber has done it right this time for the drivers!… For a retired guy like myself this is the best thing.
I would like to touch on the points, since the 1st I have 111 points for my area; I need to hit 1200. I think this is attainable for me with room to spare.”
Nathan via Facebook makes an interesting point about what passengers will notice with this new program:
“I don’t expect it will make much difference, but it is a bit annoying that my passengers will now be able to see that I am a “pro” driver but that, despite having one of the highest ratings in my city, I am at the lowest level of pro. I simply don’t expect to complete enough trips to earn anything significant from it other than recognition as the lowest of the new “best”.”
Sandra focuses on the biggest benefit to her: a degree from ASU (via Facebook):
“I was just notified that I am a diamond driver. I am excited that Uber has offered to pay for me to finish my degree at ASU! I will definitely be taking advantage of this opportunity, since I have no intention of taking any other job until my degree is finished. I love driving with Uber. It is challenging at times, but it is my favorite job I have ever had…by a LOT!”
We received a lot of comments about Uber spending money on this program instead of raising rates for drivers, but Scott from Facebook points out that this is one way for Uber to potentially control how many drivers are out on the road and for how long:
“[Uber] listed me as Platinum because I supposedly only had an 84% acceptance rate for the last three months. Of course their research for the last 3 months was kept secret. My cancellation is under 4% and rating is 4.95 with 3,000 rides. My acceptance rate and cancellation rates have not changed at all in the last week.
Since I am stuck at 84%, I do not meet the 85% threshold for seeing the direction and the amount of miles the rider will be going in… Yesterday, I went into the Greenlight hub and of course they couldn’t figure out the problem… This program is all about trying to control the driver, entice them to work more hours and accept every ride and not do any cancellations. In Phoenix, we are down $.11 per mile and up $.06 per minute. At Platinum making $30 per $1,000 based only on standard distance and time amounts isn’t cutting it.”
Richard from Facebook sums up all the driver feedback we’ve received so far in one sentence: “I’m still on the fence on this one.”
Uber Pro FAQs
For drivers in the Uber Pro beta program, your tier status will be determined by:
- The Points earned between August 1, 2018 and October 29, 2018.
- Acceptance and cancellation rates between July 31, 2019 to October 29, 2018
- Star rating average over the past 500 trips
If you have completed fewer than 500 trips, the Star Rating is based on the average Star Rating of all lifetime trips.
Points are earned during a fixed 3-month period. At the start of a 3-month period, your status is determined by the points you earned in the previous 3-month period. At any time you can move up tiers and unlock more rewards if you earn enough points for the next status and maintain high ratings.
Thank you to Dan for the screenshots below, which shows how he was awarded Diamond status (based on his previous 3 months’ driving habits):
Uber says their plan is to make improvements to Uber Pro based on the drivers’ in the beta program (Chicago, New Orleans, Phoenix, Seattle, and some drivers in Denver, New Jersey, Orlando and Tampa Bay) feedback before rolling out the program to a larger population of drivers. So if it’s not in your city yet, it may be rolling out next year if the beta program is successful.
First, to be included in the Uber Pro beta roll out (if it is in your city), drivers will need to maintain at least a 4.85 star rating and a low cancellation rate (no greater than 4%). Drivers will earn points on every trip during fixed 3-month periods.
Beta drivers will include: all drivers in Chicago, New Orleans, Phoenix and Seattle and randomly selected drivers in Denver, New Jersey, Orlando and Tampa Bay. Uber says their plan is to make improvements to Uber Pro based on these drivers’ feedback before rolling out the program to a larger population of drivers.
If you are one of the randomly selected drivers, you will receive an invitation from Uber to participate in the program. If you do not receive an invitation, you are not in the Uber Pro program.
Beginning on November 29, 2018 in Uber Pro launch cities, Quest promotions will only be available to drivers with Uber Pro Gold, Platinum or Diamond status and availability may vary by location.
5. Will Uber take a commission from Uber Pro drivers? Will Uber take a commission on the extra 3-6%?
Uber will continue to take its normal commission from all rides given, regardless of your Uber Pro status. It’s a 3 to 6% bump in net time and distance earnings (i.e. take home) depending on status level.
Thank you to Dan for the screenshots below, which shows how the extra 6% pay bump for Diamond status appears on drivers’ Trip Details:
Part-timers are eligible for this, but maintaining your status may be difficult if you don’t drive often enough to stay in the lowest tier (Gold, which is 300-600 points depending on your Uber Pro area). In order to earn 300 points in a 3 month period, you would either need to do 300 rides during normal hours or 100 trips during what Uber calls 3 Point Hours which are similar to Lyft’s Peak Hours.
Let’s start with the normal hours. In this case, you would need to do 100 rides per month, or 25 week. Part timers could certainly do this depending on the demand in your market. If you can do 3 rides per hour, then all you would need is 9 hours per week. If you can only get 2 rides per hour, then you would need 13 hours per week.
If, however, you drive during the 3 Point Hours, your driving hours would be reduced down to a third. If you could do 3 rides per hour, you would only need 3 hours, and if you are in a market in which you can do 2 rides per hour, you would only need 4 hours. If you are in a market that requires 600 points (double our example) to achieve the gold status, these hours would double.
You must earn points to access the different tiers and rewards in each tier.
- You will earn 1 point for every trip completed for: UberX, UberPOOL, Express Pool, UberXL, UberSelect, UberWAV, UberBlack, and UberSUV
Each trip, along with any Uber Eats trip, will count as an Uber Trip for Uber Pro. You will earn an additional 2 points (for a total of 3 points) when you either a) pick up a rider and begin a trip or b) complete a trip (or delivery) during the following times (these are called the ‘3 Point Hours’):
- Monday – Friday 7 a.m. – 10 a.m, 5 – 7 p.m., 9 p.m. – 1 a.m.
- Friday – Saturday 12 p.m. – 5 a.m.
- Sunday 12 p.m. – 1 a.m.
The current program periods are:
- November 1, 2018 – January 31, 2019
- February 1, 2019 – April 30, 2019
- May 1, 2019 – July 31, 2019
- August 1, 2019 – October 31, 2019
Uber Pro may continue beyond October 31, 2019 at Uber’s discretion.
Points expire and reset to zero at the end of every Program Period. They do not carry over into the next Program Period.
How would this break down for drivers in earnings? What does this look like?
Let’s break this down to dollars and cents. Let’s say you are a full-time driver. You drive for 40 hours a week and earn $1,500 per week. How would this new program impact you?
Let’s assume you are at the highest level, the Diamond level. We can now add 6% to your time and distance earnings (not your base rate nor your surge earnings). Let’s say you average 3 rides per hour for a total of 120 rides (40 hours x 3 rides/hour). That means, in San Francisco, Jay’s base rate of $1.50 per ride would not be entitled to the 6% bonus. We would have to subtract $180 (120 x $1.50) from our $1,500.
We would also have to subtract any surge earnings. Let’s assume that is about $100. Therefore our 6% increase would only apply to $1,500 less the $280 ($180 for the base rate plus $100 for surge earnings) for a total of $1,220. Therefore the extra earnings would be 6% of $1,220 for a total of $ 73.20 for one week in our example. Over one year (50 weeks), that is an extra $3,660 at the highest Diamond level.
Let’s say you spend $20 per day, or $100 per week on gas. The gas savings of 5% is $5 per week, or $250 per year. It’s not a great deal of savings, but it is still a savings. It’s important to note that this gas savings applies to any gas you purchase, at any gas station, using your Uber Debit Card.
You can often find similar discounts with a gas credit card, which is a good idea if you do a lot of driving.
For Gold Status:
- Seattle, Chicago: 600 points or more in an applicable Program Period
- New Orleans, Phoenix, Denver, entire state of NJ, Orlando and Tampa: 300 points or more
For Platinum status:
- Seattle, Chicago: 1,200 points or more
- New Orleans, Phoenix, Denver, entire state of NJ, Orlando and Tampa: 600 points or more
For Diamond status:
- Seattle, Chicago: 1,800 points or more
- New Orleans, Phoenix, Denver, entire state of NJ, Orlando and Tampa: 1,200 points or more
You can move to a higher Tier during the Program Period if you meet the Points and rating requirements. You will be automatically moved into the next tier in that case.
For Platinum tier drivers, drivers will earn an extra 3% on time and/or distance rates for every completed trip while on the Platinum tier. For Diamond tier drivers, drivers will earn an extra 6% on time and/or distance rates for every ride. This reward will be included as a separate line item on a driver’s earnings summary.
You will be able to see star rating, acceptance and cancellation ratings on your Driver dashboard (if you are in the Uber Pro program). Below is an example from reader and driver, Dan:
Gold, Platinum or Diamond tier drivers must maintain a trip acceptance rate of 85% or higher to be eligible to see Trip Duration and Trip Direction.
In order to maintain Gold, Platinum or Diamond Tier status, you must maintain at all times:
- A minimum star rating of 4.75 and
- A maximum cancellation rate of 8%
You can can see your status on your Dashboard:
Your star rating will be calculated on the average number of individual ratings provided by riders from your past 500 trips. If you receive a rating of 4 or below for something outside of your control, that rating will be excluded from your overall rating.
Your cancellation rate is calculated on the number of trips you’ve cancelled divided by the total number of rides you’ve accepted in the last 3 months. The cancellation rate includes trips you cancelled on before you arrive at the pick up location or trips you cancel after the ride starts.
Drivers who deliver with UberEATS will earn points for delivery trips. Each delivery completed during 3-point hours will earn 3 points. Delivery partners who only deliver with Uber Eats are not eligible for Uber Pro increased time and distance earnings, and trip duration viewing rewards are not available on Uber Eats trips.
For Uber Eats drivers, you will earn an additional 2 points (for a total of 3 points) when you a) pick up a delivery or b) drop off and complete a delivery during the 3 point hours (see above).
If Uber Pro has rolled out in your area, what do you think about it? If it hasn’t, after reading the answers to this FAQ, what are your initial thoughts on it? Would it benefit you?
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