Uber Reserve: Is It Worth It for Drivers?

Uber has a feature for passengers in certain cities called Uber Reserve, where they can pre-book trips from 30 minutes to 90 days in advance, but is it worth it from Uber Drivers?

If you have been driving for Uber lately, you may have been offered a Reservation ride.

At first, I did not respond to these special rides, it just didn’t sound very inviting.  Not only do you have to commit to the ride, but you must be online at least 40 minutes before the pickup time, what if you are not close to the pickup location?

In this article, I will explain why Reservation rides are often the best rides you can accept.  I will also make a few suggestions allowing you to max out your hourly earnings for these rides.


As a rideshare driver, in 2024, we must use every trick in the book to maximize our revenue. Gone are the good old days when you could accept any ride and make a ton of money.

Now that Uber and Lyft have gone to “black box” payment calculations, we are all at the mercy of ruthless algorithms.

Now more than ever, we have to take advantage of every good bonus, select only the best rides for our working day, and grab every Reservation ride we can get.


Why Uber Reserve Rides Are Valuable

Reservation rides pay a higher rate than regular rides.  The passenger has to make a reservation for a pickup, and when they do this, the rates are higher.

The passenger wants to ensure someone will arrive at a specific time, and there is a premium price for that certainty.  Let’s look at a Reservation ride.

How We Get Uber Reserve Rides

All the Reservation rides I have been offered were presented to me through a notification.

You must be on top of it to secure a Reservation ride now that the word is out.

Reservation rides are higher paying, and you must accept them before another driver grabs them.

I have observed that the more I accept the Reservation rides, the more I get offered. Typically, I get offered rides from my home city of Roseville and the next-door city of Rocklin, and my reserved rides are always to the airport.

The key is to be quick. If you are like me, you have your phone around you most of the time, so when you hear that notification sound, check it,  and accept it. If you do not accept it right when you get the notification, you won’t get it.

Where To Find Your Uber Reserve Rides

To see your Reservation ride:

  • Click on the three-bar menu option in the top left corner
  • Click on “Opportunities”
  • Click on “Reservations”

how to find uber reservation rides
how to find uber reservation rides

Then you will see your ride, it will look like this:

uber reservation request details

Now here you can see how the pay is far above average. My average per-hour rate in Sacramento is between $20 to $25 per hour.

This reservation request ride is paying me $60 per hour, wow!

What If I Am Not Near The Pick-Up Location?

Uber will use their destination filter technology and get you rides that move you closer to your pick-up location, it has worked pretty well for me.

Sometimes I thought they would send me to the passenger pick-up, but they found a short ride on the way. This is not something you need to worry about.

I usually start at 4 AM and may have a reserved ride at 7 AM. Uber manages your rides, so you are pretty close to the pick-up at the pick-up time. And what happens if you arrive early?

How To Eliminate Wait Time

Oftentimes, you will be told by Uber that it is time to drive to your passenger.  Sometimes, you may arrive as much as 25 minutes ahead of time.

This is no bueno, we don’t get paid for waiting. At first, I did not accept reservation rides because of the long wait times, then I discovered something that makes all the difference.

Once you are driving toward your passenger’s pick-up location, send your passenger this message:

Hi, it’s your driver, Jay.

I am on my way. I will arrive at 5:15.

That is about 20 minutes early. If you want to leave early, that is OK with me 👍. I will be ready to go. See you soon.

I have about an 80% success rate. Those passengers want to get to the airport, so arriving early sounds good to them. Rarely do I wait more than 5 minutes.

Driver Takeaways for Uber Reserve Rides

Reservation rides are awesome. Unfortunately, there are not too many of them.  At best, I get one on Saturday and one on Sunday.

Now that you know about the profitability of reservation rides, you can jump on your next opportunity.

If you wait even a few seconds, you will see the ride disappear right in front of your eyes and then Uber will notify you that another driver has accepted the ride.

I recommend you accept it before you even look at it. You can always let it go later if it is not right for you. Better to grab the bird in the hand when you have the opportunity, you can let it fly later if you don’t want it.

This is a valuable offering by Uber, enjoy it! Be safe out there.