- Lucy Nicholson/Reuters
- Uber and Lyft have made big business out of providing an extremely similar service.
- We spoke to 10 drivers about their experiences on the competing ride-hailing apps.
- Depending on the market, there are major differences in maps, customer service, and the riders themselves, drivers said.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Uber and Lyft do basically the same thing.
Sure, one is pink and the other is black; one is global while the other is focused only on the US and Canada; and one has plans for flying taxis while the other doesn’t. But when it comes to getting from point-A to point-B, there’s not much difference.
That’s good for drivers, a massive fraction of which drive for both Uber and Lyft (and even for other smaller companies in markets large enough to have competitors like Via).
Most of the time, the experience on the competing apps is roughly the same. But after hundreds if not thousands of rides, drivers start to notice the little differences. In many cases, these vary from market to market.
Business Insider spoke to 10 drivers about their experiences. Here’s what they see as the biggest differences between the two largest ride-hailing companies:
“This is the number one question I get from passengers,” Ray, a driver from Miami, said. “I say which ever one where the passenger actually leaves a tip.”
“Uber is far more organized and understands that by helping the drivers, it improves the customer experience,” Roger, a driver in North Carolina said.
“The only reason I give Lyft a slight edge over Uber is because Uber has not updated the map in my region in a long time,” Darron, a driver in Virginia, said. “One way streets have turned into two-way streets and Uber still has it as one-way.”
- REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
“Uber has more riders in my area,” Max, a driver in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, said. “Lyft sometimes adds passengers to my queue without asking.”
- Spencer Platt/Getty Images
“Lyft gives you more information about the customer,” Michael, a driver in Dallas, said. “I like being able to see how long someone has had an account or how many rides they’ve taken. It makes me more comfortable.”
- Drew Angerer/Getty Images
“Lyft advertises itself as more driver-friendly but that hasn’t been my experience,” Aris, a driver in New York City, said “The distance and time to pickup averages double usually so I stick to Uber.”
- Spencer Platt/Getty Images
“The only major difference is that Uber has way more calls in my area,” Horacio, a driver in Orlando, said, echoing Aris’ comments.
“Uber is far more organized and understands that by helping the drivers,” James, a driver in Orlando, said. “It improves the customer experience.”
- Madeline Stone / Business Insider
“Lyft, on the other hand, is uncaring and hides behind the internet and email,” he continued. “If I treated my riders the way Lyft has treated me, I would receive a 1-star rating.”
“There are differences in surge pay, differences in drive time per day, and in their support teams,” Jenny, a driver in New Jersey, said. “Uber shadily up-charges business-class passengers who take the same trips every week (they’ve admitted to this), and many, many more.”
- Robert Galbraith/Reuters
“Lyft riders in my area are like Walmart shoppers whereas the Uber riders are like Macy’s shoppers,” Tim, a driver in New Jersey, said.
- Kelly Sullivan/Getty Images