Uber Roulette


Uber Surge PricingAs a customer, I’m a big fan of Uber.  It’s easy, convenient, and inexpensive.  Intellectually, I even like their Surge Pricing model.  By charging more during peak demand times, they ensure that more cars become available to meet  that demand.  It makes sense.

That said, I don’t like to pay more.

Option 1: Leave the surge.

In some cases, an app like SurgeProtector can help.  It will show you the nearest spot to you in which surge pricing is not in effect.  I haven’t yet tried it, but it makes sense.  The idea is that you can sometimes walk a few blocks (or take other transportation) to get out of the surge zone in order to get cheaper pricing.

Option 2: Surge Drop Alert.

Uber offers an option to click a button that says “Notify me if surge ends.”  I always press that button, but I’ve found that you can often do better:

Option 3: Try again.

Wait a couple of minutes and try again. Surge pricing seems to change from minute to minute.  I once encountered 2X surge pricing, clicked the button to alert me, but then couldn’t wait so I tried again.  Bingo!  Surge pricing was gone.

I should note that this option is a gamble.  Last week I opened the Uber app and was told that 1.5X surge pricing was in effect.  A few minutes later I tried again.  Now the surge pricing had risen to 2.1X!  Luckily, a few minutes later, it was down to 1.4X.  I took it.

Uber Surge Pricing

Other ideas?

Do you have any other approaches for avoiding Surge Pricing?  Please comment below.

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