At the end of every Uber ride, you’re given the opportunity to rate your driver. If a driver’s rating falls too low (specifically, below 4.6 stars), they get kicked off the app.
What most people don’t know is that your driver can rate you too. All ratings are reported as averages and are visible on your own Uber profile. The rating didn’t really used to have any impact, but now it will. Uber announced today that it will deactivate accounts of riders whose ratings fall too low.
In a blog post announcing the change, Kate Parker, Uber’s Head of Safety Brand and Initiatives, wrote:
“Riders may lose access to Uber if they develop a significantly below average rating. Riders will receive tips on how to improve their ratings, such as encouraging polite behavior, avoiding leaving trash in the vehicle and avoiding requests for drivers to exceed the speed limit. Riders will have several opportunities to improve their rating prior to losing access to the Uber apps.”
It’s not clear just how low someone’s rating can go before they lose their Uber privilege. However, it’s unlikely that riders will be held to stricter standards than Uber’s own drivers.
Anyone who’s chatted with an Uber driver has probably heard quite a few horror stories. There are stories of people throwing up in cars, leaving trash behind, or passengers hitting on their driver. So, it makes sense that Uber is finding a way to hold riders more accountable for their behavior as well.
“Respect is a two-way street, and so is accountability. Drivers have long been expected to meet a minimum rating threshold which can vary city to city,” Parker wrote. “While we expect only a small number of riders to ultimately be impacted by ratings-based deactivations, it’s the right thing to do.”
For most riders who are already respectful of their drivers, this probably won’t be much of an issue.