Uber – The Latest Taxi Service Or Hunting Ground?

Uber is a smartphone based App that will put you in contact with random drivers when you need a ride home.

I must be getting old or something. Am I the only one who was told, “Never get in a strangers car!”

The way it works is you upload the App and register as either a driver/predator or as a passenger/victim.

Then when its late one night and you have had a few drinks, you can signal Uber that you are ready to be picked up. Uber then relays your information to a local person who owns a car.

Fees are taken from your credit card and transferred to the driver, no haggling and no money actually changes hands directly.

On the surface that seems alright, but the world is filled with nut jobs.

How do you know the driver isn’t the next Charles Manson. The simple answer is you don’t.

Some of you may say, “Ah, you really don’t know who a cab driver is either!”, and then smile a self satisfied grin thinking the discussion is over.

It’s not.

Licensed and regulated cab companies have records. Records about the driver, police back ground checks, if they indeed have a valid licence etc.

I started the process of signing up as an Uber driver to see if they indeed ask prying questions.

All they asked for was an E-mail address, cell phone number, postal code, credit card info and my name.

To be fair, I stopped at this stage as I do not pick up hitch hikers, and do not want random strangers vomiting in my back seat.

This is of course just  a personal paranoid opinion.

Or is it. Numerous cities around the world are trying to have this ride sharing company banned.

In New-Delhi, an Uber driver stands accused of rape, and the company is now banned from operating there.

“What happened over the weekend in New Delhi is horrific,” Travis Kalanick, Uber’s chief executive officer, said in a blog post. “We will do everything, I repeat, everything to help bring this perpetrator to justice and to support the victim and her family in her recovery.”

Another worrying rule… this service cannot be used by anyone under 18 years of age.


Because its not entirely safe.

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Author Profile: Consumer Expert Robert Nichols

Robert is a lifelong car nut. He works as a Technician with 16 years experience and has multiple trade licenses. Having worked on vehicles ranging from Porsche's, fire trucks, trains, and industrial/mining equipment, he has a varied and broad knowledge base to draw on. But his favorite thing to do is drive, be it on two or four wheels.

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