South Carolina has been full of game changers, lately. One of those in the state this past year was the presence and acceptance of Uber on the driving scene. As we near the end of 2015, I thought it would be fun to revisit a piece when it was a bit more controversial highlighting the hilarity and hi-jinx, as well as the actual experiences, of getting behind the wheel for money. The following anonymous interview was originally published for Life Out Loud on Charleston Grit March 31, 2015.
Uber rolled into Charleston amid controversy, and cab and transportation companies cried foul. Upcoming legislation is intended to address industry concerns while also helping to level the playing field in the Holy City. Image credit: Canva by freestocks.org from Pexels
Love it or hate it, Uber seems here to stay. The ruling back in January by the South Carolina Public Service Commission solidified its presence, at least through the summer, when legislation is expected to flesh out regulatory and insurance concerns.
Interested in driving for them? Think you have what it takes? Here’s an insider’s look into of one of the most innovative and technologically based transportation services to ever hit the streets of Charleston, literally.
I recently asked a friend who’s been driving for them several months now to answer some questions about his experience. The ability to set his own hours lured him to partner with the “ride-hailing service” (The Associated Press banned the term “ride-sharing,” considering it a dubious play on words), and what he says may surprise you. I certainly learned a thing or two.
But what I really wanted to know was what it was like to have random strangers in his back seat.
During a brief stint as a realtor, part of what I disliked about the gig was driving people around in my car. It felt like an invasion of personal space, and I routinely asked folks to meet me at properties to avoid unnecessary discomfort. Needless to say, I didn’t last long, although closing six transactions in my first (and only) year on the job was considered good for a newbie.
I digress…back to the dirt. Requesting anonymity, my friend describes in his own words what you can reasonably expect carting passengers around the Holy City for a fee. From how Uber treats their drivers (and riders) to moments rivaling Taxicab Confessions, anyone considering a stint behind the wheel should check out this interview first.
How long have you driven for Uber?
I started in October 2014 and have been driving ever since.