One of the best perks of driving for Lyft and Uber is the ability to interact with people while you work. You’d be amazed at the range of conversations that I’ve had with my passengers while driving for Lyft. You’ll meet people from all walks of life and if you’re interested in learning about people and hearing interesting stories, driving for Lyft or Uber is a great way to do so.
The ratings and tips you receive will be directly correlated with the level of comfort that you provide your passengers during their trip. Outside of providing a safe experience for the passenger, providing a good conversation can be a close second. Speaking with passengers also helps make work more enjoyable while also helping the time go by faster.
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Before you go ahead and talk non-stop and ask a hundred questions to your passengers, I have to tell you that there is definitely a balance when it comes to having conversations with your passengers. Many passengers prefer to just sit in silence on their phone or listen to the music that you play in your car without holding a conversation. You have to be the judge of that for each and every passenger.
One of the first rides I ever gave was for a middle-aged man at 7 am. Neither of us said more than good morning and goodbye during the entire twenty-minute ride because I could tell he wasn’t in the mood to have a conversation. After I dropped him off, I noticed that he tipped me 5 dollars, which is a great tip for a twenty-minute ride. It just goes to prove that you don’t have to hold a conversation with every passenger you get to make them happy.
2. Focus The Conversation On Your Passengers
If your passengers do enjoy talking (and you’ll be able to tell), make sure to focus the conversation on them. People enjoy talking about themselves, and when you show that you are interested in them, it makes them happy, which can improve your chances of getting a better rating as well as a better tip!
3. Address Your Passengers By Their Name
Dale Carnegie, the author of How to Win Friends and Influence People, one of the most renowned self-help books of all time, talks about how many successful people remember names. Many leaders and successful individuals make it a habit to address people by their name as it makes the connection feel more personal and the person is more likely to respect you for it.
The app will let you know the name of your passenger before you pick them up, so use this to your advantage by preparing yourself ahead of time.
One habit I’ve built while driving for Lyft is that I call the person by their name when I talk to them. It builds trust between you and your passenger and they are more likely to tip you for it.
4. Communicate Comfort To Your Passengers
Ensure that your passengers are comfortable in your car. Often times I will ask my passengers if they want the air conditioning on if it’s hot outside. Or, if it’s at night, I’ll ask them if they want the heater on. Many times the passengers won’t speak up because they think it’s rude, but it’s a nice gesture to offer your passengers and it helps with tips.
5. Start the Conversation Early
Another habit that I’ve made is calling every passenger about one minute before I arrive at their destination. Your passengers will get a notification when you arrive, but what is more personal than a personal phone call? I like to call them and just tell them that I will be there in a minute, which is great for both parties. It allows the passenger to gather their belongings and head outside, and it allows you, as a driver, to save time by waiting less. I have never had a passenger annoyed by my phone call and it shows them that you go out of your way.
6. Go Out Of Your Way For Your Passengers
You can learn a lot about someone’s interests and desires by the conversations you have with them. If your passenger tells you that he or she is a huge Miley Cyrus fan, tell your friend Siri to play some Miley Cyrus and you’ll be their favorite driver for life.
Many music streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, and Pandora cost very little per month, which can go a long way and make your rides smoother! If you’re a student, Apple Music only costs $4.99 per month! Having music in your car a great investment to have for your passengers as well as for yourself on your time off!
7. Stay Off Your Phone
It should go without saying that you should only use your phone for navigation and music while you are driving, but you would be surprised at how many people text while they are driving. Don’t text and drive, and don’t hold phone conversations that can wait for later. It can be rude and uncomfortable for your passenger, which will negatively affect your tips and ratings.
Now that we’ve gone over a few general tips about holding conversations with your passengers, here are how most of my conversations pan out.
Me: Hey ______, right?
Passenger: Yes, that’s me.
Me: Awesome. How’s it going?
Passenger: Great, how are you?
Me: Pretty good thanks! You from the area?
(Continue conversation depending on how responsive the passenger is to the question.)
It’s that simple!
Remember, having conversations with your passengers isn’t a necessity (it’s perfectly normal to have silent rides during your day.) But, having good conversations definitely help with getting better tips and making your day go by faster and smoother!