Uber is a great way to get from point A to point B. Arguably faster and more convenient than using a traditional taxi, Uber is at the forefront of how people travel. While Uber isn’t always cheaper than a taxi, it has been designed to be easy to use and uncomplicated.
In this regard Uber has succeeded, as users don’t have to be rocket scientists to use the app. As a result, Uber has seen people flock to its service. However while getting people where they need to go is its main function, Uber, like any product, is diversifying and adding new features. Here are some little known ways Uber can make your life even easier or just make your ride a little more enjoyable.
Connect Your Calendar
If you’re the type of person who is organized and prepared, there is a good chance that you use the calendar app on your phone. If you have meetings, events, appointments, and after-work happy hours stored in your calendar, Uber can help you get to them easier. By allowing the Uber app to access your calendar, Uber will scan your calendar for locations. That way the next time you fire up the Uber app, the locations of events in your calendar will pop up as destination “shortcuts.” This can save people the hassle of flipping back and forth between their calendar and the Uber app to copy and paste address information.
Schedule a Pick-Up in Advance
Most people use Uber like they would a taxi: you simply hail one when you need it. However, if you need to be somewhere at a particular time, this can cause unwanted stress. Like many taxi companies, Uber allows users to schedule pick-ups in advance, up to thirty days prior to your trip.
To schedule a ride, simply open up the Uber app and tap on the car icon. Then, set your pick-up information including the date, time and location. Upon selecting your ride type, you will receive a fare estimate. If everything looks good, tap “Schedule” to confirm. If anything changes, you have the ability to edit or cancel your advance pick-up at any time before the ride. Once you schedule a ride. Uber will send reminders 24 hours before your trip and once again when your ride is on its way to pick you up. They’ll also let you know if the fare has changed at all.
Be aware that scheduling a pick-up doesn’t make a reservation for a car. Instead, the app just sends out the request to nearby drivers at the time you specified you wanted a pick-up. In bigger cities this shouldn’t be an issue, but in areas where driver availability may be limited, you may experience a slight delay.
Create a Business Profile to Keep Track of Expenses
Uber tends to associate with millennials who want to paint the town red without worrying about a designated driver. However, as Uber becomes more mainstream, the company is quickly finding solutions to common problems. If you use Uber for work-related trips, it can be a hassle to claim your travel expenses so you can get reimbursed by your employer. Fortunately, you can create a separate business profile within the app using your work email and corporate credit card. Selecting your business profile before hailing an Uber allows your corporate card to be billed, as well as emails the bill directly to your employer. No more forms to fill out, no more crumpled receipts.
There are two ways to go about creating a business profile, through the app and your desktop PC. To set up a business profile using the app, open the Uber app and tap the top-left corner and select “Settings.” Scroll down until you see “Profiles” and tap on “Business Profile.” Here you will add your work email, corporate credit card info and decide on whether you want weekly or monthly billing summaries. If your employer uses an expense management program like Expensify, you can link your account as well.
To set up your business profile on your desktop PC, point your browser to the Uber website. From there, log in to your Uber account and simply follow the instructions.
Play Your Own Music
Sometimes an Uber driver’s radio station choice just doesn’t do it for you. Luckily, Uber users have the ability to play their own music straight through their driver’s car stereo speakers, no cables required. We should note that your driver must enable this feature on his/her end first in order for this feature to work.
If you’re matched with a driver who has enabled music selection, you’ll see a notification on your screen. To choose your own tunes, tap “Play your own music.” This will prompt you to sign in to your Pandora or Spotify Premium account. Once you’re logged in, simply choose a song, station or playlist to listen to and the music will play when your trip begins. Unfortunately at the time of this writing, this feature is only available for iPhone users.
Split the Fare
If you’re travelling with a group, it can be a bit of pain to ensure that one person isn’t getting stuck with the bill. Fortunately, Uber makes splitting the fare really easy. To do so, you’re going to want to use the appropriately titled “Split Fare” feature. This allows you to split the fare of your Uber ride equally among all passengers.
In order to split a fare, you’ll first need to request a ride. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access your trip information. Here you will see the amount you’ll be charged for your current Uber trip. Tap on it and select “Split Fare.” This will allow you to choose individuals from your phone’s contacts. Alternatively, you can manually enter the phone numbers of the other riders.
At this point, everyone you have nominated will receive a request to split the fare. The fare is then equally divided between you and those who accept. Be aware that you’ll be on the hook for anyone who doesn’t accept. In addition, each rider will be charged an additional $0.25 when the split fare feature is used.
Do you use Uber? Are you aware of any other time-saving tips? Or any tricks that can make Uber a more enjoyable experience? Let us know in the comments!