Why Uber is Inept, Indifferent and Infuriating Customers

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angry young woman rejecting man with flowers

In the last eight days I’ve had four trips cancelled with Uber even though my app told me a driver was on their way. This left me stranded and scrambling to get to my destination.

I spoke with an Uber driver last week about my cancelled trips. She said when she first started driving for Uber she would work six hours and earn $200.00. Now she works ten to twelve hours to make $200.00. Why is a 60% increase in time required to make the same amount of money?

It’s supply and demand.

The number of drivers signed up to drive for Uber has mushroomed and has created an oversupply of drivers. This oversupply coupled with stagnant demand in my city leads to more drivers sharing a smaller pool of demand. This has drivers increasingly more aware of whether trips are profitable, and in turn, they’re screening for income potential. Hence, my cancelled trips.

What has added insult to injury is the magnitude of the inept and indifferent customer service from Uber. It has been atrocious. When I asked a direct and straightforward question I got a response assuring me that my credit card was not charge. When I reminded Uber that I didn’t ask about credit card charges I was told, get ready, “Available drivers are expected to accept trip requests. Your feedback is helpful as we work to improve the efficiency of our system.”

What? That’s a low level service functionary being dismissive.

As a raving Uber fan for years the customer service portion of this situation is the most damaging. I was torqued by having my trips cancelled, but the inability to handle these three simple customer service tasks was the death knell for my relationship with Uber:

1. Understand the customers frustration

2. Acknowledge the situation and apologize

3. Address the customers frustrations satisfactorily

Uber did none of the above. Let me be clear. I’m not frustrated because I demand excellence wherever I go, nor do I see myself as a member of the business traveling aristocracy. I’m frustrated because a service I really valued for making my life easier, used frequently, referred friends to and wanted to like, was inept, indifferent and infuriating.

What does this have to do with you and your business? This situation prompted me to ask this question: How many of your customers are being treated in ways that leave them feeling that you are inept, indifferent and infuriating? Frankly, how many businesses really know if their customers are actively looking for an alternative to doing business with them? That’s an important question. Can you explicitly tell me what type of experience your customer is having with you?

Here’s the $1,000,000 question you have to answer…does your customer see doing business with you as valuable, profitable or satisfying? Executives and entrepreneurs must know the answer to this question. If you don’t know the answer to this question, you will be left having your business cancelled as opposed to nearly having a ride with Uber cancelled.


  1. Humberto González says:

    The gap between the value proposal and the delivery value, the eternal trouble in all kind of businesses.

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