Tipping Uber drivers in Australia

JohnK

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And who the hell is still getting taxis when uber is here?
I've been using Uber as I'm trying to save money but even after all these years I don't really believe in the ride sharing concept. I'll use Uber but not comfortable using Uber with family.
 

Forg

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I've been using Uber as I'm trying to save money but even after all these years I don't really believe in the ride sharing concept. I'll use Uber but not comfortable using Uber with family.
I’ve been paying bus-fare prices for a ride-share trip to work since May last year ... the concept works for me, and my busted knees. :)
In fact rain is forecast for tomorrow and I washed the car on the weekend, so I’m gonna ride-share to/from work to avoid the car getting dirty. :D
 
D

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If we are to believe the SMH article, we should all cease using Uber immediately.
 

Forg

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Quick! The sky is falling in!
I think they've sort-of got a point. What's the point of having industrial relations laws & minimum wages & workplace safety laws if companies can hire people in a different way & not have any of those responsibilities to the people working for them?
 

samh004

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I like the end of that article:

Australia should join this push back. Until then, the only tip Australians should be giving to Uber is to be good to their drivers. Or we’ll make them.

What that says to me is they want all those who have a job with Uber to go back to being unemployed, and they want to give back control of getting from A-to-B to the taxi companies who, through their own actions with bad service and high credit card fees, helped Uber get its start in the first place. I wouldn't be surprised if that article was sponsored by the taxi lobby.

I don't think the vast majority of drivers have any problem with the model they are on now, where they are contractors and the harder they work – much like the taxi industry – the more they'll make. I would believe it's a small subset of drivers who don't actually want to work hard, who want to get paid for doing nothing, who have a bad work ethic, that want to be regular employees instead of contractors, because I wouldn't be surprised if as a regular employee with all the benefits that entails, that Uber would take a larger cut. So if Australia went down that model, I'd support Uber taking more cash from drivers, but I know it would be the dying taxi industry that has pushed for it, and probably a few drivers who don't know what hard work is.

That said, none of that has anything to do with tipping.
 
D

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I think they've sort-of got a point. What's the point of having industrial relations laws & minimum wages & workplace safety laws if companies can hire people in a different way & not have any of those responsibilities to the people working for them?
Workplace law, bypass schemes have been around for many years. If it becomes too blantent the Gov't steps in with changes to the law. The thing I find strange is that so many people continually moan about AU being a 'nanny-state" but then also moan when those nanny laws are circumvented.

The reality is (I think) that Uber drivers do not work for Uber. They work for themselves and most that I speak to also are not only using the Uber platform, but also any others that may be offering a similar service so the laws relating to single employer "contractors" don't really apply as far as I can tell. It really comes down to a simple equation for the owner drivers ... "do I accept those rates, or not". The sheer number of drivers seems to suggest to me that it actually does work for many of them, but as most are aware, it's probably more a sideline gig rather than the main concert.

I think Uber (and the others) should indeed be shoved kicking and screaming under the legislative microscope, but I'm guessing they already have and the fact they are still operating after all these years indicates they are compliant, perhaps even if only by default.
 
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Forg

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I would believe it's a small subset of drivers who don't actually want to work hard, who want to get paid for doing nothing, who have a bad work ethic, that want to be regular employees instead of contractors, because I wouldn't be surprised if as a regular employee with all the benefits that entails, that Uber would take a larger cut. So if Australia went down that model, I'd support Uber taking more cash from drivers, but I know it would be the dying taxi industry that has pushed for it, and probably a few drivers who don't know what hard work is.
Also nothing to do with tipping … but my problem with Uber as a consumer (rather than as a person watching our society go down the tubes) is the quality of the drivers.

When it first started, your lift would be some guy on his way home from work. It's the way the model was presented & initially how it worked. That guy would keep bottles of water in his fridge at work, to give to passengers on the way home. That guy didn't scare the absolute cough out of you with his driving.
Now it's all people doing it for a full-time living, they don't seem to care about how bad or scary their driving is; exactly the same way as taxi drivers, couriers, heavy commercial drivers, all those other mobile accident-sources. I initially caught Uber because I felt safer; that's no longer true.
 
D

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In December 2018 a UK court upheld a decision of an employment tribunal that Uber drivers are "workers" as defined by legislation. See: UK: Court of Appeal Says Uber Drivers Are Workers
Different country and different legislation, but I see it needed the drivers to take Uber to the tribunal to get the ruling on the application of legislation, rather than the UK Gov't getting involved. It's also pertinent that the ruling was made in Dec 18 and Uber has indicated an appeal is likely and that there was descent among the presiding parties. Perhaps Uber drivers in Australia should follow suit to clear up the waters if they're feeling aggrieved?
 

Spongbob

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And note the comment in the cited report that if the Uber appeal fails, the extra costs will be passed onto users.
I wonder if this would influence (1) usage, and (2) tipping.
 
D

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And note the comment in the cited report that if the Uber appeal fails, the extra costs will be passed onto users.
I wonder if this would influence (1) usage, and (2) tipping.

Any company can "pass on" whatever costs they like, however the reality is that pax may well pass on the "passed on" costs and just go back to taxi's.

For myself, my most common trip is CNS to H-CNS and the rates are (approximately): Taxi $25, Uber (no surge) $19 and Muve $14. Even now, when Uber surges I jump in a cab (if Muve is unavailable, as it often is ... I guess drivers forget Muve to milk the surge) as out of the three of them, only Uber surge prices. If Uber increases too much, why would I bother with the whole app ordering, surge con and waiting time when there is often cabs sitting waiting for me at the rank?

I think it is pretty apparent that Uber is taking too great of a cut, especially when you compare them to the opposition who claim to be better for both the pax and the driver.
 

odysseus

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I think Uber (and the others) should indeed be shoved kicking and screaming under the legislative microscope, but I'm guessing they already have and the fact they are still operating after all these years indicates they are compliant, perhaps even if only by default.

Actually, in the case of NSW, they were kicking and screaming to the extent that they blocked investigators phones from using their service. They also ran a massive PR campaign along the nanny state lines, as well as emphasising they were the young upstart pushing back against bullying and poor serving taxi companies (who certainly had their own issues), such that they got public support at the time, which got the government to change the legislation in their favour.

It was all too hard to actually enforce the laws they were breaking against them, so they got the law changed.

I think in other countries, they got less public support - or likely the taxi operations weren't as bad as here, so the public didn't see as much benefit from switching to them. As a result, they haven't been as successful in their PR campaign to be accepted by the law in other countries as here.
 
D

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Actually, in the case of NSW, they were kicking and screaming to the extent that they blocked investigators phones from using their service. They also ran a massive PR campaign along the nanny state lines, as well as emphasising they were the young upstart pushing back against bullying and poor serving taxi companies (who certainly had their own issues), such that they got public support at the time, which got the government to change the legislation in their favour.

It was all too hard to actually enforce the laws they were breaking against them, so they got the law changed.

I think in other countries, they got less public support - or likely the taxi operations weren't as bad as here, so the public didn't see as much benefit from switching to them. As a result, they haven't been as successful in their PR campaign to be accepted by the law in other countries as here.

Goes to show the problems associated with protectionism. If the taxi's weren't so well protected for so many years and got so smug and lazy, they may have been back on top by now. Out of curiosity more than anything, were the laws actually changed, or were they simply let lie?? If the laws were changed, there may be bugger all that can now be done.
 

Flashback

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The main difference of taxi vs Uber in AU though is the barriers to entry, isn't it? i.e. the cost for a 'plate' for a taxi driver is quite an investment, hence why there's higher prices/more outcry, etc? I believe it's the same here in the UK with Black Cabs and / or Minicabs vs Uber.
 
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The main difference of taxi vs Uber in AU though is the barriers to entry, isn't it? i.e. the cost for a 'plate' for a taxi driver is quite an investment, hence why there's higher prices/more outcry, etc? I believe it's the same here in the UK with Black Cabs and / or Minicabs vs Uber.
in the ACT they dealt with it by issuing masses more plates at a small price - maybe $20,000. The theory was it would bring many more taxis.

Unfortunately it also meant people who had paid 1/2 million or more for their plates had suffered a huge capital loss and no compensation (unlike in other jurisdictions). There is no easy way to unravel years of protection.
 
D

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The main difference of taxi vs Uber in AU though is the barriers to entry, isn't it? i.e. the cost for a 'plate' for a taxi driver is quite an investment, hence why there's higher prices/more outcry, etc? I believe it's the same here in the UK with Black Cabs and / or Minicabs vs Uber.

That's the protectionism to which I was referring, but that is not all. Taxi's were (at times) plain ignorant. Refusing to answer pick up calls if it they deemed it too difficult/far/remote.

I remember one time when we went to a wedding at Church Point. We left the wedding early so we could easily get a cab (or so we thought). Over 2 hours later, the last of the guests were leaving and the place was deserted. All the cab company would keep saying to us is your booking is registered. We were lucky that one of the last guests gave us a lift back to Dee Why which was out of their way, but there was a Travel Lodge (I think it was) where we were able to book into. We were meant to go back to our friends place at Pymble, but there was no hope of that. Lucky our kids were comfortable with our friends, but I felt it was poor form that a taxi company in Australia's so called premier city could not make a pick up in over two hours. I firmly believe they just didn't want to drive to Church Point. The money was not an issue for us, but the operator just couldn't care less.
 
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Mrmaxwell

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As an early user of Uber (started using it in 2013) it has been great until 6 months ago when I noticed driver quality going down and prices going up. My last 10 trips not one driver has deserved a tip - still a better experience than a taxi however with sneaky price increases and drivers who have very little driving skills I will only use in emergencies unless something changes.
 

odysseus

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Goes to show the problems associated with protectionism. If the taxi's weren't so well protected for so many years and got so smug and lazy, they may have been back on top by now. Out of curiosity more than anything, were the laws actually changed, or were they simply let lie?? If the laws were changed, there may be bugger all that can now be done.

December 2015, the law was changed to legalise ridesharing, and a $1 levy legislated on every ride to compensate taxi plate owners for the decision.

https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw...on-for-taxi-plate-owners-20151217-glpt6r.html
 
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