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Do Driver Ratings in Uber Matter? How?

Middle aged male passenger talking to car driver.

If you’re an Uber driver, the quality of your service can make or break your business. After all, your ratings are what determines whether or not you’ll continue to have customers in the future—yes, they do matter. So if you’re going to be driving for Uber long-term, it’s important to understand how the rating system works and what you can do to improve it.

Passengers May Cancel on Drivers With Low Ratings

In addition to serving as a quality measure for passengers, driver ratings also serve as a safety measure. Passengers may cancel trips on drivers with low ratings. Drivers who have below-average ratings risk getting kicked off of Uber’s platform if their rating dips too low.

As a part-time or full-time driver on rideshare platforms like Lyft and Uber, you don’t want to give up your source of income. Avoiding poor customer service can help prevent cancellations and leave you well on your way to retaining a high rating.

What Happens If I Get a Bad Rating?

Uber is more concerned with safety than driver ratings. If you get a bad uber rating, it’s not a big deal. Hopefully, you were provided with feedback from the rider or you’re already aware of what caused the low rating.

Some people may just be having a bad day and anything could set them off. Some people are irrational and they just might not like your car for whatever reason. If you get a bad rating, just continue to give good rides, and eventually, your overall rating will overshadow the bad one.

What Will Happen If You Get a Lot of Bad Ratings in a Row?

Hand choosing 2 stars rating.

If you frequently get bad ratings, you may be temporarily deactivated by Uber. They’ll issue you warnings and they will try to help you improve if you are in danger of being suspended. It’s important to notice these warnings and take the advice so that you can continue to make money.

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First Warning

With the first warning, Uber will notify you that they are giving you fewer rides until your rating improves. The company doesn’t want to give someone with a low score a chance to ruin another rider’s experience. If you do get a notification from Uber, just take it as an opportunity to be better at being a driver, rather than seeing it as punishment for not being good enough already.

Subsequent Warnings

It will take more than one conversation to improve your rating, however. If you’re still unable to get your rating up to 4.6 or above within two weeks, you’ll get a second notification from Uber. At that point, it will probably make sense to look at what’s been written about how you can improve your service and work on those issues before it’s too late.

Deactivation

Process of deactivating.

If you fail to improve your rating after multiple warnings, Uber may deactivate your account. That’s because Uber’s not just trying to connect drivers with riders. It’s also trying to make sure that it can provide safe, convenient service for its customers at all times.

Common Reasons for Bad Ratings

The most common reason for a low rating is not having good customer service skills, which is something you should work on from day one as a driver. As soon as I had a passenger comment about my attitude or service, I would take note and learn from it. Another common reason for low ratings is speeding or driving too fast.

Be aware of your speedometer at all times.

Tip for New Riders

Many drivers have been surprised at how quickly their rating can drop when they’re new to driving for Uber. This is because your overall rating is an average of all of your individual ratings and you don’t have many ratings to create an accurate average. It’s imperative to be thorough and on point with your first 100 rides so that you can make sure you have a solid overall rating.

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That way, if you get a few bad ratings in a row, it won’t affect you much.

Can Both Drivers and Passengers Leave an Uber Rating?

Woman hand holding modern phone with 5 stars rating.

Drivers and passengers both leave a rating for their experiences on the app, but only riders can see the rating they’ve left behind. If your driver gives you a five-star rating, you will receive a notification alerting you to that fact so you can do the same. The driver is not notified about what rating you gave them.

Your driver’s ratings, as well as yours, are displayed to other riders when they request an Uber ride. Riders also have the option of giving no star rating at all. No ratings received after a ride is over don’t affect a driver’s overall rating on the platform.

How Does the Rating System Work?

Drivers are rated on a scale of 1-5 stars, with riders given an opportunity to rate each trip they take on a scale of 1-5 stars. Drivers must maintain an average rating above 4.6 in order to keep driving for Uber. A driver’s overall rating is determined by averaging their ratings from individual trips.

A rider who rates their driver poorly will be asked to provide feedback about why they rated them so low. If there was a legitimate problem with their ride, drivers can use that feedback to improve and hopefully raise their overall rating. Riders who rate their driver poorly without providing specific feedback will be asked to explain themselves or risk having their account deactivated.

If your average rating falls below 4.6, you may be put on probation for a short period of time before being removed from Uber’s platform entirely. On average, less than 2% of drivers are removed from Uber’s platform each month due to low ratings.

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Perks of Having a Good Uber Driver Rating

If you have a good rating, Uber takes that into account and gives you more requests (giving you more opportunities to make money). That doesn’t mean just completing a lot of rides, but also ensuring riders are happy during them. If your ratings are high, you may even be eligible for special perks like access to higher tiers or special assistance from customer support when needed.

Access to Uber Black

Young male uber driver behind the wheel.

With a score above 4.85, you’ll have access to Uber Black and uberXL. Uber Black rides make substantially more than Uber X. You’ll have to have a luxury vehicle to provide this service.

Being an active driver allows you to accept trips on both platforms and you can choose to only accept rides from a particular service. As always, keeping your rating above 4.85 should be your priority, but don’t worry too much about what it might look like at any one time – if you need a little boost, just think of it as a friendly reminder to be a good driver.

Uber Pro

For example, if you maintain a 4.85 rating or higher, you can be eligible for discounts at participating retailers and restaurants. Other perks include access to health insurance plans. You’ll also need to maintain a less than 4% cancellation rate.

According to their website, these plans were specifically designed for rideshare drivers and include life insurance, dental coverage, and vision care. In other words, there’s a lot to gain from maintaining a 4.85 rating (or higher). If you want to save money on car maintenance as well as things like coffee or gym memberships, then make sure to keep your rating high.

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Do You Get Special Perks for Keeping a 5-Star Rating?

Woman indicating 5 star rating on her smartphone.

The best driver rating you can get is five stars.  However, there are no special perks to specifically maintaining a 5-star rating, but there are perks for keeping your rating above a certain threshold. It’s still important to keep your ratings high as a way of showing respect for your passengers and as a way of ensuring that you’re driving a clean and quality vehicle.

Final Thoughts

Drivers with higher ratings are more likely to get top-rated passengers and more frequent requests. Drivers with lower ratings don’t get picked as often. An Uber driver with a low rating is usually seen as disrespectful, unprofessional, or even dangerous.

Don’t give your passengers a reason to give you anything less than a five-star rating—being an amazing driver is not always about getting customers from point A to point B, but also about being courteous and friendly all along.

Sources:

Business Insider – Uber’s internal charts show how its driver-rating system actually works

TechCrunch –  Uber will start deactivating riders with low ratings