Uber is one of the most popular ride-hailing apps in the world, and its popularity has increased in recent years as an accessible and low-cost option for travel. Because almost anyone can be a driver for Uber, many people wonder if it is safe to travel in one alone.
Uber is safe to take by yourself. Drivers for Uber have to undergo background checks and training before they are allowed to drive. Additionally, the company has also instated technology to ensure safety and make sure that you have access to emergency support on your trip.
Even if you are on your own, you can feel safe knowing that Uber is a reputable company that cares about passengers’ safety. Keep reading to learn more about the ways Uber enforces safety and what you can do to travel safely in your Uber.
Background Checks for Drivers
Uber requires that all of its drivers undergo a multi-step safety check. To be eligible for employment as an Uber driver, people must have a criminal background check that is clear of the following offenses:
- Violent crimes
- Sexual offenses
- Terrorism charges
- Other serious criminal charges
If you are traveling on your own in an Uber, you can rest assured that your driver has undergone a thorough background check by the company before they were cleared to drive.
In-App Safety Features
When you are traveling in an Uber car, the app also has numerous safety options for your comfort and use.
In the Uber app, you can provide the information for trusted contacts. These are people in your life with whom you would like to share the details of your trip.
When you set trusted contacts, your friends and family will receive notifications about your travel information. They will be able to see when you depart and arrive, and also your current location and estimated time of arrival should you choose to share this information.
Although it is unlikely, there are also services through Uber that you can use if you end up in an emergency.
In the app, Uber provides an emergency button that you can use if you end up in a situation that feels unsafe. Pressing this button will directly notify local authorities and provide them with the following information:
- Car make and model
- License plate
- GPS location
To access this feature, you must tap on the shield button and then choose the option to call 911. After pressing this, 911 will be notified and help will soon be on the way.
GPS Tracking and RideCheck
In response to concerns about safety, Uber has heightened their commitment to GPS tracking. Each trip you take with Uber is tracked from start to finish using GPS technology.
If something goes wrong on your trip, you can take comfort in the knowledge that there is a complete record of everywhere the car went while you were a passenger.
Additionally, their RideCheck technology will notice if your trip takes a significant detour or stops for longer than expected. If this happens, someone from Uber will contact you to make sure that you are okay.
Uber representatives are always available in case you would like to report a situation that doesn’t feel right. By calling their hotline, you will get in immediate contact with an associate who will respond to your concerns and help make sure that you are safe.
Safety Considerations When Taking an Uber
Even with Uber’s extensive safety technology, there are still some steps you may want to take to make sure you have a safe Uber trip when traveling alone.
Call Your Uber From Inside
When you request an Uber on your phone, you may have to wait some minutes before your ride shows up. If possible, wait for your Uber driver inside a sheltered building. Waiting on the street, especially if it is at night, could potentially lead to unsafe situations.
Verify Your Driver
When your driver takes your trip, the app will tell you the make and model of the vehicle, as well as the license plate information. When your car arrives, double-check that it is the correct vehicle and license plate that you were assigned on the app.
Ask the Driver to Confirm Your Name
Your driver will have access to some basic personal information about you when they take your trip. When you get in the car, ask the driver to confirm your name.
If the driver cannot provide your name, this is most likely not a verified Uber driver, and you should not get in the car.
Uber is a very convenient form of transportation, and fortunately, it is a safe one as well. Although things can always happen, use your intuition and the Uber safety features to make sure you get from place to place in a secure way.