Why I prefer Lyft over Uber, currently no tipping in Uber app

by Andi Boggs | April 19, 2017

Uber logo

Uber’s CEO, Travis Kalanick, was part of the reason I stopped using Uber and switched to Lyft. He seemed like the kind of guy who would treat women unfairly and there were countless articles in the news that contributed to my bad impression of him.

For example, the one about his willingness to investigate journalists who wrote unfavorable things about Uber was the first time I ever heard of him. Later I read about an incident where Uber executives hooked up with escorts at a karaoke bar in Seoul, and the incident is now the basis of a sexual harassment lawsuit by a female ex-employee of Uber. Recently there was an article about how Uber can’t stop losing money that I found delightful. But I have not always been opposed to Uber in their challenges as a new and disruptive tech company.

I wanted them to be victorious in their battle against drivers who were seeking employee status. I felt that the drivers in the class action lawsuit against Uber were greedily trying to limit the potential for new drivers to start driving with Uber. I was also proud of Uber's resistance to Austin, Texas’s overreaching attempt to fingerprint drivers when Uber claimed they did their own background checks on drivers which were sufficient.

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Last year I wrote a short article called “Uber and Lyft by the numbers,” and in it I wrote about the size of Uber compared to Lyft, a smaller but also very popular ride sharing company. One of the main differences between the successful ride sharing start ups is that Uber is international and operates in the U.S. and cities around the world while Lyft is limited to U.S. cities.

Uber and Lyft are both available in the city where I live, though I choose Lyft because I want it to become more competitive. Also Lyft allows drivers to use slightly older cars which I figured would result in a better rate for riders.

Since I have been using Lyft for awhile I am familiar with the tipping feature where you can give a $1, $2, $5, $10 or a custom tip on the app. So I was surprised when I read that Uber doesn't offer the ability to tip drivers in their app.

I have no idea why Lyft allows passengers to leave a tip and Uber doesn't. My feeling that Lyft is a more likable company than Uber, based on my impression of Uber’s CEO, was confirmed even more when I learned there was no-tipping on their app. I would like to know what Uber’s reason is for not allowing their drivers to receive tips via the app but I suspect it has something to do with wanting to prevent any warm, fuzzy feelings between drivers and passengers. Uber's doesn't symbolize having any soul - their operation is very cold-hearted and some of their trouble as well as their success could be a result of this. However it does seem that they are trying to evolve into a more likable creature. Still, they have a long way to go before I ever choose them over Lyft.