Rideshare services have grown into a routine part of transportation in New York City. These services offer convenience and, especially for impaired individuals, a safe mode of transportation. But passengers should be cautious.
Like other passengers, rideshare passengers face the risk of vehicle accidents. But they should also take precautions against other personal injury caused by crime. In this blog post, we share some common tips for keeping safe.
Passengers need to avoid traveling alone, especially in the evening. A co-rider brings a sense of safety and divides the fare.
If you cannot take someone with you, use a ride-sharing application that allows you to share your trip information with someone else. Uber and Lyft have an option to text ride information, such as times and destination, to someone who can see where you are at all times.
It is always important to be aware of your surroundings. Follow your route and location to assure your driver is taking you to the right place.
Book your ride indoors and never request a ride when you are standing outside. Once the ride is booked, review the driver’s rating and license plate number. Wait inside until your ride arrives and confirm that it is your ride before entering the vehicle. Have the driver confirm your name.
Keep things confidential. Do not share personal information with your driver, especially if they are seeking this information.
Finally, do not pay for the ride or even the tip in cash. Uber and Lyft use embedded systems that automatically charge credit cards or a PayPal account. These apps may also add tips.
The backseat is a safer location if there is an accident. Sitting in the back also allows extra time to leave the vehicle if other occupants act inappropriately.
Always wear your safety belt even if your driver is not using theirs. Seat belts can help prevent serious or fatal accident injuries.
When booking a ride, be sure to review its ratings. Avoid using drivers with a rating that is below four stars.
Remember that respect applies to drivers and passengers. Drivers must also comply with their rideshare company’s community guidelines. Report drivers who are rude or act inappropriately.
It is always important to trust your intuition if the driver’s behavior makes you feel unsafe or uncomfortable. Uber and Lyft have in-app panic buttons and features where a passenger can provide their location and ride status with friends or family members. You can also call 911 and, in severe cases, get out of the vehicle when it is safe and call for assistance.