Uber Trip Upgrade – How Does It Work?

Last Updated on by B. Thermidor

Uber trip upgrade is the new feature in town and its main purpose is to promote time efficiency.  I will explain how it works by providing you an example.

Here we go; say you get pinged to pick up a rider that is 15 minutes away and obviously you accept the request.  Let’s called it Request A. Now you are en route to pick up Request A, remember it’s 15 minutes away.

As you start driving about 6 minutes toward Request A, (that means you still have 9 min left) a new request just now comes in that is only 2 minutes away from you, and we’re going to call it Request B.

A new driver just becomes available, maybe he just drops off somebody or he just logs in to the app, whatever the reason, it doesn’t matter.  The new available driver is closer to your assigned Request A which you were already on your way to pick up.

This is where Uber trip upgrade comes into play.  You’ll now get switched to Request B instead, which is obviously closer than your original request.

In the end, you (driver # 1) and the new driver (# 2) wasted less time to your pick up locations.  That’s time efficiency; you don’t get to burn your gas and most importantly wasting time to pick up a rider.

Spend Less Time to pick up a pax with Uber Trip Upgrade

Have you ever been on your way to pick up a passenger only to find out that traffic is hectic? Probably due to road construction, or there is an accident, and that the pickup time becomes so much longer?

You are stuck in traffic and your pickup is 15 minutes away, so getting rid of your original request to get someone closer to your current location is very appealing. Let me tell you I’ve been there, and I think it’s safe to say that everyone of us has been in such situation.  With that being said, I don’t mind Uber switching my previous request which is far away to a new one which is way closer.

How Uber trip upgrade affects Surge time

It’s almost impossible to predict specific places and time that Uber surge is going to occur. Having said that, if you’re en route to pick up a rider and the trip happens to be on a surge, the Uber trip upgrade feature will not switch you a lower surge price. After all, it’s called “Trip upgrade” and not “downgrade”.  You can potentially get assigned to a higher surge though; for instance from a 2.0X trip to say 2.1X or higher.

uber trip upgrade

Uber Trip Upgrade Frequently Asked Questions

Will Trip Upgrade switch my UberX to UberPool?

Uber will only switch your trips within the same category or Uber services. Meaning, if you accept a request for an UberX you will only be switched/assigned to other UberX trips. Having said, that would undermine the whole purpose of trip upgrade, so it will not downgrade you from UberX to UberPOOL. Same goes if you are in an UberSelect trip, you can only get switch to the same level of Uber services or higher etc…

Do you have a choice in agreeing to the new request?

The answer is unfortunately No. As an Uber driver, I wish we have a say in this, after all we are considered as contractor according to Uber.

Will “Uber trip upgrade” switch to a passenger with a lower Uber rating?

A passenger rating has nothing to do with the trip upgrade. With that being said, you can easily get switch from a pax with a higher rating to a lower one and vise versa. So if you’re a rider with a low rating, I write about how you can improve your uber ratings here.

What do you think of this new feature? Do you think it’s really about time efficiency or it’s just another trick that Uber is using to make more money?  Let me know…