Lacy Zapata (lacy)

Ride Apprentice from Houston

162 Rider Driver

I have been driving for Lyft for around a year. I drive in the Houston area and have lived here for a very long time. Even though I often drive, I also utilize the service because I have been sharing a car for the past two years. 


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Comments by lacy

  • Passengers who give bad directions and get mad that they are wrong. 

    Also passengers with poor depth perception who think I am in the middle of the road when I am still in a parking lot. 

    Passengers who pet my hair. 

    Refusing to answer if they are the rider I am there to pick up. I do not care if you want to talk, but you need to acknowledge the pickup. 

    Passengers who complain about leaves in the floorboard on a windy day. 

    Passengers who smell like weed that lingers after they leave. 

    Some of these will get you between 1-3 stars so that I do not have to deal with it again. 

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     5 years ago in  How do I pay for tolls?

    The passenger is charged for the fare, but that is on the back end of the payment. The way I pay my tolls is by using an EZTag, and then, of course, keep a balance on there. It is an upfront cost that is reimbursed, this is not the only company to do something along those lines. 

  • I do not carry anything, nor do I want to start. Often times when someone has a weapon and ends up in a hostile situation, they are the one who gets hurt using it. This is reason enough for me not to carry one. I have never been in a bad situation, but I do pay attention to the people who are about to get into my car. If someone gives you a bad vibe cancel and do not let them in. Be aware of the police locations in your city and drive there if they are in the car and start doing something you do not trust. 

    Weapons are not generally the solution they may be made out to be. Awareness is your first line of defense. 

  • Here the time has gone down on cancellation to 2 minutes, so there are more who ask to have it canceled for them. There are only a few reasons I can think that a call would have to be made, but they are pretty unusual, and generally related to a third party pick up. I do not know if Uber does it, but some car rental companies use Lyft as their transportation to get your rental car. That would be the only time you would have access to a phone but not the app that I can think of. 

  • It sounds like a PR campaign. I went to their site and found out more. It does require an in-person interview and a more thorough background check. But I also note when I look through the pictures that I do not see any diversity. This is one thing that Lyft and Uber do have due to their onboarding process. While a more thorough background check might make some feel more comfortable, in reading about most horror stories, there was no history of inappropriate behaviors, so no matter how thorough that check is, these people would have still slid in. The problem with those background checks is that they cost a lot of money and certainly that cost would be put onto the customer. I also noticed there was no fare estimator, which leads me to believe that they would be much higher than either Lyft or Uber. 

  • It would not help congestion because drivers would just be driving further. There might be fewer but they would be traveling more miles to make the same pickups. Drivers do not stay moving when they are waiting on a fare because that cuts into the small profit margin too much. They find safe places to stay and wait until there is someone that needs a ride. If they are driving they had someplace to go, but no time to arrive. 

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     5 years ago in  Lyft Driver Referrals is Bullsh*t

    The higher referral amounts just mean that there are more rides required. When I signed on my bonus was 725, I got it, my friend who I signed on under got it. Just because the person who signed up did not do the work does not make this fake. It is a time sensitive reward. You can encourage them, but unless they want to do it, you will not get the payout. 

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     5 years ago in  Handling Dicey Areas

    Reputations are not reliable. I do not mind driving in "dicey" areas here. They tend to be considered dicey because white folks do not live there. If you do not like an area though all you have to do is turn off the app, drive to a new area and then turn it back on. You can not prevent driving into the area though. 

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     5 years ago in  Hey drivers. Radio on or radio off?

    I keep my volume really low. It feels awkward to drive someone around in pure silence. If they ask or there is an obvious reason I turn the music off though. I do have some passengers who ask me to turn the volume up. I stick to 60s, 80s, and later at night, I might go with 90s. If I have been hearing a lot of cursing or sexual references in the songs I chose a different station. I have Sirius XM so I do have quite a few options for music. I have it for myself, but I also use it for driving. 

  • I would never downrate someone for no tipping. None of my local friends that do would either. We down rate for things like giving bad directions and then being upset when they don't work right. Making you wait until after you call to come out. Not following traffic rules like wearing seatbelts, not staying seated during the ride. Trying to get our phone numbers because we are "hot" and various other behaviors that we should not have to put up with. 

    A tip does not make up for that type of behavior. As long as someone is civil and follows the normal expectations I would never low rate them. At least in my city passengers are automatically given a 5-star rating if I do nothing. I like this because if there is not a problem then I just continue driving. If there is a problem I can come back to that transaction later instead of pulling over right away to let the system know that I do not want to be matched with that passenger again. 

  • Unless you work for Uber, there is no way to know how many people on the road are actually looking for fares. The cars that drivers use are owned by them and may be used to drive for any number of reasons other than trying to earn money. 

    If there are too many on the road it will take care of itself shortly because experienced drivers will just log off and do something else instead of sitting there without being able to make any money. Also since you can log on or off at an instance there is no telling how long any drivers may be on the road. 

    I often turn it on when I do not have time to drive all the way home before I have to be in an area. Since most trips are short this almost always works out for me. 

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     5 years ago in  Uber to start paying drivers to switch to electric cars

    The real incentive for Uber is for them to actually have some better PR. They have had so many negative stories that they are struggling to find something to regain consumer confidence. 

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     5 years ago in  Uber to start paying drivers to switch to electric cars

    Yes, I am a driver. I give between 20 to 35 rides a week. Those rides are often twenty to fifty minutes in duration meaning that I would that I might need to recharge at the end of that drive to be sure I could take the next one. Even if you can find the fast chargers that is at least an hour while I am waiting to be able to make more money. I figure this because conservative estimates of the time you can drive it are about two to two and a half hours. This lessens with the use of accessories such as radio and air conditioning. I would be 1 star rated if I did not have the a/c running here because of the temperature year round. Since you do not know how far the next fare will be until you accept it, you cannot let the battery drain. 

    I have considered owning an electric vehicle in the past, so I have actually looked at the infrastructure. I do live in Houston, so there is a lot of infrastructure in place for gas vehicles already and some for E-85 but almost none for electric. There are 18 charging stations in the greater Houston area, and 13 are clustered together in the midtown area. The city can easily take two hours to cross with regular traffic, so the odds of needing to charge at least once while out are very high. 

    Some of these stations also belong to companies and are exclusively for their employees so the number is unreliable. So until there is a solid infrastructure where people can stop to charge their cars within at least every 50 miles in major metro areas this incentive is nothing but a feel-good measure that will affect no one that would not have already bought an electric car. 

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     5 years ago in  Cancelling rides - Lyft vs Uber should be higher

    The cancellation fee is standard. I like that there is no need to explain why you are canceling.  I have canceled many times because I was offered a ride too late to not order a ride share, but if you are reliant on other people to get around you accept what you get. 

  • The only complaint I have is that it seems far too easy for people to ignore the passenger must be over 18 part of the agreement. I would like Lyft to send out reminders to customers more often. That and a car seat reminder would solve most of the difficult conversations that I need to have with those that need to get places. 

    Any job where you talk to people you end up acting as a therapist, that is just part of basic customer service, so that does not bother me at all. If I do not want to have an awkward conversation I do not drive after ten, but during the day people are usually just talkative. 

    One thing that I would like to see implemented is a part of their website that helps drivers find the closest restroom, but that seems difficult, so I just stick with retail giants, hardware stores, and any grocery store for the closest restroom. Not all of the gas stations in the area will allow you to use the restroom without a purchase. 

  • I drive for Lyft instead of Uber, but I do make money. It seems to me that people count the opportunity cost of driving as the reason people are not making money. There are times that it appears I am losing money when I am driving, but that is because if I do not have a time frame to be somewhere I will use the app and drive. I do not always get a fare, but when I do it actually offsets the cost of my traveling across town. 

    Another reason is that you can always earn money by choosing to drive more often or around events, so even if you are not earning as much it is possible to make ends meet if you are having monetary difficulty. This is especially true for people who have trouble finding jobs. I do now have a job but I applied for almost a year before I could find work. In the meantime, Lyft was my entire source of income and while it did not pay as well as my last job, it kept my head above water. 

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     5 years ago in  Large Passengers, should they be made to order UberXL?

    It is a small difference in gas mileage if that is your concern. If your concern is wear and tear on the seats in your car, you need to find a different way to earn income. Honestly, I am a large woman, but I drove a very small car for over ten years and was never uncomfortable. Cars are designed to hold people, and some people are larger than others. There is no reason for a single person to call for an UberXL. That is referring to how many passengers and luggage they have, not the size of the person. 

    It may have taken him longer to get in your car for many reasons including some medical problems with knees, back, or even simply arthritis. You never know what someone else is experiencing. I find the slowest people to get in my car have their children with them even when they are young and in good shape. 

  • You can not. I think this is actually for the safety of the drivers as well. While it is unlikely, a man could pose as a woman, order a female Uber and assault them. This is certainly still possible but would require possibly ordering more than one to be able to succeed thereby decreasing the odds of a man doing this. 

  • I drive for Lyft instead of Uber, but I also drive the cheaper type of vehicle. I do not provide water/gum/mints and would not even if I had chosen to work for Uber. The cost is not significant, but it is more likely to cause you to need to clean your upholstery, need a towel or two to dry spills and need to remove trash between fares. This additional time cuts into revenue far more than the actual expense of the items. 

    I do provide cell chargers for both iPhone and Android. I do not mind a single expense that does not create any possible messes. This makes people happy but is not a steady expense. 

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     5 years ago in  Uber to start paying drivers to switch to electric cars

    This is a wonderful incentive, but honestly not enough to cause anyone to change their vehicle. Hybrid vehicles cost a great deal more and the quantity of fares for this to make economic sense is difficult to even imagine. Electric vehicles are even more pricey. They can go about 100 miles before they need to be charged, 30 minutes if you are lucky enough to find a lightning charging station but up to 12 hours otherwise. These stations are not close together and the odds of breaking down due to a lack of charge are pretty high in most areas. 

    If they really want to encourage this they need to lobby for a better infrastructure because at the moment there is not nearly enough support for electric vehicles for them to be a viable option for rideshare. 

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