I guess it isn't limited to Uber either. Lyft, taxis, limos, ... Don't they want to get to destinations faster so they can pick up more fares?
Why do all my Uber drivers drive so slow?
The Guru Take
For multiple reasons:
Despite the bad rep that drivers have as reckless and speedy on the streets of New York, most drivers do drive safely and at the speed limit. Not sure about "slow" though.
See a few points below:
- Drivers tend to be safer and do not speed. Driving records are checked by the company. Why risk losing your job, account, or (in the case of a limo driver) your livery license? Their livelihood depends on it.
- Driving fast and changing speeds erratically increases the wear on their cars and gas consumption, both hurting their profits. Gas is one of the biggest expense for the drivers.
- Driving faster does not increase the payout. The fare is calculated by distance and *duration*. Driving faster will more likely net them less money. (The only time this makes sense is when you are trying to get more fares, quantity wise.)
- Drivers often mellow out after a little bit of experience. When this is your primarily job and do it for hours a day, you take it slow. You drive safely, you pace yourself, and you do not race other drivers. Driving fast and weaving through traffic is stressful, and eventually all drivers say, "why would I do that to myself?"
I hope that helps.
Rideshare drivers know 2 things that you probably don't think about.
One. Their license is their livelihood. Losing it could mean a missed mortgage. Also, one camera speed ticket takes all the profit from a 10-hour day. I usually simply ask a passenger who is in a hurry for $100 cash upfront. They have never paid so I don't go fast.
Two. In a major city, all cars move at about the same speed. That leadfoot that just passed me will be waiting at the next stoplight. Roundabouts, potholes, speedbumps, everything conspires to create an average speed. I suppose it's different in different cities but it's absolutely impossible to drive Washington DC at anything above 25 MPH. That speed also means that the morons who pull out from a parking space in front of you or blow a red light are in front of you instead of in the passenger seat along with the passenger.
A reasonable speed (which is always below the speed limit) makes a 10 or 12 hour day relaxing and, since I make just as much money driving at a reasonable speed, I've got to think that the passengers are getting to their destinations as fast as possible.