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Yea, I had my first Uber ride and it was quite the experience. For those who aren’t aware, Uber is an online multinational transportation network which allows clients submit a trip request with their smartphones which is then routed to Uber drivers who make use of their own car to execute the request.

It was Saturday, the 21st of May, I was at a wedding of two dear friends at Ago Palace Way, Isolo, Lagos. As the wedding drew to a close and we prepared to leave, a friend suggested we call an Uber ride since the rain which had started in the morning had come back and had become quite unrelenting. We should have used his mobile device since he already had an account with Uber, but since his phone’s battery was low, I had to register for Uber on mine.

The registration process entailed downloading the app on my phone, and then entering in my details including my ATM Card details. When I was done with that, I set up my pick up location and was informed that I had to wait for 17 minutes while the nearest Uber ride tried to navigate to my location. Only a few seconds after setting my pick up location, the Uber driver called to tell me he was on his way.

The estimated arrival time kept fluctuating, going up and down, I assumed this was due to traffic and all other uncertainties in Lagos. It took about 22 minutes for the Uber cab to get to somewhere close to my location. It turned out the Uber map on the driver’s phone gave him the street next to our location as our location, so we had a little trouble locating ourselves. Uber should work on the accuracy of their map.

When we finally located ourselves, we got into the car, a 2009 model of Toyota Camry. He asked if he could start the ride, I said okay and he did by tapping on a button on his own app and simultaneously it reflected on my device that I was already on the trip. What great customer service Uber has I must say. The driver was courteous; he inquired if I had any particular radio station I wanted to listen to, I replied in the negative.

The ride was nice, we had three drop-offs to make and through it all the driver drove cautiously, very mindful of potholes and he wasn’t speeding. When I got to my stop (I was the second to alight) I wanted to pay cash but was informed it wasn’t necessary as the fare would be deducted from my account. I liked that, no need for exchange of cash or waiting to receive change, just get down when you get to your destination.

Truthfully, I dreaded receiving the fare’s notification on cost because I was expecting it to be quite on the high side, considering what I would have spent if we had called a traditional taxi or had taken the regular public transport from bus to bus. But what shocking relief I had when it arrived; it was ₦1950 only from Ago Palace, Isolo to Anthony in Maryland and three drop-offs in-between. Good job Uber.

My first Uber experience has led to two more in less than a week. And yes, I gave the driver a 5-star rating. I suggest Uber should make provisions for scheduling rides ahead of time to do away with the time spent waiting for the ride to locate the customer.

All in all, Uber is doing an amazing job. Do give them a try.

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This article was first published on 25th May 2016


Muna is a software programmer and developer with a passion for technology.

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