Earlier this year I left my corporate job in Melbourne and started up my own business. It’s exciting, scary and stressful all at the same time and right now I don’t earn as much from it as I used to when I worked full time.
However, I still have the same number of bills each month – and more – which is why I decided to try out the time-flexible world of being an Uber driver.
Over the past eight months since I switched from being a regular Uber passenger to a driver, I’ve learnt some valuable things that might have surprised me before.
1. Yes, I’m driving in the opposite direction from you. No, I’m not insane.
This happens all the time: I’ve just dropped a passenger off and I’m driving off down the street. I may be on a highway with several lanes or even get into a right-turn lane to take me in another direction. Suddenly the app lights up and I accept a request.
But when the pin on the map finally shows itself I can see the passenger is back behind me, or to the left when I’m already turning right – and it’s going to take me a couple of minutes to get to a place where I can turn around, especially when the traffic is heavy.
I’ve had a few people cancel the trip while I’m in the middle of getting back to them – thinking that I’m heading in the wrong direction for some ridiculous reason – only to have them match with me again a minute later as I’m still the closest car to them.
2. Don’t feel rude sitting in the back – it even makes me more comfortable.
Apparently being a female Uber driver in Melbourne isn’t too common — I know this because every second passenger says to me, “You’re my first girl driver!”