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Sidecar’s Increases RideSafe Fee on Long Rides to $2

Sidecar’s Increases RideSafe Fee on Long Rides to $2

Sidecar was the last of the major rideshare companies to institute a “safety fee” for every trip. They claim that this fee goes towards ensuring a safe ride for passengers and drivers alike. It goes to paying for background checks and other safety measures that Sidecar and other companies employ to ensure a safe ride.

Lyft had a $1 “Trust and Safety Fee” for a long time, and then back in April 2014 UberX had implemented a similar fee. Uber had previously not needed it as most of their trips were with UberBlack and UberSUV trips, which had their own livery insurance that took care of safety measures. [Note: to this day, UberBlack, UberSUV and livery drivers on Uber get to keep the safety fee, but still subject to 20% commission, so every livery driver gets to keep an extra 80 cents of every trip.]

Then Lyft secretly increased their Trust and Safety fee to $1.50 across the country. I expected Uber to do the same, but it has been 7 months and so far this has not happened yet.

But just today, Sidecar announced that they are increasing this fee for trips estimated over 6 miles. Passengers need to put in their destination before getting a driver so if the trip is over 6 miles, the passengers will be charged $2 instead of the normal $1 fee. This has no effect on driver earnings as these fees are on top of any time or distance related charges. As it only applies to trips over 6 miles, this shouldn’t be affected by the minimum fares at all.

This mostly effects passengers who now have to pay $1 more for longer rides. I will see how this affects passengers perception about Sidecar but I don’t believe it will have a major impact. Using Sidecar’s example below, $1 will be less than 10% of the trip fare so I don’t think customers will mind too much.

Below was the announcement made on the Sidecar Garage:

Hi Drivers,

In December, we launched the RideSafe fee for Sidecar riders. This fee is charged directly to the rider, and Sidecar uses 100% of it to offset insurance and regulatory charges. As you know, this fee does not impact what you earn as a driver, and commission will not be taken from this fee – all of it will go towards covering the costs of insurance and regulatory charges. For more details on the RideSafe fee, visit this post: Starting tomorrow: $1 RideSafe fee for riders.

A small update will be made to this existing RideSafe fee. Starting today, May 12th, the RideSafe fee will increase to $2 on all rides estimated over 6 miles. As before, this change will not impact driver earnings, and only riders traveling over 6 miles will be affected by this update.

How it works:

  • If you complete a $15 ride traveling over 6 miles, you will see  $15 on your “Accept” screen and will be paid $15 minus 20% commission.
  • The rider, however, will see a $17 fare. After the trip has been completed, the rider’s receipt will display the fare for the ride, $15, plus the $2 RideSafe fee for a total of $17.
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