Fasten – What You Need to Know as a Driver in Boston
I have been driving with them for the past few weeks and would like to lay out what is different with Fasten. What I can see is that the app has a good number of users and drivers, mainly because of their hourly guarantee (supposedly it is very competitive so most slots are taken up) and their promotion to riders of any ride under 15 minutes is only $5 (drivers still get the full fare). Some drivers are earning a bit more on Fasten, mainly because of the lack of commission and many drivers have been getting an extra $4 per ride due to “extended pickup.” You can compare the rates yourself and there is only a small advantage to Fasten.
If you are a full time driver, you may want to consider Fasten as they only charge $80 per week in fees for unlimited amount of trips for a given week. If you take more than 50 trips in a week, you can make more than on Uber (based on fees and that my average Uber trip is right around $10 before commission)
If you are interested in trying it out as a passenger (free ride up to $20), here is the link: Sign up for Fasten (Remember, rides under 15 minutes are only $5, and supposedly this promotion lasts until Feb 2017. Yes 2017)
If you are interested in signing up as a driver, here is the link: Drive for Fasten (make sure to put in TN4776 to get your first month commission free! To be honest, I think this offer will improve in a few months so hold off if you want the higher bonus. Sign up now if you want to earn a bit more money per hour.)
It was fairly easy. I did it on the computer but it would be easier to do it on your smartphone since you can just take pictures and upload it into the app. With the computer, you would need to download the pictures (license, registration, insurance, car pictures) onto the computer and then submit them to Fasten
There are about 12 videos that you need to watch. There is a quick quiz after every video and it is pretty easy. There are some key differences between Fasten and Uber and Lyft and the videos highlight all of them so make sure to pay attention. I will be covering much of that in the below post.
Application:[Update June 2016: The iOS app is in beta now so it will be available soon]
This is for Android only. For those who don’t have Android, you can rent a phone from them for $9 a week (but you will have to pay for the data from T-mobile), with the first month free. They will be coming out with an IOS app soon but unsure when that will be.
Here are the phone specs:
Model: GALAXY GRAND Prime
Lease Term: 52 Weeks (ignore this)
Security Deposit: $100
Basic Fee: $9
Wireless Service Provider: T-Mobile
Fasten Safe Ride Fee
The safe ride fee is assessed on a per ride basis and is a flat $1.50, which is on par with Lyft (and a bit higher than Uber at around $1.30)
Here is the fare table from Fasten (you only get to see it as a driver):
(new price after 11/6)
Here is a comparison with Lyft and Uber in Boston:
There is no such thing as a minimum fare. Its just base, distance and time. They claim there is no such thing as a really small fare. Reviewing my driving history with Uber and Lyft, I had many more short trips on Lyft than I did on Uber. However, almost all of the minimum fare rides on Lyft happened before May 2014. I have gotten only a few since then on either Uber or Lyft. I am not sure how this policy would work in other cities in the US.
Also, with the promotion of trips under 15 minutes only being $5 for passengers, there is really no such thing as short trips as everyone is looking to use Fasten for longer trips.
There is no tip directly through the app. Your riders retain the option to tip if they’d like.
When your trip takes you on a toll road, we will make sure that your fare represents this, and you will be reimbursed the E-Z Pass rate. In practice, you get the toll paid for both ways, even though the toll is only accessed one way.
Boston Toll Roads: Mass Pike (I-90), Ted Williams Tunnel, Tobin Memorial Bridge, Sumner Tunnel
Boston Livery Drivers Note: The toll cost for livery drivers is higher than non-commercial drivers when using the Ted Williams Tunnel or the Sumner Tunnel leaving Logan Airport. We will withhold these higher rates from your passengers and reimburse you for them with your weekly earnings
Pay periods 12am Monday to 11:59 Sunday, processed on Monday and should be deposited on Wednesday like Uber (Lyft is on Tuesday, and deposits thursday or friday)
Fasten charges drivers a flat fee per trip, per day or per week. I think this is a real game changing way to rideshare. I see much less fees this way but hopefully there will be enough rides. Right now, they are doing many guarantees round the clock (7am to midnight) so it should be very good for new drivers.
- $0.99 per trip
- $20 per day
- $80 per week
We understand that sometimes you have a longer than average drive to pick up your rider. Because of this, Fasten will compensate you for this drive time. You will see this additional fare reflected on your payroll, as well as in the Fares section of the website or driver’s app.
Drivers get an extra $4 for what they call “extended pickups.” I am not sure why they use this term, because I have been getting an extra $4 for every pickup I get. Many of them are at least five minutes away so maybe that is the threshold. I emailed in for more information on that and they responded that they are adding $4 to every ride!
How are ride requests processed?
Ride requests go out to multiple drivers at once. If you accepted and it didn’t get assigned to you, it means it was assigned to a different driver before you accepted the trip.
Can passengers or drivers rate each other if they cancel the ride?
Cancellation fee is $10.
Rider may cancel for free up to 5 minutes, but then the cancellation fee is $10. In addition, the rider is allowed to rate you if you cancel, so make sure not to cancel or you’ll pretty much get a 1 unless you spoke to them beforehand. I rarely had to cancel a request once I have taken it so make sure to do every request you accept, in fear of a lower rating. This goes both ways; if a rider cancels on you, you get a chance to rate them.
Tips on using Arrive/Start Trip Button
Hit the arrived button as you arrive. The video recommends you do not hit arrive until you are at their front door. Don’t start trip without the passenger because cancellation fee will be more than the fare you get if you start/cancel. Again, they are allowed to rate you even when you cancel.
No smoking in the car. It goes for both passengers and drivers.
Insurance – contingent liability – without passenger:
- Up to $50,000 per person (bodily injury)
- Up to $100,000 per accident (bodily injury)
- Up to $25,000 (property damage)
Commercial full – with passenger
- The moment you accept an incoming ride requests, our Commercial Auto Liability and UM/UIM Coverage (up to $1,000,000 per occurrence) are in effect. Additionally, we provide Contingent Comprehensive and Collision coverage (up to $50,000 per occurrence) to those drivers who already have comprehensive coverage on their personal insurance policies.
- The deductible for the comprehensive coverage is $2500.
Do you compensate for passenger damage?
Use the “request fare review” for damage by passenger, similar to how Uber works
They are starting with the guarantee to get drivers on the road. Here are the terms of the guarantee:
In order to qualify for the minimum hourly guarantees, you must:
- Be available for at least 50 minutes of the hour.
- Take ALL incoming ride requests during that time period.
- Stay within the boundaries of the specified service area while waiting for incoming ride requests. Active passenger trips outside the specified service area satisfy this requirement.
- Start driving towards your riders’ pick up location as soon as you accept the incoming ride request.
- Follow the Navigation route towards you riders’ pick up location.
If you meet all of the above, you will receive no less than the minimum hourly guarantee amount offered for each hour you select. If you happen to earn more than the minimum hourly guarantee amount, you will receive your actual earnings instead.
If you are unable to meet minimum hourly guarantee requirements as outlined above, you will still be paid for any rides you provide during that hour. E.g. You select a $35 minimum hourly guarantee from 5:00pm to 6:00pm. At 5:35pm you receive a call and are unable to continue driving. All of your earnings between 5:00pm and 5:35pm will still be added to your total earnings for the day. However, you will not qualify for the minimum hourly guarantee.
Some hourly guarantees have a minimum reliability rating, just like Lyft in the old days. Make sure you keep it high or you may be excluded from doing guarantee hours.
Your Reliability Rating is the percentage of minimum hourly guarantees you completed out of the total number of hours you signed up for in the previous 2 weeks. For example, if you signed up for 10 minimum hourly guarantees and completed only 7 of them, your Reliability Rating would be 70%.
We use this rating when we offer minimum hourly guarantees to you, our drivers. Only drivers with a certain minimum reliability rating are eligible for this promotion. You should strive to keep this rating as high as possible by signing up for minimum hourly guarantees you can complete.
So far, I haven’t been able to pick up many hours on the hourly guarantee. I wrote into Fasten and they responded that a lot of people sign up for them, making them fairly scarce. The guarantee slots are released at 7pm the night before, so if you are interested in them, make sure to open your Fasten driver app when you are in the coverage zone to sign up.
I will be writing more about accepting rides and being able to look at further ride requests in my next post about Fasten.