Uber changed the taxi industry but mostly failed to adopt one of its foundational tenets — tipping. Last June, the ridesharing giant is changing that and announced that you can now tip your drivers straight from the app. And that’s fared quite well for Uber drivers. In the last 12 months, the transportation giant says that its drivers have earned more than $600 million worth of gratuities. And from June to August 2017 alone, drivers made $50 million in tips.
Uber customers have the option to add a tip after a completed trip or UberEats delivery. Once you input your star rating for the driver you will be given the option to tip in predetermined increments or any amount you desire. If you are unable to tip at the time or wish to do it later, you have up to 30 days to tip your rider. You will get detailed information on which trips you gave tips and the amount in your trip history.
Drivers will need to update their version of the app and click the Accept Tips button to opt-in. Drivers will also be happy to know their star ratings will not affect how much of the tip they receive as Uber does not get a cut of the money. Drivers can also cash out their tips using Instant Pay as soon as they receive the money.
Uber has had a particularly complicated stance on tipping. At one point, Uber’s website informed riders “tips are included in the price of a ride,” even though they have never been. It took Uber paying a $100 million settlement for the company to change its messaging to indicate drivers are allowed to solicit tips. Now the company has a policy where “drivers may request tips at their discretion.”
Lyft has allowed riders to do in-app tipping for years and announced its drivers have amassed more than $200 million in tips over four years, which is about the same rate at which Uber drivers are apparently earning tips.
Last month, Uber also debuted mid-trip ratings and tips, and has purportedly seen a 30 percent rise in tipping. Customers in Salt Lake City, San Antonio, Kansas City, New Orleans, and Nashville are apparently the most generous to Uber drivers. And the most popular times for tipping are apparently Thursday, Friday, Saturday.
Updated on June 23: Uber drivers have made $50 million worth of tips in a year.