Uber and Lyft

This is probably going to be a rambling, incoherent, post. I woke up at 4am this morning, and couldn’t really get back to sleep. Now it’s almost 7am, and I’m trying to have a normal breakfast and proceed with a normal weekday. It’s a little abnormal already, since my car is acting up and the dealer can’t look at until Monday, so I’m probably working from home today. I used Lyft to get to and from work yesterday, and I could do that today too, but I don’t know if I really want to spend $40 just to sit in a cubicle all day and not talk to anyone, which is pretty much what I did yesterday. (It was a productive day. I got a lot of programming done. But zero interaction with coworkers.) On the other hand, if I spend all day alone in my apartment, I might go stir-crazy.

I’ve used Uber several times recently, in New York, during NYCC, and back at home, due to my ongoing car problems. It’s convenient, but a bit expensive. Uber has a pretty bad reputation, of course. I was just looking for a link to include here, but there’s so much bad PR for Uber, you can just search the NY Times and find a bunch of examples. (Here’s one at random.)

I installed the Lyft app on my iPhone a few months ago, but never got around to trying it. So I gave it a shot yesterday. There aren’t as many drivers working in my area as there are for Uber, but there were enough to get me rides back and forth to work yesterday without any hassle. And if you search the NY Times for Lyft, you get mostly financial articles, and none of the bad PR stuff that you see about Uber. So maybe Lyft is a better option, at least from a moral standpoint.

There are a lot of “Uber vs. Lyft” articles on the web. Here’s a pretty reasonable one from How-To Geek. From a user’s standpoint, they’re really similar.

Either way, I feel bad for the drivers. They’re not making a lot of money. Most of the drivers I’ve had recently, when I’ve talked to them, say that they’re working multiple jobs. And, in many cases, I don’t think any of those jobs are providing heath insurance.

UPDATE: I was afraid to hit “publish” on this post this morning, given how loopy I was, but it’s now 7pm, and I’m rereading it, and it’s not that bad. I did decide to go in to work this morning, using Lyft to get there and Uber to get back home. I think I’ve decided that Uber drivers, in this area at least, are a little better than Lyft drivers. Anyway, it’s probably for the best that I didn’t drive today. I was pretty tired in the morning, and again in the evening. I think I was fairly productive at work, at least. But again, I really didn’t have much human interaction and could easily have worked from home.



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