Uber May Be Forced to Allow Tipping in Its App in NYC

Time to pay surged price again? Ola Uber drivers to go on strike from tomorrow

Currently Uber does not offer users an option to tip via the app like competitor Lyft. The petition was created by the Independent Drivers Guild, a group representing Uber drivers in NY, and it got over 11,000 signatures, though it still is about 1,800 away from its goal of 12,800. "There is anger among drivers that government is not intervening in raising their issues with Ola and Uber", Kamaljeet Gill, president of Sarvodaya Drivers' Association, said.

Welcoming the court order, Uber said in a statement, "We are hopeful that the order will be effectively enforced and that action will be taken against any person who attempts to block cars, confiscate devices or harass riders and drivers, and that the safety of everyone using the Uber App in Delhi is ensured". So it is going to be a while before anyone has the ability to tip their Uber driver. "My hope is that drivers in other cities across the country will come together" to demand better treatment from Uber.

"This rule proposal will be an important first step to improve earning potential in the for-hire vehicle industry", Meera Joshi, the taxi commissioner, said in a statement today. This varies by city.

The ride-hailing service Lyft also operates in New York City, but it wouldn't be affected if the proposal was approved because it already offers a tipping feature within its app. It's a long story, but the gist of it is, Uber was briefly required to allow drivers to solicit for tips as part of a huge, $100 million settlement with a class of drivers who were suing for being wrongly classified as independent contractors.

"Uber led drivers and passengers alike to believe that fares would match what was lost in gratuities", he said.

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If a company allows passengers to only pay for a fare using a credit card, the passenger must be able to tip the driver using a credit card.

The ruling followed an April 6 hearing at the TLC on industry economics, at which a succession of drivers testified to the difficulty of making a living in an increasingly crowded market. Drivers hope that creating the in-app option will make tips more customary, potentially significantly raising their take-home pay.

While Uber settled in April of a year ago, in order for drivers to remain independent contractors, the company was forced to pay out $84 million to the approximately 385,000 drivers represented in the suit. The taxi commission has the authority to initiate rulemaking on its own, but rules must be certified by city legal authorities.

The IDG based its tip-revenue projections on the fact that nearly all taxi passengers tip, and most tip 20%.

And the nearer you are to the tippee, whether it's a barista or an Uber driver, the more like you are to tip.

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