People are snarky about ride-sharing users. You know, the hipsters and tech bros who live in places like San Francisco where owning a car is just not practical? Or who take a Lyft or Uber so they can go out drinking? Those people who disdain taxis?
Or the disabled?
I currently have very frequent migraines. The migraines have morphed and are now distinguished mostly by serious dizziness (often to the point of being hardly able to walk). Then there is the fibromyalgia…
Many days I can’t drive. I don’t really qualify for paratransit. I do not live in a big city. The last time I ordered an actual taxi it took over half an hour to show up. I’ve never had Lyft take more than five minutes.
Quite frankly, I don’t know what I do without it. I doubt that I am the only disabled person who relies on them. And what about people who don’t drive, either because they never got their license or because their license has been suspended for some reason?
Do I want Lyft and Uber to treat their drivers better, starting with making them employees rather than independent contractors? Absolutely.
Am I concerned about what will happen to fares down the road, when they need to actually show a profit? Yep.
Do I give 5 stars? Do I tip — often very well? Yes. Every time. (I once tipped 100% to a driver who offered service above and beyond what I expected. I also wrote a letter to Lyft.)
Am I glad they’re there?