Driver Announcements

California Drivers: Set your own fares when you drive with Uber

June 25 / California

Starting July 9, we’re expanding to the rest of California, including San Francisco, Modesto, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, the option to set their own fares for trips, as a multiple of time and distance rates. This feature is designed to further increase drivers’ flexibility and protect access to independent work.

If you drive in these cities and choose to not change your multiplier, you will still get the benefit of default time and distance rates, as well as surge fares. Current time and distance rates are not changing in your city. You don’t have to do anything to stick with ‘Auto-pricing’, which is the default setting in the Driving preferences menu.

But if you do choose a new multiplier, as usual, riders will be able to see an upfront estimate of their fare before they request a trip. If they are matched with a driver whose fare is set higher than the upfront estimate, they will have the option to accept or decline the offer and search for other drivers in the area.

In the coming weeks, all California drivers will be able to set their own fare. We will monitor feedback regarding how well the new feature is working. We’ll use this information to continue making product improvements in the months ahead, so that we can build on our commitment to flexibility and protect the independence of drivers like you.

If you would like to learn more about this new feature, listen to the podcast.


How does it work?

Using ‘Auto-pricing’

In the ‘Driving preferences’ section of the Driver app, you’ll have the option to continue using default time and distance rates, including higher fares for Surge, when it’s in effect.

To only use default time and distance rates, make sure ‘Auto-pricing’ is toggled ON in the preferences section of the app.

If you choose to turn ‘Auto-pricing’ OFF, you’ll be able to set your fare multiplier for eligible trip types, including UberX, UberXL, and Comfort.

To set your own fare, go to your driver app and tap the list menu in the bottom right of your screen to open the Trip Planner, then tap the filter icon in the bottom right of your screen to open Driving Preferences.

Setting your trip fare 

If you want to set a fare multiplier on default time and distance rates, you can turn off ‘Auto-pricing’, then set your desired multiplier. This new fare will apply to your next trip. 

The fare multiplier can range from 0.5x to 5.0x in increments of 0.1. You can update your fare multiplier anytime, and it will be applied to your next completed trip.  

You will only receive trip offers that meet your fare  settings, which includes the multiplier you set and your Surge preferences.

NOTE: Setting higher fares may result in fewer trip offers. Riders will also have the opportunity to decline your offer if they think the offer is too high. 

The upper bound of the fare multiplier range is subject to change. You can always find the most up-to-date upper bound in “Fare Preferences” in your driver app.

Opting in to Surge fares

Surge is still available in your market and the way it works will remain the same, with surge calculated as multiples of the trip fare. If you choose to change your fare multiplier, keeping ‘Surge fares’ ON will ensure you receive either your fare multiplier or the surge fare, whichever is higher. 

For example, if your fare multiplier is set at 1.1x but the current Surge in your area is 1.4x, you will receive trip requests at 1.4x rates. If your ‘Surge fares’ is toggled OFF, you will only receive trip offers at the 1.1x you’ve set. 

You can find the ‘Surge fares’ option in the ‘Driving preferences’ section of the app. The surge heatmap will be replaced by a map that shows where wait times are shorter.  

NOTE: By having ‘Auto-pricing’ toggled ON you will always follow current Surge fares.