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How Uber’s dynamic pricing model works

If you’ve heard of Uber’s dynamic pricing algorithm but aren’t really sure what it means, don’t worry—here’s the breakdown. We’ve put together a quick and easy guide on how our dynamic pricing model works so you can know why Uber rates change and what the usual peak times are for an increased Uber price. 

How does Uber’s pricing work?

When you go to request a ride on a Thursday night, you might find that the fare is different than the cost of the same trip a few days earlier. That’s because of the Uber dynamic pricing model, which matches fares to a number of variables such as time and distance of your route, traffic and the current rider-to-driver demand. Sometimes, this means temporary surge charges during particularly busy periods.

Do Uber rates change?

Uber uses variable costs to encourage more drivers to get on the road and help deal with the increased demand. When we notify you of an Uber price increase, we notify drivers as well. If you decide to go ahead and request your ride, you’ll get an alert on the app to make sure you know that the rates have changed.

Price Normalization

Once more drivers get on the road and ride requests are taken, the demand will become more manageable and fares should revert to normal. 

Uber peak times

If you’re a regular Uber rider, you’re probably already aware of Uber’s peak times, where higher Uber fares due to increased demand are more likely. These include:

  • Thursday and Friday nights 
  • After-work rush hour 
  • Big events and festivals

Dynamic pricing helps us to make sure there are always enough drivers to handle all our ride requests, so you can get a ride quickly and easily – whether you and friends take the trip or sit out the surge is up to you.