Soon, we’ll be introducing a new way to calculate the price of a trip: upfront fares. In Karachi, these new fares will give riders confidence that the exact price they see is the price they’ll pay, leading to more trips for you. Here’s what you need to know about upfront fares.
An upfront fare is an exact price, not a range
The most important thing to know is that instead of an estimated price range, an upfront fare provides an exact price to the rider before they request a trip.
This is the amount the rider will pay and the driver-partner will receive (minus Uber’s service fee and any charges), unless the journey changes materially, the trip takes materially longer than estimated or the actual tolls differ. In those cases, the fare will be automatically adjusted to use the actual time and distance travelled using the rates that currently exist in your city.
Why upfront fares? To help create certainty
In cities where upfront fares have been introduced, data shows that riders tend to request more because they have more certainty about the price – particularly during busy times when prices may be higher. In turn, more overall requests can mean more trips for driver-partners.
For example, showing riders a fare of Rs 250 provides more precise information than saying the trip fare is between Rs 225 and Rs 270. Because of this increased certainty and transparency, data suggests the rider is more likely to tap ‘request” after looking at the fare.
How upfront fares are calculated
Upfront fares are calculated using factors that typically affect the price of a trip, including the expected time, traffic patterns and distance, as well as surge when demand is high.
Then, the same base fare, time, and distance rates that currently exist in your city are applied. This value, plus surge and any expected tolls, is the upfront fare shown to the rider.
At the end of each trip, you’ll get the amount paid by the rider, minus Uber’s service fee and any charges. The final fare will also be adjusted to reflect actual tolls incurred.
If a trip changes significantly, so does the fare
We want you to receive a fare from your rider which reflects the time, distance and effort involved in helping the rider get from A to B. That’s why there are a few cases in which the upfront fare will not apply.
If the rider changes the journey or their pickup or dropoff location, or the trip takes significantly longer than expected in time and/or distance (for instance due to heavy traffic or unexpected road closures), the upfront fare will not apply.
In those cases, the fare will be automatically adjusted to reflect the actual time and distance travelled on the trip using the rates that currently exist in your city. The rider will also be notified of the general circumstances in which their upfront fare may change.
How upfront fares impact payments
In cities that use upfront fares, each individual fare may be slightly higher or lower when compared to the actual time and distance of the trip. However, we’ve monitored this closely in those cities to help driver-partner earnings even out over time. We’ve found that over the course of a week’s or month’s worth of trips, driver-partner payments are on average comparable to, or even higher than they were before upfront fares were introduced.
Exact pricing can lead to more trips
Riders have more confidence when requesting trips with upfront fares. Data from other cities that have introduced upfront fares suggests that upfront fares result in more overall trip requests and more business for driver-partners. We’re expecting to see the same effect in Karachi
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does Uber offer upfront fares to riders?
In cities that use upfront fares, riders tend to request more trips than they did before it was introduced because of increased transparency – there’s no maths and no surprises. If riders are requesting more trips overall, this can lead to more trips for driver-partners, including during busy times.
For example, if a range of Rs225 – Rs270 is provided to a rider, we’ve seen that some riders won’t request because they’re unwilling to pay Rs270. However, they might be willing to pay Rs225 – Rs250. By giving the rider an exact fare upfront, say, Rs250, they have the information they need to make a decision – and this increased certainty often results in a trip request.
Will I make more or less money with upfront fares?
While fares could be lower or higher on a per-trip basis, in other cities that have introduced upfront pricing we’ve found that over a week or month, driver-partner payments on average are comparable to, or higher than before upfront fares were introduced. This is because the variance in price for each trip tends to even out over time, and there are generally more riders requesting overall.
Do any trip types not have upfront fares?
Riders will see upfront fares in Karachi on UberGo, UberMini and UberX
When would an upfront fare not apply?
The upfront fare may not apply in certain limited situations, such as if the rider materially changes the journey or their pickup or dropoff location, or the trip takes significantly longer than expected in time and/or distance (for instance due to heavy traffic or unexpected road closures).
What happens when an upfront fare doesn’t apply?
If an upfront fare doesn’t apply, the rates set out in the fare estimate calculator automatically apply. You can view the fare estimate by entering the pickup and drop-off locations and can then view a breakdown of the rates by clicking on the (?) icon.
Does surge still exist with upfront fares?
Yes. Upfront fares do not remove dynamic pricing (surge). Prices will continue to vary when demand is high, and you’ll still see the heat map in the Uber Driver app with recommendations on where to get your next ride.
Riders will be shown the upfront fare as normal, with an additional note that fares are higher due to increased demand.
How do tolls work with upfront fares?
The upfront fare shown to riders includes estimated tolls, based on the recommended trip route. At the end of the trip, the estimated toll component is replaced by any tolls that were actually incurred on the trip.
That is, if the route suggests a toll, but the trip doesn’t pass through a toll road, or conversely if the route suggests no toll, but the trip passes through a toll road, the fare will be updated to reflect the relevant variance.
You will still be able to see the toll component of any fares directly in your trip summary.
What if the trip takes much longer than expected? For instance, how do delays or traffic impact the fare?
Upfront fares and navigation take traffic and other incidents into account, using traffic patterns and real-time data where possible.
If the trip takes much longer than estimated due to traffic or other factors, your fare will be calculated based on the actual time and distance travelled, as well as the tolls incurred. This will happen automatically and the rider will be notified of the adjustment.
What if a rider wants to change the destination or make multiple stops?
When riders change their destination, make an unscheduled stop or add multiple stops after they’ve requested their ride, this can significantly change or extend your journey. When this happens, the fare will be adjusted automatically using the actual time and distance rates, and the rider will be notified of the adjustment.
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