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NO LOVE LOST: Manchester Uber drivers set for Valentines Day strike over ‘upfront’ pay concerns

Updated: Feb 5, 2023

Drivers working on the Uber platform in Manchester are set to strike on Valentine’s Day in a dispute over pay conditions.

Organisers expect up to 1,500 drivers to switch off their apps at 12.05am on 13 February for a period of 48 hours.

The private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers working in the Manchester area say the strike action centres around ‘upfront charging’ changes introduced in October 2020.

Uber claim the new charging system, which saw the operator scrap 25% commission fees for a one off monetary value, is designed to improve coverage for passengers. Uber also say the average ‘take-rate’ for drivers remains similar to previous systems used.

An Uber spokesperson told the Manchester Evening News*: “Upfront Pricing is designed to improve reliability for riders, which in turn helps to create more trips for drivers.

“Overall, Uber’s average take rate remains the same, but each trip is now based on real-time information to provide the best price to appeal to the drivers in the area.”

Minicab drivers on the Uber platform are not shown how much the operator charges passengers travelling in their vehicles. The organiser of the driver strikes claims Uber are taking between ‘40 to 60 percent’ of the fare paid by customers.

Uber driver Omar Abdulkafir told Manchester Evening News: “Many times when customers get in the car they think we make a lot of money. They think the money they give to Uber is what we get.

“When they tell you how much they pay, and how much we get, sometimes the difference is a 60 percent deduction. It’s usually between 40 to 60 percent. Before the app [would] show you how much the customer pays and then show a 25 percent deduction.”


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