Uber drivers could drive down their service fees in new UK ‘Quest’ loyalty programme

Private hire Uber drivers in the UK may be able to drive down their commission fees as part of a new ‘Service Fee Quest’ programme.

Minicab operator Uber will allow drivers to ‘unlock’ a lower service fee and keep more of the trip fare, if they are able to reach a certain number of journeys.

For every ‘Quest’, there are a certain number of trips that minicab drivers will need to complete. Once they hit that target, whether it’s on the first, second or third day, the driver automatically switches to a lower service fee for every other trip they take until the end of the Quest period.

When the Quest ends, the service fee will revert back to the regular amount.

Drivers on the Uber platform will be offered two different Quests. One will feature during weekdays (Monday to Thursday) and one during weekends (Friday to Sunday). They can choose to complete both Quests in one week if they so wish.

Each Quest has two options to choose from. Uber have provided an example which states a Quest might have an option to unlock a 14% service fee after 6 completed trips, or a 7% service fee after 17 completed trips. The driver must accept one of the Quests based on how much they want to drive.

Drivers will be able to find more details of their available Quests in the promotions section of their Driver app.

Uber will be hoping that this latest loyalty scheme will divert more of the drivers' time to working on the Uber platform rather than its competitors. Many minicab drivers, especially in London, can work on multiple ride-hailing operator platforms.

In September Uber won its appeal to be granted a new London operator’s licence following a court ruling, despite the magistrate acknowledging their ‘historical failings’.

Deputy Chief Magistrate Tan Ikram deemed the private hire firm to be a ‘fit and proper person to hold a London Private Hire Vehicle operator’s licence’.

As part of the court appeal which started on Tuesday 15 September, Uber appealed against Transport for London’s (TfL) decision not to renew its operating licence because of safety breaches that put passengers at risk.

In November 2019 London’s regulators announced that it would not grant the minicab firm a new private hire operator’s licence following its latest application.

Following the latest appeal Uber are now declared 'fit and proper' to operate private hire vehicles in the capital, following the hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court earlier this month.

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