Lyft, this really sucks…

I have been a faithful customer of Lyft for the past several years, charging literally thousands of dollars of rides over that time. And then today I order a Lyft that goes to the other side of the building I’m in (a rather confusing Seattle city block), and the driver calls me in the lobby of the building, and I spend 2 minutes trying to figure out where he is, and then I get this message on my phone:

You know, it really burns me. This what they send me as a loyal customer who has been consistently recommending their service for the past two years and who has never before had a no-show.

I’m not saying Lyft drivers shouldn’t be compensated for no-shows. I get that. But the problem is that Lyft (and other massive automated services like it) have no ability to actually understand their customers and their circumstances. For example, to recognize that this was not a “no show” but actually a very frustrated “Your rider can’t find you!” that was already a major hassle for me (on a deadline for another critical appointment), not just the Lyft driver.

And not only does Lyft show any understanding for the problems this caused me—it charges me.

And then to rub salt in the wound the email has a “no_reply” address and Lyft has no one you can actually call and explain this too (which I’d be willing to do even though the value of that time would be 10X the fee they might credit me).

So instead I took the time to write this and tell everyone who reads this just how faceless an action Lyft just took.

The silver lining is that I spent the next two Lyfts after this discussing with my drivers their frustrations with Lyft. And I realized that the opportunity for the next Lyft (or Uber) is growing every day. No matter how great their benefits, the days of having big impersonal centralized platforms in the middle of our relationships are numbered because they are going to be replaced by decentralized and much more personal platforms that simply do it better and cheaper and give a much bigger cut to the drivers that do the real work.

I can’t wait.


About Drummond Reed

Internet entrepreneur in identity, personal data, and governance frameworks
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