Uber has spent many of the years it has been in business looking for ways to improve its customers’ experience on the platform and bring in more of them.
One way this is done is by introducing different ride options. In this case, we’re looking at Uber Assist, and here’s all you need to know about it!
What Is Uber Assist in 2023?
Uber Assist is a ride option for those who have accessibility needs in 2023. Some groups that would benefit the most from Uber Assist are those with disabilities, seniors, pregnant riders, and sick or injured people. Uber drivers need to go through training to learn how to care for these groups of people before they can receive Assist ride requests.
Learn everything you need to know about Uber Assist, including how it differs from other ride types, what rates you can expect, and more below!
How Do I Get Uber Assist?
You can get Uber Assist by selecting it when setting up a trip, just like you would any other ride option.
Do I Need Uber Assist for a Service Dog?
You don’t need Uber Assist for a service dog because, under federal law, service animals are protected and drivers can’t turn you down for having one.
According to Uber, drivers who refuse a service animal will be deactivated.
What Kind of Car Is Uber Assist?
Uber Assist doesn’t have any requirements for what kinds of cars qualify, and it’s open to any vehicle that’s eligible for regular rides.
This means that an Uber Assist vehicle should, at minimum, have four doors and the ability to carry up to 4 riders at a time.
Uber tells its drivers that provide Assist trips to keep their trunks empty in order to store collapsible mobility equipment like wheelchairs.
A sedan would be the most suited vehicle for small ones because they can hold mobility equipment in the trunk and still have room for the usual number of riders.
On the other hand, while you could use a compact, you’d have to limit the capacity to one rider at a time because you’d have to fold down the rear seats for storage.
What Is the Difference Between UberX and Uber Assist?
UberX is the default ride option on the platform, while Assist is intended specifically for people with accessibility needs.
Because of the focus that Assist has, its drivers are required to have extra training to deal with these groups.
On UberX, your driver might not have these skills or their vehicle might not be equipped to handle assistance requirements like trunk space for a wheelchair.
UberX and Assist are similar in that they use the same types of vehicles but, in the second one, you have a better chance of finding a driver that’s in a better position to help.
What Is the Difference Between Uber Assist and Uber Access?
Uber Access, called Uber WAV in some areas, is different from Assist in that it uses vehicles that are specifically chosen for their ability to cater to riders with wheelchairs.
As the name suggests, WAV uses wheelchair-accessible vehicles that have features like ramps and more room.
This way, riders that have wheelchairs don’t have to pack them up in the trunk.
Therefore, it’s more accessible to the ones with motorized models that aren’t as easy to transport, especially in a smaller vehicle.
Additionally, Uber says that the prices on WAV/Access are similar to the ones on UberX in order to keep the service accessible.
However, drivers receive extra for these rides and incentives that vary by where they’re based.
We looked at what these are for drivers in Britain, and they include the following:
- £5 per Access trip
- A weekly incentive starting from £150
- If the trip ETA is more than 12 minutes
Like Assist, drivers providing Access rides also need to undergo training to make them better suited to provide accessible rides.
Does Uber Assist Cost More?
Uber Assist rides don’t cost more. Rather, the rates are the same as those on UberX in order to keep it from being out of reach of riders with extra assistance needs.
How Do I Qualify for Uber Assist?
To qualify for Uber Assist, you’d need to provide a certain minimum number of rides first and maintain a strong rating.
How many rides you need to have provided changes depending on where you are ( e.g. it’s 100 in Great Britain but 500 if you’re in London specifically).
As for the rating, it’s also different depending on your location, with the usual requirement being somewhere between 4.7 and 4.8 stars.
You don’t need a special vehicle for Uber Assist because you just need to have enough space to store a collapsible wheelchair.
Is Uber Assist Worth It?
Whether Uber Assist is worth it will depend on your needs and budget, but we’d say that it is for the most part.
It costs the same as UberX, but you get drivers that are better equipped to handle additional assistance needs.
That said, we’ve found reports from users saying that the training the drivers receive isn’t as thorough as they expected, so the trip wasn’t as smooth as it could have been.
Nevertheless, if you can get it, Uber Access/WAV is arguably a stronger option, especially for people with more complex electric wheelchairs.
Because these aren’t as easy for someone with little experience to collapse, having the option to ride in it might prove more convenient.
Uber Assist is a ride option intended for riders with accessibility needs like those with disabilities, seniors, pregnant, sick, and injured people. UberX and Uber Assist charge the same rates to keep it available to the intended customers.
Drivers need to take a training course before getting access to Uber Assist, but they can use regular cars as long as they can store mobility equipment like collapsible wheelchairs. Uber WAV, also called Access, is similar to Assist but it only uses wheelchair-accessible vehicles.