Driving through a city is no easy feat. If you save enough money to invest in a car, you then have to worry about scarce parking, dense traffic, licensed drivers who should definitely not be licensed drivers, and many more traffic maladies.

 

Luckily, there are plenty of alternatives: you can bicycle, use public transportation systems, or hail a cab. These days, hailing a cab has never been easier with the surge in ridesharing services, like Uber. Yet, just like anything else that rises in popularity, Uber has been met with protest in cities across the world. Before you take advantage of Uber’s promotions for a free ride, you should be aware of the issues and dangers that calling an Uber cab may entail.

 

While Uber's app interface may be user user friendly, the company itself cannot make the same claim. (Jack Atley/The New York Times)

While Uber’s app interface may be user user friendly, the company itself cannot make the same claim. (Jack Atley/The New York Times)

First of all, Uber drivers may not always be as trustworthy and reliable as the company promises. From incidences of both physical and verbal assault to unfamiliarity with a city’s location, many Uber drivers have raised questions over the company’s screening process. Many drivers with suspicious records manage to pass through Uber’s background checks unscathed. If a company cannot guarantee the credibility of its employees, it cannot guarantee the safety of its patrons.

 

Furthermore, when something does go wrong with a trip or driver, Uber often eschews responsibility. If a driver injures somebody while he or she does not have a passenger, Uber will claim that during that time, the company cannot be held responsible. Who would be responsible if you happen to get into an accident while in an Uber car? When using Uber, passengers choose to put their trust in a complete stranger.

 

Though you may be tempted to succumb to the hype around Uber and use the company’s app to order a ride, the old-fashioned way of hailing a cab from the street may still be your best option.

 

Have you had any experiences — whether positive or negative — with Uber? Let me know in the comments, or on Twitter @ryanlawlessness