Uber recently celebrated its 5th year anniversary in Africa. That’s major. For a brand that first launched operations in Africa in the bustling city of Johannesburg in 2014, Uber is now available in thirteen other cities in Africa, including Durban, Lagos, Kampala, Accra and Nairobi in Sub-Saharan Africa, and Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt, North Africa.
Since making great strides in Africa, one that has remained constant with Uber is its Riders. Driver-partners all over the African continent attest to the fact that they interact with a diverse and unique range of Riders on a daily basis – which makes their time on the app even more interesting.
Each Rider brings their own unique identity and flavour – whether it’s the ones who ride shotgun striking up friendly banter with the driver-partner, or the ones who prefer the backseat to catch up on work, or even the ones who like the radio on… really loud, each one of them continues to contribute to Uber’s exciting journey. In Ghana, the situation isn’t any different as there are different riders with unique differences and characteristics.
Here are 10 types of Riders you’ll meet on an Uber trip:
The Navigator Pro
This Rider gives maps a run for their money, and is probably one of the driver-partner favourite type of Riders. This Rider knows alternative routes like the back of their hand and is a gem for when the main roads are backed up. With their insights on back-roads and shorter routes, you’ll zip past the traffic and still make that Monday meeting at the Ridge area. While driver-partners do have GPS, it’s always appreciated when a rider can provide an uncharted route that is both quick and effective.
The Human Wikipedia
Some Riders prefer sitting in the front with the driver-partners, and these types usually strike up conversations about really interesting things. Like the best place to eat wakyce in Osu, or where to get really affordable mechanics in Kokompe. This Rider is a treasure-trove of local information and makes sure that the trip is full of laughs and extremely useful information. Did someone say 5-stars?
The Auxcellent Rider
For some Riders, music defines the trip, and a great track, irrespective of the distance, will make it memorable. Whether it’s jamming Wendy Shay’s ‘Uber Driver,’ or crooning to 2Baba’s ‘Amaka,’ this type of Rider wants to be in charge of the music on their trip and they often request for an aux cable. The music is usually so good that the driver-partner gets put in the mood for the weekend… whether it’s the weekend or not.
The Enterprise Mogul
For some Riders, Uber is a great way to support their business. Whether it means adding additional 3-minute stops to make quick deliveries to customers, or using the same feature to touch base with existing and prospective customers, this Rider is getting the best business support by riding on Uber. Cha-ching!
The Strong Silent Type
Some Riders get into an Uber and prefer to just spend time alone with their thoughts, without necessarily engaging in conversations. No radio, no earplugs, no devices. These types of Riders, it seems, utilize their trips as a means to reboot and get their energy levels up – no there aren’t rude or brusque – they are just the strong silent type.
If you live in a city like Accra – then you know that there isn’t a dearth of parties, weddings and other social gatherings. This Rider is usually dressed up to the nines – hair, makeup and outfit on fleek, and if it’s a male Rider then you can also be sure that he’s paid serious attention to the way he looks. With Uber this type of Rider has constant support for their very busy and active social lifestyle.
Ghanaians are known worldwide for their friendliness, and many driver-partners reported that this was the most common rider. These type of riders are often overflowing with conversation, eager to get to know the driver-partner and also share in some experiences. Talking always eases the trip and makes it go quicker. It doesn’t hurt that being friendly and courteous to each other also improves ratings.
The Back-seat business pro
Smart suit, snazzy shoes, catching up on emails or phone calls in the back seat while heading to a conference or a meeting – sounds familiar? This rider is often so preoccupied with work- clicking away on the computer or tapping away on a device – that the driver-partner knows that they need all the quiet time they can get. Sometimes this Rider will also share great business insights that the driver-partners find useful – like the latest technology inventions, or investment info.
The Social Prefect
This type of Rider is similar to the Party-Goer – just that their social lifestyle is a lot more diverse. Singles fellowship on Sunday, book launches on Monday, Poetry readings on Tuesday, business dinners on Thursdays, club-hopping with friends on Fridays – for this Rider, Uber is the perfect accompaniment for their social and very busy lifestyle.
Oprah on Trip
This is the warm, kind-hearted rider whose positive outlook on life will inspire everyone they come in contact with. From their many stories of struggle and triumph, these riders will provide you with your real-life daily dose of motivational Mondays and Super Soul Sundays all on one trip. These riders sometimes even invite you to their church, or an event that clarifies your life’s next steps. Talk about food for the soul – anyone say amen?
With so many Uber trips taking place every day, drivers can always look forward to connecting with interesting riders on the Uber app.
By: Joseph-Albert Kuuire