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News of Zealand

Low Uber Ratings Will Soon Cost New Zealanders A Six-Month Ban

An employee survey reveals the user behaviour responsible for your poor ratings.

Nearly everyone has an Uber story. Whether it’s raving with a driver who has a karaoke machine and disco ball installed or things turning sour when your mate decides to expel some extra matter in the back seat, Uber drivers have just about seen it all. Some of which, they wish they hadn’t. Luckily for them, there’s a new incentive for Uber users to be on their best behaviour at all times: a six-month ban.


Starting September 19, Uber will penalise people who have ratings below four stars with a ban. But before you freak out and rush to check your rating, the new system follows a three-strikes-and-you're-out-type format, so you have chances to redeem yourself.

When your rating first drops to 3.9 stars or lower you will receive a “friendly” email from Uber reminding you to be polite and accommodating to drivers. But if your rating fails to improve after a second or third follow-up email, you'll have to work out how to function in society for six months without an Uber account.

The new system follows an employee survey which revealed what user behaviours annoyed drivers the most. One of the biggest complaints was users who request pickups in unsafe areas, locations like non-stopping zones in city centres where the driver cannot safely pull up. Drivers also gave poor ratings to passengers who did not greet the driver, slammed doors and left rubbish behind. Take note!

Susan Anderson, general manager for Uber in Australia and New Zealand, said trials of the ban had encouraged users to be more mindful of their behaviour in an effort to gain and maintain high ratings. The vast majority of users, she said, would not be affected by the new policy, as about 90 percent of users had a rating of 4.5 or higher.