Surge and Prime Time are two phrases that'll make any ride sharer cringe. They’re the phrases associated with fares that are sometimes much higher than normal on Uber and Lyft.
Surging fares is such a sensitive topic that earlier this year, Uber announced it was moving away from multiplier notifications in favor of showing the estimated total cost of the ride as to avoid any surprises.
With a little extra effort, there are few ways to take a detour around those annoying price hikes.
- Schedule your trip in advance. Uber rides are subject to the price at the time of pickup, but Lyft allows you to lock-in the price that's available upon scheduling.
- Try using apps like Surge Protector, which finds locations near you that have lower surge pricing or spots with no surge at all.
- Apply for a job at Uber and Lyft... then download the driver apps, which will give you access to each service's heat maps.
If none of those options suit you, then just simply wait. A study at Northeastern University found that there's a 60% chance that the price won't remain high for more than 5 minutes.
So next time everyone else around you is in a hurry, sit back and let them take a price hike. Your bank account will be better off for it.