Uber grants more control to drivers, but is that enough?

Other | Saturday 11th June 2016 | Arren

Getting around has never been easier or cheaper, so long as your phone’s hasn't died. For us riders it’s the best, though things aren't so rosy in the driving seat.

The company doesn’t classify any of its drivers as employees - meaning they lose out on certain rights and benefits. Instead drivers are referred to as independent contractors, something it paid $100m for in April after settling legal actions in California & Massachusetts.

In a bid to calm tempers, Uber is rolling out new schemes that benefit drivers. They're designed to give those behind the wheel more more control over their shifts and routes. The features, already trialled in cities Stateside, include the ability to pause requests, getting their cash instantly, a shorter cancellation period and a wait-time fee. But what does this actually mean?

Well if you take more than two minutes to get into your Uber once it's arrived then the driver can add an extra fee to your total and no showers will add the fine to their no show fee. How much it costs depends on the cities per-minute rate. Drivers can also pause requests, giving them the freedom to an undisturbed break without having to decline people's calls.

Another bonus is drivers being able to specify their route, allowing them to give a direction of their travel so they will only receive requests from riders going the same way. It'll make a big difference at the end of their shifts when all they want is to put their feet up.

All the new features are designed to give drivers more control over their shifts and routes. For the drivers it gives them a little more flexibility to an otherwise demanding job but are they enough to keep drivers happy?

These gestures come after a costly legal battle in California & Massachusetts with another not far off in Florida and Illinois with regard to the companies treatment towards it's drivers. Drivers believe they deserve to be employees - but Uber is happy keeping them as independent contractors saying the current system allows workers to be their own boss