Uber convenient rides shuttle students safely

Uber convenient rides shuttle students safely

Glen Rock High School students have started to utilize a new mode of transportation around town and elsewhere: Uber.

Mostly used for quick, inexpensive rides, Uber has been used by many Glen Rock students as an alternative form of transportation.

“I think it’s really useful and it’s a good way to get a ride around town when parents or friends are unavailable,” Michelle DeMaria (’17) said.

In December, Uber was a popular service for transportation to and from MetLife Stadium for the high school football championship game.  Many students who did not want to rely on friends or parents were able to get a ride to the stadium and enjoy the game because of Uber’s service.

Students also use Uber for rides after late nights with friends. 

“The last time I took one was New Year’s Eve,” DeMaria said.  “We did not feel like driving to the party and our parents were busy. It’s not that I can’t walk, I just don’t feel like it when it’s late or cold.” 

With any late night car service, safety concerns rise, especially for high school students. Concerns mounted when an Uber driver in Michigan went on a shooting rampage while continuing to pick up Uber passengers, whom he delivered safely to their destinations.  

“It concerns me that the Uber company doesn’t know who the drivers are. They just do a background check, which is not very in depth,” DeMaria said.

Michelle, an Uber driver who preferred to be identified by only her first name, explained that the verification process was very simple.

“I just had to send in my information, my drivers license, my insurance, my registration,” she said. “They said download the app and start driving for us.”

Although students in Glen Rock seem to use Uber for short, convenient rides, it is also very common for users to use Uber to and from airports. 

Despite trends, the customer and destination usually vary.

“You get really high end people and then you get the ‘average Joe,’” Michelle said regarding her clients.  “Sometimes it’s just to a friend’s house, around the corner, what have you.”

For DeMaria, she sees the trend of Uber continuing to rise.

“Uber will probably get a lot bigger and replace taxis in suburban areas,” DeMaria said.

Uber has already developed a cash-free interaction between the customer and the driver. No exchanges are necessary because money is transferred through the app.

Haley Rosenwald, a senior at Glen Rock High School, used Uber to get Chinese food on Christmas day. 

“It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be,” she said.   “I was expecting a ride with a stranger to be a worse experience.” 

“My older brother prefers Uber to public transportation because it’s cheaper,” Josh Frissora, a junior at Glen Rock High School, said.  “He gets a discount during commuter hours.  He’s been doing that since early January and it works for him.”

Alec Hall (’17) uses Uber to get to various events in the city, such as Ranger games, rather than taking the train.

“They’re pretty easy and convenient,” Hall said.