Ridesharing apps have certainly made life easier for those of us who live in cities. Now, instead of waiting 20 minutes for a cab, we can wait 20 minutes for an Uber driver—now that’s progress.
Jokes aside, Uber and Lyft offer an inexpensive way to get around, and for drivers, they’re a great way to make some cash on the side. That’s not to say that everything always goes smoothly; some rides are, well, worse than others.
We collected a few stories about the unbelievable things that Uber and Lyft passengers have tried to pull on their drivers, then we edited those stories slightly for grammar and readability. Remember, kids: If you’re going to get into someone else’s car, be polite—regardless of whether or not you’re paying them for the privilege.
1. The candy’s free, but if you want marriage counseling, you’ll have to pay extra.
“I picked up a guy in the middle of the day from a bar and took him to a casino nearby,” wrote Reddit user Unadvisedd. “As soon I got on the freeway, some lady started tailing me and constantly beeping at me.”
We’re going to go ahead and assume that “beeping” means honking her horn, not sticking her head out the window and shouting “beep.”
“I freaked out a little,” Unadvisedd wrote, “and [my passenger] said, ‘That might be my wife. Don’t worry, she’ll stop following soon.’”
“She followed us for the whole 20-minute ride, non-stop beeping. Once we got there, he practically jumped out of my car and ran for the door. She followed him in her car, almost hitting him. The last thing he said to me was, ‘Don’t ever get married!’”
Given the (extremely limited) details we have, we’re going to guess that neither one of them is a dream spouse.
2. Some passengers are absolute nightmares.
TehMetaxa, a former Uber driver, was working his beat in Hollywood after the clubs closed.
“When I pull up to the pickup location, a stream of people start poking their heads into my car to ask if this car was theirs,” he explained. “I finally find the girl [who hired me]. She opens my passenger door and tells me to wait because she needs to find the rest of her friends.”
“I’m blocking traffic while she is calling for her friends loudly. She drags one girl into my back seat and returns to the still-open front door, telling me that more are coming. At this time, the police pull up behind me and use their speaker to tell me to keep moving.”
“I tell the girl to get in so I can go around the corner. She refuses and keeps yelling for her friends. The cops get out of their car and demand I move or face arrest/ticketing. I tell them the girl won’t let go of the door or get into my vehicle.”
“They start yelling at her—and me, now—to get in or let go of the door. She tells them no, and that she needs her friends. The cop moves her and closes the door. I pull away with her friend and no idea where to take her.”
“I circle the block a few times and can’t find her again. I spent a good while trying to wake this girl and get an address. She finally gives me a rough idea of where she lives. I drive her there and find the rest of her crew standing outside of her place. I don’t bother asking what happened, I just dump her off to her friends and go home. Never doing that again.”
3. If you’re a female driver, stuff can get really sketchy really quickly.
8bitcaffeinated is a female rideshare driver working in Los Angeles.
“One Friday night, I picked up a law student after last call in West Hollywood,” she wrote. “He wanted to go to UCLA. No biggie. He gets a call from his friend and has me stop the car so he can try to figure out if we have to turn around to grab his friend.”
“Again, no biggie, I’ve got the clock running. Friend doesn’t need a ride, we head off. He starts talking about how he had a good night, and he really needed this after his bad week. He broke up with his ‘bae’ on Wednesday and [peed] on her apartment stoop when she wouldn’t call him a cab.”
He also detailed his recent run-ins with police and how he was taking an Uber to avoid further encounters with the law. We wonder why he was single.
“This guy was classic UCLA Law bro,” she wrote. “I try to lightheartedly tell him that that’s two of three karmic strikes, and he should keep his head down for a while. He laughs and agrees.”
“We finally get to his place, and he starts going with, ‘Man, you’re so pretty, you look nothing like my ex, maybe that’s why you’re so pretty.’ And I see him pucker his lips while grabbing my shoulder to move up towards the front.”
“That’s a Biggie Smalls-sized biggie. I say, ‘Get the f*** out of my car, I’ve got mace up here!’ The dude freezes and rolls out of my car…I’d call that strike three.”
4. Of course, drivers aren’t perfect, either.
Reddit user Earnlover told this story of a rideshare driver who was…less than attentive.
“I had a driver who was driving 90 mph in the fast lane while looking at his phone on the passenger seat for directions,” they wrote. “I kept trying to tell him that he shouldn’t be doing that, but he wasn’t trying to hear that.”
“He ended up missing the exit—and the next two—because he couldn’t get over to exit. Then, he almost hits a car because he didn’t check his blind spot before changing lanes, and on top of all of that, I ended up being about 25 minutes late to my appointment. I had to reschedule.”
“Who approves these people to be Uber drivers? I should’ve canceled right when I saw that 4.3 rating, but no, I just had to give him a chance. Never again, man. Never again.”
Hey, it could have been worse. Fellow redditor 70Charger was a passenger in an Uber car that hit a deer—at near full speed.
“He didn’t touch the brakes until after I had started yelling at him,” he wrote. “Pretty sure he wasn’t paying any attention to the road.”
That’s not quite the most disturbing driver behavior on this list.
“My Lyft driver told me as I got into his car that he caught his wife cheating on him that night,” wrote Quora user Lauren Drake. “The ride went fine. I was just a bit creeped out that it might affect his driving, so I stayed on the phone texting with my husband. It was about 4:30 a.m., so dark and quiet out, as well.”
Some advice for drivers: Don’t overshare on your rideshare.
5. Every rideshare is an adventure.
Or a medical misadventure, as the case may be.
“I’m not an uber driver, [I’m an] EMT,” wrote Reddit user LeoLittleCry. “I went to a call for an unresponsive person. Turned out to be a guy that fell asleep in the back of an Uber. He was very confused as to why he woke up at the police station.”
As awkward as that is, at least the guy didn’t endanger the driver.
“There was this woman who spilled a whole bag of flour in my bag seat,” wrote driver Rebecca852916. “It went everywhere. I’m allergic to gluten, and she spills a bag of gluten all over my car.”
Oddly enough, that’s not her worst story.
“I once picked someone up, and he had no idea where he was going,” she wrote.
“Like, he gets in my car, I ask for a destination, and he goes, ‘Yeah, I don’t know. I was bored at home,’ so we just sat in my car for five minutes as I drove around. Then he asked me on a date. When I denied going out with this large old man, he told me to drop him off at a bar that was across the street.”
6. This story sounds like the beginning of a horror movie.
Not a very good horror movie, but a horror movie nonetheless. Reddit user Cincydan has driven for over a year and a half. One night, he picked up a young college-aged man late at night.
“He was very clean cut, nice looking, seemed very normal, until he gets in my car—front seat. As he had not entered an address yet, I ask him where he’s going. Well, this guy is totally awake; he looks me directly in the eyes and literally cannot speak.”
“He tries to tell me where he wants to go, but he is so tense that when he tries to say anything, the words will not come out of his mouth. I am a pretty calm guy—very calm, as a matter of fact—so I just ask him again if he has a place in mind.”
“I get the same response, except this time, he starts getting very agitated, apparently because he cannot speak. He just starts screaming very loudly in frustration. Okay, now I am a little worried. I’m just driving around looking at this guy; I figured that he was probably on [something].”
“I think I may have asked him if he was okay, and again, the same response with an even louder scream. Now, I am getting very worried, as much for him as for me. Out of the blue, I pulled over and said to him, ‘Okay, here’s what we’re going to do. I am going to roll up my windows, and you are going to scream as loud as you can, get it out of you, sound good?'”
“So I did, and he did scream, really, really loudly, and I am sure everyone around the street heard him. The good news is that it worked. This guy seemed to calm down, and he could now speak to me. About this time, his girlfriend called him and I could hear that she was worried for him, but he blew her off and turned his focus towards me.”
“I think he started to trust me more. He starts asking me if I could take him to an ATM. He was still very shaky, and I tried to [ask] him which one he wanted to go to. I finally convinced him to go to a certain one that was nearby. Then, he starts on me about what I was doing the rest of the night. He wanted me to stay with him and follow him around.”
“I politely declined, because—well, I’m Ubering, making money. We get to the ATM, and I wait as he fumbles around. He’s finally able to work the machine, and he gets out a huge wad of money—probably a couple of grand, at least—and then gets back in the car and starts on me again about following him around.”
“I deny him and keep asking where he wants to go, suggesting that he should probably go home. He finally tells me that he wants to go to the casino, and he wants me to follow him in there because he ‘doesn’t want to lose this money.’”
“He is very persistent, so I have to keep refusing more and more forcefully until finally, he starts offering me $50 an hour to follow him in the casino. It’s tempting, but I keep refusing.”
“He had one last request: ‘Just wait for me here for 10 minutes, and I will be right back.’ I waited 15 minutes, closed him out with one star—one of the only ones I have ever given—so I would not get him again. I hightailed it outta there.”
7. If you’re getting into someone else’s car, follow their rules.
Otherwise, expect to find yourself without a ride.
“I have a few unbreakable rules, and one of them is when more than four passengers try to get into my Toyota Prius, the ride is over right there,” wrote Quora user Wylee Post. “I simply say: ‘I’ve canceled this ride. There will be no charge, you can call another driver.’”
“I don’t explain myself, and if they don’t exit the car quickly, I say, ‘The next thing I’m going to do is call 911 and get the police involved. Is that what you want?’”
“I created this unbreakable rule after I renegotiated with a five-passenger group and transported three passengers, leaving the others to call for another vehicle. The three passengers that I took to their destination were nice enough during the trip. I explained why I cannot break the law and have more people than I have seatbelts, and they seemed to understand.”
“After the ride, not only did the passenger give me a one-star rating, but she also opened a support ticket said that I was rude and unprofessional and needed to be fired. That was it for me.”
“I believe passengers know when they’re trying to overload your vehicle and giving any of them a ride only encourages that they keep trying. Leaving the whole group at the curb sends an important message and hopefully helps my fellow drivers.”
8. Most passengers won’t attack your car seats.
Unfortunately, some of them will. That’s just the life of an Uber driver.
“I’ve had a few rather interesting rides,” wrote Reddit user EarlGreystroke. “I did have a violently belligerent passenger one time. His friends ordered an Uber from a local bar using his phone. When I pulled up, he hops in without saying a word, and they ask me to make sure he gets home safe.”
“They mention that he may try to change the destination but to not let him. Silly me for accepting such conditions. He did, in fact, try to change the destination to a local jewelry store (which was closed, in these wee hours of the morning). I continued on to the original address.”
Why are jewelry stores closed in the early hours of the morning, anyway? Sometimes, you’re headed home after a night out and you just want to spend a few thousand dollars on some necklaces. That’s perfectly normal behavior.
“He wouldn’t talk to me, just kept intermittently mumbling incoherently. Halfway through the ride, he started attacking the backs of my seats as if he was using punching bags in a gym. He didn’t do any permanent damage, thankfully. I pulled over and told him to calm down or I’d kick him out. Oddly enough, he got quiet and ended up just bolting when I stopped near his destination.”
We can’t be 100 percent sure, but we’re fairly confident that EarlGreystroke picked up Mike Tyson. At least that guy knew where he was going (generally speaking).
“I’m an Uber driver, and the worst I’ve had was a guy who was belligerent and entered in the wrong address,” wrote user NorthernLight_. “This was around 1:00 a.m., and he told me to ‘just drive,’ and ‘I’ll tell you when to turn.’ We do circles for a bit around a neighborhood, then he says to ‘stop here.’ Then he says, “Not my house, but I can walk from here.’ I hope he made it home.”