Content marketing: Telling Meaningful Stories

[TRAVEL STORIES] What’s better? Uber or Lyft? 🚗🚗

Uber or Lyft?I used to rent cars 100 percent of the time when traveling in North America. Then a few years ago, a client suggested I take Uber to avoid wasting all this time looking for parking. Good idea!

I started using Uber more and more for a number of reasons: 

  • No need to find parking.
  • Drivers were super happy about the pay.
  • I could tie it to my Sheraton hotel loyalty program and earn points while riding.
  • No need to have cash (which I hardly ever carry) or slow credit card transactions. All payments happen in the app automatically.
  • I love the in-app map that shows the way. So I know we are heading in the right direction. 

Funny story on that last item: On a trip in D.C., the Uber driver ignored the app’s directions. See:

Uber driver ignores directions. Yay!

I called her on it and she explained that the directions were bad and would take us much longer. “I grew up here. Trust me.” OK, but I just met you. 😂😱

Reminder: I have no business relationships with any of the companies mentioned in this article – except I’m their customer from time to time. 

To be honest, those directions look strange anyway. Based on that we kept moving and didn’t stop that much (relative to Washington D.C. traffic) at least it felt like progress. I was happy with the service. I would have given her a tip, but the Uber app doesn’t have that option as of right now. But they do encourage you to tip Uber drivers! But that’s literally one reason I use Uber – so I don’t have to deal with cash. 

On another trip to Vegas, the Uber driver and I chatted about that tip thing. He mentioned that when he drives for Lyft their app has an option to add a tip. 

What do you mean –  you drive for both?

He explained that he has both apps running and will accept the best ride request. Once he’s on a trip he turns the other app off. It’s a common thing, according to The Points Guy. Maybe the drivers aren’t a differentiator if they drive for both!

I actually think it’s brilliant to run both apps as a driver. And this whole discussion prompted me to install Lyft and I will try it on an upcoming trip. 

The app looks super similar to Uber with similar functionalities. And being able to give a tip is nice. 

I don’t know if it’s cheaper or more expensive and not sure how I could evaluate that. Maybe split up when traveling with other people? Ha.

I also don’t know if I can earn points with a hotel by using it. Given that rides are usually under $30 for me, the Uber ➡️ Sheraton points are relatively small but small numbers do add up with volume.

My perception also is that Uber gets much more negative news coverage than Lyft. Rightfully or not, what people (including the media) say, influences our stories of them. That’s why I started using Uber to begin with. A few people independently of each other recommended it. The media was celebrating the company too. 

A couple recent more negative stories that come to mind: 

In contrast, I can’t remember seeing any negative-leaning Lyft stories. Did I just miss them?

Overall, the Uber model was an improvement for transportation customers. (How it all started can be read here.

It’s also an example that the stories people share about us will help us win.

I would have never considered Lyft had the media and people not talked about it as much as an alternative to Uber. Just like I wouldn’t have started with Uber without people talking about them. 

Which one will get the majority of my business? Time will tell. For now, I likely will use the one that gets me picked up quicker. 

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Christoph blogs on The Authentic Storytelling Project and is a globally recognized content marketing expert. The IMA named him Internet Marketer of the Year in 2015. He works with healthcare organizations and other brands around the globe.

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