Is It Rude To Ask an Uber Driver To Do This?

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Last year, I wrote about how I was Subjected to Religious Preaching During Recent Uber Ride. On my recent ride back from LaGuardia airport, I got into an UberX and had a slightly different experience. On this ride, the radio was on and blasting to Christian/Gospel music. Regardless of what was on the radio it was blasting so loud, that I asked him to lower it, however only slightly did he do that.

Then, as we leave the airport, the driver starts singing along to the music for the next 45 minutes of the ride. I finally had to put my headphones in, just to get some peace for the rest of the ride.

So my question is it rude to ask an Uber driver to lower the radio/change the type of music/or turn it off? I would have thought he would have gotten the hint when I asked him to lower it, however that just made him start to sing to the music…

Was I in the wrong for asking him to lower the radio? Shouldn’t a paying passenger have the right to choose what they listen to or if they prefer not to have anything on the radio?

Feel free to share your thoughts below, and what you’d do in this situation, or if you’ve ever been in a similar scenario yourself.

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  1. As I read this I am in am UberX. I asked the driver. He said, while you are in the car it is yours. You can choose the station, volume, temp, etc. He said not rude at all.

  2. Not at all IMHO, that’s part of the customer experience. Same way you can request the heat or A/C altered, you can request different music, no music, whatever–I do it all the time in a respectful way and it’s never an issue.

  3. I think it is polite to ask them to turn it down if it is loud, like awkwardly loud.

    I think it also in your complete right to give the driver a 1 star.

  4. The key here is to understand the nature of the transaction. When you get in a cab, you are hiring someone to drive you where you want to go. But Uber is not a taxi. It’s a ride sharing system. So you are not hiring someone to take you where you want to go, you are connecting with someone who coincidentally happens to be going to the same place as you are, or close enough that it’s no problem to drop you off. And Uber, the app, connects the two of you and charges you a fee for making the connection. Like a dating site. And, so I understand, happens to share a bit of that fee with the kind person who is sharing their ride with you. Because it’s not about commerce or hiring someone or anything so vulgar, but about sharing. The driver shares, the app shares, you share. Everyone shares. Just like kindergarten.

    So, since you’re all sharing, the driver gets to share their music with you.

    Want to set the terms of your ride? Hire someone to provide a service.

  5. Really? I think it’s a bit naive to say that Uber is a “ride sharing service” who’s drivers just “coincidentaly happen to be going to the same place”. They go where the rider wants to go to make a profit. It seems that it would make good business sense to try and please riders to encourage future rides, like allowing them to suggest what music is played or at the very least not playing music that offends the rider or is unpleasantly loud.

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