AUSTIN (KXAN) — Uber drivers across the state have been planning a strike, hoping to send a message to the company that they’re underpaid. The plan was for drivers to not drive Friday; however, in Austin, there didn’t seem to be much of an impact.
“It’s very busy today,” said Uber driver Kevin Vogl. “It shows, one, two, three, four, five, six, it shows like the six or seven closest drivers,” Vogl said while looking at the drivers logged on around him.
It’s not quite the result many were expecting on the day of the Uber strike. Vogl drives for three ride-hailing companies and says as he’s been logged into Uber, he hasn’t noticed a difference.
“I’ve been busy all day and I haven’t seen a whole lot of surge. If a ton of drivers got off the road to strike, then you would see surge, I think.”
Vogl’s heard that most of the drivers participating in the strike are in the Houston area.
“They got bills to pay just like I do,” said Vogl. “But if you’re sick or you choose to participate in a useless strike, then you’re not getting paid.”
Vogl says if there are a lot of drivers who choose to stay home, the entire strike could prove counterproductive.
“It could cause Uber to surge in Houston which I think is then going to incentivize drivers who are not on the road, to get on the road to capture the surge, I feel like, to be honest, they’re wasting their time.”
Instead, Vogl says his plan is to voice his concerns and have a conversation with Uber directly.
Uber and Lyft each use their own formulas to calculate what drivers earn. The non-profit RideAustin is a little different. Drivers keep everything minus $3.99. That includes a 99-cent flat fee that drivers pay per ride and $3 in booking and processing that customers are charged.