Denying service to a rider before they enter your vehicle

If you drive for Uber or Lyft, you may wonder how to deal with a drunk passenger, or how to deal with an aggressive or violent passenger. With ride sharing’s rapid growth and a seemingly growing amount of assaults on drivers, we put together a couple pointers. First, you should know that as a driver, you have every right to 1) deny the rider access to your car and 2) you can ask the rider to exit your vehicle at any time. Before we get started, make sure to check out our other resources! We have current Uber promotions, Lyft promo codes, Lyft driver invite codes, and DoorDash promo codes!

Drivers more often than not are shuttling around partygoers on the weekends. This could be someone going to a house party, bar, or cocktail hour, and you should expect to have at least a couple incidents of your own. In our experiences, we have seen drunk people walking up to the car and got a bad feeling about their condition, so we denied them access to our vehicle. Turns out that later the rider got sick in the next driver’s car. Here are some common signs of someone being too drunk to ride:

– Severe word slurring
– Visibly having trouble walking
– Speaking very loudly
– Aggressive tone in voice or aggressive actions toward others

If you do not feel comfortable with someone entering your vehicle based on any of the above (or your personal judgement), when the rider approaches your car, first lock the doors. Cancel the ride, and Uber or Lyft will give you a chance to state the reason for cancellation. After doing so, you can either just leave or roll down the window slightly and nicely inform the rider that they will have to call another ride. Generally if they are being denied service they won’t know what is happening, but do make sure you have an escape route planned. If they start walking toward the front of your vehicle, drive away before they get a chance to stop you. If they block you in, call the police immediately.


Removing a passenger from your vehicle after they are already in

If you have already begun the ride and the rider is in your car, they typically behave. However, if you feel uncomfortable for any reason you are within your rights to ask them to exit. To do this, we suggest pulling into a crowded space (i.e. parking lot), that is well lit and that preferably has security cameras. This reduces the risk of an assault, and if anything does happen there will be video evidence if not a witness. After pulling over, calmly ask the rider to exit your vehicle and give them a general reason. Do not yell or get aggressive, as that may compound the problem. The rider should comply, but if not you may call the police and give them the situation and they will advise on how to proceed.

If the rider at any time becomes violent at your or your property, do your best to exit the vehicle yourself and notify the authorities. Get yourself to safety first and then sort damages out with both your respective ride sharing service and the police later. We hope nobody ever has to take these steps, but it always helps to be prepared.

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