• New Uber tools help riders and drivers find each other. (Photo: Chris McGinnis) Photo: Chris McGinnis
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New Uber tools help riders and drivers find each other. (Photo: Chris McGinnis)

New Uber tools help riders and drivers find each other. (Photo: Chris McGinnis)

Surprising? Only 2% of business travelers tip Uber or Lyft drivers Back to Gallery

Are you part of the tiny TWO percent of business travelers who tip Uber or Lyft drivers?

Certify, a leading provider of travel management and expense reporting services, said its latest analysis of business travel spending showed that even though a tipping option has been incorporated into the companies' apps, it still has not caught on among road warriors.

"The percentage of tips per Uber ride was down in Q2 2018, from six to two percent, while Lyft had the same percentage of tips per transaction – two percent – in Q2 2018 as it did in Q2 2017," Certify noted.

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Certify's analysis was based on an examination of more than 10 million business travel receipts and expense reports.

Yikes. I'm a regular Uber or Lyft tipper and figured most other frequent travelers were the same. Guess not! That's too bad because these hard working drivers have done so much to make the business travel experience better and more convenient, not to mention cheaper than before.

Despite these tiny percentages, Lyft announced in April that since its inception in 2012, riders have tipped its drivers a whopping $500 million- and that the average tip increased about 8 percent in the last year.

How do you feel about tipping your rideshare drivers? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Certify also revealed other interesting trends in its latest report:

Ever since the two companies started operating, Uber has been the 500-pound gorilla among ride-sharing services, and Lyft has been a distant second. But that’s starting to change – among business travelers, at least. Uber might have jumped the shark, as its market share is dropping while Lyft’s is posting strong gains.

In the second quarter of 2018, Certify reported, Uber still dominated ground transportation spending with 74 percent of the market among North American business travelers. But that was a three-point drop from its share a year earlier – a sharp reversal from years of double-digit growth. Over the same 12 months, Lyft’s market share rose from 11 percent to 19 percent, while the market share of traditional taxis fell five points to 7 percent.

By comparison, just four years ago (in 2014), taxis still commanded 74 percent of business travelers’ ground transportation spending, while Uber was at 26 percent and Lyft at less than 1 percent.

Digging into the numbers, the company found that business travelers are still spending more per ride on Uber than Lyft — $26 vs. $22.37 in the second quarter of this year. And when they DO tip the driver, the Uber riders gave more – an average of $4.24 vs $3.46 for Lyft.

Now that summoning a ride with an app on their phones has become second nature for many business travelers, they’re warming up to the technology in other areas, too, Certify reported.

One area of rapid growth was in apps that help travelers find parking spots. The most popular one in its latest study was Chicago-based SpotHero the company said, with usage by business travelers soaring 216 percent over the past year, mainly in the metro Chicago area.

Do you order out for food when staying over at a hotel? Sounds like you are. “Business travelers are also embracing food delivery services,” Certify said. “GrubHub gobbled up 35 percent of all food delivery service transactions in Q2 2018 – a 10 percent drop from Q2 2017 – compared to 25 percent for Uber Eats (up 11 percent over Q2 2017), 20 percent for DoorDash and 11 percent for Postmates. Grubhub was also the highest rated food delivery service among business travelers in Q2 2018, earning 4.74 out of a possible five stars, compared to 4.67 for DoorDash and 4.6 for Uber Eats. Meanwhile, DoorDash had the highest average transaction cost among business travelers in Q2 2018, at $75.21. Uber Eats had the lowest average transaction cost in Q2 2018, at $34.30.”

But road warriors are still relying mainly on traditional food and beverage outlets. The most expensed “restaurant” in the second quarter of this year, Certify said, was Starbucks, accounting for more than 5 percent of all transactions and an average spend of $12.47.

Thoughts please on tipping Uber and Lyft drivers in the comments or on our Facebook page.

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Chris McGinnis is the founder of TravelSkills.com. The author is solely responsible for the content above, and it is used here by permission. You can reach Chris at chris@travelskills.com or on Twitter @cjmcginnis.

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