"I'm Ubering!"

oo-ber : An up and coming taxi company that is single handedly inching its way towards becoming one of the most used verbs in the English language, or at least in Chicago. This service provides kids and adults alike with a chauffeur right in their back pockets. “I’ll just Uber!” “Hold on, I’ll call an Uber.” “Mom, I can stay out later cause I’ll just Uber home.” ”I’m Ubering!” Simply put, Uber is a lifestyle. The main dilemma with Uber is that it can burn a hole in your pocket, often unbeknownst to us riders. Even though the Uber taximeter fee is approximately 1.3 times less than a regular taxi, Uber fees add up because of the $2 booking fee and the $5 cancellation fee. There is also a built in 20% tip. However, kids often Uber without realizing the cost, for they aren’t physically holding the money that they will be spending. It’s kind of like an ATM. Most people take money out, but are sometimes oblivious to the fact that the money is coming out of an account…at least until they get their monthly bank statement. Bottom line, Uber can teach a teen or young adult to be fiscally responsible, or you could have hundreds of dollars in taxi fees on your credit card by the end of the month. But, Uber does have its advantages! Since all drivers have gone through background checks (according to Uber’s website), parents feel more comfortable when their kids call an Uber than when they stand on a street curb waiting for a typical yellow taxi. It has also helped with drunk driving. Although studies have shown that DUIs have only slightly decreased since companies like Uber and Lyft have emerged on the scene, it is still a valid point. Additionally, the majority of Latin students aren’t comfortable taking public transportation at night. Uber provides a safe alternative, especially if you split the cost with friends. Many students also feel this way and believe that Uber has many benefits. Collette Block, a senior said, “Uber definitely acts as a sort of security blanket for students and their parents. It is comforting to know that I can get a ride whenever and wherever.” Uber is appealing to parents as well. As long as their children don’t overuse it, parents enjoy the fact that they can get texts when their child’s Uber has arrived with the taxi number and the name of the driver. This is just one more safety precaution that acts as security blanket, like Collette mentioned earlier. One Latin parent said, “I absolutely see the convenience, but I wouldn’t want to overuse it. Like anything in life, moderation is key. Uber’s website says, “Uber is evolving the way the world moves. By seamlessly connecting riders to drivers through our apps, we make cities more accessible, opening up more possibilities for riders and more business for drivers. From our founding in 2009 to our launches in hundreds of cities today, Uber’s rapidly expanding global presence continues to bring people and their cities closer.” In this day and age, entrepreneurs are inventing life-changing companies that can shift the way that an entire field works. But now, it is up to the consumer to utilize as best they can the newfound “power” that they have been given.]]>