interacting with a deaf uber or lyft driver

iOS & iPadOS

I was just was wondering if anyone had encountered this before? I saw on the uber accessibility website that there will be more deaf uber drivers on the road. Although I believe this is a good thing, I'd like to hear some strategies on how a blind person could interact with a deaf driver. thanks!



Submitted by Jordan on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

What would the strategy be to communicate?

Submitted by Marconius on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

If you grab a ride, pretty much the only thing you can do in this instance is contact the driver via text message and explain the situation. They are very good at responding since that is their main form of communication.

The deaf drivers I have had have been great, however I've only ridden with them when I was with someone who had vision. I'm still unsure of how it would work if I was in a car with a deaf driver and there was an emergency. Clearly communicated a description of yourself and work out a good method for them to come in contact with you so they can assist you to their car, both to and from your locations.

Submitted by techluver on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

I hate to say this, but texting within uber is kinda... annoying. It takes way too long to make it work.

Submitted by Darrell Hilliker on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Hi Everyone,

If you get a deaf driver, put on your glad rags and start texting. After all, in this case, texting is the deaf person's form of accessible communication.

Some think it is "annoying" to make things nonvisually accessible for us blind people, yet we know equal accessibility is always the right thing to do.

Submitted by Scott Davert on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

I agree with Darrell. You certainly have a right to feel it "annoying" and too muc work, but remember that the next time you wish for something to be made accessible to you. You will have no right to demand anyone do anything, because, as you say, it's annoying and too hard. It's a 2 way street.

Submitted by techluver on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Here is my rebuttal to that argument.
In a normal circumstance, I would say this is 100% true. However, the situation here is one of client and payer. We are paying for a service. If someone asks me to do something and offers to pay me, but this thing is not accessible, then I will unfortunately have to say, no, I can't do this you will have to find someone else. I believe it is the same with this situation. I'm paying for a ride, but the communication won't work, so unfortunately, this won't work, I'll have to cancel and find someone else.
We may agree to disagree, but I'm just voicing my thoughts on this one.

Submitted by Chuck on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

I have had one deaf Uber driver...
Unfortunately it was the only bad Uber experience I have ever had. But I'm not sure it was because the driver was deaf, rather the driver just wasn't very good at his job.

When I requested the ride, I noticed came up on the screen asking me to enter my final destination as the driver was hearing impaired. I did this, and then the driver accepted the ride. The Uber app list the address I was at as 1050, but I was actually at 1090, which was about three doors down the plaza. I sent a text to the driver telling him about the mistake, and the name of the restaurant I was standing in front of.

After 15 minutesthe driver texted me and said he could not find me. I texted back that I was wearing a blue Hawaiian shirt and that it was 115° outside and I was the only person standing on the sidewalk for is far as you could see either way. After another 15 minutes of texting back-and-forth, he could not find me, so I canceled the ride.

The texting back-and-forth was extremely clumsy, and the driver, was not being very clear in his text messages. I hope he wasn't texting while he was driving, but I suspect that is what was happening.

Uber automatically charge me five dollars for the ride, I went into the settings and found the appropriate complaint, and Uber cancel the five dollar charge.

I called up another Uber, which found me three minutes after I hailed the ride.

Submitted by Bahzad on Tuesday, October 11, 2016

I had a relatively positive experience with the driver who picked me up last year, though my case is different in that one of the students saw him parked near the building of my university. Needless to say, we exchanged text messages throughout the ride, which went fairly smoothly. It was awesome to just communicate, since before that would've been slightly more difficult to accomplish. All in all, I gave him a five-star rating.

I'm sorry for the trouble you have had with a deaf driver. But you also need to realize sometimes the addresses related on GPS are not always accurate. There are some locations which is "way off" from the actual locations. It is not the drivers' fault, either hearing or deaf. I also believe yellow cabs have the same issues. I'll tell you what, I'm a deaf Lyft/Uber driver and I have encountered many errors on my Lyft/Uber apps especially with the locations where they wanted to be picked up and/or where they wanted to be dropped off. You gotta bear with us all drivers who work hard to accompany their needs. The apps are what needs updating the most. I have lost a few rides because of it. Hell... I even got one request from a rider who lived 4 hours away once. I was like whatttttttttt! Just please understand when we are doing our best to anticipate riders' needs. We all gotta be a bit more patient and try to work things out together. ;-) Happy ubering guys.