UNITED STATES—Approximating the distance of your journey or the gap between landmarks is recommended. This helps to ascertain that the Uber driver is headed in the right direction. Also, it enhances safety by allowing the sharing of accurate information about your current location. This can be useful in case you have someone waiting for you or following up on your journey. Updating friends and relatives can also enhance your security when using an Uber car. This is more important if you are headed to an unfamiliar place in California.
Knowing the destinations also helps in the identification of the safest neighborhoods in California. Consecutively, researching your destination and the areas’ security will provide information about regions with deplorable security. Such information helps to maintain focus, especially when traveling through California’s most insecure areas.
Know Who to Call
Traveling should be fun and adventurous. Using an Uber car should not trigger unnecessary security worries. However, remaining vigilant is one of the best ways to ensure you are safe. Having someone you can call on your speed dial is essential. This will ensure you pass information or call for help in case of an emergency.
Having contact details for local emergency departments is also an excellent way to hasten your safety while using Uber services. Additionally, information about the location of various safer places in the neighborhood is paramount. These places may include police stations or embassies, and they can offer appropriate assistance.
Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) provides an online directory for community police station address. The directory can help people identify the nearest police station based on the streets or building addresses. Having such information is paramount for emergency responses.
Reaching the police can help avert a planned kidnapping, carjacking, or even robbery. More so, you can have any other emergency information well written down on a paper or a notebook. It may help in contacting your friends or relatives in case something that leaves you unconscious happen.
Drawing unnecessary attention while using Uber can attract criminals and scammers to make you their target. Dressing appropriately is the first step that should keep you inconspicuous. Dressing like a tourist can influence the Uber driver to steal from you.
Passersby and pickpockets may be tempted to snatch your bags or phones from the car. Such a scenario could be avoided by dressing like a local person. Alternatively, taking other precautionary measures by keeping your windows closed and the door locked can help to keep you safe.
You should let everyone know you are new in California, even if you are new. People are likely to scam visitors more than the locals. Even if you do not know the directions of your destination, do not show panic. Remaining confident and alert may discourage the Uber driver from doing anything dubious.
Using Google maps can also help you to learn your destinations rather than enquiring from a stranger. Nevertheless, letting your Uber driver know you are using Google maps is not recommended. It may expose you as a weak target for scams or theft.
Watch Your Language
Knowing what you are saying can keep you safe. Knowing that the Uber driver is a stranger should be the first step. Then, it is important to choose your words wisely. Not everything should be communicated to a stranger. Having a formal conversation is recommended rather than diverging to more personal issues.
It is not wise to give all information about your luggage. Revealing to the Uber driver that you are carrying valuables or vast sums of money can cause you problems. The driver can even conspire with local criminal gangs to hijack the car and target your cash and other valuables.
Keeping your accommodation details from strangers is another way to ascertain your safety while using Uber. Revealing such information to a driver or another person you encounter along the journey may endanger your stay. You can quickly become a prime scam target if you tell an ill-intended Uber driver what they wanted to know about you.
Identify Signs of Travel Scams
There are different travel scams executed by taxi drivers in California, and Uber drivers are not exempted. Having information about these common scams can help to avert an impending danger. Broken meter scams are common in California. The Uber driver may give an excuse that since the meter is faulty, they will charge a flat rate at the end of the journey. Using such an Uber car will create an opportunity for the driver to extort money by overcharging. Avoiding such as taxi and requesting for a new ride can help to keep your money safe.
Another common scam to avoid when using Uber in California is a diversion in the middle of the journey. The driver may suggest that the hotel you had booked is not suitable. They may say the hotel burned down or is closed for renovations. The driver may then offer to take you to a new destination. This is unsafe because the driver may be intending to steal your money or belongings. The Uber driver may also decide to take you to a new hotel where he or she will be paid a kickback for bringing new clients.
Some taxi drivers have under deals with local clubs, hotels, restaurants, or other visitors’ destinations. They get paid allowances for each person they bring. Identifying the driver’s agendas is a paramount safety precautionary to avoid being a victim of these scams. However, many Uber drivers are a great source of helpful information.
Write Down the Uber Details on a Notebook or on Your Phone
Taking extra caution by taking down the taxi plate number is another excellent way of ascertaining your safety while using Uber in California. This can also be done to inform of a video or a picture. Such information will be vital if you forget your belongings, be it a pulse or a phone. Some Uber drivers may not be honest enough to return your items. Having the taxi’s details can help the police or the driver’s company conducts the investigations and helps you recover your lost items.
Informing your friends about the Uber details may be helpful. They can use those details to find you if necessary. They can even share the details with the police if they are unable to trace you. Taking caution does not mean every Uber driver is conspiring to harm you. However, you may never know what the other person is thinking of you. And accidents happen. If you’re in one, you should know what to do after an Uber accident.
Take Care of Your Valuables
It is essential to take care of all your items when taking using Uber services. There are specific valuables that you cannot afford to lose. They may include phones, cameras, documents, or anything else. Locking such valuables in a safe place should be prioritized to ensure their security is not compromised. The Uber driver doesn’t have to know the details of your valuables. You keep them away from the strangers’ eyes.
Keeping your bags away from the window is also recommended. Street thieves may crush the window and steal your valuables if you expose them. Keeping emerge cash in a safe place is also important. This will ensure you have money to help yourself thieves or the driver manages to steal from you.
It is also recommended to avoid stupid stunts for photos. You may be tempted to get your head outside the window of a moving Uber taxi to take a picture. Such antics may lead to damage or loss of your valuables as they can easily fall off from your hands and crash. A passer-by may snatch the phone or the camera from you. Therefore, taking care of your belongings should include having good manners inside the Uber.
Board and Alight in Safe Places
Not all places are safe in California. Having confidence with no signs of restlessness can keep scammers at bay as you wait for your Uber driver to pick you up. Panicking would make you an easy target for scammers and pickpockets. Always end the journey and alight from the Uber at a safe place.
Confirming that you have all your belongings is also vital before letting the Uber driver go. You can do a quick search based on your item list to ascertain that you have not left anything in the car. People often forget things. It is not a sign of cowardice to confirm you have your valuables at the end of the journey.
Notably, most Uber drivers are friendly and helpful. You should feel free to speak to your driver and get the information you need about California or the places you intend to visit. However, always be alert to guarantee your safety.