News

Hanover's Uber drivers see slow growth

Written by Davin Jurgensen/Hanover Evening Sun | Jan 6, 2016 9:38 AM
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Photo by AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File

(Hanover) -- Uber is rising in popularity, connecting people with drivers who are transporting them to their destinations.

But, how is the service holding up in Hanover?

Like a taxi, when you call for an Uber, it picks you up at your location and takes you where you want to go. The difference is Uber works through a smartphone application. People can install the app on their phones to request a driver in the area. The driver, the one closest to the request, will receive the customer's name and number.

Drivers around the borough are trying to spread the word. Seth Weaver of New Oxford and Will Loughlin of Hanover have each had a few calls around the Hanover area and said they've gotten busier in the past two months. But, the big cities hold more opportunities.

"It can get busy, but it depends how many people in Hanover have the app," Weaver said.

Loughlin created a Facebook page to help people better understand Uber and hopefully gain more popularity in the area.

He breaks down the process of exactly how the system works and posts suggestions on how it can be helpful.

"It would be nice if more people used (Uber)," he said.

On New Year's Eve, Weaver received about five notifications from people in the Hanover area, he said.

Paul Arigo, another Uber driver in Hanover, was also working that night. Arigo registered as an Uber driver in November as a way to receive more part-time income.

"I think word is getting out," Arigo said. "It wasn't quite double digits, but it was enough to stay busy from 8 p.m. on."

He took people from restaurants and bars around Hanover and Gettysburg, he said.

After Weaver attended to his customers New Year's Eve, he chose to spend the rest of his evening in Harrisburg where the app is more known.

Uber is not yet available directly in Hanover, so drivers operate under the Harrisburg coverage area, said Kaitlin Durkosh, of Uber, in an email last month. This allows drivers in the borough to travel farther to more populated cities.

Loughlin also spent the holiday in the city, he said. He finds it easier to do his job in Harrisburg and other, bigger areas.

"In Hanover, we're not busy enough to stay in the car. You'll be bored to death," he said. "But in Harrisburg, we're busy that we can stay in the car."

Although the cities are more popular, Loughlin said Hanover is definitely getting busier.

"I started doing this in Hanover almost four months ago," Loughlin said. "Back then I'd have maybe one on Friday night or two on Saturday but it's picked up more."

For example, he used to get a notification about every four hours, but now he notices his wait time decreasing to about two.

"It used to be complete luck really, but (the amount of people) probably doubled," Loughlin said.

Weaver hopes Uber keeps gaining users around Hanover, Gettysburg and other smaller areas, he said. He suggests people share their experiences with the app online to notify other people the service is available in their town.

Quick tips

  1. Download Uber from your phone's application store
  2. Enter your credit card information
  3. Tap the map to set your pickup location
  4. Request your ride and wait for a driver to accept
  5. Enter address or name of your destination
  6. Uber shows you the name and photo of your driver, the license plate number and the route

What you should know

  1. Drivers are required to undergo criminal background and driving history checks that cover county, federal and multi-state databases.
  2. You must be 18 or older to use Uber.
  3. It is the driver's decision if he or she wants to accommodate pets. Uber recommends calling your driver as soon as the request is confirmed to coordinate. All drivers are required by law to transport registered service animals.
  4. Rides are booked on-demand by making a request through the application. You cannot reserve a ride ahead of time, but you can check the app a few minutes in advance to see the current availability of drivers during your pickup time.
  5. You can cancel your request without charge up to five minutes after your initial request.
  6. A fare estimate from Miscreation Brewing Company in Hanover's Center Square to Blue and Gray Bar and Grill on Baltimore Street in Gettysburg ranges from $30 to $40.


This article comes to us through a partnership between WITF and the Hanover Evening Sun.

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