It’s Like Bringing McDonald’s to A Steakhouse

What a lovely metaphor that I came up with.  What does it apply to you may be asking?  Well, if you’re reading this blog the only hint I can give away is: it’s in the title!  Haha.  So, I’ve been focusing on competition between the rideshare apps lately, and this line refers to something that one of my pax said.  I’m not here to herald one app while bashing another; just trying to provide some raw insight into what rideshare drivers experience in the New York City market.

Related post: Carpool Competition:  Things are getting interesting in NYC

With all the bad press that Uber’s been getting lately, they’re likened to the McDonald’s of the rideshare world.  Cheap, quick, and solely serves a specific purpose (e.g., getting pax to and from, compared to a quick lunch).  A lot of pax confuse Via with other rideshare services, essentially because the similarities are so abundant. One guy caught himself, and apologized for the mix-up.  

Pax:  I guess that’s like bringing Dunkin Donuts into a Starbucks….?

Driver:  More like bringing McDonald’s into a Steakhouse.

A little hyperbolic, I realize; however, the emphasis is on the distinction between the two rideshare apps.  And this is an area that I talk about regularly on this blog.  Because competition in NYC is so stiff, these transportation network companies (TNCs) are rife with promotions and boast high-levels of compensation for drivers.  So alignment with one company over another is significant for drivers; however, the difference for consumers may have less of an economical impact.

Along these lines, picture a big concert being let out.  Masses being herded in an unorganized fashion, most individuals needing some form of transportation at this moment.  Probably a ride, possibly mass transit.  Here’s a little clip to accentuate my story:

Just outside the Barclay’s center, 11:50pm.  Most of the crowd will likely need to take some form of transportation.  And the decision to use a smartphone app for e-hailing, which company to use, and why will undoubtedly be widely varied.  Obviously the yellow cab is still a popular option in the city, as this guy standing in the street can attest to.

Wish I had caught a little more of our exchange, because I did sit there for a good minute before encroaching forward with my vehicle.  It was then that he got all pissy:

Street guy:  Oh because I’m in your way.

Driver:  Yeah, you’re in my way.  That’s right.

Street guy:  Because the world belongs to you, asshole!

I understand that people need to occasionally hail a yellow cab.  But can you be a little smoother about it?  Instead of dragging your mother into the middle of street?  The guy was nearly impeding traffic, and was wavering back-and-forth between the curb and street.  Being all waffling, like Indecision 2016.  I swear if it’s not moving in NYC, then people will find a way to move past, around, or get by it one way or another.  Case in point, I have one last video of a ridiculously narrow squeeze that I had to get through.  And double-parked trucks frequently leave little to no room for the flow of traffic.   

Saturday turned out to be quite the eventful night!  A few different incidences, but this run in with an ice-cream truck happened earlier in the day.  I think the kid stalled out, and accidentally shifted into reverse.  Nearly backing straight into me, which he made sure to confirm that everything was Okay by tossing up a “thumbs up.”   

Female Pax:  What was that about?

Driver:  I guess he thought he hit me?

So that completes the round up this week!  I wish I had some audio of the “bringing McDonald’s into a Steakhouse” bit; because it clearly is more funny in context of relevant conversation.  But at least avoid bringing McDonald’s anywhere, and you’ll probably do Okay.