Uber now encourages tipping, gives less time to cancel rides and more; Atlanta riders affected by changes

April 14, 2017, Atlanta, Georgia – A sign in front of the 3rd Base Gate entrance indicates to both drivers and passengers where Uber drivers may drop off and pick up patrons at the Atlanta Braves Opening Game at Suntrust Parkin Cobb County, Georgia, on April 14, 2017. (HENRY TAYLOR / HENRY.TAYLOR@AJC.COM)

Uber has just announced significant changes to their business in an email sent to drivers and delivery partners.

Related: Don’t want to use Uber? Alternative rideshare options to get around Atlanta

The changes, which include adding an option for tipping and an increase in fees for some riders, will roll out over the next 180 days and beyond. In metro Atlanta and the rest of the nation, at least one change will be in place next month.

Uber will add a feature that allows tipping, one of the most requested features by Uber drivers, to all cities served by Uber by the end of July.

Hours after the announcement, company co-founder Travis Kalanick reportedly resigned as CEO. Kalanick had previously taken an indefinite leave of absence from his duties.

Though prompted by requests from drivers seeking a better driving experience, some of the changes will have an impact on riders as well.

Here is what will be new for riders in Atlanta:

You can tip your driver. By the end of July, riders nationwide will be able to leave a tip for the driver when rating the service. Tipping is available June 20 in three cities (Seattle, Minneapolis and Houston) and will expand to the rest of the country over the next few weeks. This was the most requested feature from Uber drivers who will not see Uber fees deducted from their tips.

You have less time to cancel a ride. If want to cancel an Uber request, you will have only two minutes instead of the current five minutes. If you fail to cancel in the proper time frame, you will have to pay a fee.

If you make your driver wait, you have to pay. Drivers will earn a per-minute rate for any rider who isn’t ready to go beginning two minutes after arrival.

Teen riders will pay more for rides: Any trips from teen accounts will come with a $2 base fare so drivers will earn more from those rides.

Uber has suffered some major setbacks recently culminating in the departure of company co-founder Travis Kalanick. Kalanick left the company shortly after the release of recommendations from former Attorney General Eric Holder who was brought on to help the organization determine how to fix a male-dominated company culture that had become a hotbed of bad management, sexual harassment and bullying.

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Damn Redhead
Damn Redhead

What about if you wait for 10 minutes and a driver cancels because they are now on surge pricing and can make more money from someone else? What are they doing to protect the riders?