Uber Vs Didi Vs Ola in Melbourne – who pays better for base rate trips

Increased competition in the rideshare market in Melbourne is welcomed by passengers and drivers.

When it comes to competitive ride rate, passengers are now spoiled for choice, while drivers, too, enjoy a better pay per KM on average.

We compared three main rideshare operators, Uber, Didi and Ola, by sampling a total of 20 recent UberX equivalent trips each (base, no surge) from a number of different Uber/Didi/Ola drivers in Melbourne, removed tolls and divided the total net pay per trip by the actual kilometers traveled on that trip.

The results are as follows:

  1. Didi currently pay drivers a net average of $1.74 per KM.
  2. Ola currently pay drivers a net average of $1.70 per KM.
  3. Uber currently pay drivers a net average of $1.51 per KM.

* Note: net paid per km on-trip in Melbourne, inclusive of GST.

No doubt that when it comes to who’s paying better for base trips, Didi and Ola are leading the way, paying drivers for base trips on average $0.20+ per/km more than Uber, 15% more!

This wide gap is due to Uber’s exuberante 27% and 22% (respectively) high commissions charged to drivers while Ola charges 15% and Didi charge 5% only.

It is important to note that Uber’s net average paid per KM significantly changes under surge conditions. Drivers may find they are much better off driving for Uber at x1.3 (or higher) surge conditions, providing they don’t get hit with a bad case of “upfront pricing”, a trick  Uber often use to deceive drivers, shortchange and avoid paying them the full fare.

Drivers may also want to consider the distance to pick up as they are not getting paid for this portion of the job. Hence, make sure to only pick up jobs that are no more than 10 minutes away (and no more than 6 minutes away in the CBD).

Drivers! To ensure operators continue to compete for your time, always drive for the best paying operator at any given time while on your shift.

General industry news – New driver groups claiming to represent “all drivers”. No they are not!

RSDU was formed in 2016, following drivers’ disappointment with the lack of proper representation and leadership in the rideshare industry. Today we have more than 6000 registered members, our activity (including industrial actions), have brought driver’s true story to the media and public attention in Australia.

Before we launched our massive media campaign in Australia the public and decision makers were all under the impression Uber drivers mint money. We helped change this perception. Our work forced Uber to lift the rates by 15% in December 2017 as well as introduce a number of app enhancements (like the “no thanks/ decline” option to ride requests and no more 2 minute bans). Our work helped changing Uber – drivers relationship into a more contract like relationship.

The industry is a little older now and the number of new operators entering the market is growing. Some operators like Didi even show the destination, further providing drivers with choices to make the right independent business decisions.

While we would like to see a floor put under the minimum net paid per KM traveled, and a cap put on the number of drivers, the RSDU does not support further unnecessary regulations that may render the entire industry not viable.

Given a proper floor of at least $1.90 net average paid per KM traveled (all inclusive, in Melbourne), together with a cap on the number of drivers, we believe the conditions will be set for drivers to bring home minimum wage, service their cars and run a viable business. We respect the TWU union but we are also mindful of the union’s ability to represent rideshare best interests. The TWU represent drivers in the taxi industry which may present a conflict of interests and may lead to over regulation of the rideshare industry as a result.

We are also very mindful of certain driver groups (like the unregistered “cooperative”) claiming to represent “all” drivers, tricking drivers into taking a survey but not disclosing the fact the survey was ordered by the TWU Union. Be wary of such driver groups claiming to represent your best interests, they are not. A group that misled and lied to drivers once is likely to do that again.

The members of the “cooperative” group were not elected, but self appointed, their method and actions spell bad news for our industry as they place too much responsibility on ride share operators, forgetting that this is actually a free market now with many more operators at play. The recent increased competition in the rideshare market is pushing rates and driver conditions up. Drivers don’t really need any more groups rehashing the same old topics the RSDU already highlighted and force changed some time ago. We recommend that drivers stay well clear of the “cooperative” group. All they really care about is promoting their own self personal agenda and ultimately make matters worse for this industry.

Under current conditions many drivers consider themselves self employed and running a real business. Being associated with a formal union may prove counterproductive, resulting in over regulation of the industry, rendering it not viable.

Our vision for the future: The RSDU believe that proper drivers’ education together with the right tools will better help drivers make the best business decisions, hence forcing more competition between operators for drivers time and availability, ultimately improving drivers’ conditions in a REAL FREE booked rides market.

Max B. – Ride Share Drivers United
A driver’s advocacy group

Stay on top of your trip payout by using the Uber Gross fare Calculator.
Good news! The free version is back online. Click this link to hop to the calculator page. A standalone Android or Apple apps are also available. Proceeds from the sales of the apps help support the RSDU.

Drivers in other states who would like us to do a price comparison for their own city please contact us.


Stop press: We are happy to announce the zicXoc initiative, a new driver app project in collaboration with a software company. The project has now entered it’s beta stage and about to be launched soon. It’s the rideshare app that drivers from around the world have been waiting for.For more information please click here.

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