But how do you become an Uber driver?
Becoming an Uber driver is an easy process that anyone can follow. Signing up can take less than 20 minutes!
In this blog post, I’ll guide you through everything you need to know about becoming an Uber driver.
- Earn around $20 per hour driving people around.
- Become an Uber driver by meeting requirements, submitting an application, and getting approved.
- Maximize earnings with excellent customer service, knowledge of area & peak hours/locations.
- Understand financial responsibilities related to taxes and gas expenses when driving for Uber.
4 Steps For How To Become An Uber Driver
Thousands of people rely on Uber drivers daily to get them to their destinations safely and quickly.
As an Uber driver, you can earn money in your free time, set your own schedule, and enjoy numerous benefits.
To join in and make some money yourself, here are the steps you need to take to become an Uber driver:
1. Meet Driver Requirements
Before you start the application process, you must ensure you meet Uber driver requirements.
To become an Uber driver, you must:
- Meet minimum age: 21 years old
- Have a valid driver’s license and proof of car insurance
- Have at least one year of licensed driving experience
- Pass a criminal background check- need a clean driving record!
- Have a four-door vehicle that meets Uber’s vehicle requirements
- Have a smartphone that can use the Uber Driver App
2. Apply Online
Next, fill out the driver application on the Uber website.
You must provide your personal information, driver’s license, and car details. You’ll also upload required documents, including proof of insurance coverage and a driver’s license photo.
Make sure to fill out all the information accurately to avoid delays in the approval process.
3. Get Approved To Drive
After submitting your application, Uber reviews your information and conducts a background check to verify your driving record and criminal history.
The process may include a vehicle inspection to ensure your car meets Uber’s vehicle requirements as well (see below)!
This can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. If Uber finds any discrepancies or issues during the background check, they’ll let you know and provide instructions on how to resolve them.
Then, Uber will notify you via email if you’re approved to drive.
4. Start Driver Mode
Once approved as an Uber driver, it’s time to enable the Uber app.
You’ll want to take time to familiarize yourself with the Uber app and start accepting ride requests.
Uber offers many helpful resources to new drivers, including online training and an in-app tutorial.
Once it’s set up, you can get requests sent to you for people needing rides. You can accept or decline requests based on your preferences and availability.
Uber Driver Car Requirements
Before you hit the gas, Uber set some vehicle prerequisites to ensure a smooth and safe ride for every passenger.
Just like Uber driver requirements to qualify as an Uber driver, your car needs to meet certain requirements.
Here’s what you need for a proper Uber car:
Bare Requirements for Your Uber Car
Even though the Uber vehicle requirements may change from city to city, there are some basic requirements that all Uber cars must follow:
- Up-to-date vehicle registration
- Must be insured and driveable
- Should be over 15 years old
- Must be in pretty good shape, with no visible bumps or scratches
- No commercial branding
- Not a taxi/have taxi colors
- Comfortably seats between four and seven passengers
- Sporting four doors that open and close easily
- Able to pass the Uber car check-up
- Equipped with working A/C and windows that go up and down
- Not a rebuilt, taxi, branded, or government vehicle in its past life
- Not a rental unless it’s from a company with the Uber thumbs-up
- Seat belts for everyone
Every Uber driver must have auto insurance that meets the minimum coverage requirements set by the state.
Your insurance coverage must include liability insurance, which covers you and your passengers in the event of an accident.
Uber also provides additional insurance coverage that activates when you’re on the app and accepting rides.
Make sure you understand your insurance options and obligations before becoming a driver.
Different Cities, Different Rules
Guess what? The rules aren’t the same everywhere. Each city has its own set of Uber car requirements.
Because every city has its rules and guidelines for drivers, you might need extra auto insurance or have to pass a tougher car inspection.
Check out this Uber Page– it has a list of cars for you for eligibility. You can change the city to where you are and see if your car is on the list.
Different Services, Different Cars
Uber offers a few different services, each with its own car requirements. The Uber service you choose to offer will dictate the kind of car you’ll need.
For example, UberX (the most common car type for drivers) requires a car that can seat four passengers, while UberXL requires a car that can seat six passengers.
UberBLACK and UberSUV require high-end luxury vehicles.
Tips For Uber Drivers
Being a successful Uber driver goes beyond meeting the driver’s requirements and owning a suitable vehicle.
To truly stand out, you must implement strategies that optimize your earnings and guarantee an unmatched experience for your passengers.
Let’s look at some beneficial tips to maximize your Uber driving experience:
Offer Excellent Customer Service
As an Uber driver, you should offer excellent customer service by being courteous, friendly, and professional.
Your passengers are the lifeblood of your business. They determine your ratings and their positive feedback can bring in more clients.
Greet your passengers with a smile, help them with their luggage, chat with them, or offer them water or mints if you have them.
Small gestures can go a long way in making your passengers feel comfortable and valued.
Know Your Area
Uber drivers should always know the area they are driving, including the best routes to take, popular local destinations, and the best times of day to be on the road.
Take the time to learn your city’s streets, highways, and traffic patterns. Learn about the neighborhoods, landmarks, and events that take place.
If you understand the best routes to get there, you can save time on the road and provide your passengers with a smooth and efficient ride.
Drive Busy Times & Areas
Knowing when and where the busiest times and areas are is important.
During peak hours, the demand for Uber increases, and so does surge pricing, meaning more moolah in your pocket.
Drive during peak hours when people are commuting or heading out to popular spots like bars, restaurants, and sporting events.
Busy areas like downtown or the airport are a few examples of popular destinations that riders request.
This way, you can ensure a steady stream of passengers and ride requests to keep your earnings up.
Don’t Skip Rainy Days
Rainy days might not seem like the ideal time to drive, but they can be great for Uber drivers.
When it’s raining outside, the demand for ride-sharing services increases, and surges and incentives are often higher.
You don’t necessarily need to drive in a storm, but when it’s drizzling, or it’s been raining for a while, people are more likely to call for a ride to get around.
Embrace the rain and seize the opportunity to make the most of these high-demand days.
Keep Your Car In Amazing Shape
Your car is your workplace, so it should always be in excellent condition:
- Regular Car Maintenance: Get regular vehicle maintenance to ensure your car’s longevity. This includes oil changes, car repairs, tire rotations, and other check-ups.
- Cleanliness is Key: Make it a habit to clean the interior and exterior of your car frequently. Keeping your car clean impresses passengers and gets you good ratings on the app.
- Emergency Kit: Always have a basic emergency kit in your car. This should include items like a spare tire, jumper cables, and basic tools to handle minor repairs on the go.
- Get A First Aid Kit: You never know what happens on the go, but having a first aid kit with bandaids and gauze is always important in my book.
How much do Uber drivers make?
A full-time Uber driver’s money varies depending on the city and how many hours you work.
Reports show the average hourly pay for a full-time Uber driver is $18 an hour.
Uber drivers get paid for each ride or delivery they do, with the earnings being based on the length and duration of the trip.
On top of that, Uber often rolls out special promotions that allow drivers to earn a bit more, particularly during high-demand periods or when they complete a certain number of trips.
So, Uber pay is broken down like this:
Fare + Promotions + Tips = Earnings
They’re reimbursed for any tolls encountered during a trip, and if a customer cancels after the driver has started heading their way, they receive a small compensation for the inconvenience.
Drivers also have the opportunity to earn extra by taking on bookings made in advance.
What do I need to be an Uber driver?
You must meet several Uber driver minimum requirements:
- Be at least the minimum age to drive in your city
- Have at least one year of licensed driving experience
- Possess a driver’s license with at least one year driving experience
- A driver profile photo
- Smartphone for the Uber Driver App
- Pass a background check/driver screening for a clean record
- Own an eligible vehicle that meets Uber’s vehicle requirements
- Have a drivable car with insurance
- Have your vehicle inspected
If you meet all these Uber driver requirements, you can apply online and wait for approval.
Once approved, you can set up your driver account and start accepting ride requests.
Do I need car insurance to be a rideshare driver?
Yes, a personal auto insurance policy is required for rideshare drivers.
Uber’s insurance does provide additional coverage during rides.
It offers $1 million in liability coverage when transporting a rider and $100,000 per accident in liability coverage while waiting for a passenger request.
However, ensuring that your auto insurance policy provides coverage while operating commercially as an Uber driver is important.
Does Uber pay for gas?
No, Uber doesn’t cover the cost of gas and vehicle maintenance.
Drivers are considered independent contractors who are responsible for vehicle-related expenses.
However, Uber offers various promotions and opportunities to increase earnings, which can help offset these costs.
It’s also a good idea for drivers to keep track of their gas expenses, as they may be tax-deductible costs depending on where they drive.
What are the best hours to drive?
The best hours to drive for Uber largely depend on your location and the day of the week, but generally, the most lucrative times for most drivers are:
- Rush Hours: Weekday mornings (around 5 to 9 AM) and evenings (around 4 to 7 PM)
- Weekends: Friday and Saturday nights, especially from 8 PM to 2 AM
- Special Events: Concerts, sports games, festivals, or public events increase rideshare demand
- Airport Runs: People don’t want to leave their cars at the airport, so you can transport them
- Bad Weather: Rainy or snowy days can increase demand as people prefer not to walk or drive
It’s a good idea to monitor your Uber app throughout the day as it can highlight areas with high demand or surge pricing.
How do I pay taxes as an Uber driver?
Uber drivers are independent contractors, making paying taxes slightly different. Since you are your own boss, handling your income taxes involves a few steps.
Here’s a simplified guide to help you navigate this as an independent contractor:
- Track Your Expenses: Keep a detailed record of all your expenses, including gas, maintenance, tolls, and even the depreciation of your vehicle for tax deductions.
- Understand Your Tax Forms: Uber provides a tax summary and a Form 1099-NEC or 1099-K (in the US), which reports your annual earnings to use on your tax return.
- Self-Employment Tax: You’ll also be responsible for paying self-employment tax, which covers Social Security and Medicare taxes.
- Get Tax Help: Consider using tax software or consulting with a tax professional to make the process smoother.
Remember, tax laws can vary greatly depending on your location, so it’s always best to consult with a tax professional to understand the specifics of your situation.
You may ask, “Is becoming an Uber driver worth it?” I think the answer is yes!
Becoming an Uber driver is a great way to make extra cash in your spare time and make money using your car.
I’ve gone over the steps on how to become an Uber driver, and it’s really quite simple.
You must meet a few basic requirements, pass the background check, and have a reliable car to transport passengers safely.
These are low barriers to entry, making rideshare driving a great gig economy job for many people who don’t have much work experience.
With a little effort and planning, you can become a successful driver for Uber and enjoy the flexibility and freedom of this type of work.