People depend on rideshare services to get around today. More than 25% of the US population uses rideshare apps at least once a month. These numbers will only go up as years go by due to factors like urbanization and internet popularity that markets this business. While many rideshare apps are available, Uber is the most popular.
Statistics show that Uber gets over 50million requests each day. And with 3 million drivers, the company growth curve is expected to rise exponentially. Thus, being an Uber driver can earn you money on the side. If you consider joining the rideshare industry, Uber is a great option to consider. Here is everything that you need to know about Uber.
Uber is a transportation network company (TNC). They connect passengers with drivers through an app. Besides, it’s services are available in most major cities across the globe.
It all started back in 2009 when Garrett Camp got an idea of creating his own ‘ride sharing’ service. Travis Kalanick developed the actual app. He later became the CEO of the company.
In its early days, Uber was only available in San Francisco. It steadily grew, and by 2014, it was already serving 58 countries worldwide. At this point, Uber started to offer other services. This includes food delivery and transportation for pets.
Apart from the regular rideshare services, Uber also offers different services. The different services suit various needs and budgets of different clients. UberX is the company’s most basic services.
UberXL offers rides in larger passenger vans that can fit up to six passengers at a time. UberSelect gives customers access to luxury sedans. The passengers ride in Mercedes-Benz and BMWs for more expensive fares. Finally, UberBlack connects riders with high-end automobiles. This includes Cadillac SUV or Lincoln Town Cars.
Uber Driver Requirements
If you want to drive for Uber, you will need to meet some basic requirements and vehicle requirements. The application process is simple, but it does take about a week or two for your background check to clear.
- Be at least 21 years old
- Have a valid driver’s license for the United States
- Have at least three years of driving experience
- Pass the background and criminal check
- Have an updated auto-insurance to cover certain stated liabilities
Uber Car Requirements:
Uber car requirements depend on the type of service you provide. UberX requirements differ from those of UberBlack. Here are the requirements for each service level.
- UberX: since it is the lowest level service, it comes with simple requirements. The vehicle should be a 2002 model and above. The Sedan should have four doors and accommodate at least four passengers. This is including the driver.
- UberXL: the requirements are similar to UberX. However, the Sedan or minivan should have a capacity of up to six passengers. The vehicle should not have any cosmetic damages.
- UberSelect: as mentioned earlier, this service offers access to luxury cars. The requirements are more stringent than those of other services. The vehicle should be a 2009 model or above. A new entry car also qualifies to be in UberSelect. The vehicle must be in excellent condition with leather seats and four doors.
- UberBlack: this is the most exclusive service. It requires the highest level of compliance with vehicle requirements. The car should be a 2012 model or above with at least four doors. UberBlack only accepts vehicles with black interiors and exteriors. This gives the car a luxurious look.
Uber insurance package
Having a personal insurance policy is a must if you want to drive for Uber. The insurance policy should cover you and any damages that occur while on the job. However, it might not be enough when working as an Uber driver.
Uber offers additional insurance coverage. However, the options vary depending on which state you live in. In all states, Uber provides contingent comprehensive and collision insurance. This policy covers any damage to the driver’s vehicle, up to $50,000.
Uber provides liability coverage of $50,000 per person and $100,000 per incident. These two packages cover instances of bodily injury. There is also $25,000 that covers property damage. These packages vary from state to state.
The Uber insurance policy will only cover you while you are on duty. If an accident happens before or after a trip, your car insurance will protect you.
Adherence to local regulations
Uber is a transportation network company. Therefore, it must adhere to the regulations set by the state. This means that there are some restrictions on operating as an Uber driver.
Some states require Uber vehicles to have a TLC license. In others, Uber vehicles are not allowed to have a taxi sign on the roof.
You must also comply with any local laws applicable to transportation network companies. You can be liable for fines for violating these regulations.
How to make money with Uber
The best thing about driving for Uber is that there is no limit on how much you can make. You get paid based on the number of rides you give.
Providing the best service is one of the secrets to making money with Uber. A happy customer will always tip or rate you highly. This will help attract more riders and improve your rating.
Another way to make money with Uber is to drive during surge hours. This is when the demand for rides is high, and there’s more potential to make more tips. You can find out when these hours are by using the Surge Pricing feature in the app.
Also, setting a driver’s destination can be of great help. This means that you will only accept requests going in the direction of your destination. This will help you save time and fuel since you won’t be driving around looking for requests. You can set your driver destination in the app settings menu.
Uber driver pay
Uber’s pay structure is highly flexible and dependent on the day and work frequencies. It can even change daily. Uber provides the drivers with an earning estimate rather than a set wage. This way, the drivers can estimate their profits.
Several variables determine how much you make as an Uber driver. The main ones are your city, the number of hours worked and the type of service you provide.
Assuming that you are a full-time driver in a big city, your average earnings would be around $19 per hour. However, this varies greatly depending on the demand for rides at any given time. In some cases, you may only make a few dollars per hour. On the other hand, there have been instances where drivers have made over $100 in just one trip.
How to Make More Than Average Using Uber
Earning more with Uber solely depends on the strategies you use. Here are some tips on how to make more than the average Uber driver:
Understand your local market
Gathering information about your local market will help you understand where and when to drive to get consistent pay. You can use this information to plan your driving hours and days. Take advantage of peak hours and holidays when there is more demand for rides.
Use a good car
The type of car you use has a considerable impact on the number of trips you make and your earnings. A wise choice would be to buy an eco-friendly and fuel-efficient hybrid car.
If you are already an Uber driver, consider signing up to drive for other Uber services such as uberX. This will give you more opportunities to get requests and increase your earnings.
Do not always run for surge fares.
While surge fares can be a great way to make more money, chasing them all the time can be counterproductive. Surge fare is common when there is a high demand for rides and fewer drivers. It often happens during holidays and peak hours. Taking advantage of surge fares only portrays you as a standard strategist. What if you stuck with the regular pricing? It means more demand for your car. This translates to more money for you.
Quick response time
When a request comes in, make sure you respond as quickly as possible. This will score you some brownie points with your riders and more tips.
Offer high-quality services
Riders love it when you provide them with a quality service. If you want to make more than the average Uber driver, learn how to keep your riders happy. This includes being polite and professional at all times. Passengers appreciate minor acts like opening doors for people and carrying their luggage.
Offer UberPool services
Another way to make more money is to drive for UberPool. This service allows riders to share a ride with other passengers going in the same direction. Drivers get their pay based on the distance and time of the trip. Thus, driving for UberPool can be a great way to make more money. However, keep your clients as comfortable as possible. Do not carry too many passengers or make them wait too long before the trip begins.
Uber Driver review:
Before deciding to drive for Uber, it’s essential to understand the good and bad aspects of the experience.
- Freedom to choose when and how often you work
- Flexible hours
- Good pay, especially if you drive during surge hours or have a long trip
- You don’t have to work for a boss
- A chance to meet new people every day.
- It can be dangerous at times. As an Uber driver, you do not know the kind of person you are picking up. They could be criminals, unstable or intoxicated. This increases the risk for both you and the rider. At times, you have to drive your passengers to bad neighborhoods. This risks your safety and your car’s.
- There is no job security as an Uber driver. If the company decides to stop operating in your city or get low ratings from customers, you could lose your job.
- There are not enough customers during low hours. This translates to less money and more gas consumption.
- The company can deactivate your account at any time. This could happen if you violate the terms of service or get low ratings from customers.
Uber offers an excellent opportunity for people who want to make money on the side. It is a flexible way of making money, and you can work as little or as much as you like. However, it has its downsides too. Make sure that you are not just working for Uber but also building a business out of it. Playing the right cards is vital to being successful in this business.
Should you join?
For many years, Uber has managed to dominate the rideshare industry. This means that you have an opportunity to earn a living providing Uber services. With high-quality services which translates to more earnings, it might even become a full-time job.
Any notable praise?
Uber has for years received a lot of praise for its great customer service. The company gets top ratings and A+ scores from customers. Thanks to its excellent services, the company earned six awards in 2021. Among the awards was the Best Company for Women and Best Company Culture.
Any notable criticism?
While there is a lot of positive praise for Uber, they also receive criticisms. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) records numerous complaints from Uber customers. There have been complaints about the app not being efficient. This makes booking a trip becomes challenging. Other complaints include dealing with unprofessional drivers and advertising inaccurate fare.
Any other things you need to know?
If the field of stocks interests you, you can also buy Uber stock. The company has a bright future, and there is a lot of growth potential. You can buy Uber stocks at around $40.
Are there better alternatives?
Lyft and Via are other competitors of Uber. They are a great choice if you want to try something new and different from Uber. You will find a lot of similarities between Lyft and Uber offerings.
Via Rideshare is quite different. It operates like a shuttle to transport passengers at affordable rates. You pay much less than it’d cost to hail a taxi or ride with Uber and Lyft. Alternatively, check another business opportunity that may be a good fit for you.