So, you’ve decided to join the ranks of rideshare drivers around the world who help people get from point A to point B, which is good for them and good for you (and your wallet!).
However, before you sign-up with Uber, Lyft, or any other rideshare company in your area, there are 7 important things you need to know:
- Your local municipality may have rules on the books that make it illegal to pick-up and drop-off passengers in their jurisdiction. This is probably going to change in the next 5-10 years as cities figure out how they can get their piece of the financial pie (and avoid an all-out revolt from taxi and limo drivers). But for now, you definitely want to make sure that you’re not going to be breaking any laws or by-laws, because that could lead to stiff fines.
- You’re going to need additional insurance. Talk to your broker or insurance company and see what they have to offer. If you’re getting a crazy quote, then don’t be afraid to shop around to find a better deal.
- You’ll need to have a four-door car, and (for Uber) you need to be at least 21 years old. You also need at least three years of driving experience.
- You’ll need to pass a criminal background check. If you have a transgression in your past, then this may not necessarily disqualify you from signing-up. It all depends on the situation and context.
- Contrary to what many people believe, you don’t have to commit to driving a minimum number of hours per day, week, or month. Of course, the more available you are, the more revenue you’ll earn.
- Speaking of earning: you’re probably not going to make a lot of money, so don’t quit your job as a dental hygienist, veterinary technical, project manager, modern office design professional, or whatever else you do. On the low end, when you factor in all of your costs — including gas, insurance, tolls, and car maintenance — you could find yourself making minimum wage (or maybe sometimes even less than that). Alternatively, on certain days when surge pricing kicks in (because demand spikes), you could find yourself making upwards of $30, $40 or even $50 an hour.
- Reviews are a big part of success (or lack thereof) for rideshare drivers. So, brushing up on your communication skills and making sure that your passengers are comfortable is important.
The Bottom Line
The majority of people who sign-up to become rideshare drivers end up quitting within a few months. While everyone has their reasons, the most common causes are unrealistic expectations and mistaken assumptions. You can avoid both of those pitfalls if you do your homework, ask questions, and make sure that you know what you’re getting into. If all goes well, become a rideshare driver could be a great way to (let’s all say it together) MAKE MONEY YOUR WAY!