How To Use Uber Express Pool

Uber Pool: What Is Uber Express Pool, and How Well Does It Work?

As a company that’s constantly innovating and coming up with new ways to use their service, it’s no surprise that Uber has recently launched a new product known as Uber Express Pool. Uber has a carpool service currently, called Uber Pool. But Uber Express Pool is a new development in the rideshare carpooling world. It’s basically Uber Pool, but slightly more advanced.

So why has Uber added Uber Express Pool to the Uber Pool family? What is it expected to do? How will this affect riders and drivers alike? Read on for all the answers to your Uber Express Pool questions.

What is Uber Express Pool?

At its most basic, Uber Express pool is a carpooling service. Like carpooling to work with a coworker, the intent of Uber Express Pool is to get multiple people to a similar place using the same vehicle. The goal is to make the cost of the trip cheaper for everyone. It’s a way to reduce fares for riders, and also hopefully increase profits for Uber.

The crux of Uber Express Pool, and the thing that makes it the most different from Uber Pool, is their brand new back end, which calculates ride routes in a new way, making it more effective and less confusing for their system. With this technology, they hope to avoid a significant amount of the problems that Uber Pool has, namely extremely inefficient routes that are burdensome not only to drivers, but also to passengers, and Uber as a company.

Now, Uber hasn’t even rolled out Uber Pool to all of the cities they service yet, and it’s safe to say that they’ll want to test out Uber Express POOL in a very limited sense before extending it even just to the cities Uber Pool was servicing. It will also work better in high density urban areas, where many people have need for car rides to similar areas. This means it may never even make it to more suburban areas.

Uber Pool: How does Uber Express Pool work?

With Uber Express Pool, you place your pickup and dropoff spot,  just like any other Uber ride. Then, Uber matches you up with another person who’s interested in going to about the same area. You’re each given a place a short walk from you that’s more efficient for the route, and you then wait there for the ride. The Uber picks you up, and you get taken to a dropoff spot that may be a short walking distance from your destination.

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It’s a straightforward system — but then again, so was Uber Pool. The biggest issue that plagues Uber Pool is that the system can pick extra riders up at any point in time, which meas the route would have to be recalculated, potentially making travel and walk time much longer. Sometimes, it would become so mixed up that it would seem less efficient than just taking a normal Uber.

From the way it’s being advertised, Uber Express Pool has fixed some of those issues. Uber states that after you request the ride, you’ll wait “a few extra moments” so they can find other riders that can carpool with you. They then state, “After we map the best trip, we’ll show you where to meet your driver.” Though it’s not explicitly stated, this does seem to imply that, contrary to how Uber Pool worked, their system will map the drive before it even starts.

It’s also not completely clear what “a few extra moments” means. Depending on who you ask, that may mean one or two minutes, or it may mean six or seven minutes. For the heavily reduced fares, it’s not exactly wild to ask for a five to six minute wait time, but that time will depend on how many people there are nearby, and how many of those people are using Uber and interested in carpooling. Depending on time of day and area, wait time to find another rider could be under a minute or over ten minutes, and that unpredictability could turn off potential riders.

With all of these factors, it’s likely that Uber Express Pool will only be used in certain areas, and probably only at certain times as well. However, until Uber gives us those statistics directly, it’s hard to say for sure.

Uber Pool: What will Uber Express Pool change for riders?

With Uber Express Pool, it’s clear Uber is branching out and trying to entice people outside their usual clientele to use their services. This is for good reason, too — Uber is losing a lot of money, and if it doesn’t start making that money back, it’s going to have trouble attracting new capital. Of course, these losses don’t mean Uber is currently going under. Plenty of companies, including big names like Amazon and Twitter, started their now-profitable lives with extremely large profit losses. However, Uber has to turn things around, and fast.

How Uber Pool Works

That’s likely why they’re trying to appeal to a new crowd. In the same way that Amazon has managed to maintain startlingly low prices on many products, Uber is trying to maintain a ride cost that is far below the previous standard for taxis. That means reaching out to people who take the bus, and carpool with their friends.

The main drawback to Uber Express Pool is that it will take more time, and it will require walking, rather than just being dropped off directly at your destination. Many people who just take normal Uber drives see this as a significant setback, and for much of that demographic, it is. However, it seems like Uber isn’t trying to use Express POOL to convert existing customers; rather, it appears as though they’re trying to lure in those who primarily use bus and subway systems to get where they need to go.

Uber Express Pool may allow people who would already take the bus to get where they need to go in a way that’s faster, more efficient, and much more affordable than taking an individual Uber. A twenty-minute car ride may take an hour and a half on the bus, and walking time will likely be around the same as with a bus system. While for existing customers, this may seem an unnecessary waste of time and money, it’s fair to say that this system will likely pull in a fairly significant number of new customers.

What will Uber Express Pool change for drivers?

Of course, an important part of the profit and loss structure for Uber right now is that drivers are criminally underpaid, but Uber still can’t maintain their business. While the prices are great for riders, it’s unavoidable that drivers aren’t making enough money to support themselves — in the quest for the lowest possible price, Uber has refused to acknowledge that multiple people need to make a profit in order for the business to be successful.

The thing is, as it stands now, the Uber Pool prices are simply too low. While they’re certainly enticing for people at the moment, Uber can’t sustain those prices in the long run, which means they have to increase the prices at some point if they want to stay in business. Rather than advertising based on price, they need to advertise in some other way, and add value to their business in a completely different fashion. It’s not impossible to make Uber rates lower than taxis while also making them high enough to pay drivers properly and still turn a profit.

It’s true that taxis were already in trouble before rideshare services came about, as it’s one of the things that drove the creation of these services. Many riders can’t pay the high rates of taxis, and some would be extremely happy to cut down on the cost of their rides even further, but they need to take into account the payment of the driver in this equation.

Will Uber drivers refuse Uber Express Pool rides like they have Uber Pool rides?

It’s no secret that many Uber drivers simply refuse to accept Uber Pool rides. Unlike Lyft, Uber pays drivers a lower rate for carpool rides. Since Uber cannot deactivate a driver for not accepting rides, a fair number of Uber drivers will simply turn down Express Pool rides, as they have Uber Pool rides.

The main issue with both Uber Pool and Uber Express Pool, is that Uber itself is refusing to let this strategy make drivers more money. On a carpool trip under Uber Pool’s rates, a full Uber Pool ride brought in approximately 20% more than one single trip. However, they didn’t pay the drivers anything extra. While it’s understandable that Uber wants to make more profit to offset their significant losses, they need to recognize that drivers will want to move away from the service if they don’t feel as though they’re making enough money to sustain themselves. Uber needs both drivers and riders, or their business simply will not function.

Uber needs to come to an understanding with their riders and drivers. Riders need to realize that drivers have to be paid enough to make a living, drivers must enter the industry understanding that the goal is to keep ride prices low, and Uber needs to accept both. Rather than cutting the Uber Express Pool prices so low, it would be much more effective for everyone to just cut them slightly. Perhaps then, Uber Express Pool could actually make Uber more money, make drivers more money, and cost riders less individually, which would make it a win all around.

What is Uber’s concept moving forward with Uber Express Pool?

Interestingly enough, the Uber Express Pool concept does seem to be some kind of first step to integrating Uber with city bus systems. In an interview with Recode in February, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi outright stated that his ultimate goal was not to be seen as a car-for-hire company, but as a full transit system.

“I want to run the bus systems for a city,” he stated, describing his ambitious end goal for Uber. “I want you to be able to take an Uber and get into the subway — if the trains are running on time, you’ve got real-time data — get in the subway, get out and have an Uber waiting for you for right now. Or know that there’s a bike right there for you that gets you where you’re going in the fastest manner.”

Dara Khosrowshahi

In essence, what this means is that Uber is eventually trying to create a full network of transit that works as a one-stop-shop for your transportation needs. You take an Uber to the train station, take the train station across the city, and have an Uber already waiting to pick you up when you get there. It stands to reason that Uber Express POOL is a movement toward that vision.

However, bus systems have historically never been extremely profitable. While it’s an interesting concept, and fully integrating a city’s transit system with a privately-owned rideshare program may end up turning a larger profit, simply trying to replace buses that can hold fifty people with cars that can hold four isn’t exactly a sustainable model. And with all the issues already arising from underpaying drivers by undercharging riders, it’s unlikely that the integration Khosrowshahi has in mind will happen anytime soon — at least, not with this model.

So, what does Uber Express Pool mean for riders and drivers right now?

If you’re not already in a large, extremely urban city, this change likely won’t mean anything. In places that already have a lower demand for Uber & Lyft, the extra time needed to find two or more riders near each other who are interested in going to a similar place is too much to effectively pay off. You may, however, see some new changes if you do live in a highly urban area.

If the limited information we have on Uber Express Pool is correct, this change may not even take off for urban areas. It doesn’t seem as though it’s going to make Uber enough money to continue to be profitable. Unless they’re making money from an unseen part of this system, they may have to either raise prices or scrap the concept altogether.
At the end of the day, Uber, its riders, and its drivers don’t understand each other. As long as they’re constantly fighting, with riders trying to get the lowest price, drivers trying to make enough money, and Uber trying to convince them both to continue using the service so they can make money, the service is likely going to remain stagnant. Uber is losing billions of dollars, and, while investors are covering that because they see the rideshare service taking off in the future, they can’t keep losing money in that way.

Uber Express Pool, though an interesting idea, is not a long-term solution. If Uber wants to go anywhere, they need to look past Uber Pool and Uber Express Pool. Instead, they should start trying the things that could actually save their business.

How To Use The Uber Driver App

The Uber Driver App – How To Get It And How To Use It


Any time you have to do something new, there’s a learning curve. Even if you’re can pick up new technology pretty easily, the same holds true for the Uber driver app! New apps can be difficult to understand, and the Uber driver app is no different. It’s definitely a user-friendly app when it comes to the basic features — accepting and rejecting rides is easy to do, and if that’s all you’ve been doing, you probably feel like you have a pretty good grasp on the app. However, there are plenty of additional features on the Uber driver app that can help you earn more money more efficiently, and you should be using them!

Here’s a comprehensive overview to various Uber driver app features, so you never have to wonder if there’s a better way to be making money with Uber. Further down, you’ll find a video that shows all of these features in action. Click here to start your Uber application with a sign up bonus code. You’ll be prompted to download the Uber driver app during the Uber driver application process. You can also download the Uber driver app directly from the Apple app store or Google Play.

Uber Driver App: Home Screen

When you open the app and log into your account, the first thing you’ll see is the home screen. This is where you’ll accept and reject rides. You can navigate to all other features from the home screen as well.

Uber Driver App - Home Screen

Uber Driver App: Area Map

The home screen displays a map of the area immediately around you, with your location in the center. It also shows SURGE areas — areas where there is more demand for drivers right now. SURGE areas are filled in with shades of yellow, orange, and red, representing how much Uber traffic there is in those areas. Taking rides in SURGE areas results in extra income; however, you should have the Uber passenger app handy, because, unlike the passenger app, the driver app doesn’t show you where other drivers are. You want to wait in an area with fewer drivers, so you get rider requests more quickly.

At the top of the map is a lightning bolt; tapping this icon will bring up information about surge in your area. You can also see which multiplier applies to the fare in the area. Multipliers depend on how much demand there is for riders at the moment — they work in tiers such as 1.3x, 1.5x, and 2.2x. During certain times of day (rush hour usually), some areas automatically surge for a set period of time.

Uber Driver App - Surge Zones - Rush Hour

Online or Offline

Near the top of the app is a little switch to go online and offline. Going online ensures that you’ll get ride requests, while going offline is the same thing as having the app completely closed, and allows you to use in-app features without being prompted to accept ride requests. To go online, make sure the toggle button is swiped to the right.

Uber Driver App - Going Online
Uber Driver App - Home Online Screen

If you tap the toggle button, but it won’t let you go online, there are multiple reasons that you may need to check. First of all, make sure your documents aren’t expired — if your drivers’ license or registration has expired, you’ll need to update those before you can drive. Your account may also be frozen due to a complaint report or an accident, which has to be resolved before you can drive again. Make sure you’re only driving in the city you’ve signed up for; be careful going too far into the suburbs, as it might not be considered the same city. Also, be sure your app is updated to the most recent version. Also, make sure you’re connected to the internet and have your location turned on.

If you’ve made sure these are all in proper working order, but you’re still not able to go online, try submitting a help request.

Uber Driver App: Destination Filter

An extra-helpful feature is the destination filter, which allows you to only get ride requests that are along a trip to a certain destination. When you turn this filter on by clicking the three lines in the upper right hand corner of the app, you can continue to fill requests while also making your way to a destination, whether that’s back home, to an appointment, or to some kind of event. It’s a great way to squeeze in an extra trip before you go back home!

Uber Driver App - Destination Filter

You can only use the destination filter twice in one day, but the filter continues to apply no matter how many trips you pick up along that route. However, if you change the destination, it will use your second filter. Because of this, it’s best to only use it when you’re going to sign off once you get somewhere, but you want to see if you can do one or two more extra small trips beforehand!

Uber Driver App: Announcements and Promotions Feed

On the Uber driver app home screen, towards the bottom, you’ll see some announcements directly from Uber. The announcements and promotions feed is there so you can stay up to date on any changes that may affect your status as a driver, or how much money you’ll be making. It’s a good idea to check the announcements feed every time you log in to the Uber driver app, to make sure you don’t miss any upcoming promotions or quests.

Uber Driver App - Home Screen With Feed
Uber Driver App - Announcements Feed

The feed also shows certain promotions such as one-time incentives, or time-sensitive incentive increases. However, this area doesn’t show every promotion available, just a small portion of them. Be sure to keep up with other Uber drivers to take advantage of all available promotions, including ones that aren’t shown on this tab.

Promotions also change frequently! Check the feed occasionally to stay up to date.

Uber Driver App: The Earnings Tab

This tab allows you to keep track of how much you’ve earned so far by using Uber. The earnings amount will be displayed, as well as how many trips you’ve taken to earn that much. It’s important to note that these are estimations, so your actual payment statement may be slightly different. However, it should be approximately the same once you get paid.

Uber Driver App - Earnings

The earnings section displays a graph that initially shows your payment by weeks. However, you can break the payments down into weeks, days, or even individual trips, so you can get an idea of how much you’re making on average for each of those time frames. You can also look at the Pay Summaries section to see how much you’ve been paid out in the past, and see how you’re measuring up to your past earnings.

Every Monday, drivers are emailed an official pay statement, and earnings are deposited directly into your bank account.

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Uber Driver App: Invite Section

Also on the earnings tab of the Uber driver app is the invite section. Like many other businesses that rely on having a wide user base, Uber provides a referral program for both drivers and riders. The driver referral program can be incredibly lucrative if you know what you’re doing, which is why you should try to get your referral code out there as much as possible. It’s also great because both you and the person you referred get a bonus! Depending on the city, that bonus could be over a hundred dollars.

In order to get the bonus, the person you’ve referred needs to sign up with your invite code, get approved, and then complete a specific number of rides, depending on the city. The invite section actually tracks where in this process each person is: whether they haven’t completed signing up, are still waiting to be approved, or haven’t taken the requisite number of rides. If someone seems as though they’ve been stuck on a particular step for a while, you can send them an email through the app! Let them know you’re able to help with any questions they have, and move both you and them closer to that sign-up bonus.

Uber Driver App: Trip History

This area on the Uber driver app earnings tab is an incredibly detailed history of every trip you’ve taken, and is great to keep an eye on if you want to see a detailed breakdown of your ride payments. The information includes the Uber rider’s name, their destination, any pricing variation such as SURGE pricing, and the earnings you received. You can also report a rider using this tab, or open up a dispute with support for a specific trip.

Uber Driver App: Driver Rating

This tab is one of the most important portions of the Uber driver app. After every trip, the rider and driver get to rate each other on a scale from one to five, based on how much they enjoyed the ride and how safe they felt. In order to keep working for Uber, drivers need to maintain at least a 4.6 star rating, which means that constantly checking your rating is an important part of being able to tell how well you’re doing.

Uber Driver App - Ratings Screen

This tab shows your current rating, which is an average of up to your 500 most recent ratings — or, if you have fewer than that, the average of all your ratings. It also shows your acceptance rating, which is equally as important when it comes to driving for Uber. This is a percentage based on the amount of ride requests you’ve accepted versus the requests you’ve received overall. While you don’t have to accept any rides you don’t want to take, be careful about accepting and then cancelling too many rides. That’s a sure way to be deactivated.

Uber Driver App: Rider Compliments

Here, you can check out all the five-star ratings and compliments riders have given you. Riders can send any of eleven stickers — all-star driver, neat and tidy, excellent service, amazing effort, awesome music, cool car, entertaining driver, expert navigation, great conversation, great amenities, and late night hero — as well as add a personal note.

Uber Driver App - Rider Compliments
Rider Feedback

If a rider rates you four stars or lower, they are prompted to provide a reason for the low rating, which can give you tips on how to increase your rating. The Rider Feedback section is great if your rating has recently taken a hit; you can see why the rating has gotten lower recently.

Uber Driver App: Driving Rewards

You can check here to see if you qualify for certain Uber rewards, such as discounted car maintenance, fuel cards, savings on phone plans, and even more traditional benefits such as car insurance, retirement plans through Betterment, and health plans.

Uber driver app - Fuel Card

Uber Driver App: Account

This is an overarching tab to help you with account problems. It covers your profile, which allows you to change your name or other Uber-specific information that will be shown to drivers. You can also update your important documents, including driver’s license and car insurance, as well as payment and tax information, such as your bank account. In the documents tab, you can also see what documents are currently active, as well as which will be expiring soon. If your legal information has recently changed, be sure to change your information here immediately. This is also the place in the Uber driver app where you can get help or contact an Uber agent.

Uber Driver App - Account Tab


If you have a Bluetooth-capable car, you can use Pandora to sync up with your rider’s choice in music, then play it through the car’s stereo! Many riders will sync their Pandora account with their Uber account, making it easy for you to play music they’ll love.

Safety and Security

Here, you can read about legal concerns, as well as safety protocols for both drivers and riders. You can even learn about certain protocols, such as rules for long rides.


If you are deaf or hard of hearing, this tab is where you can change the ride request alert settings from aural to visual.

Uber Driver App: Help

This tab allows you to directly ask Uber support for help with account problems. It also contains an FAQ that has articles to answer questions and help drivers through common problems without needing to wait on a reply from support. To call Uber support immediately from this tab, simply click the blue phone icon in the upper right hand corner. (Sometimes, the phone icon doesn’t appear, but if you click in the the upper right hand corner, the app will ask if you want to call an agent).


Uber Driver App - Help
Uber Driver App - Speak To An Agent

Here, you can also see a log of all your interactions with Uber Support in the past, as well as a summary of your trips and fare. You can open a dispute with any payments you take issue with, as well as report an issue with a rider or a trip.

Uber Driver App: Uber Driver Support Phone Number

You can also call Uber driver support directly at 1-800-593-7069.

Uber Driver App: Settings

Here, you can fiddle with navigation options, connected accounts, accessibility, and much more. These are little things that won’t have a huge effect on your driving experience, but can help you make it more comfortable.


Lastly, you can learn a little bit more about Uber as a company, as well as technical details about the app.

How To Use The Uber Driver App – The Video!

Uber has put together a video showing most of the features mentioned above in action.

So, there you have it! A conclusive guide on what you can expect from the Uber Driver app. It can seem very overwhelming just reading about all the different features, but if you use this guide to navigate the app, you’ll get the hang of it in no time. Remember that Uber is constantly updating its app to bring its drivers the best possible experience, so you should be on the lookout for new features at all times. Good luck, and drive profitably.

Uber Vs. Lyft

Uber vs. Lyft – Which App Is Better?

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When the Uber app came out, it was a revelation that changed everything. All of a sudden, people could take a ride from one place to another, without paying the often prohibitively expensive price of a cab. If that wasn’t an amazing enough advancement in technology, we’ve moved even further, and you now have multiple choices when it comes to ridesharing.

The rideshare industry is now a two company battle – Uber vs. Lyft. That means there are plenty of people trying to decide which one is best. Which one is cheaper? Which has the shortest ride times? Which is easier to use? Here’s a quick guide to Uber vs. Lyft — the differences, the similarities, and the things that make each unique.

Uber vs. Lyft – How do the Uber and Lyft apps work?

Essentially, ridesharing with Lyft or Uber is just an extension of taxi services, but easier and cheaper. Though taxis have been very common for many years, they can be extremely expensive, and people don’t often have the money to take taxis to and from work every day. Ridesharing, however, is more of a connection between drivers and riders directly. Riders pay less as a whole, and Uber or Lyft take a cut of the fare, leaving the rest for the driver. Lyft generally takes less of the fare from the driver than Uber.

Uber and Lyft both use an app to facilitate their services. On both apps, you put in your pickup address and destination address, and it calculates an approximate price; once you confirm that you’re willing to pay that price, it sends out a driver to pick you up and drop you off. Once you’re done with the ride, you can rate the driver on a scale from 1-5 stars, add a tip, and send the driver a comment if you appreciated something specific.

The apps also provide extra information about the ride and options for your trip. For example, the app calculates the ETA and stores the payment method, and allows you to choose from a range of ride types that include regular sedans, suvs, and luxury cars. They calculate extra costs, such as extra time that the driver waits for the rider, and surge costs. They also have 24/7 support, which allows you to contact them with any concerns (through the app only usually), from lost items to payment issues.

Early on, there were many differences between Uber and Lyft, especially when it came to pricing and certain app features. However, as both companies have grown, they’ve become essentially the same. While certain things like surge costs may vary between the apps at different times, they all have the same capabilities — things like being able to request a specific class of car, leave a tip, and see your ETA before booking the trip. This means that it mostly comes down to personal preference, or which app is cheaper when you need a ride.

Uber vs. Lyft – How do you use the Uber app?

Using Uber is a very straightforward process; the app is designed to work with the user, no matter what operating system they’re using. Upon opening the app, you’re given a field to enter in your destination, upon which it automatically calculates how long it should take for you to be picked up, as well as how expensive the trip will be. Once you confirm the trip, they send out the request to the driver, and you’re ready to go.

Uber vs. Lyft - Uber Passenger App

The Uber Rider App

Uber also provides extra features that can be helpful to some riders. Some of the most-used features include the ability to schedule some trips well in advance, the ability to create a record of business trips, and the ability to create a “family profile,” where you can manage and keep track of your entire family’s Uber usage. You can also choose to use a Spanish-speaking driver, a driver with a wheelchair-accessible car, or a driver that can provide additional assistance if necessary.

Payment is simple with Uber; they take credit or debit cards, PayPal, Uber gift cards, Apple Pay, and in some places, college campus cards. Like many other apps striving to gain a large user base, you can also get discounts when you refer people. Those who use your referral code get $5 off their first three rides, and you get $5 off your next ride as well. Between the simple setup, simple payment, and extra features, using Uber is an extremely user-friendly process, and that’s how they intend to keep it.

Ride With Uber


Uber vs. Lyft – How do you use the Lyft app?

For many people, when they think of rideshare services, they think of Uber. However, that has stopped being true across the board with the rise of other services, and one of the biggest ones is Lyft. Though their capabilities are mostly the same, they have a definite difference in terms of appearance; while Uber is all black and silver, giving off a very professional vibe, Lyft is bright colors like pink and purple, catering more toward the younger crew.

When you open up the Lyft app, you’ll be asked to confirm your pickup address first, then choose where you’d like to be dropped off. It will show you an estimated time for your drop-off, as well as about how long it should take to get a driver to your pickup location. You choose what saved payment method you’d like to use and confirm the ride, and the driver shows up at your door.

Taking A Ride Using The Lyft App

Uber vs. Lyft - Lyft Rider App 1
Uber vs. Lyft - Lyft Rider App 2
Uber vs. Lyft - Lyft rider app 3
Uber vs. Lyft - Lyft rider app 4
Uber vs. Lyft - Lyft rider app 5


Similarly to Uber, Lyft also has some extra services they offer to make rides more simple and useful. In keeping with the design, which is aimed toward a younger crowd, Lyft allows you to edit your public profile to add a little bit about you, as well as your hometown and favorite music. Though it doesn’t usually do much, you might end up with a driver who has your favorite artist playing when you get in the car!

Lyft takes multiple payment options, and also allows for PayPal, debit or credit cards, Apple pay, and gift cards. Promos work a little differently, too; depending on what city you’re in, the discounts you end up with could be more or less than another city. There are also different discounts that are applied when a driver refers someone. All in all, Lyft is looking to capitalize on the fact that Uber is a little bit more reserved and “high-class” by appealing to people’s sense of fun.

Ride With Lyft


Uber vs. Lyft – Which one should I be using?

When it comes to the all-important question of, “Which is better?” there’s unfortunately no clear-cut answer. Uber tends to have more options when it comes to car type, but Lyft may have a higher promo rate in your area. Lyft may be cheaper during surge times, while Uber may be cheaper at a base level. There’s really no way to say that one rideshare system is better — they both provide different things, and your personal interpretation of those things will make you gravitate toward one or the other.

As it stands now, it’s always a good idea to have both on standby. Just make sure you’re considerate to the other rideshare users in your area — “playing the system” by placing a request on both, then canceling the one that will take longer, is extremely rude, and does nothing but drive up the price. Both of these great rideshare apps give you a large amount of information before you ever request. Take advantage of that information and make your own choice every time.


Lyft Driver App Launch Screen

Have You Considered Signing Up To Drive With Lyft? You Should.

There are plenty of drivers who are steadfastly Uber-only; for a long time, Uber was the only game in town when it came to rideshare companies. People stayed busy with Uber, and were making enough money that it wasn’t worth their time to keep switching back and forth between it and Lyft. If anything, it would only make them a few more dollars anyway. A couple of years ago, drivers who ran both the Uber and Lyft apps concurrently, would usually get ten Uber requests for every Lyft request.

But times are changing, and Lyft has been gaining popularity fast. Sure, most Uber drivers will still tell you that Uber is busier in their market, and they would be telling the truth. In most markets, if you run both the Uber and Lyft driver apps at the same time, you’ll still get more requests from Uber. However, in a number of markets, if you mainly run the Lyft app, occasionally turning on the Uber app (in the suburbs mostly), you’ll make the same, if not more, money.

Lyft’s market share has increased over the past 18 months, and Lyft’s growth rate in the U.S. now far exceeds Uber. In fact, there are some areas where Lyft is far more popular than Uber, and plenty more where it’s just about on the same level. Still not convinced? Here are some things to consider.

Geographical area plays a large part in the popularity of Uber vs. Lyft

There are no real hard-and-fast rules when it comes to whether Uber or Lyft are more popular in a given area. There does seem to be a vague trend toward Lyft being more popular in urban areas, with Uber being more popular in suburban areas, but even if you’re in a less populous area, Lyft is still growing faster. Here’s what a couple of Lyft drivers have earned recently in Boston and Washington, D.C. (gross earnings shown – take home pay would be about $1200 (D.C.) and $1700 (Boston)

lyft washington dc weekly earnings

Lyft Weekly Earnings Example – Washington D.C.

lyft boston weekly earnings

Lyft Weekly Earnings Example – Boston

But no matter where you are, Lyft is probably more popular than it was, say, last year. They’ve significantly expanded their range, meaning that even if Lyft didn’t even offer service in your area a while back, they probably do now. And if they’re offering service, it means there’s a demand for it — which means you might be able to fill that hole.

Driving for both Lyft and Uber is actually less difficult than you might think.

If you’re approved for both driving apps, you can easily switch back and forth without really losing anything from either one. Lyft has basically caught up with Uber when it comes to app functionality, so you’ll end up making pretty much the same amount per ride no matter which one you use. The apps are also very easy to use. They do cater to different clientele — but that’s a good thing. It explains why there are so many riders on each one, and why you can use both without losing money.

There are definitely quirks to each; that does explain why some people prefer driving for one over the other. However, if you’re willing to put in just a little bit of effort, you can get adjusted to it, and switch back and forth without any real difficulty. That effort is worth it, if you can make some more money.

If you don’t like running the Uber and Lyft driver apps at the same time, and switching back and forth manually, not to worry – there’s an app that will do it for you! If you have an Android phone, you can download Mystro, a great little app that will automatically run both apps for you. Even better, the app will only accept rides based on your criteria.

Uber hasn’t been doing great financially.

If you’ve been following the news, you might know that Uber hasn’t turned a profit yet. Lyft hasn’t either, but they’re much closer to profitability than Uber. Uber investors aren’t widely worried, because it’s not uncommon for startups to lose money for a long while, but Uber has lost more than any startup in the history of the world. There’s a chance they might start changing their pricing model, which may be bad news for drivers. Unlike Lyft, Uber has incredibly high overhead, mostly due to their breakneck expansion, and their tendency to overstaff in new markets.

Obviously, nothing is set in stone, and Uber might even start being more profitable than Lyft. However, it’s never a bad idea to have a fallback plan, just in case.

So what’s the verdict?

If you haven’t tried Lyft, or you haven’t done it in a while, it’s a great idea to try it again. Lyft is expanding, closer to being profitable, and paying out at basically the same rate as Uber, which means there are really no drawbacks to using both of them. Especially if you’re in a very urban area, Lyft is probably booming, and you might as well get more rides when you have some downtime! Take that extra step — you may be surprised by how much more you get paid when you add Lyft to your rideshare repertoire.

If you haven’t signed up to drive for Uber or Lyft, check out our prior post on whether you should sign up to Drive With Lyft or Uber.

Stay safe out there, and drive profitably.

Woman Ordering Uber

Rideshare 101: The New Uber Or Lyft Driver’s Handbook

Please welcome RSC’s newest contributor, Barry, who drives for Uber and Lyft (mostly) in San Diego.

Over the past few years, Uber and Lyft have seen an incredible boom of success. With the easy entry and the loaded promise of making substantial sums of money all on your own schedule, it’s obvious why driving for Uber or Lyft has become a go-to job for anyone looking to give their wallets a little extra padding. There are even drivers who, through commitment and perseverance, have turned rideshare driving from a side project to full-time career!

With flexible hours, the promise of huge payouts and a relatively simple workload, rideshare driving almost seems too good to be true. So, like most modern skeptics or anyone who’s been curious about some of the advertised promotions out there, you may be wondering: what’s the catch? Can driving for Uber or Lyft really become a viable career, or is it all just a load of marketing misinformation?

Taking advantage of one of their many new driver promotions, I started driving for both Uber and Lyft in the bustling city of San Diego late last year. In the beginning, the results were kind of a mixed bag. While the possibility to make a hefty amount of cash was definitely there, there was a lot of trial and error involved in figuring out just how to make ridesharing work for me. There’s a lot of competition out there and the more you know, the more likely you are to stand apart as an excellent Lyft or Uber driver.

I’ve put together a few of what I feel are the most important things I learned during my first few months driving. Hopefully, these tips can help you avoid making the same newbie mistakes and set you on the path to success!

It’s All About Location

Considering just about anyone can become a rideshare driver with just a quick vehicle inspection, the industry regularly runs the risk of becoming over saturated. This becomes even more of a problem when the big companies like Uber and Lyft start advertising new driver promotions, luring in loads of new drivers with promises of guaranteed income for the first few weeks of their employment. These surges aren’t constant and usually run in a cycle; one area will load up with new drivers, wait for most of them to drop off after a month or two and then leave behind a fleet of dedicated, highly rated drivers. It’s an easy way for Uber or Lyft to boost their income and increase their numbers, but it can be a real pain for drivers who depend on regular business to support themselves.

Do yourself a big, big favor and research your area before you become a new driver. The best way to do that is to take an Uber or Lyft ride yourself. Does it only take two minutes for you to get a car where you live? That probably means the streets surrounding your home are pretty saturated, most of which are impatiently circling around waiting for a ping. Alternatively, if there’s a longer wait, chances are there are fewer drivers available to haul passengers – which is, ultimately, a good thing for you. It increases your chances at getting regular rides and, by proxy, increases your income. Try checking wait times in a few areas of town to gauge overall driver saturation in your city.

Don’t Get Sucked In By Surge And Primetime

Try to get a feel for what locations are usually swarming with drivers and don’t waste too much time chasing rides there. On that note, be mindful about chasing the surge, “hot spots” on your map. Hot spots occur (the map area turns a shade of red) when there’s a greater demand for cars than there are drivers available, and both Uber and Lyft will lure you in with the incentive of double, triple or sometimes even quadruple fares. It seems like an awesome deal, but most experienced drivers will warn you to stay away unless the hot spot is within a few minutes (5 minutes max) from your location.

Their reasoning? Most surges only last a few minutes and will disappear before you get there, having lured in so many drivers that the spot instantly becomes flooded and rides become next to impossible to nail down. I experienced this a few times myself, and each time I abandoned my regular circuit to chase a spot, I found myself wasting time and gas (rushing to a spot uses more gas) for little to no pay off. Ongoing, I’ve had more luck by just staying put and letting all the other drivers go on the wild good chase while I picked up what they left behind.

Uber Surge Map

Uber Surge Map

Lyft Primetime Map

Lyft Primetime Map


Find what spots work best for you, avoid places with too many drivers and trust your intuition when it comes to obvious hot spots. Remember, you and every other driver are looking at the same map and every car you see is just more competition.

Keep on the Move, But Don’t Move Around Unnecessarily

One of the biggest mistakes new drivers make is idling around in parking lots waiting for riders to magically appear. This will absolutely kill your cash flow, even if it seems like you’re being frugal about your gas. I would argue that the biggest enemy of any rideshare driver is wasted time. Every minute you spend waiting for work to come to you detracts from your average hourly pay and can be the difference between making a living wage and just making some spare cash. The most successful rideshare drivers are constantly on the move, hunting down rides and making themselves accessible across a wider radius.

Map out a circuit around your area of choice, keeping yourself close to things like train stations, strip malls, colleges or bus stops (you’ll notice I didn’t say airports – more on that later), and then continue to loop those streets. On average, I picked up a few rides every time I went through my own circuit, many of which I would have missed out on if I’d been sitting still miles away.

Now, while you should move to where the rides are, you should not drive around aimlessly once you get to an area where you’re likely to catch a request. Once you’ve mapped out your circuit, note the locations of places where you can easily pull over and wait for ten minutes or so.

Explore New Places

One of my biggest gripes as a rider is a driver who doesn’t know their way around town or makes me wait an extra five minutes while they try to figure out how to get into the parking lot I’m waiting in. Little inconveniences like that can set a really negative tone for your entire ride, so you’ll want to do your best to avoid them.

If you’re going to Drive With Lyft or Uber, set aside a day to just drive around and get a feel for how the streets work. Are there any strange intersections? Are there one-way streets or tricky highway ramps you’ll have to navigate? Is there a place you can safely pick up your passengers at curbside? How do you get in and out of the major businesses? Which sides of the street have even number addresses, and which have odd numbers? These are just a few of the important things you should be keeping an eye out for. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did when you’ve got an impatient businessman checking his watch in your back seat.

One of the worst experiences I had as a driver was navigating a small private airport for the first time with a passenger who was already running late. Not only did I botch the pick up by taking extra time to figure out how to get to his location, but I missed the ramp out of the parking lot and we were forced to circle the lot a second time. He was less than pleased, and it could have been avoided entirely if I’d taken the time to drive through the area on my own and understand how the complicated, construction-covered streets worked.

The Trouble With Airports

Since we’re talking about airports, let’s take a second and go over the finer points of these supposed moneymakers. Yes, people regularly use rideshare cars to get to and from the airport. It seems like an obvious way to make a lot of money in a short time, but things have changed in how Uber and Lyft handle the high traffic pings coming from airports.

For starters, in an attempt to keep things fairly spread across drivers, Uber and Lyft have established queues to match rides to drivers. You automatically enter this queue once you enter a certain radius surrounding the airport and, on average, the wait time to catch a ride is easily an hour, sometimes more. There are actually designated parking lots set aside for rideshare drivers to sit and wait for their turn to come up, but remember earlier when I said wasted time is your worst enemy? That’s a whole hour you’re waiting for a single fare, which isn’t guaranteed to be a long ride. You can imagine how frustrating it is to wait that long only to get a ride five minutes down the street to the rental car place. Instead of catching two or three rides, you only made a few bucks in an hour.

Worse yet, if you leave the area surrounding the airport, you are immediately removed from the queue and your place in line isn’t saved. You start all over again if and when you re-enter the queue, making it a pretty unforgiving and unwelcoming system for people actually trying to make a decent wage as a driver.

Uber Lyft Airport Pickup

Waiting at the airport often isn’t worth it.

Beyond that, there are a lot of surprising legal issues surrounding airports. Every airport has a different set of rules, but some are incredibly strict about where you are and are not permitted to pick up guests. You can get in a lot of trouble for loitering where you’re not allowed, so make sure you take the time to research your local airport and see what the regulations are on Uber or Lyft for both picking up and dropping off passengers before you put yourself in a bad position.

The bottom line? In my opinion, airports are rarely worth the wait and you’re much better off finding rides somewhere else. Most times I waited out the queue at the airport, I scored a ride that was no more than fifteen minutes long. I gave up on it shortly thereafter and went back to my regular circuit, where I was making way more money without the idling.

Make Sure You’re in the Know

Keep a tab on current events in your area. Things like concerts, sports games, festivals and farmers markets can all be great ways to score a few rides. Uber and Lyft will both e-mail you with some of the major events happening near your zip code, which can be incredibly helpful, but there’s always more to be discovered than what they’re offering to all of their drivers. (Remember – more drivers mean more competition!) Get to know when local events are happening and try to schedule around them so that you’re always one step ahead.

If you’re willing to put in late hours, another great thing to be aware of is the closing times for local bars and clubs. The late night crowd is usually pretty lucrative and you’re doing everyone a great favor by getting intoxicated people home safe and sound. Just remember that there’s some unique challenges to the bar crowd. You’ll definitely meet some interesting people – a woman with no shoes once spent fifteen minutes telling me how happy her cat would be to meet me – and you definitely want to keep some carebags in the back seat, but it’s definitely an entertaining bunch and they tip very, very well.

Hidden Expenses

A major part of figuring out your take home income is considering all of the expenses that come with being a driver. If you’re full time, you will fill your gas tank at least every couple of days. Having a car with great gas mileage may not be an Uber or Lyft necessity, but it can be a massive boon when starting as a new driver. Other than that, however, what are some of the other regular expenses you’ll be responsible for?

Firstly, there’s the cost of maintaining your car. You’re going to be putting a lot of wear and tear on your vehicle so be prepared to keep on top of oil changes, brakes and any other repairs that may show up during your travels. If a nasty pot hole busts your alignment, you’re going to have to repair that right away. Furthermore, you will need to wash your car regularly, which is something you’ll have to put aside both time and money for. On average, it took me about half an hour to fill my tank, thoroughly wash my car and get ready to roll.

Mileage And Expense Trackers

You’ll also want a way to easily track your expenses and mileage. For every 1,000 miles you drive for Uber or Lyft, you get a $545 tax deduction. The easiest way to keep track is to download a mileage and expense tracker, which will automatically keep track of your miles, and alert you to potential deductions. Here’s two of the most popular mileage and expense trackers among Uber and Lyft drivers. Most drivers prefer Stride, but Quickbooks integrates seamlessly with Turbotax.

Some other expenses to keep in mind are food, whether that’s fast food joints or pre-packed lunches, and whatever amenities you’re offering to your passengers to earn that five star rating. One thing you’ll want to offer your passengers is a charging cable for their phone (make sure you have cables for both Apple phones and Androids). As for an auxiliary cable if they want to choose their own music, water bottles, tissues and small snacks, it’s up to you. Most drivers don’t and I wouldn’t say it’s necessary.

You can choose just how far you’re willing to go to please and entertain your passengers. I’ve seen cars with LED lighting, touch screens on the back of their seats and so many snacks you’d expect a stewardess to be handing them out. Some cars have had toiletries and feminine hygiene products, which can be a real life saver, and others just had the basics of a few sick bags and water bottles in case of motion sickness emergency.

Put some thought into what you might like to see as a passenger and invest a little to make sure your riders are comfortable and happy. They’ll thank you with good ratings every time.

Don’t Forget Self Care

Last, but certainly not least, never forget to put aside some time for self-care. It’s surprisingly easy to get caught up in the hustle of chasing down rides or taking those pings back to back, but it’s important to take breaks every now and again! On my first day of driving, I was so excited to be getting so many rides that I went nearly nine hours without stopping to eat or drink. The massive headache I nursed on my way home was all it took for me to make sure I never made that mistake again.

Pack yourself lunches or keep snacks on the inside of your car door to munch on between rides. Make sure you keep a bottle of water around to keep yourself from getting dehydrated. And, arguably just as important, absolutely make sure you get out of your car and stretch at least twice a day. Sitting in a car is actually terrible posture for your back and shoulders – just ask any trucker – but you can mitigate sore muscles by giving them a good stretch every now and again. Taking just a few minutes to take care of your body can help you alleviate a lot of aches and pains later.

Keeping yourself happy and healthy will make your entire experience as a driver more positive, and let you share your good vibes with your passengers.

Final Words

Being a new driver can be pretty daunting at first. There’s a lot to learn and you have to be able to think on your feet in stressful situations like construction zones, heavy traffic and crowded parking lots. Being prepared ahead of time can make a world of difference and I hope the information here can help you feel a bit more confident as a new driver. It may seem overwhelming, but once you figure out the rhythm and flow of your area, ridesharing can be a really fantastic way to earn money, meet new people and enjoy the freedom of working on your own schedule.

With a bit of extra time, dedication and the tips and tricks we’ve gone over here, you’ll be on your way to earning five star ratings in no time!

IoT Lyft Uber 2018

How Will the IoT Help Uber and Lyft Evolve as Businesses in 2018?

Uber and Lyft dominate the rideshare industry. Both companies have been around for several years, and are seen as the founding fathers of the rideshare industry. However, despite their massive popularity and international success, both services still need improving. Uber, for one, has been mired in controversy over the years, and many drivers aren’t happy with the low rates and the amount Uber takes from each ride. Lyft, on the other hand, has struggled to compete with the global reach of Uber despite the massive market for rideshare services.

As the IoT (Internet of Things) technology that both companies use continues to improve, so too are the services that Uber and Lyft can offer.

Current State of Uber and Lyft

Uber has found itself in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons over its workplace culture and treatment of drivers. There are plenty of examples of the company’s cultural problems, and we previously looked at Uber’s fifth criminal probe in December 2017.

For Uber drivers, the most relevant example of an awful company culture was an exchange Uber CEO Travis Kalanick had with a driver over low rates. Last year, a video of the exchange leaked online, and, after heavy criticism from the public, Kalanick apologized. It was a good move by Kalanick, but he seems to have missed the bigger picture. An Uber driver wanted better working policies and higher rates from Uber. The driver wanted Uber to understand the drivers’ woes regarding the brutal fare cuts from 2016. This is where Uber needs to improve if it wants to get past its current company image issues, as well as evolve as a better business. Their most recent blunder in Florida, where they raised prices without raising driver rates – and then actually emailed drivers to tell them, shows how far the company still has to go.

There are several ways on how the IoT can help improve Uber’s culture. The company needs to take a cue from some of Lyft’s strategies to improve customer service and keep the drivers happy.

For one, Lyft has a better way of tipping their drivers. Uber does allow passengers to tip their drivers, but Lyft makes it much easier for riders. By making the tipping process a bit difficult, Uber appears to be disregarding the happiness and welfare of their drivers. The technology already exists, so it is up to Uber to bring it to the forefront of the app in 2018 to improve their public image.

While Lyft may treat their drivers better, and have a better public image, they are still far behind Uber in terms of business. Uber has a much larger coverage range, as Lyft only operates in the U.S. and only in 45 states, compared to Uber in all 50 states (however Lyft does cover more cities: 240 – 209). Uber also has a huge global reach (although it has struggled in most of Asia and parts of Europe) and is competitive in major cities across the world.

Integrate With Smart Cities

Rideshare companies like Uber & Lyft can also contribute to the building of smart cities. Smart Industry states that based on Uber’s model, rideshare cars could collect data that would be then be applied to improving how smart cities work. Smart Industry quoted Dr. Jim Walsh of GlobalLogic on how the data collection would work: “the location sensors associated with both the passenger’s and the driver’s mobile devices (the actual ‘things being monitored) are regularly broadcasting their location to a ‘back end’ system that is hosted by Uber in the cloud. Uber’s cloud service then provides analytics to determine which car/driver combinations are relevant to each service request.”

With the continued development of IoT smart cities in 2018, this is one way that Uber and Lyft could evolve their respective businesses in 2018.

Rideshare Partnerships

Both Uber and Lyft have created partnerships with brands and events. This is helping both companies develop their business and reach new customers.

Uber partnered with Spotify and Pandora, which helped them provide a unique riding experience through allowing customers to create playlists through the Uber app. The ‘rider music experience’ was upgraded in 2016 with the ability to have cars automatically playing the music when the customers got into the car.

Lyft took over as Sundance Film Festival’s official sponsor this year from Uber, offering discounted rides to selected film premieres. The company was able to supplant Uber after they had a disaster with their helicopter service in 2016. After Uber offered rides for $200-$300, the local Sheriff closed down the operation after decreeing that the company was in violation of the Summit County code. Oops! Lyft was also able to align itself with the ‘Me Too’ movement, something Uber could not do effectively for obvious reasons. Through providing a service at Sundance, and sponsoring events that have been organized to discuss the ‘Me Too’ movement, Lyft has been able to enhance its image as the “good” rideshare company.

In 2018 both companies are using IoT technology to expand into the healthcare industry. The Washington Post reported that both companies are looking to take advantage of the 3.6 million people who miss medical appointments each year. Uber has developed a branch of the company called Uber Health, which is “a dashboard that will allow healthcare providers to schedule rides for patients”. Lyft has also partnered with health insurers, hospital systems, and medical transport services to help get patients the care they need.

The IoT and Road Safety

Lyft has partnered with Five Star Lager to reduce the number of drink-driving incidents. In Chicago, customers who buy Lyft’s Five Star Lager will be able to receive a 60% discount on their ride home.

Uber is also using its IoT technology to improve road safety in 2018. Partnering with the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways in the U.K., Uber will promote road safety through messaging on the app and social media. These will include advertisements and videos promoting the use of rear seatbelts, hands on the wheel, and the prevention of drunk driving.

The move by both companies to use the IoT to promote and increase road safety follows a directive by the U.S. DOT to use IoT tech in the commercial driving industry. An Electric Logging Device (ELD) mandate – which ensures fleet drivers use an ELD-compliant device in their vehicles — took effect in December of 2017 in order to lessen truck-related accidents. Verizon Connect ELD devices record a driver’s Hours of Service (HoS), and helps prevent them from exceeding the hours by alerting the drivers if they are about to overdrive. Fatigue caused by overdriving is not only present among truck drivers, but with Lyft and Uber drivers as well.

USA Today covered Uber & Lyft drivers who work dangerously long hours, noting that many drive for as long as 16 hours without resting. As fatigue caused by too many hours is one of the biggest causes of accidents involving trucking and rideshare drivers, the new mandate, as well as local ordinances passed in cities like Chicago, will reduce the chances of them going past their legal road hours.

The actions of both Lyft and Uber to improve road safety by carefully monitoring driver operations demonstrate how hazardous U.S. roads have become. As more people become concerned with staying safe, rideshare companies develop better IoT-related strategies to improve operations, reduce accidents, and increase both driver and customer security.

Final Takeaway

Through a wider and improved service, Uber can help rebuild its public image, and Lyft will be able to more effectively compete with its main rival. In addition, the integration of devices that carefully monitor hours of service will improve the condition of overworked drivers. If they are indeed doing it to offset the low compensation at both companies, Uber and Lyft drivers can use the IoT devices as proof in presenting a case to authorities. IoT technology has the capabilities to streamline not only business operations but also provides data for improving working conditions.

Buying A Car For Uber

10 Things To Consider When Buying A Car For Uber Or Lyft

So, you’ve decided to join the rideshare economy and make money while setting your own hours. After you’ve looked at the different options to choose from in terms of companies to gig for, you’re left with another big decision – what vehicle should you choose? Don’t worry, we’ve identified ten areas to consider helping you choose the right car for you.

Whether you’ve chosen to work for Uber, Lyft, Instacart, or another competitor in the rapidly growing sector, your car is one of the most important parts of your success. It can help determine your margins, how your customers rate you, and ultimately how much you take home at the end of every week. If you’re looking to invest in a new car, be sure to keep these key features in mind throughout the purchasing process.

1. Fuel consumption

It should come as no surprise that fuel consumption should be one of your top priorities. With a wide variety of rides, from those that remain local to long distance journeys, you want a car that can handle both well. It goes without saying that a car that performs better on miles per gallon is going to increase your margins and save you cash when you need to fill up.
For this reason, many rideshare drivers choose a hybrid vehicle model that performs well in both urban environments where traffic is likely to stop and start and country driving. When you look at the long-term, it can be beneficial to pay more for a car with improved efficiency.

Hybrid favorites among Uber and Lyft drivers include the Ford Fusion and Toyota Prius. In the non-hybrid category, the Chevy Cruze is probably your best bet.

2. Number of passengers

Both Uber and Lyft require all vehicles to have four independently opening doors. So, that’s most coupe models immediately out of the running.

Of course, if you pick the right model you can seat more than the standard four passengers, allowing you to take rides that require room for six or seven. On the flip side, larger vehicles will not have the same mileage efficiency and, in some areas, there isn’t the demand to warrant investing in a car that can comfortably sit more than four people.

Starting at under $28,000, the Ford Explorer has become a very popular UberXL and Lyft Plus vehicle.

3. Comfort

Comfort is essential for getting that all important high rating to ensure you continue to get booked. No one wants to be sat in the back of a car feeling cramped and uncomfortable for entire journey. Consider how comfortable your passengers will be – roomier is definitely a positive in this area.

Your comfort matters too. Whether you’re planning on being part of the gig economy part time or putting in eight hour shifts on a daily basis, investing in a car that your comfortable in will make it much easier to get the job done.

4. Insurance and Depreciation

It’s easy for the additional costs of running a vehicle to slip your mind when you’re choosing a vehicle to use for Uber and Lyft. But make sure you do your research and factor in the price of things like depreciation and insurance. It could save you hundreds of dollars each year and ensure that you maximize your profits and tax deductions.

5. Uber & Lyft Service Level

Do you know which Uber or Lyft service you would like to drive for? Both companies have different service levels, and different vehicles qualify for each service level.

Lyft has Lyft, Lyft Plus (suv’s), Lyft Premier (slightly fancier/newer cars), Lyft Lux (luxury vehicles), and Lyft SUV (luxury SUV’s). Uber has UberX, Uber Select (slightly fancier/newer cars), UberXL (suv’s), Uber Black and UberSUV (commerically licensed driver, black car vehicle).Having a look at what’s in demand locally can help you assess the right decision for you. The best way to do that is to ask some local drivers.

Also make sure the vehicle you’re considering qualifies for the service level you want to drive for before buying the car.

6. Warranty

Whether a car comes with a strong warranty or not could be a deciding factor if it’s the right decision for you. It gives you peace of mind that should something go wrong you’re covered. If maintenance is something that you’re concerned about, a good warranty with an included maintenance package should be at the top of your list.

7. Maintenance costs

The make and model of your car has a big impact on the maintenance costs associated with any repairs that you might need. Ideally, you want to find a vehicle that strikes the right balance between being reliable and having parts that are easily replaceable, which can be a challenge. Overall, Honda, Toyota, and Ford are considered to be the most reliable vehicles with the lowest overall maintenance costs.

8. Model Year

The year your car was made could mean that your car can’t be used for for Uber or Lyft. In most markets, your car must be a 2003 or newer. However, the requirements are more stringent for the premium services like Lyft Premier or Uber Select. For those services, your vehicle often has to be a 2011 or newer. Additionally, in most markets, Lyft drivers are not eligible for the weekly Power Driver Bonuses if the model year is before 2011.

Purchasing a newer model might mean a higher initial cost but it also means you won’t have to replace it as soon if you plan on driving for Uber or Lyft for the foreseeable future. You can check the local Lyft and Uber vehicle requirements on the following pages.

9. Total Miles

Your car is quickly going to clock up mileage when you’re working. You’re likely to find that you easily exceed the average 12,000 miles per year. A car that’s lower on mileage when you purchase it should mean lower overall maintenance costs, at least for the first year or two.

10. Price

Getting the best price can be tricky, and car dealerships are notorious for jacking up prices and including unnecessary items in a vehicle purchase. Consider using a negotiation service like Carjojo to get the best price on your car. A good negotiation service can literally save you thousands on your vehicle purchase.

what to do in an uber accident

7 Things You Should Do If You’re In an Accident While Driving Uber Or Lyft

Being involved in an accident can happen to anyone at any time. It is important to remember to keep your composure throughout the incident. Here are the seven things that you should if you have an accident while driving Uber or Lyft.

1. Seek medical attention if there are injuries associated with the accident.

Assess your own condition right after the accident. Check on the condition of any passengers that were riding with you. Ask the other driver and any passengers in the other vehicle(s) if they sustained any injuries. Call 911 if the situation warrants immediate medical attention. Your primary responsibility after an accident is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those that were involved.

2. Call the police or go to a station, and file a police report.

This is an especially important step if there are injuries involved with the accident. For more minor incidents, this step may not be necessary. You will still need to file an accident report with the police even if they aren’t called to the scene. This step is to protect you against any future claims of injury from the other driver or your passengers. The police investigation may not be helpful when filing your claim with the insurance company. Make sure to not admit fault to the accident even if you feel as though you’re responsible. Even if the cause of the accident is blatantly obvious, any lawyer will tell you, do not admit fault.

3. Document the accident.

Take photos of any damage to both vehicles and the license plates. You may even want to take photos of the scene so that you can actually remember how the accident occurred. Write down what you remember about the accident with as much detail as possible. This can help you if you need to enter arbitration to settle the accident. Gather statements from any witnesses that are willing to talk to you. Make sure to exchange information with the other driver. This means that you get their name and number as well as their insurance information.

4. Report the accident to Lyft or Uber.

The method of reporting will differ depending on the rideshare company. For Uber, you can report the accident in the app. In the lower right hand corner of the app, click on “Account”, then select Help > Trip Issues and Refunds. Then select the trip, click “Help” again, and click “I was in an accident.” You can also call 800-353-8237, Uber’s emergency hotline.

For Lyft, call their emergency hotline number 855-865-9553.

5. Call your insurance company.

Which insurance company will cover the damages depends on what period you’re in with your rideshare company. Period one means that you’re online but you don’t have an active ride request. You will have to contact your personal insurance company during this period to cover the accident. The caution with this is that if you don’t have rideshare insurance, they will deny your claim. During periods two and three, you will contact the rideshare company as they will be your primary insurance company during this time. Period two means that you’re on your way to a passenger, and period three means that you have a passenger in the car. Both Uber and Lyft have primary insurance in a few states, but it’s contingent, or secondary, in most states.

6. Pay the deductible to get back to work.

The amount of your deductible will vary depending on the rideshare company. The deductible for Lyft is $2500 while the deductible for Uber is $1000. If you’re reporting the incident to your own insurance company, the amount for the deductible will vary if they even cover the accident at all. It’s important to have this money saved up prior to an accident. This will enable you to get back to work quicker.

7. Work with the repair shop to reduce the amount of downtime.

Depending on the extent of the damages to your vehicle, there may be significant downtime while it’s being repaired. If your vehicle is still safe to drive and won’t impact the rider experience, you can continue to work while coordinating the repairs. For more extensive damages, you may want to plan on being out a work for a month. This time estimate may be reduced if you’re able to work with the repair shop. Make sure to stay on top of your insurance company to get the claim covered. This will enable you to get back on the road. Uber will require that you undergo another vehicle inspection before you’re allowed to pick up fares. If it’s clear the other drive is at fault, you may be able to have their insurance cover the cost of a rental car. If you’re in a city with HyreCar or Maven, or another service that rents vehicles for Uber or Lyft, that means you can get back to work almost immediately

Being involved in a car accident can be traumatic as well as inconvenient. Be prepared so that you can handle the situation calmly. Set the money aside to cover the deductible and other incidentals.

British Soloman is a contributing writer and media specialist for Service First Automotive. She regularly produces content for a variety of car safety and maintenance blogs.