Lyft may not have quite the market penetration of Uber yet, but it’s getting there. And plenty of Uber drivers are choosing to try out Lyft, reasoning that it’s better to have two income sources. Maybe you’re considering joining them, or maybe you’re completely new to the platform
Either way, you’ve probably got questions – and we’ve got answers.
How Does Lyft Work?
Using the Lyft app, passengers put out a request for a driver to take them wherever they need to go. Any nearby driver can accept this request and travel to the passenger’s pickup point.
After a ride is done, the passenger and driver then rate one another on a scale of one to five stars. Passengers are also given the opportunity to tip and can write an anonymous comment which is sometimes shared with the driver.
How Does The Driver Approval Process Work For Lyft?
The Lyft driver approval process is relatively simple. First, you will need to consent to a full background check and driving record check. You should be fine here, as long as you meet the following qualifications:
- Fewer than eight demerit points on your licensing record, in most markets.
- No convictions in the past five years for failure to stop at the scene of a collision, driving with a suspended license, impaired or dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, or negligent driving.
- No convictions for any violent crimes, drug-related offenses, sexual offenses, certain types of theft, or property damage.
It’s important to note that Lyft also conducts random background checks on current drivers. They also pay attention to rider complaints. Even if you are approved as a Lyft driver, if you suddenly start practicing unsafe driving, you could be removed from the platform. Should this happen, you’ll receive an email notification, at which point you can dispute the results. However, the decision is usually final.
Finally, in most states, you are required to submit your vehicle for an examination at a registered mechanic to ensure it’s road-safe. Said inspection mostly focuses on safety features, so provided you’ve been taking the necessary steps to keep your car in good shape, you should be fine. The cost of the examination can vary, but it should usually be around $20 and take a few days or so. Lyft is also opening a number of new driver hubs in 2019 that may include discounted or free inspections.
Beyond this, your vehicle must also meet the following requirements:
- Four doors, with seats for four passengers not including the driver. This does not include jump doors.
- In fair condition, free of obvious damage. This does not include minor scratches, hail damage, or scuffed paint.
- A clean, stain-free, odor-free interior.
- Registered and insured, as per the law. Note that the vehicle does not have to be registered to your name.
- Meets the vehicle age requirement for your market. If you’re in the U.S., check our our post on Lyft Vehicle Requirements. In Canada, this means that your vehicle must have been manufactured in 2011 or later;
How Do I Contact Lyft Management?
At the moment, there’s no way to reach out directly to Lyft management – all you can do is submit a help request to Lyft’s support team.
How Can I Email Lyft Support?
You can contact driver support through the app. Lyft will respond to the email connected to your driver account.
Generally, contacting Lyft driver support through the app is the best way. But you can also try emailing Lyft support at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’re experiencing an issue with a trip or a passenger, the fastest way to get help from Lyft is through the Lyft Driver app. From the Ride History tab, select the trip you have an issue with, and tap “Get Help.”
Alternatively, you can contact Lyft through the Lyft Help Center on their website.
How Old Do You Have To Be To Drive For Lyft?
To become a Lyft driver in the United States, you need to be at least 21 years old with at least one full year of licensing history. It’s important to mention that this licensing history must be based in the United States. Even if you have held your driver’s license from another country for several years, you won’t be able to drive for Lyft if you don’t have a US license.
Does Lyft Allow Dogs?
Lyft does not have an official stance on pets – whether or not you allow dogs in your vehicle is entirely up to you. The one caveat to this is service animals. If someone has a service dog, you are obligated to allow them into your car.
What’s A Lyft Mentor?
The Lyft Mentor program was originally intended as a way to help applicants learn the ropes of the platform. Completing a session with a Mentor was part of your approval process. Mentors showed new applicants how the app worked and took them on a test drive.
How Do I Become A Lyft Mentor?
As of July 2017, the Lyft Mentor program has been discontinued – you can no longer become a Lyft Mentor, as they no longer exist.
How Do I Return a Rider’s Lost Item?
There are several options to return lost items to riders. Lyft drivers are free to contact riders on their own and set up a meeting to return lost items. Additionally, you can contact Lyft Support and they’ll help get the item shipped free of charge if you provide them with the basic information of the ride (destination and pickup, time and date, rider’s name, item lost).
Drivers in Boston, Las Vegas, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. can also drop off items at Lyft Hubs where the rider can come to pick them up at their convenience.