Uber, once thought of as a simple idea, has become the largest ridesharing application and service around the globe. From 2020 through 2021, Uber generated a massive $11.1 billion. If you are thinking of becoming an Uber driver as your full-time job or even as a secondary source of income, you may be wondering what is required to do so and how old you need to become a driver.
In order to become an Uber driver, you must be at least 21 years of age or have at least three years of driving experience if you are under the age of 25.
How much driving experience do you need to become an Uber driver?
Before you can get started as an Uber driver, you will need to have a legal driver’s license and also meet the minimum age to drive as a registered driver in the state you reside in. Additionally, all Uber drivers must have at least one year of driving experience on their record. For individuals who are under the age of 25, you must have at least three years of driving experience in order to drive for Uber.
Is there an age requirement to drive for Uber in specific states?
No, there are no age requirements that are only in place for specific states. All Uber drivers must already have a valid driver’s license in the state they reside in along with the appropriate amount of time driving for experience purposes.
Benefits of Driving for Uber
Driving for Uber is a great way to earn a primary income while also being a useful tool for those who are interested in a second income after their full-time work is over for the day. Some of the most notable benefits of driving for Uber as a contractor include:
- Create your own schedule: As an Uber driver, you are not required to drive during specific and set shifts. Instead, you can create your own schedule and choose when you want to pick up passengers on a whim. Whether you are in a new town or running errands of your own, you can take on work just about anywhere at any time.
- Use your vehicle: With Uber, you have the ability to drive your own vehicle to pick up passengers and complete runs.
- Weekly pay: Rather than waiting two weeks to receive your paycheck, all Uber drivers are paid on a weekly basis. Weekly payouts can help you to earn money faster when you need it most.
What type of car or truck can I drive as an Uber driver?
You can drive any 4-door vehicle that qualifies with Uber as an Uber driver. You will need to check for specific requirements based on the current make, model, and year of your own vehicle you plan to use as an Uber driver.
Do I need to have my vehicle insured before I can drive as an Uber driver?
Yes, you will need to have liability insurance for your vehicle at a minimum in order to work as a driver for Uber or Uber eats.
Do I need a commercial driver’s license in order to work for Uber?
Currently, most cities where Uber is available do not require drivers to obtain and maintain a commercial driver’s license. However, the expansion of Uber services (beyond the standard UberX service), may require drivers who are interested in driving for higher premiums to acquire and maintain a commercial driver’s license.
What are the vehicle requirements for Uber drivers?
Before you can begin driving and picking up passengers as an Uber driver, you will need to ensure that your own vehicle meets the minimum requirements for all Uber drivers. Currently, the vehicle requirements for Uber drivers who are working in the United States include:
- A four-door vehicle that is no more than 10 years old (these requirements may vary based on the city and state you live and drive in)
- Valid driver’s license
- Valid registration for the vehicle with updated and valid license plates
- State-issued license plates
- A working seatbelt that is available and proper for all potential passengers
It is important to note that it is not possible to drive for Uber if you are using a vehicle that has once been used as a traditional taxi or mode of transport. It is also not permitted to use a vehicle that has been previously salvaged if you are interested in driving.
How do you apply to become an Uber driver?
Applying to work for Uber as a driver is quick and easy if you have an internet connection using a computer or even your smartphone. Visiting the official Uber website is the best way to get started with the application process. Once you are ready to become an Uber driver, ensure that you complete the following steps in a timely and orderly fashion:
- Complete your application by visiting the official Uber website.
- Inspect your vehicle using a third-party service. Uber requires that all vehicles registered with the company for driving purposes must be thoroughly inspected and certified by a third party before they are permitted on the road for picking up passengers.
- Submit your background check requested by Uber as well as any paperwork that has been sent to you following the completion of your online Uber application.
Once your application has been received, reviewed, and approved, you can then begin to start driving and earning money as an Uber driver.
What documents are required to complete the Uber driver application process?
Before you are approved to drive as an Uber driver, you will also need to submit documentation to Uber. Documentation that is required and requested by all applicants who are interested in driving for Uber includes:
- Your social security number and/or a photo of your social security number ID card
- Proof of car insurance on the vehicle you intend to drive when driving passengers for Uber
- Paperwork that submits to allowing Uber to run a background check on you
A background check from Uber will look for the following in your driving record:
- Reckless charges or tickets
- Criminal history
- A history of DUIs (Driving Under the Influence)
- Suspended licenses
- A history of operating vehicles without insurance
These potential issues may cause a delay or a rejection in your Uber application if they are recent and/or recurring.
How much will I earn as an Uber driver?
The amount you will earn as an Uber driver will vary greatly depending on the city you are driving in, the number of hours you put in, and whether or not you choose to work during surge hours. On average, Uber drivers typically earn anywhere from $8 to $12 per hour without tips. Uber typically pays drivers based on estimated fares, and will provide a base fare for each passenger they pick up and drop off.
How do I know when it is best to work as an Uber driver?
Drive around your city and become familiar with various routes as well as popular locations and hotspots that may be your best sources of income.
Tips for New Uber Drivers
Working as a new Uber driver can be an adjustment for some, especially if you are new to the gig economy or working as a contractor. Some tips to keep in mind if you are just getting started as an Uber driver might include:
- Relying on tips is a part of the job as an Uber driver, so picking up larger fares or seeking out surge times is ideal as an Uber driver.
- Use the Uber in-app map to browse surge prices and surge fairs in real-time to maximize profits.
- Keep your vehicle clean and pleasant at all times.
- Consider offering mints, water, and other convenient items for customers to increase your chances of a larger tip.
- Become familiar with your city’s driving routes to provide shortcuts and expedited trips for those in a hurry, which can result in larger tips.
How do Uber drivers manage earnings and taxes?
Uber drivers (both Uber and Uber Eats drivers) are required to file as self-employed and as a contractor. Uber drivers are considered 1099 workers, or freelance contractors/gig economy workers. When working for Uber, you will need to calculate your own income and state taxes as well as your own self-employment taxes as long as you earn more than $400 annually.