How To Make Extra Money Driving For Uber
Like it or not, taxis are dying. Ridesharing companies have been quick to fill in the gap, led primarily by Uber.
In fact, ridesharing’s been so influential that “Ubering” is now informally a verb in the English language (“let’s just Uber there!”).
You know what that means. A potential side hustle idea (that could potentially get you out of debt as well)!
Should you join the swelling ranks of Uber drivers?
Read on to see how you can make extra money driving for Uber.
Expenses To Consider
Uber drivers are independent contractors, meaning Uber won’t be covering any expenses.
Fortunately, independent contractors can write off many of these on their taxes. Make sure to record all of these and bring them to your accountant/tax software when the year ends.
You can’t drive for Uber with no car. Sure, they’ll even rent you a car, but you still have to pay them for it.
Gas is needed to get anywhere. But since you’ll be driving for pay, you’ll be going through a lot more gas, so extend your gas budget.
Make sure to separate gas used driving for Uber from gas used during personal driving by keeping and organizing your receipts. Trust us, it’ll make tax time a lot easier.
All the extra Uber miles add up. You’ll need to be vigilant about and budget more for routine maintenance such as oil changes, tire rotations, and air filter replacements. Chances are you’ll be doing these much more often.
Prepare for irregular damage to your car as well. Being out on the road more increases chances of an accident.
On top of that, certain situations exclusive to Uber driving can lead to car damage. A great example would be transporting bar patrons; they could ruin the interior or exterior of your car for various reasons we won’t get in to.
Your insurance company is also aware of the risks of Uber driving and thus will charge you a higher premium to add a rideshare endorsement to your plan.
We highly recommend NOT trying to sneak past them. If you get in an accident while driving for Uber, they won’t hesitate to drop you.
Pros Of Driving For Uber
Uber does not require any scheduling or availability. You get to work whenever you want to just by “clocking in” on the Uber app and “clocking out” when you’re done driving people around.
If you’re bored at home, why not hop in the car and pocket some cash? It’s totally within your power to do so as an Uber driver.
There’s been fiery debate about Uber’s wages and such, but they pay pretty well for a job that you can do whenever you want. This may not be ideal for someone who MUST rely on Uber wages to survive, but for others, it pays well for a job you can do literally whenever you want.
And then there’s surge pricing. When things get extra busy, Uber jacks up the prices to regulate supply of Uber drivers and demand for Uber rides. You keep 80% of whatever the fare is, regardless of the price.
Those who enjoy accessing their money as soon as possible rejoice, for Uber pays out your earnings weekly.
Can’t say that about most of your typical employers.
Cons Of Driving For Uber
Wear & Tear
Uber driving’s most obvious drawback is the wear and tear. Adding all those extra miles means you’ll need to increase maintenance frequency, resulting in higher maintenance costs. Make sure you are saving money for these expenses.
Not to mention that your car will depreciate much faster as you rack up the mileage.
The more you’re out on the road, the less safe you are. That’s how operating multi-ton, gas-powered (or electric-powered) hunks of metal works. Putting yourself on the road with other cars increases your chance of accident.
But that’s not the only safety threat.
Although extremely rare, there’s always a chance you pick up a passenger that attempts to rob you or threaten you for another reason.
We don’t mean to scare you away; we just want to make you aware that this can happen.
Unpredictable Busy/Slow Times
Sure, you can clock in whenever, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have passengers. Wanting to work without enough demand can become frustrating pretty quickly.
The Verdict On Uber Driving
Uber driving is an excellent gig if you’re willing to spend more on your car and accept the safety risks involved. The flexibility might be the biggest reason why; what other side hustles let you clock in and out as seamlessly as Uber? Not many.
“People”-people and introverts alike will do well. Some enjoy a talkative driver, while others prefer to ride in silence.
Best Times To Drive For Uber
So when exactly should you be driving for Uber?
If you’re willing to forego some Friday and Saturday night fun, you can stack a ton of cash in just one weekend by transporting thirsty bar/club attendees out to the bars, between bars, and back home.
Since these nights get really busy, surge pricing might happen as well. Not only are you constantly getting business, but said business is paying you much more per ride!
You’re also doing a great public service. Driving bar patrons on these nights keeps drunk drivers off the road and many of your tipsy passengers will treat you like a godsend.
Vacation Time In Vacation Hotspots
We’re thinking spring break in this case. To put it bluntly, many college kids will be drinking heavily on spring break. That’s a huge source of Uber income right there.
You could also score some rides to and from the airport. Many college students stay in hotels far from the airport, meaning a hefty earning amount per ride.
Weekend days shouldn’t be overlooked if you want to maximize earnings. There aren’t nearly as many drunk individuals seeking transportation, but people aren’t trapped at their desks during the weekends. Naturally, many of them will need rides to various weekend activities.
Hey, you won’t have to give up your Saturday night if you drive all day! You might even pay for your bar tab with your earnings.