Have you ever thought about making money as a side hustle? More and more people are looking for innovative ways to bolster their earnings – which might also come in handy for you! So, whether you’re just looking to earn a little extra income on the side or if you would like to earn a full-time income from home and be your own boss, considering the different side hustles out there is a great place to start. Luckily, our team has outlined some of the key things you need to know about starting your new career as a Lyft driver – including the opportunities this could offer and how you can decide whether this is the right path for you.
GETTING STARTED WITH LYFT: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
As a professional rideshare driver, one of the most challenging first things you will need to consider is how to sign up and begin working. Luckily, getting started with Lyft is fortunately incredibly simple. However, before you jump right in with your new ridesharing career, be it on a part-time or full-time basis, you’ll need to keep a few things in mind.
First, you’ll need to consider customer service. When doing food deliveries (etc) for apps such as Uber Eats or GrubHub, customer service plays a much lesser role, since your actual time with the customer is pretty low. However, as a rideshare driver, you’ll probably spend quite a lot of time with your customer. Since the average rideshare trip is around 5.4 miles, assuming you travel slowly at 25mph, you’ll be spending almost 15 minutes with your customer. With this thought in mind, the importance of being friendly, approachable, and attentive is crucial.
Don’t forget, too – much of your earnings as a rideshare driver will come from tips. Unfortunately, just over one-third of Americans are pretty tight when it comes to leaving tips. With this thought in mind, giving a great standard of service is definitely influential in your final pay. Don’t worry – we’ll cover this in a bit.
If you’re confident you can provide great customer service to complete strangers, starting as a Lyft driver could be simple. Luckily, if you get great ratings and provide excellent customer service, you may begin to build a repertoire over time – increasing your chances of getting rides! However, while some platforms like Uber now offer “favorite driver” features, this is something we’re still waiting on with Lyft. Unfortunately, the Lyft rideshare platform still operates on a first-come, first-served basis.
CREATING YOUR LYFT DRIVER’S ACCOUNT
If you are happy you’ll be able to support local rideshare users with their own driving needs, you can begin looking at creating your Lyft driver’s account. You won’t be able to begin making rideshare trips with Lyft until your driver account has been approved. Unfortunately, due to the documentation requirements, approval can sometimes take several weeks. However, if Lyft receives the documents quickly, they aim to process applications ASAP, potentially within 24 hours.
How Do I Use Lyft For The First Time?
In order to use Lyft for the first time, you’ll first need to brush up on the Rider Policies and the basic qualifying driver requirements. From there, you will be able to apply for a Lyft driver account through the dedicated Lyft driver application site.
You’ll first need to provide your phone number and fill out the relevant documentation. Once you’ve done so, you will then need to schedule your vehicle inspection with a local Lyft garage or location to ensure your vehicle is safe to be on the road and used for passengers. Don’t forget to submit all required documents at this stage, as any missing files could significantly delay your driver application’s processing.
How Do I Join Lyft with My Car?
To join Lyft with your car, you’ll need to register the vehicle with Lyft, then take it to an approved location where they will check the car’s safety.
However, if you don’t own your own car or don’t want to use your vehicle for Lyft driving, you could consider the Lyft Express Drive service instead, where you can rent a car on short-term contracts to give rideshare driving a little more freedom.
How Do You Qualify to Be A Lyft Driver?
There are several main requirements to qualify as a Lyft gig driver. Of course, you’ll need to be old enough; Lyft requires its drivers to be at least 21 years of age, although some regions require drivers to be 25 years of age. Drivers should check this based on their state and city before getting started.
In addition to this, drivers will need to have access to a four-door vehicle (if not, you can hire a vehicle from the Express Drive program directly). There may be additional vehicle requirements depending on the city, too.
Drivers must also have a full clean driving license and will need to complete a background check before they can be approved for work as Lyft drivers.
Provided that you meet all of the main requirements, you should be able to begin working as a delivery driver for Lyft within a few weeks. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that the process of checking documentation can often take several weeks.
How Long Does It Take To Become A Lyft Driver?
The process of applying as a Lyft driver is incredibly quick. However, the actual application time for your role as a Lyft driver may take substantially longer, and this is well worth considering as part of your working routines. Indeed, working as a Lyft driver doesn’t have all that many requirements, but the lengthiest process will usually be getting approved.
From there, you can quickly begin your awesome new job as a rideshare driver; but be sure to allow time to get between destinations when working as a Lyft driver, as you may need to spend some time getting from A to B to pick up your first rider for the day.
HOW DO LYFT DRIVERS GET PAID?
Lyft drivers get paid through a series of four different metrics on a piece rate basis – in other words, rather than being paid by the hour, you get paid each time you provide a ride. However, the price per ride varies based on both the distance and the time, and it’s also possible to earn tips from the customer for your deliveries too. However, customer tips are fully optional, so if you don’t provide stellar service for your customers, they may be more hesitant or reluctant to offer a tip accordingly.
Do Lyft Drivers Only Get Paid in Tips?
Some people assume that Lyft drivers only get paid in tips rather than being paid by the platform. Fortunately, this isn’t the case at all. In fact, Lyft drivers receive a main pay from the Lyft app for their work, which is taken from the charged fee.
However, tips often represent a very significant proportion of Lyft drivers’ pay rates. If you want to increase your earnings with the Lyft platform, focusing on tips and providing great customer service is very important.
How Many Trips Can You Do in a Day With Lyft?
The number of trips you can do in a day with Lyft varies significantly based on many different factors. For example, the time between riders, the length of the trips in question, and the number of hours you work will all play a significant role.
There’s not actually a specific limit on the number of trips you should complete per day. And, thanks to recent changes to the Lyft system, short trips now receive a slightly higher rate than before to account for the increased travel time between pick-up destinations.
However, you will be limited to the number of hours you can work. Lyft requires all of its drivers to take at least a six-hour break after 12 hours of being in driver mode. This means that if you start work at 9 AM, you can continue working until 9 PM so long as you then take a 6-hour break or longer. Since many trips take around 20 – 30 minutes, this easily allows plenty of time to complete at least 20 trips per day, if not more.
When accepting rides as a Lyft driver, you’ll only have to complete a single stop for each trip, compared to multiple stops with other apps such as Uber. This can make accepting and completing trips with Lyft far easier than some other apps allowing riders to request multiple stops.
Do I Pay Taxes for Lyft?
When you work with Lyft, you’re a self-employed contractor. This means that you will be responsible for paying taxes on any earnings you make through Lyft, as it’s still a form of job income. However, the amount of taxes that you will pay will vary depending on how much you make with Lyft. You can also reduce your taxes when driving for Lyft by making the most of legal tax deductions.
Does Lyft Pay my Fuel Bills?
Unfortunately, unlike some delivery platforms, Lyft neither pays for nor contributes toward your fuel bills. As such, many drivers find themselves feeling put off by the thought of rideshare driving due to the high costs involved with working as a rideshare driver.
Fortunately, simple tips such as driving more controllably and turning your vehicle off while waiting to pick up a rider can all help reduce your fuel bills. Fuel is also tax deductible, so while you’ll have to pay money to fuel your car, you can save money on your taxes based on how far you go – assuming you track your mileage when working with Lyft, that is!
HOW CAN I BOOST MY EARNING POTENTIAL WITH LYFT?
If you’d like to boost your earning potential with Lyft, you could consider several simple options. We will cover more of these opportunities in Part 2, but for now, it’s worth keeping in mind how the Para gig driver helper app could help.
As one of the main ways to make a side income, it’s no surprise that many people want to earn more gig work. However, to land the best gig jobs during a ridesharing shift, you need the Para app to make choosing jobs easier.
Indeed, there’s nothing to say you have to accept every single rider. As such, if they’re not likely to offer a good return on investment (e.g., you’ll need to drive an unjustifiably long way to get there), you can simply decline the offer! Luckily, this sort of thing is rare since Lyft assigns drivers on a location basis. Still, there’s a lot you don’t see when first presented with the Lyft offer screen, which is worth keeping in mind. Don’t worry – the ability to accept/decline with Para makes this almost effortless.
So don’t get stuck with anything but dull jobs that don’t pay out as you deserve. Integrate driver tools with Para today and see how this could take your gig work to new heights! You might just be amazed by how much easier this can make your Lyft rides!
If you’ve been looking for a side hustle that can allow you to make a generous part-time or full-time income, becoming a Lyft driver might be the ideal option! However, it’s worth considering that there’s a big difference between starting off as a Lyft driver and actually making a successful career from your new side gig.
So, if you’d like to kickstart your new career, be sure to consider today’s tips – and don’t forget that providing amazing customer service is the most important factor in increasing your earnings with Lyft. Luckily, a simple greeting, being chatty, where reciprocated, and keeping a clean-fresh smelling car will definitely help with this.