How Do I Sign Up to Be a Rideshare Driver?

By Roxy FavrettoLast Updated Jun 24, 2020 7:19:24 PM ET
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Photo Courtesy: Lyft/<a href="https://youtu.be/lNAAM-Mzg9o">YouTube</a>

Signing up to be a rideshare driver can be a rewarding experience, especially if you appreciate the freedom and flexibility of choosing your own schedule and work area. After all, you only accept rides when and where you want. Uber, Lyft and Via are three of the most popular rideshare programs, and you can sign up to drive for any — or even all three — of these companies.

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Of course, there is a verification process you have to successfully complete, but it’s still likely to be the easiest "interview" you ever had. In general, to become a driver, you have to pass a background check and provide valid verification documents to prove you’re legally licensed to drive, legally allowed to work in the country (proof of residency) and your vehicle is insured. Some companies also dictate specific rules for the vehicle you plan to drive. Let’s take a look at some of the details.

Lyft

The first step to becoming a rideshare driver with Lyft is to start the application process by providing basic information about yourself, including your driver's license number, phone number and home address. After you provide your phone number, a verification code is sent to your phone and must be entered to proceed with the application. You will also need to specify whether you have a car or will need one to drive for Lyft. Exact vehicle requirements for Lyft vary by state and sometimes by city. You must agree to Lyft's Terms of Service before moving on to the next step.

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Photo Courtesy: @Lyft/Twitter

Once you complete this initial step, Lyft will inspect your vehicle to ensure it's suitable for the driving service. The company will find a location that's convenient for you and schedule an appointment. If you're using a rental car, Lyft will do the inspection before you pick up the vehicle. Whether you plan to drive your own car or use a rental, you will have to undergo a background check, including your driving history. It typically takes a few days for the background check to be completed, and you cannot drive for the company during that time.

If you can’t drive your own car, you can secure a rental through Lyft's ExpressDrive service. Once your application is approved, it's up to you to decide where and when you would like to pick up the vehicle. Before you start driving, you have to pay a fully refundable security deposit. The ExpressDrive program offers unlimited Lyft miles along with a certain number of personal miles. Ride requirements will vary, depending on where you live. For example, if you live in New Jersey, you must give 20 rides every seven days to qualify for the program.

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In terms of payment, most drivers find it easier to deduct the total rental cost from their earnings. If you only want to try driving for Lyft for a short period of time or you decide you don’t want to continue driving for the company, you can return the car at any point after seven days.

You can monitor the status of your application online, and once it's approved, you will be ready to begin your career as a Lyft driver. To start driving, open the Lyft app on your smartphone and turn on the driver mode. The next step is to accept a ride request, followed by picking up the passenger at a specified location. Once the ride is over, the payment will be processed through the app using a credit card that the passenger has chosen to save on file.

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Uber

Sign up to drive with Uber by providing basic information online, such as your first and last name along with a phone number, email address and the city where you will drive. You will be asked if you drive a personal vehicle, taxi or delivery vehicle. The sign-up box will ask you to specify whether you have a car or will need a car to drive for Uber.

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Photo Courtesy: Auto Auction Rebuilds/YouTube

You have to meet certain requirements and provide verification documents to start using Uber's Driver app. The requirements include at least one year of driving experience as well as meeting the minimum required age to drive in your particular city. You must also submit the necessary information for a background check. Both a copy of your valid driver’s license and proof of residency must be submitted. If you own your vehicle, you must also provide current insurance information. You will have the opportunity to upload all the required documents along with your photo. The final step is to ensure your car qualifies for service or to begin the rental car process.

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If you need a rental car, you can choose from a selection offered by Uber's vehicle partners, such as Hertz, Zipcar, Avis and other reputable organizations. These road-ready vehicles come with little to no upfront costs. You also won't have to sign a long-term contract to drive an Uber rental car.

The sign-up process to drive with Uber is the same whether you have a vehicle or plan to rent. Once your application is approved, you can browse the available vehicles in your city and then reserve and pick up your vehicle. Choose to rent a vehicle by the hour, week or longer. Pricing will vary based on the amount of time you keep the car and the specific vehicle partner you use for the rental. Once you're cleared to drive with Uber, you can set your own schedule as well as select how and when you get paid.

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Via

Via's sign-up process looks less daunting at first glance, as you only need to fill out your phone number and the city where you will drive. Once you enter that very basic information, you can create a personal profile to tell the company more about yourself and how you plan on driving with Via.

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Photo Courtesy: @ABC7NY/Twitter

The next step is to upload your driver's license, insurance and other relevant documents. Once that step is complete, Via will send you to its registration center to finish the registration process. After your approval is complete, you can download the Via Driver app and begin accepting ride requests.

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Via supports its drivers with guaranteed hourly earnings along with low service fees. You can also rent a vehicle at an affordable price, if necessary. You will also have the flexibility of choosing whether you want to get paid by the hour or by the ride. Via sends out its rates for the upcoming day so you can plan accordingly.