How To Make More Money With Uber [7 Tricks For Drivers]

How To Make More Money With Uber [7 Tricks For Drivers]

1. Schedule Driving Times Around Surge Pricing

Uber drivers all have one favorite word: SURGE.

When there are a lot of ride requests in a certain area and not enough drivers to support the high demand, Surge pricing kicks in. It’s Uber’s way of getting more drivers out on the road in that area.

During Surge, Uber assigns a multiplier to the price of the ride. It can be 2x, 4x, 5x, etc., which means that riders will pay more and drivers will earn more during Surge rides. We’ve seen Surge multipliers in the double digits on holidays!

Surges can happen at any time, and if you drive during a Surge, you’ll definitely make more money. But if you want to make the most of Surge pricing, you’ve got to know where the Surge is.

There’s no guarantee of a Surge, but there are some key times where Surges are much more likely to occur. On Friday and Saturday nights (especially late at night when the bars close) you’re sure to find lots of drunk people looking for a ride home. If you drive in a densely populated downtown area with a lot of bars or clubs, there’s a good chance you’ll see a late-night Surge.

Surges are also more likely to happen during morning and evening rush hours. In the hours from 6 to 9 am and from 5 to 7 pm, everyone either wants to get to work or get home. Drive during those hours and you might be able to catch a Surge.

Surge pricing also tends to occur when major events, like sporting events and concerts, let out. Know what events are happening in your city and position yourself in that area before the event ends. If you’re lucky, you’ll be one of the first drivers to catch the Surge and may be able to get multiple rides at the Surge multiplier.

It’s best for full-time rideshare drivers to plan their weekly schedules around these popular Surge times. Drive when it’s busy. Rest when it’s slow. Let your downtime be from after the bars close until the morning rush hour begins, then again between the morning and evening rushes. The point is to do as much driving as possible during the Surge.

6. Check for Weekly Promotions

Sign-up bonuses aren’t the only way to earn extra cash with Uber. They often have weekly bonuses for drivers who meet a certain set of criteria.There are two main forms of weekly promotions: Quests and Boosts.

Uber Quest is the company’s way of gamifying your driving experience. A typical quest requires that you complete X amount of rides in X amount of time. Finish the required amount of rides in the given time frame and you can enjoy a nice bonus. This is just one more way that Uber incentivizes drivers to push harder and complete more rides in a given city or at a certain time of day.

Another popular promotion is the Uber Boost. It’s different from Surge pricing, but similar in concept. If you work during busy hours in featured areas, you can earn a boost that’s 2x or more than the typical fare. Surge pricing supersedes boost pricing, so if the Surge is higher, you’ll earn the Surge fare.

It can be difficult to take advantage of Uber Quest and Uber Boost for part-time drivers, but if you really need the extra income, it is well worth it.

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Bonus Income

After the bonus is collected, I’d just use Uber to pick up passengers along the way to wherever you’re going using their destination feature. I realized it’s not worth driving full-time anymore. The reason is because the hourly gross wage drastically declined since I started due to a large increase in drivers.

The great thing about this $300 income is that I had no idea it was coming. It was completely out of the blue, like seeing an Amazon gift box from a stranger at my front steps during a non-holiday period. Furthermore, it’s not like I’ve written a ton of articles about my Uber experience either. I only have two dedicated articles out of 2,000+ articles on Financial Samurai that revolve around my Uber experience.

Out of the $414.21 income, roughly 25% was active, and 75% was passive. As someone who is trying to maximize his time based on an hourly wage, such a high ratio for passive income is solid!

How does delivering with Uber Eats work?

Once you’ve completed the process to start making deliveries, the first thing you’ll do is log into the app to begin receiving delivery requests. The app will let you know of an order for pickup near you, and with a quick tap, you can accept it.

Once you accept the order, the app can navigate you to the restaurant using optional GPS. The restaurant should have the order ready when you arrive, so let the staff know you’re picking up an order with Uber Eats once you get inside. You can also check the app for helpful notes from the business or to see if there are multiple orders to pick up.

Once the order is in hand and you’re back on the road, the Uber Eats app will provide the customer’s location for drop off and navigate there with GPS if you choose. The customer will be alerted when you’re close so they can be ready when you arrive. You’ll be given details of where exactly to drop off the order, including if the customer has requested delivery to their door or if they’ll meet you outside. You can also check the app for any notes left by the customer for speedier delivery.

And in case that’s not enough, you can always contact the customer or the restaurant right through the app. Or if you need help, you can contact Uber support.

While on your way to a pickup, you may also get other delivery requests from the same restaurant. You can decide whether or not you want to accept these additional deliveries. If you have multiple orders, the app can guide you to each customer accordingly using the optional GPS. As you’re delivering, you might also be offered requests for back-to-back deliveries. This can be a great way to ensure you’re waiting less so you can earn more.

How Much Can You Actually Make on Uber?

You can make a median salary of $56,066 as a full-time driver for Uber in the United States, according to ZipRecruiter. Annual income could go as high as $130,000 or as low as $14,500, depending on several factors. Factors that affect median earnings include hourly wages, the type of Uber driving, and location. For example, Uber Eats drivers currently earn an average annual salary of about $40,176 .

The top three highest paying cities for Uber rideshare drivers at the time of writing are San Mateo, CA, Berkeley, CA, and Daly City, CA. Full-time Uber driver earnings in these cities include an average of $69,121, $66,778, and $66,592 yearly respectively.

What About Uber Eats?

Uber rideshare drivers also have the option to deliver orders through Uber Eats. This entails opting in, accepting delivery orders and then transporting food and beverages to customers.

Choosing to deliver food can boost an Uber driver’s pay, especially on days when rides are slow. Uber encourages its drivers to diversify their payment options, depending on demand.

Uber Eats pays drivers a delivery fare based on pick-up, drop-off and distance. There is also a similar surge pricing for food delivery known as “Boost” that will increase pay at certain times of the day.

More Rides Could Mean More Money

One way to make money with Uber is to give more rides. Of course, that’s easier said than done. You may not be able to predict when you’ll get the most number of rides in the shortest amount of time. There are a couple of ways to ensure that you are driving smarter (and making more money) rather than just waiting around for fares:

Know Your Local Peak Hours

It can also pay to drive at times when you expect to see more ride requests. If you know that the waterfront in your town is always hopping on summer evenings, then it’s a good idea to plan to drive then.

Don’t Chase Busy Areas

That said, you might only take advantage of busy areas or times that you anticipate (like the day a popular singer is at the local arena) or those that happen to occur nearby. If you chase busy areas across town, it’s might not be as busy by the time you get there, and you’ll have wasted the time and gas.

Bring Snacks–For Yourself

Many Uber drivers offer bottled water and snacks to their rides. This is an excellent way to make the ride a comfortable one for your passengers. But it can be easy to forget your own rumbling tummy. Which means you might find yourself hitting up a fast food restaurant for a snack, which just cuts into your profit and is not great for your waistline.

Coming prepared for your own needs can be an important way to help you pocket as much profit as possible.

See also: Make Money Delivering Food with Doordash

About the Author

Emily Cahill is a writer with over three years of experience creating digital content. Previous to that, she worked as a freelancer in publishing while attending Trinity College for English/Rhetoric. She specializes in SEO-driven content that highlights the unique properties of a product or service while making them digitally “findable,” particularly for the finance, geek culture, and lifestyle niches.

Ufuoma Ogono

About the author: Ufuoma is a veteran freelance writer whose work has also appeared in Smartereum, Cyber Jam Limited, and Binance. Her goal as a content writer is to help readers chase their careers in technology and follow their dreams. Ufuoma attended of Delta State University, where she earned her BSc in Sociology and Psychology.

Ideas that may help maximize your earnings with Uber Eats

Accept orders, make deliveries, and get paid; there’s not much to this side hustle. But there are things you can do to try to maximize your earnings with Uber Eats:

  • Drive a fuel-efficient car: If you’re making deliveries by car, then there’s no way to avoid spending money on gas — unless, of course, you go electric. Using one of the best credit cards for gas can also help, but the more fuel-efficient your car is, the less it might eat into your pay.
  • Deliver during hours when it’s busy: You won’t be the only one out there making deliveries, so timing might be the difference between keeping busy with deliveries and not making any money.
  • Earn tips: No matter how hard you try, you’re not going to get a tip from everyone. However, if you focus on providing the best service possible, you may be able to increase your chances of getting a little something for making their experience a positive one. Since you keep 100% of your tips, there’s earning potential here.

Uber Downsides

While Uber can be a great side hustle for anyone with a car, it’s not all profits and roses. To start, the earnings can be unpredictable. While this is common with any kind of independent contractor opportunity, it can be especially true of Uber since you are dependent on other people using the Uber app.

There’s also the weirdness factor in inviting strangers into your car. While the majority of riders are going to be perfectly lovely people just trying to get where they need to go, sometimes drivers will have to deal with aggressive, drunk, or even vomitous passengers.

Coming prepared for any potential rider–which includes having water and snacks available to help those struggling to keep that last tequila shot down, and having vomit bags for those who can’t–can help overcome the worst of the weird passengers.

Recent Developments

On March 12, 2022, Uber announced that it would begin implementing a temporary fuel surcharge starting on March 16 as a way to compensate its drivers and couriers for rising fuel prices. In the U.S., the surcharge for an Uber trip will be either $0.45 or $0.55 and $0.35 or $0.45 for an Uber Eats order, depending on location. The entire surcharge will go directly to the company's workers. The company said the surcharge was temporary for at least 60 days, after which it would conduct a reassessment.

On Jan. 27, 2022, Uber said that it had reached an agreement with the largest services-sector union in Canada, the United Food and Commercial Workers Canada (UFCW) union. Uber agreed to provide employee-like benefits to contractors who work as ride-hail and food delivery drivers, such as pensions, sick pay, and other workers' rights.

In 2021, Uber reached a similar deal with Britain's GMB union, which gave GMB the power to represent as many as 70,000 drivers. Uber has fought with labour unions throughout the world for years over whether its drivers should be reclassified as regular employees rather than as contractors.

How I Mad Over $100 An Hour Driving For Uber

There are two ways any enterprising individual should think about ways to make money.

The first way is to think about the total amount of money you can earn in a year, since the yearly salary is the standard way to calculate income. If you think this way, you’ve got the employee mentality. There’s a natural tendency for the majority to slack off or do the minimum over time since you’re going to get paid a set rate, no matter how little you work. Gotta love it!

The second way to think about earning money is through the hourly rate. If you think this way, you’ve got the independent contractor mentality. I think in this way because I decided to hit the eject button from Corporate America back in 2012 due to boredom, a lack of correlation with compensation and effort, and my intense desire to be free.

I only want to actively work about 25 hours a week so I can spend time on my online business and do other fun things. Therefore, my goal is to maximize my income on those 25 units a week.

So How Much Do Uber Drivers Actually Make?

Many Uber drivers are students who want to pay their way through college. How much Uber drivers earn varies from one driver to another, and it all depends on how much they drive, and many other aspects, such as car maintenance, gas expenses, tolls, insurance, and so on. The time of the drive is also relevant to the amount a driver is going to earn at the end of a ride. It is hard to calculate an average number.

Overall, a driver is said to get an average weighted driver wage of $21.90 per hour. If a driver works 30 hours a week, the rough projected annual driver salary would be around $34,164.

Bonuses

However, it is important to consider that drivers do receive bonuses sometimes. It can be a little rare, but they still get some advantages. Some of the bonuses include sign-on bonuses and referral fees.

If you are still curious about numbers in different major cities across the United States, then check out this 2019 chart that says how much drivers made per hour before expenses and after TNC commission.

MarketEarnings Per Hour MedianEarnings Per Mile MedianEarnings Per Trip Median
Pittsburgh, PA$18.80$0.96$11.28
Los Angeles, CA$17.07$0.87$9.84
Dallas, TX$15.64$0.70$10.95
Phoenix, AZ$16.78$0.71$10.00
New York, NY$20.96$1.10$13.33
Washington, DC$17.44$0.94$10.23
Boston, MA$20.88$1.07$10.95
Chicago, IL$17.84$0.98$10.78
Baltimore, MD$15.90$0.81$9.90
Atlanta, GA$13.79$0.66$9.67
Miami, FL$12.69$0.69$8.67
Austin, TX$17.19$0.84$10.88
Detroit, MI$16.60$0.68$10.65
New Jersey$18.41$0.91$10.50
Houston, TX$14.26$0.63$10.85
Philadelphia, PA$17.22$0.99$9.71
Bay Area, CA$21.21$1.06$11.67
San Jose, CA$21.80$1.00$11.51
Seattle, WA$20.35$1.14$11.47
San Diego, CA$17.15$0.79$9.39
San Antonio, TX$12.44$0.64$9.29
Columbus, OH$14.46$0.76$10.05
Indianapolis, IN$14.69$0.66$9.29
Denver, CO$19.10$0.87$11.85
Jacksonville, FL$13.87$0.64$9.09
Charlotte, NC$13.57$0.62$9.31
Las Vegas, NV$15.37$0.89$8.61
Oklahoma City, OK$14.05$0.62$8.29
Nashville, TN$15.52$0.77$10.00
Kansas City, MO$16.85$0.69$11.23
New Orleans, LA$14.33$0.90$10.31
Tampa, FL$12.55$0.63$9.01

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