How To Make More Money Driving For Uber

Are you an Uber driver that wants to know how to make more money? Then this post is for you as I share all the ways to earn more money and keep more of it in your pocket!

Driving for Uber is one of the most popular side hustles today. In fact, many people make a full-time income doing so.

But what makes some drivers so successful is knowing the tips and tricks to maximize their income.

How do I know what it takes to be an elite Uber driver? Because I was both an Uber driver and an Uber Eats driver. I spent months combining real-world experience with my business knowledge.

Below is everything I’ve learned. You can copy exactly what I did to become a top-rated driver with higher income.

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What Uber Tells You About Being a Successful Uber Driver

New Uber drivers receive a 15-minute training video on how to become a successful driver.

The video goes over things like how to offer good service and how to consistently get five-star ratings from passengers.

Other tips include opening the door for people, having extra phone chargers in the car for passengers to use, and even providing water bottles for thirsty customers.

While those are nice and having a high driver rating is important, there are more ways to be a successful Uber driver (and when I mean successful, I’m talking about bringing home more money)!

7 Ways to Boost Your Uber Earnings

1. Save Money on Gas With GetUpside

Gas is your biggest expense when you’re driving for Uber.

Waiting for passengers, sitting idle at traffic lights, stop and go traffic. You name it – it all eats gas.

Let’s face it. You’re going to be at the gas station a lot. What you need is something to save you money every time you stop at the gas pump.

GetUpside is your answer. GetUpside is a mobile app (available on Android and iOS) that gives you up to 25¢ per gallon cash back every time you fill your car up with gas.

All you need to do is use the app to check-in to the gas station you’re heading to, get gas, and you’ll receive cash back for every gallon you purchase.

If you’re new to GetUpside, download the app and add the referral code NINJA25 (add this code first) followed by the promo code UBER35 to get up to 85¢/gal cash back on your first fill-up.

For an average car with a 17-gallon tank, that’s $13.60 that you could earn immediately!

GetUpside often releases additional promo codes that you can add to your account. Check the list here and be sure take advantage of them to earn even more cash back.

2. Drive for Lyft at the Same Time (or Uber Eats, Instacart, DoorDash)

When I was driving for Uber, I hated the waiting game.

You know when you drop off a passenger and you’re counting down the time until there’s a new ride available? Sometimes it can take what seems like forever.

And you know what they say – time is money.

Don’t handcuff yourself to Uber. Do what I did and download another driving-for-money app.

For me, that was Lyft. Whenever I drop off my current passenger, I would turn on both Uber and Lyft. That way, I “double” my chances of getting a ride request.

You’ll spend less time waiting and more time making money. I know someone who had Uber, Lyft, Uber Eats, Instacart, and DoorDash all turned on at the same time.

That’s a true hustler!

Ninja Tip: Most driving or delivery apps offer a bonus when you start working with them. Take advantage of these new driving promotions to bring in more cash!

3. Use the Uber Passenger App

As an Uber driver trying to make the most money possible, you already know that you make less money when other drivers are in the same area. More competition means less ride requests – supply and demand, baby.

And while you can’t control how many drivers are working at the same time, you can use the Uber passenger app to your advantage.

For instance, you can use it to see where other Uber drivers are, which helps you relocate to a different area with less competition.

A great example is my experience working in Boston after a Red Sox game. I thought I’d get a ton of rides by camping out near Fenway Park, but it turns out that every driver had the same idea.

Instead, I drove towards the other side of the stadium where baseball fans inside restaurants were leaving and quickly got a notification for a ride.

Another benefit of the Uber passenger app is that it shows you more up-to-date information on surge fares. So if you’re chasing pricing surges, the passenger app is perfect.

4. Chase Surge Fares

Speaking of surge fares, you should definitely aim for areas that have surge pricing to make more money per ride, but be smart about it.

Don’t chase surge fares a few miles away from you because they may be gone by the time you get there.

Do it when it’s convenient to – when the area is not too far away or traffic getting there isn’t terrible.

5. Drive Up Surge Fares

Did you know you’re partly responsible for whether an area gets surge pricing or not?

Uber determines surge pricing based on supply and demand. When more people want rides than there are drivers available, Uber increases the fare price in order to encourage more drivers to come to the area.

Knowing this, you can game the system a bit.

When you anticipate increased demand, such as when bars are closing or a sporting event ends, log out of the driving app and turn on the passenger app 10 minutes before the high demand kicks in.

This will encourage Uber’s algorithm to start surge pricing, letting it think you’re a passenger looking for a ride instead of a driver ready to pick someone up.

6. Bring Your Own Food (and Water)

I had no idea sitting in a car for a long time makes you sore until I started driving for Uber (respect for all the drivers out there).

You’re going to be on the road a lot. I found myself taking 10-15 minute breaks every couple of hours.

When you do take breaks, it’s very tempting to stop by a convenience store or gas station to buy food and drinks. But that’s money coming out of your pocket and not in it.

Those $10 sandwiches and $2 bottles of water adds up quick. Convenient stores are convenient (duh), but you pay the price for that convenience. It’s much more savvy to bring your own food from home.

7. Identify Local Restrooms

Believe it not, a number of new Uber drivers waste a lot of time trying to find a public toilet or bathroom they can use.

Remember, time is money and you want to be killer efficient. Not only will you burn valuable time trying to find a restroom to use, you’ll also consume more gas trying to find one.

Scope out available restroom facilities before you drive. Supermarkets like Wholefoods and coffee shops like Starbucks are usually your best bets with free parking and unlocked restrooms.

The Bottom Line

Making money as an Uber driver is easy, but the median earnings is around $18 per hour (median means half of drivers earn more than $18/hr and half earns less than that amount).

You’re here because you want to be better than average so I hope you learned that everything from surge pricing to bathroom breaks has the potential to make or break this side hustle.

Are there any other hacks you’ve learned to make more money driving for Uber? Let me know in the comments section below!

About John Pham

John Pham is a personal finance expert, serial entrepreneur, and founder of The Money Ninja. He has also been fortunate enough to have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, and U.S. News & World Report. John has a B.S. in Entrepreneurship and a Masters in Business Administration, both from the University of New Hampshire.

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