For the past three nights, after my son went down to sleep, I went out for a few hours to drive for Uber. Before I started, I figured I would quit after one day after seeing what’s it’s like, but it’s been really fun! Last night, I drove into D.C. for the first time as an Uber driver, and it took me to places I had never seen before. It was thrilling experience exploring new areas of the city in the middle of the night.
Why did I do it?
I was curious to see what it was like. I wanted to see what kind of people take Uber and where they go. Having never taken an Uber ride myself, I wanted to see what the Uber experience was like. I was also curious to see what Uber drivers actually make.
What does it take to become a driver?
All you need to become a driver is a car (model year 2006 or newer), license, registration, insurance, and state inspection certificate. Once you provide all that, they run a background check. When it clears, you’re good to go.
Who takes Uber?
I’ve had a wide variety of mostly younger clientele including college students, recent grads, drunk girls, and young professionals. I had a guy who had just gotten out on bond and was dealing drugs on the phone for the entire ride (guess he didn’t learn his lesson). Some just sit in the back and are on their smartphones, but I’ve also had quite a few interesting conversations.
How much do drivers actually make?
Uber takes a good chunk of your fare (25% plus a Rider Fee), but you still end up with a decent amount (usually about 2/3 of the total fare). The amount you earn will vary, but I would say on average, you will earn about $16-$20/hour (more in surge areas). I was out for about 3 hours last night and made $64.46. Two of my trips were in surge areas, which helped, and one of my trips was from Fairfax into D.C., which accounted for almost half of my earnings. Below is my Thursday payout. I drove for about 3h 10m, including the 36m it took me to drive home from D.C.
I also signed up to start driving for Lyft (referral link for Lyft). I think I’ll go out about 1-2 times a week from now on for a couple hours a night. I’ll do it as long as it continues to be fun. Plus, this also helps me move closer to the goal of financial independence.