Like many people, you may have just started driving for a large gig work provider like Uber or Doordash. While these jobs are flexible and sometimes well paid, it can get boring driving around alone all the time. Or you may even have a child you need to take care of during your gig shift. These situations will make you wonder if a passenger can accompany you during your trips on the job. Unfortunately, the rules for this aren't exactly clear, and it varies between companies. So, we researched each company's policies and have the answers for you here.
Whether or not you can carry a non-client passenger with you during a gig like Uber or Doordash depends on the task type. For rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft, passengers who are not the driver or paying customers are strictly forbidden. But for food delivery companies like Uber Eats, Doordash, or Grubhub, it's the opposite. The food delivery services don't mind you having a passenger as long as they don't interfere with the work.
Knowing the passenger regulations for each of the car-based gig work companies is useful and important. But, there are other factors you should consider before deciding to drive for one of these companies. So, please continue reading to find out more about other rules surrounding these gigs, the time it takes to get become a driver, and how much money you can potentially make by delivering food or transporting people.
Passenger Rules with Gig Work Tech Companies
Uber, Lyft, Uber Eats, and Doordash are all tech companies that employ gig-based labor to complete tasks like food delivery. Each of these companies has different regulations and agreements that the employees have to follow when carrying out their tasks. We researched all of those driver policy documents and guidelines to summarize them for you here.
Passenger Rules with Uber
According to the Uber Help section, a frequently asked questions page, drivers cannot have non-customer passengers in the car during their trips. They even explicitly ask that when you are online and accepting paying Uber passengers, to not allow any other passengers in the vehicle. Uber made this rule to make the ride more pleasant and safe for passengers paying through the app.
In regards to safety, Uber drivers require a background check before they start driving. This is impossible to control for passengers who are friends or family of the Uber driver.
Passenger Rules with Lyft
Lyft operates under the same rules as Uber for non-paying customer passengers. According to Lyft's Help section, Lyft drivers should not bring extra passengers who are family and friends along during their drives. For Lyft, it's also an issue of comfort and safety for their paying customers.
The same line of safety logic guides the rule that drivers should only give rides to people who pay through the app. It's better for the safety of all parties involved.
Passenger Rules with Uber Eats
Uber Eats is more relaxed than Uber on passenger rules. Uber's Community Guidelines apply to both regular Passenger Uber and Uber Eats. The section in those guidelines on the subject called "Extra riders and non-account riders" is specifically about the Uber passenger service and doesn't mention specific rules for Uber Eats.
The consensus on several online forums of Uber Eats drivers is that passengers are allowed on Uber Eats jobs. Those forums also say to ensure that the passengers don't affect the performance of the job when they are riding with you.
Passenger Rules with Doordash
Doordash is very much the same as Uber Eats when it comes to having passengers during tasks. On Doordash's Requirements page, the content is mainly about insurance and efficiency. They are less concerned with small details like whether or not you have a passenger in your car.
Again, the online agreement is that it's within the rules to have a passenger with you while completing Doordash deliveries. Multiple community members explain that since you are a contract worker with Doordash, how you conduct the work is entirely up to you.
Passenger Rules with Grubhub
Like the other two big food delivery companies, Grubhub doesn't have any rules against bringing passengers with you on deliveries. Instead, their website is focused on the overall process of becoming and being a Grubhub driver. As long as you work efficiently enough to gain good reviews from your customers, there is no reason why having a passenger will inhibit your productivity.
Can I Be an Uber Driver and Do Uber Eats at the Same Time?
It's tempting to kill two birds with one stone and give people Uber rides while on food delivery runs with Uber Eats. It's possible to do both at the same time, but not directly. Because Uber and Uber Eats offer their gigs through the same application, it's possible to be doing both simultaneously.
However, Uber will not let you accept a food delivery and transport a group of people simultaneously. You are only able to accept these tasks separately.
Do You Have to be an Uber Driver to Do Uber Eats?
Since Uber was around before Uber Eats, it may seem like you have to graduate from one to the other. But, on the contrary, you can sign up for Uber Eats even if you've never driven for Uber in the past.
The requirements to start driving for Uber Eats are less strict than the requirements for Uber. For example, Uber requires a 4-door car no more than 15 years old, while Uber Eats will allow any vehicle no more than 20 years old. There is also an easier age requirement for Uber Eats.
How Long Does it Take to Become an Uber Driver?
To become an Uber driver, you must complete a series of steps that include an application, background check, and driver screening. In all, the process usually takes between one and seven days, according to Uber's website. The background check portion of the onboarding can take the longest, but Uber notifies you if that happens. The other parts of the process are speedy to get you driving as soon as possible.
How Much Do Uber/Lyft Drivers Make?
Factors like location and time of day determine how much Uber and Lyft drivers make on average. According to Glassdoor, the best database of salaries and workplace reviews, Uber drivers who left reviews on their site made between $13 and $19 per hour. Lyft had a much wider gap in the reported salaries from that same data, somewhere between $12 and $21 per hour.
However, it is essential to remember that there are also several ways that people boost their earnings on platforms like Uber and Lyft. Upgraded rides like Uber Black for luxury cars or Uber Green for eco-friendly cars tend to net the driver more earnings. Further, prices go up to a premium during busy times like rush hour or after a sporting event. The cost during these times is called Uber Surge Pricing, and it's a good opportunity for drivers to make a little extra money.
How Much Do Uber Eats Drivers Make Per Delivery?
Like passenger transport gig jobs, the income you can earn from food delivery jobs largely depends on the area and the demand. For example, the L.A.-based Uber Eats driver in the video below completed 15 trips for a total of $85.88. That averages out to around $5.73 per order, many of which took only 15-20 minutes. This average is in line with other drivers' reported earnings online.
Please note that the driver in the video is also doing regular Uber simultaneously as Uber Eats. But he doesn't accept any rides until the end, but it makes his overall daily intake go up to the $125 that you see in the thumbnail below. Have a look at the video if you are curious:
App-based rideshare platforms like Uber do not allow you to bring non-paying customers with you while you're working. On the other hand, food delivery services don't seem to mind as long as the customer is happy. Both of these job types are decent ways to make money on the side while keeping a flexible schedule. If you need to have a passenger with you, we recommend going with food delivery gigs instead of the rideshares.
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