7 Things EVERY New UBER Driver Should Do Before They Get Started
One of the great perks of driving for Uber is how accessible it is. This is something that most anyone can do, without any advance technical know-how or formal training. Basically, if you can drive a car, you can work for Uber, or so the thinking goes.
And it’s true enough, to an extent. But just because Uber isn’t a technical field, that doesn’t mean there aren’t skills you need to develop as you go. It takes effort and strategy to really make big money driving for Uber. So for those who are just getting started, we have a few beginner tips—things you should do before you set out for your first fare.
Remember: There’s a Learning Curve
Our first advice has a lot to do with expectations. Remember that you’re not going to be the world’s most in-demand Uber driver overnight. You’re probably not going to make bank during your first week. You have to learn about Uber passengers, you have to learn about your market, you have to learn about the best times and places to look for passengers—there’s just a lot to consider. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t hit the ground running with this; instead, buckle down and devote yourself to learning Uber’s ins and outs.
Get Your Car Ready
To make it as an Uber driver, you have to maintain a high rating—if not a perfect 5, then at least a 4.6 or higher. And one of the primary factors passengers consider when rating drivers is the cleanliness of the vehicle. Be rigorous and thorough in scrubbing your vehicle clean; make it spotless. And don’t just clean it. Also stock it with the stuff you’ll need to truly accommodate passengers—bottled water, mints or gum, charging cords for iPhones and other wireless devices, etc.
To go the extra mile, you could even make an Uber box that you leave in your back seat, stocked with candy bars, hair clips, plastic baggies, paper clips, rubber bands, clothes pins, hand lotion, tissues… really provide passengers with anything and everything they might need. That extra effort can go a long way, as this is exactly the sort of thing that tends to impress Uber passengers. For more recommendations on what you need, check out YouTuber “The Simple Driver’s” video where he goes over 20 essential items every Uber Driver should have in the car.
Know Where You’re Going
Speaking of making an impression, a rating factor even more significant than vehicle cleanliness is sense of direction. Nobody likes an Uber driver who gets lost in his own home town, so make sure you know your market well—and research the specific area where you plan to concentrate your efforts. Also be sure you have Google Maps and a phone mount, allowing you to navigate easily and effortlessly.
Driving for Uber can be surprisingly demanding—not just mentally, but physically. You may find yourself sitting in the car for long stretches, day after day. This may make you stiff and sore, so we recommend incorporating physical fitness into your everyday life. Be active before an Uber shift, and especially do some yoga or other stretching exercises. Your body will thank you for it.
Locate Public Restrooms
You’re going to have to go eventually, and it’s ideal to find somewhere you can do it with minimal hassle. A public bathroom that you can get into and out of quickly, without having to go out of your way or pay for parking, is the ultimate place. A clean bathroom is especially nice! Spend some time scouting out the best locations in your area. Did we mention there are apps that help you out with this sort of thing?
Familiarize Yourself with the App
Do you know how to accept passengers? Are you familiar with surge areas, and how they are presented on the map? If you need Uber technical support, do you know where to search for it? Before you get going, you should know the Uber app inside and out. It’s not very complicated, thankfully, but it still requires a little bit of time.
Consider Hot Areas
It will take some time for you to get a feel for where the best places are in your town to pick up passengers—but even before you start driving, you can think about your city, pay attention to where the heavy foot traffic is, and jot down some places to drive around during your first week. You’ll pick up more info as you go, but you have to have some kind of starting game plan.
Get Going with Uber
Again, there’s a learning curve—and you’re not going to get everything right straight out the gate. With these tips, though, you’ve at least got a solid foundation for Uber success.
Do you agree with this list? Do you have any tips of your own to fellow new drivers? Share them here in the comments!