Should I Drive for Uber or Lyft? A Rideshare Company Comparison
If you’re considering becoming a rideshare driver, you need to figure out is which company is best for you.
The two most obvious choices are Uber vs. Lyft – they dominate the market and have the largest customer base, meaning more frequent pickups for their drivers.
You’ve been thinking you’d like to be a Lyft or Uber driver. Or maybe you’d like to drive for both Uber or Lyft. Picking up and transporting passengers for either of these leading rideshare companies is a great way to make some extra cash, but there are distinct differences between the two. If you’re wondering, “Is it better to be a Lyft or Uber driver?,” or maybe “Will I make more money driving for Uber or Lyft?”, we’ll help you answer that important question with some candid poll results from some of the Uber and Lyft drivers who rent their vehicles from HyreCar.
Did you know 20,000 rideshare drivers increased their earnings with a free Cargo store inside their car last year? Learn more about Cargo and how they help rideshare drivers HERE.
If you are an Uber driver, a Lyft driver, or both, we’d love to hear your opinions, so we can use your feedback in future articles. Thank you! Alright, let’s get to it!
This article details the results of the poll, as well as direct quotes from ridesharing drivers who gave us expanded answers.
NOTE: Just so you know, HyreCar is not affiliated in any way with either Uber or Lyft. We’re just a bunch of fun peeps whose goal it is to provide affordable rental cars to all you rideshare drivers out there. None of the opinions you’re about to read are our own, as this article contains the honest feedback and professional preferences that our car rental customers who have driven for both Uber and Lyft have generously provided us.
Uber vs. Lyft Poll Results from Rideshare Drivers:
From all of the ridesharing drivers we polled, the results favored working for Lyft vs Uber.
- Drivers who preferred Lyft: 19
- Drivers who preferred Uber: 7
- Who is bigger Uber or Lyft? Uber does have a larger customer base than Lyft, and is available in more states than Lyft, meaning you’ll pick up more rides as an Uber driver.
- If you ask “Which pays more Lyft or Uber?,” the answer is Lyft, by a nose. The company pays drivers slightly more, has a rider minimum, and they take less of a commission than Uber’s 20%. For example, drivers for both companies will take home between $13 and $15 an hour on average, but Lyft comes out closer to the higher range.
- Lyft is seen as being more driver-friendly than Uber when it comes to helpful, customer service. Uber customer service is sometimes hard to reach and the reps seem overwhelmed.
- It is easier to go through the Uber driver sign up than what it takes to be approved as a Lyft driver. For example, Uber allows cars from 2000 and newer, while Lyft requires a 2003 model or newer. Click here for a list of car and driver requirements for both companies.
Actual Quotes from Actual Uber & Lyft Drivers
Harry prefers driving for Lyft vs Uber, but he makes more cash working for Uber:
I always tell people that I prefer driving for Lyft, but I make more money and get more rides with Uber. I think Lyft does a great job cultivating a driver friendly culture though, and it shows with a lot of their features. Even before you start driving, Lyft greets new drivers with a mentor ride which allows them to get familiar with the app and meet another more experienced driver in person. Uber on the other hand, sends you a few 5 minute YouTube videos which nobody watches (I didn’t!) and then you’re thrown to the wolves.
But regardless of which company you prefer, you’re now a business owner as a rideshare driver and you need to diversify your income. Even if you are plenty busy with Uber, you’ll still want to have Lyft or another service as a backup for those times that you get locked out of your account or when the Uber app goes down for a couple hours. Ultimately though, I like to support Lyft and other services as much as I can because the competition is a good thing for drivers. The more companies there are, the more options drivers will have.
– Founder at TheRideshareGuy.com
Kingley is fan of driving for Lyft due to more tips from passengers and great driver support.
LYFT is better! Bottom line? Tips for the drivers! This erases most of your third party fees. You can defend a low rating given by a passenger, which by the way is ridiculous considering we are self employed contractors using a 3rd party app that has too much bearing on our livelihood. Great driver support. Great weekly bonus initiatives. Only thing I can complain about is there no actual place (like Uber off Westwood) that you can go to.
I went to LYFT after I was suspended for low ratings with Uber and I’ve never been back since because Lyft has a different caliber of passenger. Uber riders expect you to cater to them as if they are paying for a top tier black car limousine service. This is silly, considering the passenger is 75% off a taxi ride or any other concierge service. I would always pick LYFT over Uber mainly because of the ratings, also.
A note from your friends at HyreCar: For more info and suggestions regarding passenger tipping, check out our Uber Tipping Blog.
David also prefers working for Lyft vs Uber due to favorable driver policies regarding ride cancellations and appreciation for drivers.
Hands down, the answer is Lyft. While the total dollar amount you may make driving for Uber will likely be more than your total for Lyft, you will make less per ride with Uber. So, for each ride you make driving for Lyft, you will be making more for that ride than you would have made if you were driving for Uber. It’s also worth noting that, in general, Lyft’s policies toward drivers are much more favorable than Uber’s policy toward drivers. Here’s an example: when you arrive to pickup a Lyft passenger, the passenger is charged from that point forward, while with Uber, the passenger is charged only after they get in your vehicle and the trip begins.
Another example, when you cancel a trip because a rider is a no show, Lyft will give you the full $5 cancellation fee after 5 minutes, as long as you call the rider first. Uber only gives you $4 out of the $5, but only if the Uber app indicates that you arrived on time and at the location where the rider is actually located. In other words, if the rider or system indicates an incorrect location to be picked-up, you will not receive any cancellation fee regardless of who cancels the trip. Overall, it just boils down to Lyft having a much better appreciation for their drivers than does Uber.
– Founder at Schlaf Guru
If you ask Chad, “Is driving for Lyft better than Uber?,” he will definitely say yes for a higher class of passengers, very little Uber tipping, and less corporate commission taken from his paycheck by Lyft.
I prefer to drive for Lyft because I have never had a bad Lyft customer in 300 rides. I have had Uber customers who bring drugs (mostly marijuana and related paraphernalia) into my car. Others have been on hardcore drugs like meth who wouldn’t stop fidgeting and shaking. One man puked in my front seat about 20/30 seconds after I picked him up, (I was like, really dude?) and it ruined my night.
My Lyft customers tend to treat me better so I tend to give them better service. About 50% of my Lyft riders leave me a tip, and it’s not uncommon to get $5 on even a short ride. I never expect a tip for Uber, and if I do, I generally get one or two a day out of 25 rides. I have a nicer car (2014 Hyundai Sonata) that I meticulously clean and only Uber customers will bring greasy food in my car and think it’s okay to set it on my backseat.
With enough rides for Lyft there is a reduction in commission, so I try and do as many as I can each week. With Uber the rates are extremely low and it can be hard to turn a profit.
Xavier does driving for both Uber and Lyft but favors driving for Lyft due to higher earnings and nicer passengers.
I like driving for Lyft more but I do both. Uber is just better with demand. Lyft has some dead hours during the week but they are preferred because of higher earnings per ride and electronic tips are allowed. I like that I can see my rider’s destination if they enter it before I pick them up, and passengers tend to be nicer. Also, I can see their faces before I pick them up. I like being able to use Apple maps for my GPS. There is also a destination filter so I can get passengers only going in my direction.
Chris works for both Uber and Lyft, but prefers driving for Lyft.
I work for both Uber and Lyft. I personally prefer Lyft over Uber when I take a rideshare as passengers because the best Lyft drivers are very pleasant and always smile. They are faster to get to me, and I am always pleased with the service. Also, Lyft takes care of their drivers better, and their cars seem nicer and more comfortable. I feel that Lyft has better drivers who take this kind of job seriously.
Also, after I make $50 of earnings as Lyft driver, I have the option to deposit the funds after reaching that goal, which is why I prefer Lyft.
Ulandsey only drives for Uber because they offer more paths to higher income than Lyft does. He also had problems with the Lyft sign up.
I drive exclusively for Uber. I tried for two years to onboard with Lyft but I ran into CONSTANT problems enrolling with them. The barriers seemed impossible to overcome so I gave up trying to drive for Lyft.
I have picked up customers who ride with both services. Lyft customers almost always prefer to sit in the front seat, whereas Uber customers use the front seat only if there is a group during the ride. I like it when clients sit in the front seat because they tend to be a bit more friendly and enjoy conversation and/music.
I ultimately recommend Uber because they offer paths to higher income with UberSELECT, UberBLACK and UberLUX. Drivers can earn more money in less time by driving fewer miles with a more expensive car. $200 in an UberX vehicle is 223 passenger miles, 86 miles for UberSELECT, 57 with UberBLACK and 40 with UberLUX.
Rosalyn prefers driving for Lyft as the passengers seem happier than Uber passengers.
I prefer Lyft, but wish they were busier. Driving for Lyft also seems a lot calmer, as the passengers seem happier… Plus, Lyft is a little bit cheaper and they are always there not only for their passengers, but for their drivers as well.
Neena like the tech support that Lyft offers drivers as well as Lyft reward programs.
I love driving for Lyft better. I’ve driven for both Uber and Lyft, but Lyft tech support seems to be more helpful. I get a response the same day, sometimes in the next hour. Uber takes about three days to respond. I feel safer driving for Lyft and I appreciate that we get to keep 100% of our tips.
Also, the rewards program for sharing your code gives us $20 versus a mere $10 for Uber. The Lyft driver referral bonus is a whopping $500 if my referral completes 100 rides.
As a driver, Daniel appreciates Lyft’s vision as a company, plus the pink mustache on his car helps passengers find him.
I prefer to drive for Lyft because I like their company’s vision. I can get tips from passengers. I like the pink glowstache to help passengers find my car. I like that the Lyft app is easy to use. The app automatically updates my Waze’s destination when Lyft automatically adds a pick up location for Lyft Line. I don’t have to click an accept button like the Uber partner app. Lyft rocks!
Carry also likes driving for Lyft for ease of using the app.
I prefer Lyft because it doesn’t constantly ask me if I want to go offline or remain in the app when no rides are coming through, even if I’m still signed in for a while. And once I have $50, I can cash out without having to go to another bank or account number set up. This is very helpful when I’m crunched to pay a bill.
Jay drives for both Uber and Lyft but feels there is are more surges and riders with Uber. He doesn’t like Lyft Line as much as Uber Pool.
I’d like to say I like driving both. But as a driver, I notice Uber seems to have more riders and surges overall which makes it easier to make a living even during times when there are not as many people. Uber allows you to see surge multipliers by area so you know what your goal is in a specific area.
Lyft line also can be problematic compared to Uber Pool primarily because Lyft Line adds people to your route without asking if you would like to accept. Uber Pool gives you a choice, which is better, especially when you have passengers who want to change their destinations or you have drunk passengers who may not interact well in a carpool.
If you ever watched that I Love Lucy episode in the chocolate factory, Lyft Line reminds me of it. While it’s easy to accept one or two passengers, it starts getting crazy and out of control when you get 4 or 5 or 10 in one trip that you have to reroute for. Passengers also start complaining about having to slightly change route when picking people up and dropping them off along the way. Drivers will likely prefer to just drive one passenger a lot longer rather than drive and drop off multiple passengers which often leads to minuscule wages for the hassle and headache. This isn’t a chocolate factory.
Lynn considers Lyft to be more driver friendly and like that Lyft offer discounts on various purchases to drivers.
In general, I prefer to drive for Lyft. They’re definitely more driver friendly. They are considerate to their drivers, not only through the ability for passengers to tip, but they also offer discount opportunities for car-related expenses (i.e. tires, but also for entertainment like movie tickets etc). Uber offers none of these things. What one learns once they’ve driven for Uber awhile is that it’s absolutely not worth the cost to drive at all for Uber unless it’s surging, whereas with Lyft, due to the tipping offsetting the commission, it’s OK.
On the flip side of that though, Uber will offer promotions that are more frequent, varied and easily achieved then Lyft. As an example, the last few weeks I’ve received promotions from Uber where over the course of the week I’m guaranteed between 1.3x – 1.8x the regular fare rate regardless, if it’s surging or not.
I’m very fortunate due to the fact that I have total flexibility of when I drive, so I’m able to take advantage of promotions then someone who’s not able to.. As I said earlier, unless there is a promotion or it’s surging, you’re lucky to make minimum wage after gas costs while incurring the wear and tear on your car while driving for Uber.
Lyft driver Martin loves the Lyft instant pay option.
I prefer to drive for Lyft. The instant pay option is awesome and overall they treat me better. They keep their word and honor their promotions. I’m still battling Uber for the $1000 sign up bonus I was promised.
Justin has driven for both Uber and Lyft, but prefers Lyft as there is a minimum for rides, unlike Uber.
I have driven for both and I prefer to drive Lyft, as there is a minimum for rides unlike Uber, which is better protection for drivers that get a lot of short rides. There is also Express Pay, so I don’t have to wait a week to get my money, which lets me make a minimum of $50 before I can cash out.
This keeps gas in my car all week and is good for surprise expenses. Also, the Lyft passengers seem more laid back and friendly than most Uber riders. I am also not bombarded with ads and “incentives” to get my friends to buy a car. I don’t like some of Uber’s marketing.
Note: Try using an expense or mileage tracking app to help manage expenses. A good example is Hurdlr, which was built with this purpose in mind. Not only does it auto-track mileage and expenses, but it also offers real-time views of earnings and potential tax deductions.
Click HERE to download Hurdlr on iOS and Android.
Scott prefers driving for Uber more than Lyft because he can go to an Uber office and talk about issues with real live people, unlike Lyft.
I’m listed on both Uber and Lyft platforms but I find myself preferring Uber more often. There are several reasons why Uber is more appealing to me as a driver. They have an instant pay option which has been a lifesaver in this expensive city. I have the option to access my earnings the very instant I’ve completed a ride or delivery.
They offer Uber driver support with actual live people in an office. I can go there and discuss anything about my account and any issues that I may have as a driver. Lyft does not offer that. They also have relationships with car dealerships and have offers specifically for Uber drivers.
A note from your friends at HyreCar: Click HERE for more info about Uber Driver Support
John L. likes how Lyft drivers receive tips in the app, which encourages passengers to leave a gratuity.
I’d much rather work for Lyft as the drivers are able to receive tips in the app, so it is almost in a way encouraged. This reminds riders that it IS AT LEAST an option for them to tip. Uber still does not offer this option. In fact, there is even misleading info on Google when you search for “should I tip my Uber driver?” Often an article is mixed up and something that is actually referring to UBERTaxi is quoted for UberX. I think it states something about the tip being included with the fair.
Cody drives for Lyft because passengers are friendlier.
Lyft because they are the first ones to come out with express pay and they have a great company philosophy. Most of the time Lyft passengers are way friendlier than Uber passengers. Also, Lyft drivers are usually better than Uber drivers. Plus, what could be cooler than a colorful light up mustache on your front grill?
Bonnie loves driving for Uber because of income incentives and less stringent car requirements
I love Uber! I looked into how to sign up for Lyft but my car is a 2003 and they require a year newer. Lyft could lower vehicle requirements just the year as that would be great! Uber has a lot of incentives they are very honest with pay. Also, they respond to issues very promptly!
Charles drives for Uber and Lyft but prefers Uber. He doesn’t like Lyft’s pink mustache on his car among other things.
I’ve driven for Uber and Lyft and maintain an active account on both. My preference is to drive for Uber.
- Lyft required me to meet with a mentor, taking my photo, doing a ride along, etc. I found this to be pretty corny and scheduling our meeting took several days.
- I like Lyft’s ability to withdraw earnings in excess of $50 early but Uber recently enabled the ability to withdraw at any time.
- Lyft has a destination filter. When I was ‘done’ driving for the night I would turn to Lyft and set a destination filter picking up anyone along my route. Uber recently added the same functionality.
- My first ride with Lyft was a pool ride and I found the experience awkward. Uber’s pool rides have increased significantly in the last few weeks so I’m not sure there’s much of a difference anymore.
- Lastly, I’m not so keen on the pink mustache. I prefer the marketing of a tech says letter U over the cutesy mustache.
Those things being said, I recommend anyone doing ride share sign up and maintain both. Try both and see which you prefer but keep the other as a backup. I’ve been in a position where Uber was verifying my updated insurance and I was unable to use the app for a few hours, so I turned to Lyft.
Todd sees advantages to both Uber and Lyft.
I drive for both in the Provo, Orem, and Salt Lake areas of Utah. There are advantages to both Uber and Lyft. Lyft pays better and has the option to have customers tip through the app. Uber pays a little less because of the app popularity and marketing. So more customers use it. I’d say I’m busier through Uber.
Vivica prefers driving for Lyft over Uber because Lyft passengers tip more.
Hello, I’ve been driving for Lyft and Uber since August of last year. Although I love both, I prefer Lyft over Uber. Riders are usually more upbeat and friendly plus I love the tips which usually balance out the 20% Lyft fees from the rides. Drivers keep 100% of tips. Not to mention the option for Express pay. when I use it my money is in my bank account within the hour. Love it!!!!
Baron is a satisfied Lyft driver. Better pay. More tips, and social events for drivers.
I prefer Lyft. The pay is better with tips and also they give drivers the ability to make 10 and 20 percent bonuses. They even have cool events for the drivers where they give away prizes and have pizza. Overall they treat their drivers better.
Linda likes Uber driving better than Lyft because there is usually an Uber driver bonus available.
I prefer driving for Uber over Lyft for several reasons:
- Uber is better known, at least here in this area. When I would work both apps at the same time, I would get 3 times more calls than with Lyft; and even if it seemed Lyft paid better, adding tips, overall I made more money with Uber.
- Several months ago, Uber sent out a questionnaire asking if we, the drivers, felt like we were important to the company. I added many comments at the end, pretty much saying I get the idea you don’t care and don’t even know we exist. Within just weeks, Uber responded by inviting drivers in for appreciation pizza, ice cream and in-person
- details about where the company is heading and other things that concern us. The local Uber people took notes on what we thought may help improve Uber for us as drivers. After that, I also received several calls from Uber San Francisco asking for more input if I had any. Most companies I have worked for in the past have sent around questionnaires such as these but never has anyone ever responded to them like Uber has.
- Uber has offered me some unbelievable monetary incentives at various times that made driving for them very profitable.
- The customer service is great. Every time I have ever had to contact them, they have answered me within a half hour and were more than professional.
- When I first started, Jan. 2016, I thought the app was okay, but a couple of months later, they did an entire overhaul on it and it is so much easier to navigate to find any answer and they improve it weekly.
- I don’t need it very often but the cancellation fees are better $10 rather than Lyft’s $5 when a rider cancels or is a no-show.
- Lyft doesn’t allow you to cancel a ride and charge the customer after a certain period of time. For example, I drove around an apartment complex for 20 minutes trying to find the rider who requested me. I made several calls and texts to him that weren’t answered. Finally, when the guy answered, he said he made a mistake, so I had to cancel the ride and I was out my time, gas and money. The only other way I could have made any money would have been to start the ride as soon as I was at the apartment complex and then he would have been charged while I drove around looking for him, but how do you think he would have rated me if he didn’t even take the ride? A “one” and a complaint, probably. He said he accidentally must have hit the app. If it had been an Uber call, 5 to 10 minutes later after he did not answer calls or texts, at least I would have made $7.50 instead of nothing, and Uber customer service would have handled it, and I would have kept my high ratings.
Bo drives for both but leans toward Lyft due to pleasant customers and cash out availability.
They’re both great companies, but I prefer and drive for Lyft more. The passengers tend to be more relatable and nicer, and I also like that Lyft gives you the option of cashing out after you’ve made a certain amount. Nice when you’re strapped for cash.
Kayla prefers driving for Lyft due to the user-friendly Lyft app but is appreciative of Uber’s different levels of income.
First off, I would like to start by saying thank you to HyreCar for the company you started which gives me an opportunity to drive other vehicles when my car in the shop. It’s really helpful to keep the bills paid. So now to the question: I personally prefer Lyft better just because I felt the app was more user-friendly and I felt comfortable in general with the prices consumers were paying, considering I was a Lyft customer as well.
However, Uber now is my favorite mainly because of the wide range they are trying to cover and the different job opportunities they are making available in Austin. I didn’t often go out and have drinks or enjoy night outs downtown prior to rideshare services because taxis were just too high priced and inconvenient. Once Lyft came around, I got to enjoy several nights with my friends, having a safe ride to and from home at a low cost.
Last but not least, there was a week when my restaurant had a small kitchen fire and we had to close for business. Having Lyft and Uber to drive for ad make a little extra cash during that time was really, really helpful. I hope you are able to expand HyreCar and the other ride-sharing that’s coming available to Austin.