Driving in your spare time, or even as a full-time gig, can be an appealing prospect for anyone looking for a way to make more money and be in control of their schedule. As an Uber driver, you’ll have the opportunity to choose where and when you work, get paid automatically and regularly, and meet new people on a regular basis. However, there are a few requirements the company has in place that new drivers must meet, and a few disqualifying qualities you’ll want to be aware of. Here’s our list of requirements you have to meet in order to become an Uber driver:
Background Check and Driving Records Check
Uber uses a third-party company to complete background and driving records checks that go back approximately 7 years. Major driving infractions such as drunk driving, DUI, DWI and having a suspended license will likely disqualify you from becoming an Uber driver. Criminal histories that include convictions of both misdemeanors and felonies can also be disqualifying, depending on the crime. Since Uber drivers are considered independent contractors, the company does not drug test or conduct credit checks.
Current License and Vehicle Registration
Uber requires its drivers to be licensed to drive in the U.S. for at least one year, and have a current license and registration in the state they wish to drive in. Any applicant under the age of 23 must have at least three years’ driving experience, so if you were a late bloomer and didn’t get your license until you turned 21, you won’t qualify just yet.
Current State Minimum Insurance Requirements
Drivers must also carry state minimum insurance on their vehicle they plan to drive for Uber rides. The company doesn’t require you to purchase commercial insurance or obtain a commercial license, but you do have to provide proof of current coverage. You will want to check with your insurance provider to determine if they will cover rideshare activity, as most will require you to add this to your policy.
Vehicle Requirements for Uber Drivers
Uber won’t let you drive just any vehicle for their ridesharing customers. Uber activation centers will conduct an inspection for free, or you can have this done at an auto shop that is licensed by your state for a small fee. Things of concern during the inspection will be safety features and condition of your seat belts, lights, brakes and tires.
Vehicles must also be no older than 10 years, but some cities have different requirements. The model must also have 4 doors and hold at least 4 passengers. Uber also won’t consider vehicles with a salvage or restored title.
Uber requires its drivers to be at least 21 years old and have a Social Security number for accounting purposes. If you aren’t old enough you’ll simply have to wait, but if you need a Social Security number you can apply for one at the local Social Security Administration Office.
One interesting fact about applying to Uber is that you don’t have to have a vehicle before you apply. If you need to find out whether you even qualify first, go ahead and submit the application and go through the background and driving records checks. Once you are approved, you can determine whether to lease, rent or buy a vehicle to drive for them. Lenders can also consider the fact you have a job in place waiting to help pay for the vehicle, which may make it easier to obtain lending for this purpose.
Driving for Uber can be a great way to earn extra income or even become a full-time gig. Whether you’re between jobs or just want to try something new that will allow you to meet all kinds of new people on a daily basis, this may be the job for you. You just have to remember that there are some regular background requirements and current license, registration and insurance details you’ll have to provide to the company, just like most other jobs. The good news is that as long as you meet these minimum requirements, there’s very little training to worry about – and you’ll enjoy driving to new parts of your hometown and exploring your city on a regular basis, all while someone else foots the bill!