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Iceni Magazine | October 22, 2020

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How to become superstar Uber driver

How to become superstar Uber driver

Working for Uber provides taxi drivers a great opportunity to earn additional income through the flexibility this line of work offers.

This guide will help you understand the basics on getting started, employment rights, how much you can potentially earn and what fees you’ll need to pay.

If you’ve got access to a vehicle and time on your hands, Uber can help you make some extra money. One thing to note straight away is that if you’re transporting passengers, your standard personal car insurance policy won’t cover you. You’ll need a taxi insurance policy which can cost significantly more. To compare prices and find the best deal, head over to utilitysavingexpert.com.

How do I become an Uber driver to begin with?

As of right now, all of Uber’s drivers are referred to as ‘partners’ instead of drivers. This is because the worldwide taxi company classes them as if they are self-employed. However, a recent ruling in a UK employment tribunal case found that the country’s 40,000 Uber drivers should not be classed as self-employed and should be given the same rights as other workers.

These rights include but are not limited to annual leave, sick pay and the National Living Wage. UK judges, in a court ruling stated the following: “The notion that Uber in London is a mosaic of 30,000 small businesses linked by a common ‘platform’ is to our minds faintly ridiculous. Drivers do not and cannot negotiate with passengers… They are offered and accept trips strictly on Uber’s terms.” Since then, the company has appealed against this.

Meanwhile, whilst this case continues, you’ll need to think about the following:

  • Annual leave
  • Sick leave
  • Maternity and paternity pay entitlement
  • Your rights as a gig worker
  • Stable contracts from flexible working

Starting up as an Uber driver

Having a vehicle will be the main starting point for anyone wanting to become an Uber driver. The car must be less than five years old. You can find more information about what models are suitable on the company’s website. Generally speaking, you’ll be looking at a saloon or multi-purpose vehicle (MPV), this is typically a large hatchback which can comfortably accommodate between four and six passengers.

What license will I need as an Uber driver? 

You will need a private hire vehicle license, which can be applied for through your local authority. The license will include a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. You’ll undergo an interview and also need to pass an in-depth medical examination. Normally, you can expect this process to take around six weeks.

The cost of insurance

It costs a lot more to be insured for business use when compared to being covered for social, domestic and pleasure. For many drivers, a personal car insurance policy will typically cost them around £300 per year. However, taxi insurance can set you back more than £2,000 annually. It is worth noting that this does include public liability insurance, an essential component when transporting fare paying customers.

Applying for Uber training 

It’s easy and straightforward to apply to become an Uber driver, simply visit the company’s website and complete the online form. Once you’ve submitted this, you will then be given a two-hour training course which covers all the essential information you need before you can start work. Many drivers state that this course covers the practical elements of the job, such as what to do if a customer falls asleep and how to move them. You will also be instructed on how the Uber smartphone application works for drivers.

How much money do Uber drivers make?

Uber states that their ‘partners’ will make around £550 per week, this is based on a 35-45 hour work week. This figure is calculated after the company subtracts its 20% ‘service fee’. Please note that this fee will be 25% for drivers who registered after 24 April, 2016.

Ultimately, the amount you earn through Uber will depend on how many hours you’re able to put in. Some taxi drivers may choose to work 50+ hours per week, while others may work less than 10 to top up their main source of income. Many people like the flexibility that this type of employment provides, not only in working hours, but also being able to choose and manage your own schedule.

Even after factoring in how much you’ll earn after Uber’s fee, you’ll also need to take away taxi insurance, fuel and maintenance costs for your vehicle. Petrol costs could be around 20% of your weekly earnings.

Uber charges

After taking its 20-25% service fee, Uber will pay you your wages directly into your bank account. You will also be sent an invoice which details all the trips you’ve made.

The business even offers you the option of taking out a company mobile phone which includes satellite navigation for a weekly £5 charge. Alternatively, you do have the option of using your own smartphone by downloading the application yourself. Uber’s company phone will include costs for data usage and repairs.

Being an Uber driver is almost the same as being a private hire taxi driver. You’ll be able to take advantage of the company’s large customer base and start making money straight away.


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