How to Become an Uber or Lyft Driver During a Crisis

Think about a hypothetical future where the government enforces mandatory quarantine on major cities. Places of work shut down such as bars, restaurants, gyms, and there is no certainty on when the economy will start functioning normally again. 

At the time of the writing of this article, this dooms-day scenario is happening in major cities around the world. One uncertainty is how rideshare, and the rest of the gig economy, will react to the world in times of crisis. Right now at RideShare Mechanic, we have seen an increase in traffic because of the following theories: 

1. People are wanting to sign up as a rideshare driver as a backup plan to earn extra money on the side while their other sources of income may be unavailable. 

2. Drivers don’t want to go into a regular mechanic because of the COVID-19 pandemic (or the mechanic is closed). 

In this article, we are going to discuss how to sign up for Uber, Lyft and some other ideas for making money in the gig economy in a time of crisis.

How much money can I realistically make from Uber/Lyft during a time of crisis?

Below is a table created by Gridwise. It shows how much drivers can expect to make in major cities across the US when driving for different rideshare companies:

This obviously will change based on the user demand (riders). In other words, how many people will still need ridesharing services during a crisis? RSM has a couple predictions for what may happen to the demand of rideshare: 

1. All rideshare could get shut down as an ordinance put out by a city/state. 

2. Rideshare demand actually relatively increases because public transit shuts down. 

Keep in mind that these scenarios could differ based on your geographic area (ie: New York City shuts down all ridesharing, while other areas keep it active). In any case, we know that there will be a boom in rideshare demand (riders requesting rides) once all the dust settles from this recent crisis (COVID-19). Whether you start driving now because there’s demand for rideshare in your city during a crisis, or you want to catch the massive rideshare wave that will hit when “lockdown” regulations lighten up, now is a great time to get signed up and become an Uber or Lyft driver.

Uber and Lyft Vehicle Requirements

First, let’s go over the requirements for your vehicle before we get into the best way to sign up for rideshare in a crisis. Our friends over at created a great video outlining the general vehicle requirements. Remember these vary state to state, and even city to city, so be sure to check with us for specific requirements! Check out this video to get an idea of vehicle requirements for rideshare.

How to maximize your rideshare earnings during a crisis.

As you go down the internet rabbit hole looking for the best times to drive, you will see content based around the following topics: Holidays, bar close, airport trips, big concerts, etc.. This is great content that explains what the normal peak hours are, however, this all changes when crisis strikes. 

There’s no real way (other than to follow the hysteria of the media when they mention something that makes the public panic and run to the grocery store and buy all the toilet paper) to understand when are the best times to drive in such uncertain times. The best thing you can do is to start developing your own schedule by identifying trends through observation and exploration. 

Is it safe to be a rideshare driver during the COVID-19 crisis?

It is safer than other things you can do but you are exposing yourself to people and there is no way around that. For some safety tips on driving as a Rideshare driver during the current COVID crisis – click here!

Here at RideShare Mechanic, we offer a video vehicle inspection. Normally our tag-line is something about being “quick and convenient” because your certified vehicle inspection can get done from wherever you are. Now we want our community to know that it’s also the safest certified inspection a driver can get because you don’t have to bring your vehicle to a brick-and-mortar mechanic shop exposing yourself to crowded places. Something else to note is that a lot of these brick-and-mortar mechanic shops are actually getting shut down because of the fear of COVID-19 infection. Please continue reading below to understand how you can become a driver for both Uber and Lyft in times of crisis.

How to sign up as an Uber driver

Click here to sign up with guaranteed earning after your first few trips. Follow the signup process but when the screen pops up that requests you get a vehicle inspection, come back to us here at RideShare Mechanic. We charge $30 for a video vehicle inspection (click here to see how this works), and we will even ensure that you get a referral sign-up bonus (be sure to mention this to the agent you are working with). 

If you already have started your uber driver application, then click here to see how you can retroactively apply a start-up bonus to your existing account. This generally works if you have given less than 100 trips!

Remember, once you reach the point of your sign up process in which the company requests that you submit your inspection, click here to get your inspection done virtually (safest, and quickest option)

How to sign up as a Lyft driver

Unlike Uber, Lyft does not give out referral bonuses to their new drivers anymore. Click here to start your Lyft application. Like we mentioned above, click here to get your inspection done virtually.

Remember, once you reach the point of your sign up process in which the company requests that you submit your inspection, click here to get your inspection done virtually (safest, and quickest option)

How to make money in the gig economy during COVID-19 (and stay safe)?

If you are looking for other ways to make money besides becoming an Uber or Lyft driver, there are many options. Most recently there’s been a major spike in demand for delivery apps such as DoorDash, PostMates, and InstaCart. InstaCart is boasting the addition of an extra 300,000 jobs during the COVID 19 crisis. This is because most people are in quarantine/lockdowns and are looking for ways to continuously supplement their income in the gig economy. According to, DoorDash is giving independent restaurants the chance to pay “zero commission” to DoorDash as a way to attract more signups. For the gig worker, this means that there will be a lot of opportunity to deliver food/groceries to people in major cities. The same article states: “DoorDash also confirmed that it has set the default delivery option to “no contact.”. This will decrease the likelihood of the virus being spread and allow users and gig workers to feel safe in using delivery apps.