If you have your own vehicle, proper insurance, and a squeaky driving record, there are multiple rideshare applications that you can use to earn more than just a pretty penny. Sadly, you are not the only one thinking about journeying into the rideshare driver venture. Uber alone operates in over 400 cities nationwide, meaning there is fierce competition.
That’s why it is essential to learn and utilize strategies that will help you stand out and be chosen as a driver more often than other average Joe drivers.
Let’s learn how to make your vehicle and rideshare driving techniques unique, shall we?
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If you have a knack for being impeccably nice and charming, your smile and a politely said “Good Day!” will help you gather the 5-star ratings you need to get yourself on the rideshare map.
Strive to be helpful, respectful, courteous, and polite at all times, even if your day is personally not going so great. Your job is to make the customer’s experience memorable so they choose you as their driver again.
- Help them with their luggage
- Open the door
- Ask if they have a “preferred” route
Allow and Be Prepared for Furry Passengers
There’s still no official rules about passengers bringing their beloved furry friends along for the ride. The best thing you can do is be prepared for this situation to arise, instead of turning down a ride.
If you find that your route is heavily situated in residential villages or suburb areas, you should learn how to be properly equipped to have fluffy customers ride along too.
- Place old towels on your seats to allow pets and owners to sit beside each other
- Purchase a back seat cover that can withstand pet hair
- To really add an extra edge, provide adequate safety for your passenger’s pet with seatbelt harnesses
- To avoid distractions from your furry customers, purchase a pet barrier to ensure they don’t get too friendly as you drive them to their destination.
Get a Mini Trash Can
There are many drivers, including myself, that up their rideshare game by providing mints, gum, or snacks to their passengers. Everyone likes free food! But this can mean a lot more trash for you to have to clean out…unless!
There are numerous varieties of mini garbage cans for your car so that your customers can easily throw their trash away and keep your vehicle clean for the next fare.
Never Cancel on Potential Customers
While no one really enjoys hustling clear across town to pick up a fare whose destination is just a few minutes away, resist the urge to cancel on passengers. When you do this, you make rideshare companies look bad and they can easily deactivate your account and take away your side hustle just from 1-2 complaints.
Unless there are extreme reasons as to why you hit that cancel button, the higher your acceptance rate of fares, the higher your earnings will be.
Know Restroom Locations
The call of nature is inevitable and the last thing you want is for a passenger to have to relieve themselves in your car as you helplessly sit in a traffic jam.
Begin by familiarizing yourself with the bathroom locations where you typically drive your routes the most.
- Are there gas stations or coffee shops nearby?
- Do these locations allow free parking?
Keep You and Your Car Fresh
Your vehicle is an enclosed space and can smell like everything that has been in it, from perfume, food, body odors, smells from outdoors, you get the picture. It’s not hard for your car to start smelling rather musty.
Your vehicle is essentially your traveling office and the heart of your rideshare side gig. So, keeping it clean is vital to keep racking in those 5-star ratings.
- Keep air fresheners, spray cleaners, and paper towels stocked in your car
- Crack windows to allow odors that have built-up to release
- Before each shift, rub down your car and get it as clean as you can
You as the driver should also be a picturesque image of clean.
- Dress appropriately for the weather
- Hair needs to be combed
- Clothes cleaned and pressed if needed
- Don’t overdo perfume or cologne
Have More Than One Kind of Cellular Charger
Phone chargers are a necessary God-send to many passengers because most of them don’t have the time to charge their phones to 100% before hopping in your car. Passengers will take notice when you have the appropriate charger they need, so splurge a bit and get iPhone chargers and Android chargers to provide customers.
Also, ensure that you buy a decent car charger adapter that actually charges phones and doesn’t drain cellular devices further.
Always Have Bottled Water
Think about how annoying it is to lug around water bottles as you travel. This is why rideshare customers appreciate it when drivers have bottled water stocked in their vehicles. Giving a nice and chilled bottle of water to a thirsty passenger will get you a 5-star rating in no time!
If you are an early morning driver like I was, many of my passengers were folks headed home from the bars and casinos, which meant having water to give them to help them get sobered up was a God-send all on its own, for me and my passengers. It’s better to spend a few bucks on water than professional cleaning when passengers vomit in your car.
Don’t Let Friends or Family Ride in Your Car During Rideshare Hours
Having friends and relatives cruise the town with you as you pick up fares may seem like a swell idea and can make drivers feel safer, but it will hurt your ratings from passengers. They don’t want to be the third wheel in an awkward conversation that you and your known passenger are only privy too.
Also, if that passenger happens to mention the additional person in the car during their fare, you will likely get your account revoked and will no longer have this side gig to make you an additional income. What a bummer!
Safety First, Always
One of the things that will cause your driver rating to drop is jeopardizing the safety of passengers while they are in your vehicle.
- NEVER drive while under the influence (rideshare or otherwise!)
- Drive safely and not as if you are in a high-speed chase
- Instruct passengers to put on seat belts if they don’t automatically
If you strive to follow these techniques in your rideshare business, you will surely be on your way to gaining many 5-star reviews, as well as high recommendations from previous customers! Good luck and hustle on!