Top 5 Perks to Working as a Driver for Lyft

Whether you're looking to start a new career or supplement your existing income, you should consider driving for Lyft. Founded in 2012 by entrepreneurs Logan Green and John Zimmer, it's become one of the country's largest and most popular ride-hailing services. Like its competitor Uber, Lyft allows users to hail rides using a mobile app. You can take advantage of Lyft's ever-growing popularity by joining the company's team of drivers. It's a fun and rewarding job that offers the following five perks.

#1- Sign-Up Bonus

Lyft is pretty generous with its new driver signup bonuses. To attract drivers, the company offers huge cash bonuses for signing up. The actual amount of these bonuses varies depending on the city, the number of trips you intend to drive, and market conditions. However, it's not uncommon for Lyft to offer $500 signup bonuses for major U.S. cities. For high-mileage drivers in busy cities, the company may offer up to a $1,000 signup bonus. By driving for Lyft, you can get your hands on one of these bonuses. Of course, Lyft needs drivers to succeed, which is why it gives these signup bonuses away.

#2- Education Mentor

When driving for Lyft, you'll have access to your own personal education mentor. You can contact and seek advice from this mentor for free for as long as you work for Lyft. If you're struggling with a college course, for instance, you can contact this person for help. As explained by Business Insider, this is part of Lyft's Guild Education program, which provides drivers with access to their own personal education mentor as well as discounts on universities, schools and other education centers. Guide Education is a relatively new program that Lyft launched in December 2018. However, it's become one more way that Lyft differentiates itself from its ride-hailing competitors.

#3- It Pays Well

You'll probably earn more money driving for Lyft than you would for Uber or other ride-hailing services. Lyft rides cost slightly more to users than Uber. Because of this, Lyft drivers typically earn more than their counterparts at Uber. According to one report, Lyft drivers earn an average of $17.50 per hour, about $2 more than Uber drivers. That's pretty decent considering the low barrier to entry the job requires. Lyft is selective regarding who it hires, but as long as you're at least 21 years of age, have a decent vehicle, a clean driving record and a clean criminal record, you shouldn't be denied the job.

#4- Positive Work Culture

Lyft is renowned for its positive company culture. According to the same report previously cited, Lyft has the highest level of driver satisfaction among all major ride-hailing services. The report found that more than three-quarters of Lyft drivers were happy with their job wheres less than half of Uber drivers were happy with their job. Lyft emphasizes the importance of creating a positive company culture by recognizing and rewarding the best drivers with customized gifts. If a driver is a movie fan, for example, Lyft may reward him or her with a gift certificate to the movie theater. This customized approach to worker recognition is one more way that Lyft excels as a top ride-hailing company for which to work.

#5- Tax Breaks

Finally, you can take advantage of tax breaks as a driver for Lyft. When working as a driver, you are classified as an independent contractor by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Unfortunately, this means you won't have access to employee benefits like overtime pay or minimum wage. The good news, however, is that you can deduct work-related expenses from your federal income taxes.

The IRS allows ride-hailing drivers to either use a standard mileage deduction or actual mileage deduction. As of 2018, the standard deduction is a simplified format that involves deducting 54.5 cents for every mile that you drive for Lyft. Alternatively, the actual expense method involves deducting the cost of all expenses related to owning and using your vehicle for Lyft, including insurance, gas, oil changes and other maintenance. Contact a tax professional to learn more about eligible deductions as a Lyft driver.

As you can see, driving for Lyft offers several benefits. You can receive a signup bonus, access a personal education mentor, participate in a positive company culture, deduct vehicle expenses from your income taxes and more.

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