The rideshare business grew over the last decade. Thanks to advances in technology, new rideshare companies disrupted the traditional hired driver business model, like taxi and limousine services.
Rideshare companies come in many different shapes and sizes. However, the goal for rideshare is to match passengers and drivers using mobile apps or websites. The rideshare industry includes industry leaders, like Uber with options from basic rider service to Uber Black luxury service. Also, smaller companies often cater to a niche category, like HopSkipDrive that provides a safe option for children to ride without a known adult present.
At Buckle, we also saw the potential in the disrupted transportation space. Traditional insurance companies haven’t found a great solution to offer affordable and simple insurance coverage for rideshare drivers. Buckle’s innovative auto insurance solution offers one insurance policy to cover both personal and business use of a vehicle for rideshare drivers.
List of U.S. Rideshare Companies
As you search for the right company to partner with for a rideshare gig, consider the various options available. The main categories are passenger transportation, package delivery, and restaurant or grocery delivery. First, decide which category works best for your personality and vehicle. Also, consider that with larger rideshare companies, you may transition between categories.
Here, we focus on passenger rideshare companies. The industry changes regularly with new companies entering the market and others going out of business. Always check the website for any company you plan to pursue to understand their current business model and driver requirements.
Uber – The Top Company
If you’re pursuing ridesharing as a driver or a passenger, you’ve likely looked at Uber. In fact, Uber is so popular, it’s becoming synonymous with rideshare. Kind of like using Kleenex as a term to refer to a tissue. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider your other options, but Uber does offer structure, brand awareness, and both rider and driver protections.
Another benefit of Uber is the different driver options and rates. For example, if you have a vehicle that qualifies as an Uber XL, you can charge higher rates for Uber XL riders but also provide rides at Uber X rates. This means more rider opportunities to increase your income. In addition, you can work as an Uber passenger driver and an Uber delivery driver. Under one company, you have the option to use your vehicle for different services.
Lyft – Second Largest Rideshare Company
Lyft is a great alternative to Uber. Like Uber, Lyft provides more structure and security for rideshare drivers. Both companies offer insurance coverage above your standard rideshare policy to offer passengers peace of mind. Overall, Lyft is a solid option that offers service in most areas of the country. The name is known and trusted by passengers which help attract riders and build your income.
Via – Shared Rider Service
Via offers passengers shared rides, like traditional bus service but in a smaller vehicle. As a driver, you pick up multiple riders in an area. The passengers meet you at a nearby corner and you deliver them to an area near their destination. Unlike, Uber or Lyft, the rider doesn’t go directly to their desired location. This shared rider experience keeps rates low. Plus, the company claims drivers make more income than the competition.
Juno and Gett – Joined Forces
Juno and Gett, previously separate services, partnered in the U.S. market. The Juno model aims to treat drivers and riders better. Unfortunately, Juno currently only offers service in or to New York City. However, for drivers in NYC, Juno offers a solid alternative to the larger rideshare companies.
Ride Zum – Designed for School Transportation
Ride Zum is a great opportunity for drivers with top-notch backgrounds to drive children to school. This service works great for charter and private schools or parents opting for a school choice option outside of their assigned school. Basically, this service meets the needs of schools and families without bus access. This niche driver opportunity works great for flexible schedules or drivers that don’t want to deal with an unpredictable adult clientele or undesirable weekend and late-night work hours.
Zimride – Corporation and University Focused
The Enterprise rental car company owns Zimride. As a driver, you’re paid to provide rides for passengers going to a corporate or university location. Zimride, as an industry-specific provider, works well to make extra money for students or employees headed to their destination by offering a paid carpooling option.
Wingz – Founded for Airport Transportation
Wingz started as a rideshare option to the airport. Now Wingz offers pre-booked and flat-rate rides to other destinations. Wingz is less like an on-demand ride option and more about booking a ride for a planned event. This offers drivers more security and dependable income. As a driver, you don’t have to waste time waiting to find a ride during your driving shift.
TRYP – New Rideshare App
If you’ve heard the name TRYP, don’t get too excited. While this company has a website, it doesn’t seem to offer service yet. This is a new venture that hasn't launched. This website and app currently seek riders and drivers, but isn’t up and running.
HopSkipDrive – Designed to Transport Children
HopSkipDrive started out of the need for parents to find safe transportation for their children to get to school and other activities. Now, HopSkipDrive works with families, schools, organizations and government agencies to transport kids safely where they need to go. This driver opportunity works great to connect safe adults who want to make an income serving children, parents and agencies that need a reliable and safety-focused transportation option.
Safr – Rideshare for Women
Safr offers an innovative option for female rideshare passengers to customize their transportation experience. The rider selects the driver’s gender based on what makes them feel safest. Safr drivers must pass a comprehensive background check because safety is the priority.
Other Rideshare and Passenger Apps
Not all passengers’ apps work for rideshare drivers. In fact, many of the apps you may hear about providing a solution for taxis to mimic rideshare service. For example, Curb only works with professional taxi drivers. This app simply provides a way for passengers to locate and pay for taxi service.
Like Curb, Flywheel offers the technology to allow taxis to work like Uber using apps to hail and pay for a ride. Arro is another app-only service that taxi drivers use to accept riders and easy payment options. In all cases, the driver requirements must align with local licensed taxi regulations.
Ztrip also works more like a taxi service but uses an app to attract riders. Both the pay and the rider reviews aren’t as transparent as with other rideshare companies. In fact, Ztrip’s reputation falls short of Uber and Lyft.
Waze Carpool isn’t a rideshare driver option. Instead, this app links individuals seeking carpool opportunities together. The app also provides a way to share the cost of a ride. However, the amounts are small and wouldn’t work as a rideshare driver income.
When you look for a company to partner with as a rideshare driver, start by ensuring the company works with self-employed, contract drivers. Apps like Waze Carpool offer innovative solutions, but they don’t meet your needs as a driver.
Helping Rideshare Drivers Find the Support They Need
At Buckle, we work with rideshare drivers to provide solutions for the rideshare business. Our goal is to empower drivers who embrace the new gig economy. Traditional business models, like those offered by traditional insurance companies, don’t serve the best interests of rideshare drivers.
Buckle developed an innovative rideshare auto insurance solution based on real driver needs. We offer one policy to cover all your driving needs – both personal and professional. We designed Buckle’s rideshare insurance to evaluate driver risk based on the criteria that matter most.
Traditional insurance companies use credit scores to set insurance rates. We know the diversity of rideshare drivers means credit scores create a disadvantage. Therefore, we look at driver ratings to determine how you run your business and treat your vehicle. Our goal is to provide the coverage you need at a price you can afford.