How To Become A Lyft Driver [Step-By-Step]

Learn how to become a Lyft driver, step-by-step. I'll show you what you need to do to apply for the gig and how to complete each step.

Looking to make some extra money? Have a car that you’re willing to use to drive strangers around town?

If you answered yes to those two questions, it might be time you looked into driving for Lyft.

Here’s everything you need to know about signing up, driving, and making money with Lyft.

Lyft Driver Application
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Here’s How to Become a Lyft Driver

If you’re ready to drive for Lyft, it’s easy to sign up, but before you do, you’ll need to meet some basic requirements.

If you meet the driver and vehicle requirements (see more on that below) you can start the application process to drive for Lyft through their website or app.

The first step is to enter your phone number and agree to the Terms of Service.

the first step of the Lyft sign up process

After you accept the Terms of Service, you’ll need to provide more basic information.

Please note, this is where you can enter a promo/referral code!

Where to enter a Lyft driver promo code

After you’ve entered this basic information, you’ll have to enter information regarding the type of vehicle you intend to drive with Lyft.

Entering Lyft Vehicle Information

After entering your vehicle information, you’ll have to confirm (again) some personal information.

In this step, they also ask for your social security number in order to run a background check on you.

They’ll also gather your driver’s license information (for your driving record check) and your shipping address (so they can send you a copy of your background check).

Entering driver License information for becoming a Lyft driver

On the next screen, you will have to approve of the background check:

The Lyft Driver background check disclosure

The timeline for approval varies, and Lyft lets drivers know that the process can take several weeks.

However, some drivers have said that they got approval in less than three days.

Just log into your account and you can check the status of your approval.

Once you’ve consented to the background check, you’ll need to schedule a time for your vehicle inspection test.

During this test, they will verify that your car meets the requirements (which we’ll get to in a little bit).

Scheduling a Lyft vehicle inspection

They’ll also check for any exterior damage and interior cleanliness.

They will also assess the mechanics of your vehicle to make sure it is not too loud or dangerous.

The final step of the process is to upload a few documents to confirm the information you provided previous was true and accurate.

You’ll also be asked to provide a photo of yourself (which will be used for your Lyft driver profile.

Here’s a complete list of the items you’ll need to provide:

Documents required for Lyft

If Lyft runs into any issues with your paperwork, they will reach out and ask you to resubmit them.

Once Lyft approves you to drive, they’ll send you an email to set up a “welcome ride.”

During the welcome ride, you’ll ride around town with an experienced Lyft driver.

While you’re on that ride, the experienced driver can gauge your driving abilities and answer any questions you might have.

Lyft will also send you a Welcome Kit that includes the Lyft Emblem for your car and a standard driver guide that details what you can and cannot do.

Once you’ve completed all those steps, you’re officially able to start driving and making money on your own time.

How Do I Apply to Become a Lyft Driver? (Summary)

  1. Ensure that you meet all driver and vehicle requirements
  2. Open up Lyft’s driver application page
  3. Verify your phone number
  4. Add your driver’s license and other personal information
  5. Consent to a Lyft background check
  6. Visit a verified mechanic for a vehicle inspection
  7. Set up your “Welcome ride” with an experienced Lyft driver
  8. Start driving

Lyft Driver Requirements

As with any job, you have to meet the Lyft driver and vehicle requirements in order to be eligible for the position.

To qualify to drive for Lyft, you must be at least 21 or older and hold a valid driver’s license issued by the state in which you plan to drive.

If you’re older than 23, you have to be licensed in the U.S. for at least one year.

If you’re under the age of 23, you must be licensed in the U.S. for at least three years.

You need to have access to a vehicle that meets Lyft’s standard (more on that below).

You also need to be listed on a valid auto insurance policy and be able to pass a driving record history check done through the DMV.

Drivers that have major traffic violations, such as DUI or reckless driving, are not eligible to work for Lyft.

Basi Lyft Driver requirements

A background check is also part of the process.

You can’t have any felonies, theft charges, violent crimes, sexual offenses, or disqualifying drug offenses on your record.

The only other requirement is that you have a working iPhone or Android phone with internet access and a working phone number.

You have to show proof that you have a data plan; Wifi-only devices are not permitted.

Driving for Lyft uses up a lot of phone data, so make sure your wireless plan can accommodate.

Lyft Vehicle Requirements

You can’t just have any old car and think you can drive for Lyft.

Lyft requires all cars to maintain certain safety standards and cosmetic standards.

You cannot have a car that’s more than 12 years old (in some cities and states the vehicle age requirement is even older).

You must have valid license plates (commercial plates are fine) and an up-to-date vehicle registration.

Your car needs to have a minimum of four doors and five seatbelts.

And – this goes without saying – you must hold a valid car insurance policy and meet all local and state driving requirements.

What Kind of Smartphone Do I Need to be a Lyft Driver?

Lyft drivers must have a smartphone that meets the basic requirements.

It’s the only way you can find rides and determine where to go.

It can be an Apple or an Android phone, as long as it works smoothly with the app.

Apple users must have iOS 11.

Android users must have version 7 or newer.

Any software older than that won’t work optimally with the current version of the app.

The other main requirement is that you have a data plan.

You cannot use a phone that depends on Wi-fi service alone.

When you’re driving, your data has to be enabled, not restricted, if you want the app to perform at its best.

If the app isn’t performing at its best, you won’t be able to do the work required.

You also won’t be able to make any money.

It’s essential that you have a phone with a solid internet connection that doesn’t rely on Wi-fi alone.

Renting a Car Through Lyft

Most people think that you need to own a car to drive for Lyft.

Truth is, you don’t.

Lyft offers a rental service called Express Drive where you can rent a car if you don’t have your own.

Lyft has partnerships with a variety of different rental car services, such as Hertz and Avis.

Drivers can rent cars at affordable rates in order to take on work as a rideshare driver.

Additionally, there are also peer to peer car rental companies like Turo or Hyrecar that allow you to rent vehicles for a short time for rideshare driving.

The prices and rates vary from city to city, depending on the style of the car and the city you work in.

This service is not available in all cities, but it is available in multiple locations.

Click here to see a list of cities where drivers can take advantage of the opportunity to rent a car.

To qualify for the Express Drive program, you must be 25 years or older.

You still need to pass a background check and meet the other driver requirements, but it’s a great option for drivers’ whose cars don’t meet Lyft’s standards.

Renting a vehicle will cost you, but so will driving your own car.

Renting a car through the Express Drive service also requires that you provide a deposit.

That deposit will be refunded to you upon safe return of the vehicle.