Jessica Sautter is a Content Writer for CarInsuranceCompanies.com with a Bachelor’s Degree from Eastern Michigan University in Elementary Education with a Major in Reading and a Minor in Mathematics.

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager

UPDATED: Sep 26, 2020

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Key takeaways...

  • Driving for Uber is a great way to earn extra money
  • Uber provides its drivers with generous auto insurance while working
  • You still need your own policy for when you drive for personal use
  • You can ensure the best deal on auto insurance by shopping around and reviewing your policy every six months

When driving for Uber, you need insurance to protect yourself and your passengers. Uber and other ride-sharing services like it count as commercial driving. Most personal auto insurance policies do not cover driving for pay.

Fortunately, Uber provides its drivers with generous insurance for when they’re working. This coverage is only in force when you’re actively driving for Uber. You’ll still need your own policy for when you drive your vehicle for personal use.

Compare car insurance quotes by entering your zip code into our free rate tool above.

Table of Contents

Uber Driving Basics

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Driving for Uber is a great way to make extra money with your car. You can even earn a full-time living doing it in certain areas. Anyone can do it as long as they have the following:

Once Uber approves you as a driver, you can start getting work through the Uber app. It’s easy. When you want to accept rides, you log into the app and set yourself as available. GPS technology matches you with nearby people who have requested rides.

You get their information and can accept or decline the job. If, for instance, you live in Miami, and someone requests a ride all the way to Orlando, you can say no if you don’t wish to drive that far.

Even better, Uber has a rating system that works both ways. Your passengers can rate you on the app and future passengers can see your rating, but drivers can also rate passengers.

If you get a ride request from someone who’s a notorious problem passenger, you’ll know ahead of time.

You get paid for every mile you drive a passenger as well as every minute they’re in your car.

The app tracks all of this information. You never have to track invoices or chase down payments. It’s all automatic. Uber isn’t perfect, but it makes driving for money as convenient as possible.

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Insurance for Uber Drivers

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Uber covers its drivers with one million dollars in liability insurance and another one million in uninsured motorist coverage.

This coverage only applies in certain situations, though. It depends on whether you’re marked as available in the Uber app. It also depends on whether you’re carrying passengers at the time of the accident.

Available and Carrying Passengers

After an accident, when you contact Uber and try to make a claim through their policy, they’ll want to know two things.

  1. One, were you in “available” mode in the app?
  2. Two, were you actively carrying passengers when the crash happened?

If both answers are “yes,” you have the strongest chance of being covered by Uber’s policy.

The point of the policy is to protect drivers when their personal insurance doesn’t cover them – meaning when they’re driving for pay – and to protect passengers during their ride.

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Available, but Not Carrying Passengers

Just because you’re available in the app doesn’t mean you’re carrying passengers.

  • Maybe you’re hoping for a pick-up, but no one is seeking a ride at the moment.
  • Perhaps you’re between passengers.
  • You dropped off your last passenger of the day and are heading home, but you forgot to switch your app to unavailable.

Situations like these can be the trickiest of all where insurance is concerned.

Because you were available on the Uber app, your personal insurance might argue you were driving for pay but Uber’s argument is that you weren’t actually getting paid, so you weren’t working for them at the time. So who foots the bill?

The answer is that your personal insurance policy should cover you but if it doesn’t, or if it covers the accident but doesn’t pay for all the damages, Uber offers supplemental coverage in this situation, as well.

It’s not a one million dollar policy in this situation. Rather, it pays up to $50,000 per injury and $25,000 for property damage.

Not Available in App

The final scenario is that you aren’t marked as available in the Uber app at the time of the accident. There’s no question here: your personal insurance coverage should pay.

This situation is really no different than a truck driver parking their rig for the night, hopping into their personal vehicle, and heading home. You aren’t acting as an Uber representative when you aren’t available in the app, so you need your own policy to protect you in an accident.

Securing the Best Coverage

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As an Uber driver, you still need personal auto insurance to protect you when Uber’s policy doesn’t.

In fact, if you rely on Uber for income to make a living, you should consider upping your coverage and making sure you have comprehensive and collision coverage along with liability.

If you damage your car in an accident and you don’t have enough insurance to pay for all the damages, you could lose a source of income.

Increasing your coverage doesn’t necessarily mean making it prohibitively expensive. You can ensure you’re getting the best deal by shopping around between different carriers and reviewing your policy every six months.

Shopping Around

You shouldn’t ever accept the first car insurance quote you receive. You have no way of knowing if it’s the best available. Only when you compare several offers side by side can you get an idea which policy is best for you.

Take the time to do this comparison and you can be confident the policy you choose is best.

Try to review your policy every six months. It might have been the best available when you took it out. But that doesn’t always mean things are the same six months later.

Maybe your premiums jumped, or perhaps your coverage dropped. A competitor might have come along and introduced a better policy for your needs. Never renew your auto insurance without thoroughly reviewing it.

Driving for Uber is a convenient way to make extra money. But before taking the job, understand how car insurance works for Uber drivers and make sure you have enough to protect you and your vehicle.

Enter your zip code into our free car insurance comparison tool below!