Uber Driver Guide: New York | finder.com

Make money in New York City with Uber

What you need to start driving and how much extra cash you can earn – it’s all here.

Car requirements for Uber

The car’s make and model that you’ll be picking up passengers with when driving for Uber will determine the amount of money you can earn per ride. Uber has six different tiers, plus a food delivery service and an on-demand delivery service (no food) in New York City – they each have individual requirements. From UberX (some drivers even have car seats), all the way to the fancy UberSUV, here’s what to know to get yourself on the road.

Driver requirements for Uber

To start driving for Uber in New York City, all applicants must:

  • Be at least 21 years old.
  • Have access to an Uber-approved vehicle.
  • Hold a valid US driver’s licence for one year, or three years if you’re 23, in the state you will be working in.
  • Show proof of commercial insurance and vehicle registration.
  • Have a TLC (Taxi and Limousine Commission) driver’s license.
  • Have a Social Security number for a background check.
  • Have a clean driving record.
  • Have a smartphone to use the Uber app.

Don’t meet thee requirements? You could still be eligible to deliver with either UberEATS or UberRUSH.

Driver document checklist

Have all the required documents? Apply online to become an Uber driver now. Not quite sure yet? Click here to read our full Uber review.

    • A valid, in-state driver’s licence.
    • A valid TLC license.
    • Insurance certificate.
    • Commercial vehicle registration.
    • TLC-for- hire vehicle permit.
    • Complete a free vehicle inspection at a registered Uber inspection site at least once every four months.


Vehicle requirements broken down by Uber type

To be considered as a driver for Uber, the car you will be using has to meet certain requirements to ensure safety for you, and your customers. Here’s a breakdown of what shape the vehicle you’ll be using needs to be in to start driving for Uber.

Uber driver requirements

All cars being driven for Uber in New York City must:

  • Be in good working condition with no cosmetic damage.
  • Have at least 4 doors.
  • Pass a vehicle inspection.
  • Have working windows and air conditioning.
  • Feature no commercial branding.
  • Be a 2006 model year or newer.
Uber typeModel yearVehicle typeSeatingInsuranceSpecial requirementsEligible models
UberX2006 or newer4-door4 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesNo former taxis, government-branded or rebuilt vehiclesCheck here
UberXL2006 or newer4-door6 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesNo former taxis, government-branded or rebuilt vehiclesCheck here
UberPOOL2006 or newer4-door4 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesNo former taxis, government-branded or rebuilt vehicles Any
UberBLACK2013 or newer4-door luxury4 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesBlack exterior, black interiorCheck here
UberWAVN/AWheelchair accessible van4 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesDriver is certified in assisting people with disabilitiesAny wheelchair accessible van
UberSUV2012 or newerLuxury SUV or van6 or more passengersCommercial vehicle insurance and for-hire-car registration platesBlack exterior, black interiorCheck here
UberEATS/ UberRUSH (car)2006 or newerAnyN/AIn-state car insuranceAny

UberX popular vehicles

  • Acura. MDX, RDX, TL, TSX
  • Buick. Enclave, Envision, Regal
  • Chevrolet. Cruze, Impala, Malibu
  • Dodge. Avenger, Charger, Dart
  • Honda. Accord, Civic, Element
  • Hyundai. Elantra, Sonata
  • Mitsubishi. Lancer, Outlander
  • Nissan. Altima, Maxima, Sentra
  • Toyota. Avalon, Camry, Corolla, Prius
  • Volkswagen. Golf, Jetta, Passat
Uber may amend this list of eligible vehicles at any time.

UberSELECT eligible vehicles

  • Alfa Romeo. 159, Giulietta (2012 or newer)
  • Audi. A4, A5, A6, A7, A8 and respective Avant models, Q3, Q5, Q7, Q9, any RS or S Class
  • BMW. 3-series and 5-series (includes Gran Turismo), 7-series, Alpina B7, X3, X5, X6, M3, M5
  • Chrysler. 300
  • Hummer. H3
  • Hyundai. Genesis
  • Infiniti. FX, Q50, QX70 (2012 or newer)
  • Jaguar. F-PACE, XE, XF, X-Type
  • Jeep. Grand Cherokee
  • Land Rover. Discovery, Freelander, Range Rover (includes Evoque and Sport)
  • Lexus. ES, GS, GX, IS, LS, NX, RX
  • Maserati. Quattroporte
  • Mercedes-Benz. B-Class, C-Class (includes CL, CLA, CLK, CLS), E-Class (includes Wagon) G-Class (includes GL, GLA, GLC, GLE, GLS), M-Class (includes ML), R-Class, S-Class, V-Class, Viano
  • Porsche. Cayenne, Macan, Panamera
  • Subaru. Liberty (2015 or newer)
  • Tesla. Model S, Model X
  • Toyota. Kluger (2013 or newer), Prado (2012 or newer)
  • Volkswagen. Passat, Touareg (2012 or newer)
  • Volvo. S60, S80, XC60, XC70, XC90 (2012 or newer)
Uber may amend this list of eligible vehicles at any time.

UberXL popular vehicles

  • Acura. MDX
  • Audi. Q7
  • Buick. Enclave
  • Cadillac. Escalade
  • Chevrolet. Tahoe, Traverse
  • Ford. Expedition, Explorer, Flex
  • Honda. Odyssey, Pilot
  • Hyundai. Sante Fe, Veracruz
  • Land Rover. Discovery
  • Mazda. CX-9
  • Mercedes-Benz. E-Class Wagon
  • Mitsubishi. Outlander
  • Nissan. Armada, Pathfinder, Quest
  • Toyota. Highlander, Sienna
  • Volkswagen. Routan
Uber may amend this list of eligible vehicles at any time.

UberBLACK eligible vehicles

  • Audi. A6, A8, Q7
  • Bentley. Flying Spur, Mulsanne/li>
  • BMW. 5 Series, 7 Series, X5
  • Cadillac. Escalade
  • Chevrolet. Suburban, Tahoe
  • Hummer. H3
  • Hyundai. Equus, Genesis
  • Jaguar. XF, XJ
  • Land Rover. LR4
  • Maserati. Ghibli, Quattroporte
  • Mercedes-Benz. E-Class, GL-Class, ML-Class, R-Class, S-Class
  • Porsche. Cayenne, Panamera
  • Rolls Royce. Ghost, Phantom
  • Tesla. Model S, Model X
Uber may amend this list of eligible vehicles at any time.

UberSUV eligible vehicles

  • Audi. Q7
  • BMW. X5
  • Cadillac. Escalade
  • Land Rover. Range Rover Sport
  • Mercedes-Benz. GL-Class, R-Class, V-Class
  • Tesla. Model X
Uber may amend this list of eligible vehicles at any time.

Don’t own or have access to an Uber-approved vehicle? Here are your options in New York City.

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Uber car rental

There are many participating dealers to a rent car with TLC plates from in New York City. For about $180 a week, with an Uber partner like Hertz, you can be on the road driving for Uber and making extra cash in as little as two days.

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Uber car leasing

For a slightly higher fee each week, you can typically rent-to-own your own vehicle after a few years. Choose from compact, hybrid, SUV and luxury models.

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Car loan for Uber

There are lots of tailored car finance options available through one of Uber’s company partners or directly via a bank, credit union or standalone car lender.

New York City Uber inspection centers

In New York City, all drivers need to pass vehicle inspection to drive with Uber.

  • All Uber vehicles must pass inspection once every four months at a DMV Inspection facility. If your car is not up to code with state and local requirements, you could be subjected to a summons or fines.

TLC Safety and Emissions Center
24-55 Brooklyn Queens Expressway
Woodside, NY, 11377

Greenlight Hubs

Being your own boss driving for Uber is going to come with a lot of questions. Greenlight Hubs provide in-person support and can answer questions about how to get a license, how to get a vehicle and anything else that may come up with your Uber employment opportunity.

Falchi Greenlight Hub
31-00 47th Avenue, 1st floor
Long Island City, NY 11101

Bronx Greenlight Hub
New Horizon Shopping Mall, 961 E 174th Street
Bronx, NY 10460

Brooklyn Greenlight Hub
Dolaj Catering Hall, 600 Coney Island Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11288


How much can I make as an Uber driver in New York City?

For Uber drivers, the amount of money you can make is up to you, but there are some factors to consider. How much you’re driving, where you’re driving and what kind of car you’re driving all come into play. If you’re in a busy city, you will make much more money than someone who is in a smaller suburb. Also, gas and car maintenance is something to consider as well, since you’ll be paying for these services, when driving with Uber.

Here we’ve broken down all the nuts and bolts of what goes into calculating an Uber fare.

Uber typeInitial feeCost per minuteCost per mile
UberX$2.55$0.35$1.75
UberX with car seat$2.55$0.35$1.75
UberWAV$2.55$0.35$1.75
UberXL$3.85$0.50$2.85
UberBLACK$7$0.65$3.75
UberSUV$14$0.80$4.50

The following table assumes that you are completing 24 four-mile, 10-minute trips per day, for 5 days of the week. We’ve also put 10% aside from every trip to cover fuel and other costs – actual costs may be higher or lower.

Uber typeGross earnings per tripFees deducted per tripTotal earnings
UberX$13.05Uber fee (25%): $3.26
Fuel and other costs (10%): $1.30
$8.44 per trip
$202.56 per day
$1,012.80 per week
UberXL$20.25Uber fee (25%): $5.06
Fuel and other costs (10%): $2.03
$13.16 per trip
$315.84 per day
$1,579.20 per week
UberBLACK$28.50Uber fee (25%): $7.13
Fuel and other costs (10%): $2.85
$18.52 per trip
$444.48 per day
$2,222.40 per week
UberSUV$40.00Uber fee (25%): $10.00
Fuel and other costs (10%): $4.00
$26.00 per trip
$624.00 per day
$3,120 per week

Drive with Uber: Make up to $15/hr, get driver rewards and perks

Uber driver rewards

To show that they care about their drivers, Uber has partnered up with businesses all across the board to help out with gas, music and your phone plan. The Partner Fuel card helps save money at the pumps by offering up to 15 cents off per gallon. Uber has also teamed up to with AT&T, Sprint and Verizon to cut down your bill and save you up to 18% – it can be extended to your immediate family too. And if you’re on an Uber trip or off the clock, the Uber Driver App offers free Pandora to make sure there is never an awkward silence.


Where to make the most money in New York City

Once you’ve become a certified Uber driver, you get to choose the area where you want to pick up customers.

New York City hotspots

These areas are popular among riders:

  • Weekday mornings. Penn Station, Grand Central Terminal, Upper East Side, Upper West Side, East Village.
  • Weekday evenings. Midtown, Financial District, Times Square.
  • Weekends. Lower East Side, East Village, West Village.
  • Events. Madison Square Garden, Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, Barclays Center.

Peak trip times

New York City Uber drivers are constantly in-demand. Driving during these busy periods are a surefire way to earn more cash.

  • Weekday mornings 5 a.m. – 9 a.m.
  • Weekday evenings 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Friday and Saturday til late.
  • Sunday daytime.

LaGuardia Airport (LGA) and John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) instructions for drivers

These are great spots for Uber drivers to make money because there is always an influx of customers waiting to get out of the airport and to their destination. Because this is a heavily saturated area for riders, passenger pickups work in the manner of a queue instead of the usual distance based system. Be sure to check the Uber website for their comprehensive guide on how airport pickup requests work.

Download the Uber app

Click here to get the app and get started (or continue) with your Uber driving job:

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