13 Ways to Create an Income with Your Car

The Zebra
Dec. 26, 2018

gig economy rideshare

 

You may have heard of the gig economy recently, and you may even already be one of the 57 million freelancers working in the U.S. For those in need of a refresher, the gig economy is a free market system in which temporary positions are common and organizations contract independent workers instead of hiring them as full-time staff.

A recent study by Intuit predicted that by 2020 almost 40 percent of the American workforce would be independent contractors. One of the major components of this upward trend is independent workers' ability to use their vehicles to service companies.

We created this guide to help those interested in leveraging their car to make money as an independent contractor. We compiled a list of the top companies offering to hire for a list of different services, including car sharing, rideshare, and delivery or courier services.

Read on to find out how much you can plan on earning and the pros and cons of each.

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Turo

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.6 stars
  • Average earnings: $560 per month

Turo is a peer-to-peer car sharing service operating in the United States and Canada. It’s designed to allow you to rent your car out for a day or more at a time. Turo works best if you have an extra set of wheels that you don’t rely on daily. You price your car based on the competition: for instance, a brand new BMW is priced higher per day than a 10-year-old Honda Civic. Turo offers three different levels of protection:

  • Basic protection: Earn 85% of the trip price. $1 million liability, $3,000 maximum out-of-pocket cost for damage
  • Standard protection: Earn 75% of the trip price. $1 million liability, no out-of-pocket costs to you for damage to your car, get a replacement car during repair
  • Premium protection: Earn 65% of the trip price. $1 million liability, no out-of-pocket costs to you for damage to your car, get a replacement car during repair, covers exterior wear and tear and covers loss of income in the event of an accident

To estimate how much you can make with Turo, we calculated your earnings if you chose standard protection and rented your vehicle out for 15 days a month at $50 per day. The earnings come out to about $560 per month after Turo takes 25 percent for the standard protection.  

Getaround

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.9 stars
  • Average earnings: $250 per month

Getaround is another peer-to-peer car sharing service, located in eight major US states. Getaround focuses on sharing your car at hourly rates rather than daily rates in an attempt to target consumers who want to rent a vehicle for a grocery run or other type of quick errand. With Getaround, as the owner of the vehicle you never have to meet the renter, so you can park your car at work and allow a renter to pick it up and use it for daily errands while you never have to leave your desk. There are some fees that Getaround charges that Turo does not:

  • $99 service installation fee
  • $20 per month in subscription fees

Getaround also takes 40 percent of the revenue for overhead costs, instead of the standard 25 percent by Turo. To calculate how much you can make renting your car per month through Getaround, we calculated that if you rent your car at $7 per hour at 60 hours per month (15 hours per week), you take home $250 after Getaround takes its 40 percent cut.

HyreCar

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.9 stars
  • Average earnings: $635 per month

HyreCar is a different type of car sharing service that solely rents to rideshare drivers. It’s designed so that drivers for Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare services who don’t have vehicles can rent your vehicle as their mode of transporting rideshare customers. Rentals are done on a day-to-day basis in which you set mileage limits. HyreCar rates usually range $35–$65 per day, and they take 15 percent of the revenue. To calculate how much you can make per month renting your vehicle with HyreCar, we estimated that if you rent your vehicle out at $50 per day for 15 days, you take home about $635 after HyreCar takes their 15 percent cut.

There are some things to keep in mind with HyreCar. First, rideshare drivers will most likely be putting hard miles on your vehicle compared to the other two car sharing options. Also, HyreCar’s insurance has taken some heat for not covering damages or even theft of owner’s vehicles.

 

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Grubhub

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.5 stars
  • Average earnings: $12 per hour

Grubhub, the parent company of Seamless, is a meal delivery service that allows customers to order food and have it delivered to their door by a driver. As the driver, your responsibility is to pick up the order from the specified restaurant and deliver it to the customer.

As a Grubhub delivery driver, you’ll be classified as an independent contractor, as with all of the meal delivery services. You sign up to work multi-hour blocks designated by the Grubhub app. You earn $5 per delivery and 50 cents per mile from the restaurant to the customer, plus you keep any and all tips you make. Most reports say average earnings are about $12 per hour, although it varies on your market and which time blocks you work.

UberEATS

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.3 stars
  • Average earnings: $8-$12 per hour

If you’re already an Uber driver, you can switch seamlessly between ridesharing and meal delivery, giving you extra opportunity to stay busy if one or the other is slow. UberEATS pays you a pick-up fee, drop-off fee, and mileage fee. Each of these depends on your market, the distance between the restaurant and customer, and any surge pricing that may be added.

Uber takes 25 percent of the total cost of the delivery and you keep all tips. Most reports say that you can expect $8–$12 per hour delivering with UberEATS.

DoorDash

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.1 stars
  • Average earnings: $15-$25 per hour

As a “Dasher” for DoorDash, you get paid $1 per delivery plus a “pay boost” and you keep any tips. DoorDash guarantees you a minimum of $10 an hour, meaning that if you come up short of that in a shift, they’ll cover your difference. They also show you guaranteed pay for each delivery, so you know exactly how much you’ll make before you accept.

With many incentives like 30 deliveries in 30 days, “Busy Pay” boosts and referral bonuses, Dashers can expect to make between $15-$25 per hour. This doesn’t take into account gas, parking fees, taxes, and other costs.

 

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Postmates

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.3 stars
  • Average earnings: $8-$15 per hour

With Postmates, you can deliver food or small office supplies. Drivers are paid a fee for pick-up, drop-off, any wait times and paid per mile between the drop-off and pick-up points. You also get to keep 100% of your income from tips.

Depending on the market, most reports state that drivers for Postmates make about $8–$15 per hour including tips, but can make upward of $19 an hour during peak times. 

Amazon Flex

  • Glassdoor rating: 2.5 stars
  • Average earnings: $25+ per hour

Amazon Flex might be the best option on this list for making the most money fast, especially if you have a truck or large SUV. With Amazon Flex you’ll pick up packages at local pickup stations and drop them off at their corresponding locations, much like a UPS driver.

Amazon pays you a flat rate for a “delivery block” and guarantees a minimum of $18 per hour. You can earn $100 for a four-hour delivery block, equalling $25 per hour. But, you can complete those deliveries in three hours and still get paid the $100 for the four-hour block. Another perk is Amazon Flex's twice-weekly payout schedule, which means you’ll see your money quicker than you would with most other services.

Roadie

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.5 stars
  • Average earnings: $60 per local delivery, up to $650 for long haul deliveries

Roadie is a unique service that pays you for delivering miscellaneous packages on behalf of individuals. You can transport anything from groceries, furniture, or even pets! Gigs are priced based on item type and distance you have to drive, with the average earnings for a local delivery around $60 and average earnings for long hauls up to $650.

Roadie is a great way to offset your road trip costs by taking a package with you to your destination or to a town along the way. This is the only service that offers gigs for long hauls of this type.

 

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Shipt

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.4 stars
  • Average earnings: $15-$25 per hour

Shipt is a grocery delivery service where customers input their orders online and a Shipt driver does the shopping and delivery for them. Shipt pays weekly and claims that their drivers make between $15–$25 per hour plus tips, but most reports say you can expect closer to $10 per houraftertips.

This isn’t including expenses for gas or wear and tear on your car. One perk compared to other services on this list is that you will drive significantly fewer miles for Shipt than you would for Uber or other rideshare companies. 

Instacart

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.8 stars
  • Average earnings: $10-$12 per hour

Instacart is another grocery delivery service similar to Shipt. Instacart has no hourly guarantee and how much you can make greatly depends on your location. Some reports in larger cities say that you can make close to $25 an hour, while others report that you aren’t able to get orders for hours at a time. You can realistically expect to make around $11 an hour driving for Instacart in a decently busy location.

 

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Uber & Lyft

  • Glassdoor rating: 4.3 stars (same rating)
  • Average earnings: $10-$12 per hour 

Much has already been written on how much you can make driving for Uber and Lyft, and most of our findings say you will make about the same with either service. Overall, earnings depend greatly on the market in which you drive and the time at which you drive. You can expect to earn around $11 an hour via each service.

Here is a quick breakdown of how Uber and Lyft pay:

    • Both take 20–25% off each trip
    • Drivers typically earn about $25 per hour before fees
    • Uber and Lyft both take about $8 in commissions and fees

Hopskipdrive

  • Glassdoor rating: 3.9 stars
  • Average earnings: $25-$30 per hour

Hopskipdrive is a unique rideshare service designed to allow parents to hire caregivers to pick up and drop off their children, whether it’s at soccer practice, after-school camps or other activities kids are involved in.

It’s currently only located in Colorado and California, and you have to have five years of previous caregiver experience. Most parents will want to personally meet you before they hire you. Reports state that you can make upwards of $30 per hour.  

 

Calculating the cost of an average work day

AAA states theaverage cost per mileto own and operate a new vehicle in 2018 is 60 cents per mile. This includes gas, maintenance, and monthly payments. Multiply your miles driven by 60 cents, then subtract that number from your total income and you will see your net income.

You can do this on a weekly or monthly basis. It’s recommended not to consider your insurance payment in this calculation because your insurance payments are not a cost consumed per mile, it’s a cost consumed over time.

 

gig economy infographic

 

 

Having the freedom to choose your own schedule and the ability to have a mobile job can be appealing. There are different pros and cons to each service, and money may not be your only concern.

You will also want to take into account taxes that you’ll need to pay as an independent contractor and accelerated wear and tear on your vehicle. If you plan on using a vehicle you are still paying off, you will also want to account for your monthly car payments and insurance payments.

Once you have decided on the best service for your needs, fill out their application process and begin your new position at your desired company!

 

Sources

MarketWatch | The Work at Home Woman | Review Geek | Forbes | Wonolo | Uber People | AAA