Considering driving for Uber in Miami, FL? If a move to Miami is in your future, or if you’ve been on the fence about signing up to drive for Uber, this guide will help you make the decision to drive or not!
Below, Senior RSG contributor Paula Gibbins interviews Miami drivers about the pros and cons of driving for rideshare in Miami. From the city layout, rideshare requirements, and unique city benefits, we answer all of your rideshare questions about driving in Miami.
Driving for Uber in Miami
If you’re a Lyft or Uber driver in Miami, you already know how special that city is, and if you’re considering becoming an Uber driver, you might be curious about how Miami differs from other cities.
Miami Uber Driver Requirements
According to Uber’s website, the following are required to drive in Miami and southern Florida:
- 15-year-old vehicle or newer
- 4-door vehicle
- Good condition with no cosmetic damage
- No commercial branding
Uber accepts both official and temporary registration documents. The vehicle does not need to be registered in your name to qualify, but the VIN on the insurance must match the VIN on the registration.
All drivers must maintain their own insurance policy in accordance with state and local laws. In addition, Uber maintains automobile liability insurance on behalf of all U.S. drivers.
Your name must be listed as a driver as well as the make and year of the vehicle.
Florida requires in some areas that drivers display a sign or sticker to help riders identify you as a rideshare driver. Drivers will also be subject to driving-hour limits. Uber and Lyft don’t specify on their website what the limitation is, but it’s probably safe to assume it’s the standard 12 hours.
Your app will keep track of how many hours you’ve been active and give you alerts when you have reached your limit.
As of the writing of this article, there’s a sign-on guarantee of $1,600 for drivers in Miami who complete 200 trips or deliveries within 30 days of account activation.
Miami Uber Driver Hotspots
You may find yourself frequently dropping off/picking up visitors at these hotspots around the city.
Miami is of course known for its beaches, but it’s also near other large cities that can offer alternative driving opportunities.
There are several attractions throughout Miami, including museums, beaches, sporting arenas, and more. According to Chris, who moved from NYC to Miami and is an active driver there, “The money is in Miami.”
He lives 30 minutes outside of the city but makes sure to head in that direction to start out his driving day. Chris’s other job is as a restaurant manager, but he prefers driving for Uber full-time.
We also chatted with David L., the founder of two Florida-based driver Facebook groups (see below) who has driven continuously in the Miami market since Uber launched there nearly 10 years ago.
He says about Miami:
Miami has more requests than Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Delray Beach and West Palm Beach combined. These are also considered hotspots for the Miami market… Most driver drive Uber and Lyft here to maximize their earnings. Lyft has increased the percentage of total rides dramatically over the last few years.”
The area marked off as “Miami” for Uber and Lyft includes Fort Lauderdale, the Everglades, and more.
Miami Beach/South Beach
You’ll notice that Miami Beach and South Beach are located on an island, not on the mainland of Florida. It’s connected to the rest of Miami via bridges.
Art Deco Historic District
Marvel at the architectural style featured in the Art Deco Historic District, also on Miami Beach.
According to driver David, “I always enjoy working downtown Brickell Ave and South Beach. Lots of rides! Most are considered short rides of 1-10 miles with a few miles being often.”
Everglades National Park
The Everglades, just outside of Miami, is a sight to see indeed. It’s an experience you can’t really have anywhere else in the U.S., and if you’ve never been there before, it’s worth a visit. It’s also why drivers will get a lot of requests, particularly from tourists, to this hotspot.
Everglades is only a half-hour from Miami International Airport and is made up of swamplands that are home to alligators, snakes, birds, and more. There are walking trails as well as airboat tours available.
Miami International Airport
According to driver David, “for those who like airports, there is plenty of airport demand year round.” Here’s what Uber’s website says about picking up passengers at the Miami International Airport.
- Finding the waiting area – In order to receive trip requests, you must be located in the waiting lot. Based on the operating agreement with the airport, the waiting lot is located at the northwest corner of McLaughlin Road and Northwest 20th Street. You can find directions to the lot by tapping the MIA Waiting Lot symbol on the Driver app map.
- Waiting inside the lot – Once you’re inside the waiting lot, you’ll be placed in a virtual queue to receive a trip request. You can see your position in the queue by looking in your Driver app. You can also check how long the queue is before you get to the airport by tapping the airport parking symbol on your in-app map.
- Picking up your rider – Once you accept a trip request, head to the pickup location noted in the app.
Occasionally, drivers may receive an opportunity to head to the airport pickup zone in anticipation of upcoming demand. If this happens, here are the steps you should expect:
- You will receive an alert to begin driving toward the terminal.
- Once you’re driving, you should look for a rider request on your way to the pickup zone.
- In the event that you do not receive a request on your way to the pickup zone, you may return to the waiting lot and resume your position at the top of the queue.
Daytime vs. Night-time
Miami can be a party city, so nighttime driving is definitely profitable. In fact, that’s when Chris prefers to drive, with the understanding that he’s likely going to be transporting people who are more than a little tipsy, potentially making the ride…interesting.
Chris stated, “Driving during the day is a challenge. The traffic is almost as bad as NYC. We’re really not compensated for our time, and there’s a lot of being idle and sitting in traffic.”
Another driver, Howard, agrees that nighttime is where the money is, but he personally prefers driving during the daytime.
He loves meeting new people and Howard estimates that his passengers are about 50% tourists, 50% locals. On the other hand, he tries to avoid having to park and wait for anything or anyone – which is why he’s a rideshare driver only.
“Parking is terrible,” stated Howard. “That’s why I don’t do deliveries.”
Howard also mentioned that airport rides aren’t really worth the effort because you’d have to wait around for 30 minutes to an hour or more to pick up a passenger, which “doesn’t make sense to me.”
One thing Howard recommends is to avoid downtown Miami during rush hour. “That’s just a nightmare,” he said. “Taking 20 minutes to do a two-mile ride isn’t really cost-efficient.”
It could be more cost-efficient if/when Uber’s upfront pricing for drivers is live in Miami, since Uber is now rewarding short rides.
Learn more about Uber’s upfront pricing here.
Miami Uber Driver Tips
Here’s more of what Chris and Howard had to say about driving in the Miami area.
Chris said, “We’re very fortunate. People come from all over the world to party in Miami. They have no problem paying top dollar for a Lux or Premier ride.”
He went on to explain that “the 1%” come to party in Miami and the clubs are all open late. Even if it’s a slow night, Chris can get a few premier rides, and those will make his night.
Chris is also always ready to give a helpful suggestion to the tourists who are looking for a good time. He said, “I try to tell them where I feel the best restaurants, clubs, everything. It enhances the experience. Ft. Lauderdale is a bustling city. Miami will always be a special place. The culture and everything. I try to steer them in the right direction.”
Howard, on the other hand, drives in Miami because he can’t stand just sitting around watching TV after he’s done working for the day. So, he fills in the gaps with Uber driving.
Howard mentioned, “This takes me to places I’ve never been to before in my life. That’s part of it. During the day I meet a lot of nice people. Beyond that, I get free tuition and free Rosetta Stone. As long as I can do it when I want to, I really can’t say that much bad about driving for Uber.”
Finally, driver and Florida driver Facebook group owner David shares:
“Miami Market tends to be seasonal. Peak season ends before the end of March and doesn’t start to pick up until October.”
Uber Driver Alternatives in Miami
Don’t feel like driving around people in Miami? You’re in luck with delivery company Relay! Relay Delivery is available in Miami and focuses on food delivery. One big difference about Relay from Uber Eats? Relay drivers are paid hourly!
Miami Drivers Can Now Use Solo to Earn More
Drivers in Miami can now access the full suite of options from Solo, one of RSG’s new favorite companies.
Watch and learn more about Solo: Solo is Offering Uber and Lyft Drivers Guaranteed Earnings!
With Solo’s expansion into Miami, drivers who use Solo can now access:
- Earnings Predictions – Find out when it’s the best time of day and week to earn more
- Guaranteed earnings – Solo is so confident in their hour-by-hour earnings predictions, they offer drivers guaranteed earnings!
- Planning – Create earnings goals and schedules to help you track your progress and earnings
Is Driving Uber in Miami Worth It?
With tips and strategies provided in this guide, driving for Uber in Miami could easily be worth it for many gig workers. Are you a Miami rideshare driver? Do you agree or disagree with the Miami drivers we interviewed?
If you are looking for more city driving guides, check out the links below: