How to Make $100 a Day Driving for Uber and Lyft at the Jersey Shore

Here at The Rideshare Guy, we’re all about helping drivers make more money regardless of where they drive. We’re continuing our series of driving strategies with new city driver guides. Today, we have a guest post from reader Craig Verran about what it’s like driving on the Jersey Shore. Below, Craig will share his tips on how to earn more at the Jersey Shore, his typical expenses, and his top takeaways.

Hello fellow Uber/Lyft drivers, my name is Craig Verran and I am a part-time driver at the New Jersey Shore. I began driving in the summer of 2017 and have been driving ever since. Prior to this, I retired as a Vice President-Marketing of a Fortune 500 firm after 32 years of service.

Quick read: Craig’s top tips for Jersey Shore Uber drivers:

  • Start early to catch the morning crowd going to work, airports and doctor appointments in the winter months.
  • In the summer at the shore, you can expect rides all day long if you want them, as the shore towns are loaded with tourists.
  • Set a goal and a schedule to make sure you’re maximizing your time on the road

driving on the jersey shore

Getting Started with Rideshare Driving

One summer night in July 2017, my daughter came home urging me to start driving for Lyft. She explained that her friend’s father was driving primarily in Lavallette, NJ, another Jersey Shore town, and making $700 for Friday-Sunday driving, never driving past 8 pm.

Being retired since 2003, I decided to give it a try primarily to fund my Florida charter fishing trips, fine dining and other fun things to do without using household monies.

I found out quickly that I was making some money on Lyft, so I signed up for Uber as well.

Today, after 4500 Uber rides and 1500 Lyft rides, Uber accounts for 70% of dollars earned while Lyft is 25%.

The remaining 5% is made up from Grubhub and DoorDash as fill in monies during mid-day slow periods in the winter months if I feel like it.

Looking for more driver guides and tips on earning more? Check out our related articles:

Strategy for Driving on the Jersey Shore in the Summer

Since I am a part-time driver, my strategy for the summer months is to earn $1,000-1400 per week working around 25 hours.  My daily goal is $100 per day and $200 on Friday-Sunday.

With just $100 a day during the week, my days can end after just a couple of rides, especially if one is to the airport, which nets me $80 without tip. If I have a quick earnings day, I will keep driving, often earning $200 a day by noon.

Now, one of the reasons in setting and being able to make my goals is that the Jersey Shore area pays $1.15 per mile (down from $1.33 per mile) and $.19 per minute.

Outside the shore area (which is the majority of New Jersey) the rate drops to a low $.76 per mile and $.12 per minute, even though some of the surrounding towns are filled with very, very wealthy people who can easily afford to pay more.

Obviously, I try and stay in the Jersey Shore area in the summer months, which is not a problem.

In the winter months, I spend quite a bit of time in Florida but do some driving in New Jersey in the winter months. I do not drive in Florida while I’m there.

Strategy for Driving on the Jersey Shore in the Winter

With the thousands of shore guests no longer in attendance, my strategy in the winter changes to driving a half-hour from the shore to busier cities.

A good winter week is $600-700 per week because most rides are at a lowly $.76 per mile, and I work more hours because of the low rate.

In the summer I attain Diamond status that gives only one benefit I care about: seeing the time and direction of where the rider is going.

I would like to see that feature on every ride regardless of status, like California drivers are now getting because of AB5, making drivers employees rather than independent contractors.

I also think it is ridiculous to have only two times per day you can set your destination to home or in the direction of closer to your home. Both Uber and Lyft lose on this because after the 2 I use, I quit, but if they offered more, I would continue to do more rides since I know I am getting closer to my home rather than going further away.

Jersey Shore Driver Expenses

As far as expenses, I don’t count insurance as an expense since I would have the car I drive anyway.  However, gas, miles on car, meals and Uber/Lyft fees take around $15,000 for this driver.

I rarely get involved in quest bonuses because getting 50 cents a ride to make the bonus is just not worth my time. It is also extremely rare I see any surge pricing as I don’t drive late nor do I drive in those cities that offer some surges because they are all too far from my home.

I don’t wait at airports, and I don’t bother chasing concert or sports events – they are not worth the traffic, and I probably would only get one ride anyway due to heavy traffic around these events.

Takeaways for Drivers on the Jersey Shore

Overall, I feel like many other drivers, that the rate per mile is too low and Uber and Lyft have room to raise prices, so we are paid more. This would help Uber and Lyft cut some of their huge losses and turnover of drivers.

Yes, they might lose a few riders, but the majority won’t care; what are they going to do go back to – taxis? Having said this, I feel this is a great job since you have the flexibility to work when you want.

Your office is your car, hopefully complete with A/C for the summer months. You are the boss, and there is no heavy lifting!

Here are my top tips for Uber drivers at the Jersey Shore:

  • I find it best to start early to catch the morning crowd going to work, airports and doctor appointments in the winter months.
  • In the summer at the shore, you can expect rides all day long if you want them, as the shore towns are loaded with tourists.
  • I never drive past 8 pm in the summer and 5 pm in the winter. Most days, certainly in the summer, I have made my goal by noon.
  • In the winter I work early, then take a break and go out again around noon time if I haven’t made my $100 per day goal for a few more hours or 3-5 pm when a lot of people are on the move.

Again, don’t get discouraged in the winter months as you may have to drive to a busy city to make your goal faster. In the summer staying at the shore is a very good bet.

I find only 10 percent of all riders tip, and it’s mostly people who get a tip in their own jobs (service workers like servers, bartenders, etc.). Many very wealthy people don’t tip, and several people are still under the belief that Uber discourages tips (or that is their excuse now).

I treat every rider with respect and I know when to speak or be quiet. You can often judge right away if the person wants to chat or not. If no tip so be it, the reality is most do not tip.

I hope these tips for driving on the Jersey Shore help you and give you a better understanding of how much a Jersey Shore driver can make. Let me know if you have any questions below!

Readers, what city would you like us to cover next in our Driver Guide series?

-Harry @ RSG