A Guide to The Lyft Driver App


Most riders and drivers enjoy driving for Lyft because they have a reputation for valuing their customers and drivers. If you want to drive for Lyft, or even if you already do, this post about the Lyft driver app will show you all the ways you can benefit from driving for Lyft. We will look at

How to become a Lyft driver

Start by downloading the  Lyft app, available on both the Apple and Google Play stores. From there, you’ll quickly discover how Lyft has established its reputation of being friendly to its drivers and customers. The sign-up process is laid out for you, step by step. Because you must first pass a background check, it will take a few days to be fully signed up—so don’t expect to get to work right away. 

You will need to let the Lyft app know where you plan to drive as requirements vary from one state or city to the next. In some places, you may need to get special licenses or go through a Lyft vehicle inspection. The Lyft website will tell you everything you need in terms of your vehicle, driver qualifications, and any other documentation required, based on where you live. 

What the app for Lyft drivers can do

Once you sign up for Lyft driver duty, you’ll be ready to learn more about the app. The Lyft app’s features are extensive, but the UI (user interface) is intuitively designed. There are many features that you will need as a driver. While you may learn a lot about them during the sign-up process, it will take some trial and error to know about and use them all. 

These features include

  • driving and delivery information
  • earnings
  • bonuses and promotions
  • safety
  • ride history
  • rewards
  • app settings
  • customer feedback
  • information about your vehicle and devices
  • car rentals

You can visit Lyft’s YouTube channel and take advantage of their extensive library of videos to get some idea of just how comprehensive the apps’ services are.

There’s a wealth of information within the Lyft app as well. Tap on the home screen’s menu icon at the upper left, go to “Support and Safety,” and select the “Learning Center.” There you will find numerous tutorials that cover just about every issue you are likely to encounter when learning how to use the Lyft driver app.

How to use the Lyft driver app

Once you’re ready to fly solo, so to speak, the first thing you’ll notice about the Lyft app is how sleek and functional its design is. You can use the same app to drive or deliver as you do to request rides.  You can toggle between the Lyft rider side of the app and the  app for Lyft driver simply by choosing the icon you want on the bottom of the screen.

Click on the search button (magnifying glass) to be a passenger and the bus icon to access information about public transportation. The key icon sends you to Lyft’s car rental partner, and the steering wheel directs you to the Lyft app for driving.

In addition to the choice of driving or being driven, Lyft offers delivery services in certain cities. Currently delivery services are available in only 12 larger US markets. Delivery items include packages under 50 lbs, food delivery from restaurants that have relationships with Lyft, prescriptions, and retail items. If it is available in your locality, it will show up on your app.

There is no separate Lyft delivery driver app. Drivers in markets where Lyft delivery operates will receive requests through the regular driver app. Drivers don’t have to deliver; if they want to opt out of receiving delivery requests, they must contact Lyft (as it’s not possible to opt out of deliveries in the app itself).

Drivers can, however, opt in or out of accepting carpool rides, which allow you to pick up more than one passenger along a given route, and drop them off at select destinations. Drivers can also choose to pick up reserved rides, where the customer arranges to be picked up at an exact location and time.

All Lyft drivers, whether they opt for rideshare, delivery, or both, must complete Lyft’s education program before being fully qualified to drive. Topics covered include safety, community standards, and food safety for food delivery drivers. This article from Mashable tells you more about the mandatory, video-based program.

The Lyft driver app also houses a Lyft learning center. 

Once you are fully approved, you will see a map and a button in the app inviting you to go online. Now you can start earning money with Lyft!

The map will show where there will be extra money added to your payments, due to increased demand. These areas are known as bonus zones.

Make sure you’re ready to drive when you tap that button, because before long, you’ll receive a ride or delivery request. When you receive the request, you’ll see how much it will pay. You have 15 seconds to decide whether to accept it. To accept, swipe, and a map will appear showing you where to pick up your rider or make your delivery.

The Lyft app will automatically provide the route you’ll need to take. If you want to use a different GPS service, namely Waze, you can do so by indicating this in your settings under “Navigation.” Here you’ll note, too, that Google Maps can be used within the Lyft app.

No matter which GPS service you choose, the map will show you the exact pickup location. After you get the passenger or delivery item, swipe again, and the map will change, directing you to your destination. When you arrive, drop off either your passenger or delivery, and end the trip. At that point, you’ll see how much you will be paid for the trip. A tip might be included, or tips may become visible later, after the customer adds them.

The Lyft blog offers this set of instructions and helpful advice for your first trips as a Lyft rideshare or delivery driver.

If, during or after a ride, it becomes apparent that there are issues with a customer, it’s always best to inform Lyft as soon as possible. Pull over, and go to your app under “Help.” Tap on “Ride and payment issues,” and a list of options will appear. You can report anything from being rated unfairly to a car seat issue, as you’ll see on the screenshot below.

Lyft driver ratings: where to find them

After each ride or delivery, you and your customers will get a chance to rate one another. It is very important to maintain high driver ratings. If you have a lot of negative ratings from your customers, Lyft may deactivate you and retract your right to work on the platform. When you have good ratings, you also will benefit by getting more offers for rides and deliveries.

You can find your Lyft driver ratings under your profile, which is an item on the menu that appears when you tap the menu icon in the upper left hand corner of the Lyft driver app home screen.

Also displayed will be badges, earned when your customers make additional comments about the high quality of your service. Ratings are much more important than you might think.

How to manage your account on the Lyft rideshare and Lyft delivery driver app

When you sign up to become a Lyft driver, you’ll have to upload documents for your car, including registration and insurance, and, if it applies in your state, proof of inspection. You may drive along for around a year, and then discover you have to update this information, or, you may get a new vehicle that needs to be registered with Lyft.

All you need to do to update your account is click on the menu icon on the home screen, then tap “Account.” Another page will open that allows you to update your information. Tap on “Insurance,” for example, and you can upload your latest insurance card.

Here is also where you can get more detailed information about your earnings, obtain tax documents, and even upload a new profile picture.

The Lyft app is quite impressive, both for its sophistication as well as its ease of use. It is also visually appealing, with colors that attract the eye and emphasize what’s most important on the screen at any given time.

As a driver, you will probably agree with many of your colleagues that the Lyft app is easy to work with. That’s true, and there is a way to make the experience of being a driver for Lyft even better.

Elevate your Lyft earnings with Gridwise

Gridwise improves on what the Lyft app has to offer in a few very important ways. It provides you with

  1. complete mileage tracking. Lyft tracks only the miles you drive while you are picking up and dropping off people and/or packages. Gridwise tracks every mile you drive from the time you start your shift. Now you can collect the valuable tax deduction for all the miles you drive to and from trips, and in between. When you deduct more mileage, you get to keep more of your earnings.
  1. comprehensive earnings reports. When you sync your Lyft app to Gridwise, your earnings will be recorded for each shift. Then when you want to find out how well Lyft is working for you, Gridwise produces attractive and easy to read graphs that allow you to see all the data that’s relevant to your Lyft driving gig.
  1. Gridwise Benefits. This feature, designed to meet the needs of gig drivers, gives you access to low-cost insurance, affordable health care, deals on car maintenance and rentals, and more.
  1. updates on weather, traffic and local events. Know what’s going on around you so you can be the most efficient, aware, and available Lyft driver out there.
  1. insight into where business will be. Gridwise features When to Drive and Where to Drive show you data based on real driver earnings in your area. Now you’ll be able to plan your driving shifts for the times and places that bring you the most money.

When you make Gridwise your Lyft partner, you don’t just make your life easier; you make it so you can maximize your earnings, too!

Make the most of your Lyft driving gig with these practical posts from Gridwise:

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