Rideshare Refined: How Alto Is Upgrading The Rideshare Driver Experience


If you’re a rideshare driver and take your job very seriously, you deserve to be treated like a professional. The popular companies you’ve always worked with are familiar mainstays, but they don’t always treat you like you’re valued or skilled. But now there’s a new way to work that’s a real upgrade to the rideshare driver experience. In this post we’ll share information about Alto, including

  • Alto: a new take on the rideshare driving experience
  • how to earn more money as a rideshare driver with Alto
  • the Alto difference

Alto: a new take on the rideshare driving experience

Taking rideshare driving up a notch starts with innovative thinking. Entrepreneur Will Coleman demonstrated exactly that when he conceived and developed Alto. He wanted his customers and drivers to have a distinctive experience that set his company apart from popular rideshare apps. The first way he did this was to change the way transactions would be viewed.

With traditional rideshare arrangements, companies such as Uber and Lyft serve merely as technology platforms that facilitate connections between passengers and drivers. The companies collect fees from both sides of the transactions in order to compensate themselves for providing the software which enables their rideshare business to work.  

Alto is quite different. Quoted in this article on the Robb Report, Coleman explains Alto’s approach this way:

“We made the decision very early on to say we’re not a tech company, we’re a service and hospitality company.”

What exactly does this mean? Alto has created consistent, high-quality rideshare experiences for both customers and drivers. The cars are owned and maintained by the company. Alto’s fleet consists of company branded Buick Enclaves, chosen for their practical mix of luxury, comfort, utility, and most of all, safety. 

Customers know that when they call an Alto, they’re going to get a clean and well-maintained vehicle driven by a trained professional. Alto goes beyond the ordinary to create a customer experience that allows riders to be greeted with familiarity, from the recognizable exterior to interior features such as lighting and even a specific Alto scent.

The idea is to make passengers feel as though they are getting into their own car. Riders can even use the Alto app to create the exact environment they desire while in the vehicle or before it arrives. They can select the music or lower the volume, change interior lighting, and if they choose, put the driver on “Do not disturb!”

So far, Alto is available in select cities in Texas and California, as well as Miami and Washington, D.C. The company has plans for expansion, which would be a big boost to the rideshare scene. Alto’s focus on customer service and high quality, plus its innovative membership model, make Alto an attractive upgrade for customers. Now let’s explore what kinds of advantages it offers to rideshare drivers.

How to earn more money as a rideshare driver with Alto

Alto wants to attract serious and highly skilled drivers to work for them, so all drivers who work for Alto are hired as W-2 employees. This means they are provided with

  • predictable work hours
  • a company owned luxury SUV 
  • payment by the hour, not by the ride
  • company coverage of expenses such as fuel and auto/liability insurance
  • healthcare, dental, and vision insurance
  • paid time off and sick leave
  • safe driving bonus awards
  • 401(k) with company match after 6 months’ working for Alto
  • extensive training in hospitality and defensive driving
  • repeat customers who subscribe to Alto memberships

Alto’s vehicles provide drivers with

  • HEPA air filters that keep the interior air clean and fresh
  • leather seats and captain’s chairs
  • telemetric tracking for safe driving
  • in-vehicle wifi and chargers
  • bottled water and umbrellas for passengers
  • in-car security cameras
  • plexiglass barriers
  • 24-hour live support 

If all these aspects of driving for Alto appeal to you, you’ll need to know that the company is very selective about the background and experience of the drivers it brings on board. Drivers for Alto must

  • be over the age of 21
  • fill out an application and upload a résumé
  • successfully complete an interview process
  • pass an extensive drug-screening test
  • clear a thorough, fingerprint-based background check

If you are a professional driver with a charming, friendly personality that is perfect for the hospitality business, you’re the kind of driver Alto is looking to employ. Apply to be an Alto driver and take a step up to a new level of rideshare driving.

The Alto difference

When you work with the traditional apps as an independent contractor, rideshare driver pay gets eaten away by gas, maintenance, and vehicle depreciation expenses. Most good Uber driver advice or Lyft driver advice will include other things you need to think about, such as mileage deduction for gig drivers and rideshare insurance for your personal auto policy.

With Alto, these expenses and concerns are completely absorbed and handled by the company. Woo-hoo! This is a big change from being an independent contractor, and many full-time drivers would find these, along with the other benefits of being an employee that we’ve mentioned, to be great incentives to drive with Alto.

Drivers who can’t or don’t want to drive full time, or to be obligated to work at certain times of day, might not want to work for a service that hires drivers as full W-2 employees. They would be better off sticking to gigs that let them remain independent contractors. They might also find that a free mileage tracker app such as Gridwise helps them keep tabs on their earnings and deductions, and keep on top of local events, traffic, and weather alerts that affect their driving.

Drivers who live where Alto operates and who want to be full-time professionals, who receive predictable earnings and all the benefits of being employees of this innovative company, now have the perfect place to work. Alto definitely upgrades the rideshare driver experience. If you think Alto is right for you, give it a try. 

Apply to be an Alto driver!


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