Tag Archives: ride sharing

44,000,000 Americans have a side hustle

Bankrate’s survey found that younger millennials (ages 18 to 26) are the age group most likely to have a side hustle, with 28 percent saying they have an extra way to make money aside from their main source of income. And they’re not using these gigs to make a quick buck every now and then just to fund their trip to Coachella; 61 percent of younger millennials say they earn extra money on the side every week, and 96 percent of them say they do it at least monthly.


Income from side gigs isn’t just limited to some loose change from a lemonade stand, either. Millennials are raking in serious cash from these side hustles. The survey found that millennials make a median of $200 monthly from their side jobs, and 25 percent of younger millennials make more than $500 a month.

Looks like we can afford that avocado toast after all.

It makes sense that millennials are hustling harder than other generations; we’ve grown up with social media and the internet, so we’ve got a firm grasp on not only how to properly filter an Instagram post, but how to really grow our green in a gig economy dominated by apps and other on-demand services.


This isn’t just your mama’s Tupperware party.

Hayley Welz, a 24-year-old living in Los Angeles, says she started a side hustle to save more money and to pay off debt. While her primary source of income comes from her role as a business client solutions executive, she also works on the side as an executive consultant for a skincare company. Welz regularly posts on her social media platforms about the brand’s products, leveraging social media to market the skincare products through posts, live events, and video tutorials.

“I use this money (from my side business) for some savings to travel and to help pay off my student loan,” Welz says. “There was zero risk in trying out the business because there is a 60-day empty-bottle money-back guarantee on a business kit to start. If in 60 days I decided I didn’t want to continue the side business, I could get my money back on my initial investment with no penalty. So for me, it was obvious. Why not try it out and give it a chance?”


An extra stream of income could serve as the perfect excuse to spend sporadically … but if you’re smart, it shouldn’t. Resist the urge to splurge! Your money from your side hustle is best stashed in a high-yield savings account, where it can serve as an emergency fund (ICYMI, you should always have between four to seven months’ of expenses in case things don’t go as planned).

If your savings are already in good shape, use that money to pay down debt (helloooo student loans!), or invest it. If you’re living within your means, your primary source of income should take care of all your fixed and fun expenses; everything else should be used to invest in your future self.




Lyft rolls out new tipping prompts as drivers pass $250 million in tips earned

Lyft is touting a metric that its main rival can’t crow about – tip money earned through the platform. Lyft famously offers an in-app tipping option for riders, while Uber does not; and since Lyft announced that drivers had collectively earned over $100 million in tips four years after the company started its ride-hailing business, it’s been providing updates on the earning potential represented by tips on a semi-regular basis. Today, it has a new update on total earnings, and it’s rolling out new features that could contribute even more to tip-based earning potential.

Just two-and-a-half months ago, Lyft announced that total tips had passed the $200 million milestone, so the additional $50 million accumulated between now and then has come at a faster rate than ever before. A few factors might be helping out here: First, Lyft has greatly improved its footprint in the U.S. in the beginning of 2017, expanding to well over 100 new cities. Second, Lyft is gaining ground on Uber in terms of market share as Uber reels from its cultural and leadership problems, at a rate that we haven’t seen before between the two rivals.

Lyft is now going to start showing new pre-set tip options in rides to hopefully help drivers earn more on longer rides, the company revealed today. On trips where the fare is above $25, riders will now get $2, $5 and $10 tipping options instead of $1, $2 and $5 choices (custom tip options also remain for all rides). Lyft says than in its initial small group testing, it’s already seeing tips rise on those rides where the cost is over $25 and people are seeing the new selections.



Lyft rolls out new tipping prompts as drivers pass $250 million in tips earned

Lyft drivers call for investigation into alleged ‘wage theft’

A New York labor organization is calling for an investigation of Lyft and other ride-hailing services for allegedly cheating drivers on their fares.

The Independent Drivers Guild (IDG), which formed last year as an affiliate of an existing labor union, said Wednesday that Lyft has been engaged in “large-scale deception” by improperly deducting more than 11 percent from drivers’ fares on interstate trips. In effect, the ride-hailing company is stealing some of the drivers’ wages by collecting taxes and surcharges on trips out of state that should apply only to in-state trips, and then disguising those charges as administrative fees, the labor group says.

New York State Assembly member Robert Rodriguez backed the IDG’s request for a full investigation in a letter addressed to the state’s attorney general and the Department of Taxation and Finance.

Drivers have also accused Uber, Juno and other ride-hailing services of being less than upfront in their dealings with their citizen drivers.

“There is no merit to this allegation,” Lyft spokesman Adrian Durbin said Wednesday afternoon. “Our driver agreement lays out what commissions and fees apply to driving on the Lyft platform, and we’ve consistently abided by the agreement since entering the New York market in 2014.”

Ride-hailing drivers in New York have discovered that Lyft appears to be deducting a state sales tax on out-of-state trips that should be applied only to rides that begin and end in New York, the drivers guild says. The ride-hailing service also appears to be improperly collecting a surcharge for the Black Car Fund that shouldn’t apply to out-of-state trips.

When the drivers complained to Lyft, however, they were told that the charges were administrative fees. Those fees also happen to mimic the rates of the 8.875 percent state sales tax and the 2.5 percent surcharge for the Black Car Fund, which funds workers’ compensation for the drivers, according to the drivers group.

“This is an egregious and deliberate tax scam that amounts to wage theft affecting thousands of our members. By disguising these pay deductions as state taxes, Lyft willfully deceived drivers in order to rob them of their earnings and further enrich the company,” Ryan Price, executive director of the IDG, said in a written statement.



Drivers For Ride-Hailing App Juno Claim Company Misled Them With Promises Of Stock

Last year, drivers for ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft were excited about a new competing app, Juno, which promised to grant drivers stock in the company along with lower commissions and in-app tipping. Juno was recently acquired by yet another service, Gett, and the drivers have seen their equity evaporate, leading them to file a complaint with federal regulators.

The plan for Juno was to share more revenue with its drivers than rivals do. Retaining drivers is important, as it cuts down on costly expenses associated with recruiting new drivers, like referral fees and sign-on bonuses.

A source familiar with the startup’s finances told Bloomberg Technology that Juno was profitable, but unable to convince investors to help it expand to more cities. Instead, the company decided to pursue a deal with Gett, a ride-hailing app out of Israel which operates in multiple cities, including New York.


Drivers acquired theoretical equity in Juno the more that they drove, and the plan was that drivers would own about half of the company by 2026. Gett, which paid $200 million to acquire Juno, has no such equity plan, which meant the end of the stock program.

Drivers learned in an email that they would receive a small cash payment, about 10% of what drivers had been told their accumulated stock was worth.

That’s where the Independent Drivers Guild, a group that’s not a union but represents New York City’s drivers with Uber, comes in. To maximize their time and income, drivers for ride-hailing apps often work for multiple services at once, accepting passengers as they come in. According to the group, 40% of its members also drive for Juno.

While the Independent Drivers Guild represents drivers for Uber in New York City, its members often drive for Juno as well. Yet Uber pays some of the group’s administrative expenses, which makes it a little awkward when the IDG is calling for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate one of Uber’s competitors.

Uber itself Uber paid $20 million to settle charges that it misled prospective drivers about what their pay would be.

In its letter to the FTC [PDF], the IDG says that it learned from mysterious “sources” that Juno had learned from the Securities and Exchange Commission that its stock plan may be illegal. Yet, the IDG alleges, that was a few months before the deal, and the company still used the idea of earning equity in the company to appeal to new drivers.

“Many IDG drivers have no access to traditional worker protections like retirement plans, group health insurance, or even paid time off,” the IDG notes in its letter. “The promise of a stake in the company attracted thousands of drivers seeking financial security for their families.”

The group also sent the letter to New York state’s attorney general, New York City’s Office of Labor Policy and Standards, Juno, and Gett.


Drivers For Ride-Hailing App Juno Claim Company Misled Them With Promises Of Stock