The delivery side hustle economy is booming right now. Many people are using their cars to bring in big bucks by either delivery packages, food, and other supplies or driving people around locally through a rideshare company.
Last year, my husband earned $10,000 from driver side hustles and it was a big help to us financially. We were able to pay off his car loan and some other debt while also saving for a vacation.
While driver side hustles like Uber, UberEats, Lyft, PostMates, Amazon Flex, TaskRabbit, and Door Dash can be a great way to bring in some extra cash, like all opportunities, you need to carefully consider the pros and cons before deciding if it’s right for you.
One Simple App
Most modern driver side hustles allow you to start earning money fast with just one simple app. Programs like Uber, Lyft, TaskRabbit, and DoorDash and others all have secure and user-friendly apps that you will use to do business with paying customers.
Once you apply and get your application processed and approved, all you have to do is complete the necessary hiring requirements then log into the app to find work near you.
You will “clock in” on the app by making yourself available to accept jobs. Customers will request orders or rides all on each specific app and they will pay safely for the app so you don’t have to worry about collecting payments.
Driver side hustles are super flexible because you can often choose when you wish to work and don’t have to commit to set hours. For my husband, he liked to drive during the evenings after working at his full-time job or even on off days and weekends. During busy weeks, he didn’t drive much and had the freedom to slow down as needed.
If you’re bored and have some spare time to kill, you can simply log into the app and look for jobs. You can even do this work full time and work around your school schedule or kid’s school schedule if you wish.
Another benefit of driver side hustles is that you often get paid every 7 days or even less sometimes. Some side hustles will provide you with a bi-weekly paycheck or payout in 30 days or longer.
Uber and Lyft both pay drivers weekly. Postmates pays delivery drivers 4-7 business days following each delivery. Amazon Flex processes payments each Tuesday and Friday for delivery drivers.
One of the top concerns for anyone considering a driver side hustle is often safety. This is especially true if you’re considering a rideshare apps like Uber or Lyft. You may have reservations about driving strangers around or even delivering food and packages to them.
I know for rideshare apps, passengers have to identify themselves in order to be picked up and you can communicate with them via the app and even call or text to discuss the pick-up location if needed all while your number is blocked and protected by the rideshare company.
If you’re driving passengers around, you can share your tips with friends and family and there is also the option to file reports if you encounter major issues or you can even charge them a fee if they do any damage in your car. Yet and still, bad experiences have been rare for the most part and you would have to overcome the awkward feeling of having a stranger in your car.
Some people will crank up a conversation and be friendly while others may be more reserved. If you really don’t want to deal with people, you can choose to deliver food or packages instead.
Car Maintenance and Repairs
If you’re going to be using your car a lot more for work, odds are your auto expenses will noticeably increase. You may have to start paying more for gas, get frequent oil changes, and pay for regular maintenance and repairs more often.
The best way to deal with the added expenses is to budget for it. You will also need to make sure you’re taking good care of your car and investing in preventative tools and resources. Finally, be sure to take advantage of any perks that might be available to you via the company you’re working with.
For example, Uber provides drivers with discounts for servicing their car at certain shops. If you have to drive through toll roads for deliveries or passenger trips, you can also be reimbursed for any money you spend on tolls.
Taxes Are All On You
As with any side hustle that pays you as an independent contractor, you need to set aside money to pay estimated quarterly taxes. Factor in that you may have to set aside anywhere from 15% – 30% of your income for taxes.
Be sure to speak to your accountant to determine how much of your earnings you should set aside each month as it will depend on your tax bracket.
Also, don’t forget to track your mileage and deduct qualifying expenses to lighten your tax burden each year. You can deduct expenses like fuel used when you were driving on the job, car repairs and maintenance, and tools and materials you purchase as a result of your side hustle.
At the end of the day, driver side hustles would be an ideal option for you if you think the pros outweigh the cons and if you’d be generally interested in the work. It’s pretty easy and many of the jobs pay more than minimum wage. Plus, you can work whenever it’s convenient for you.
Just be sure to make sure you feel completely comfortable doing the work, take good care of your car, and plan accordingly for taxes.
What do you think about side hustles that allow you to use your car to earn extra money?