How much does an Uber driver make in Canada? Is Uber driving even worth pursuing as a business or side hustle in Canada? These were the questions a young migrant couple who couldn’t easily land jobs asked and we took on the challenge of finding out the facts.
Canada is a land of many opportunities. One such opportunity is making money driving, either as a side hustle or a full-time job. Whatever your reasons for considering uber driving, one inevitable thing to note is that you’re not doing it for fun but to make some extra cash.
Ridesharing service companies like Uber and Lyft have become one of the most popular side hustles for many Canadians. Uber especially has global coverage with over 10,000 city coverages.
Since the introduction of the ridesharing program in Canada, Uber has transformed the Canadian transportation sector and opened a new way of making money.
Uber services are now available across Canadian cities and provinces, and the company regularly employs more drivers. But, is it worth your time to drive for Uber in Canada, and how much do Uber drivers make in Canada?
About Uber Canada
Uber is a ridesharing service company providing specialized transportation services to Canadians. The ride-hailing company started operations in 2009 in San Francisco, USA, and expanded to other cities worldwide.
In Canada, the Uber service is spreading across the provinces and cities, including Toronto, Québec, Edmonton, Montreal, Calgary, and Ottawa. Uber users in Canada and across the world operate with the use of a mobile app.
Classifications of Uber Driving Services
To enjoy a successful service as an Uber driver, you need to decide which of the Uber driving services you want to provide. This factor will influence how much you can earn from the gig. Uber ride-hailing services range from basic transportation to luxurious rides.
Here are the common types of Uber services based on the class and types of vehicles:
UberX provides riders with a private ride at an affordable rate. UberX offers the lowest cost Uber ride with simple requirements and vehicle specifications. A vehicle that can accommodate up to four people (one at the front and three at the back) is suitable for UberX. However, due to Covid-19 safety rules, Uber drivers cannot carry any passenger at the front seat. Hence, every ride will have one less passenger.
UberXL is another affordable ride for a group of up to six people, excluding the driver. Vehicle specifications include Vans and SUVs that can guarantee comfortable rides.
Uber Pool is a shared ride where you can have extra riders along the same route with a maximum of two seats.
Uber Comfort is designed for more comfortability for the riders. It is suitable for experienced and highly-rated drivers with newer vehicles.
Uber Green gives riders luxury and sustainable rides in electric vehicles. The low-emission ride connects riders with hybrid and fully electric cars and a $1 fee to support the Uber driver and the Green Future program.
Uber Black and Uber Black SUV
These are luxury rides for up to three people (Uber Black) and six people (Uber Black SUV), respectively. These premium luxury rides come with highly rated and professional drivers using high-end and well-equipped black cars.
Uber Lux comes with top-rated drivers and luxury cars. It’s the most stylish ride option from the ridesharing platform.
How Much Can I Earn Driving Uber in Canada?
An average Uber driver’s pay has been a subject of much discourse on forums and web discussion platforms.
Many factors determine the amount you can earn as an Uber driver, including your location, timing, and how often you drive.
Uber driver salaries vary significantly, depending on region, classification of the ride, driver’s efficiency, the time of the day that you drive, the number of hours you work every week, and several other determining factors.
Talent reckons that an average Uber driver makes $39,975 per annum, which is $20.50 per hour. According to the comparison and job bank platform, Entry level Uber driving positions start at $38,025 per year, while experienced drivers make up to $39,975 per year. Invariably, Uber driver-partners make between $19.14 per hour and $20.59 per hour.
|Average Salary Rate||Salary Rate (Low)||Salary Rate (High)|
On the other hand, Indeed presumes that an Uber driver can make up to $25.49 per hour while the Uber hourly average for independent contractor drivers is about $16.81 per hour.
As a result, the average Uber salary in Canada, according to Indeed, ranges from approximately $30,083 per year for a driver (independent contractor) to $33,072 per year for a driver. This data shows that the estimated yearly salary is about 44% below the country’s national average.
Although the minimum wage may differ by provinces/territories and cities, an average Uber driver can make more cash depending on the number of hours spent behind the wheel.
For instance, the average minimum wage in Ontario is $14.25 per hour, while Alberta has a slightly higher rate of $15.00 per hour, and provinces like New Brunswick have an $11.70 hourly wage rate.
Therefore, some Uber drivers earn salaries that are slightly above the Canadian minimum wage. Many Uber drivers in Canada report average hourly rates between $15 and $31 from working eight to ten hours per day.
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Do Uber Drivers Receive Salary in Canada?
Generally, Uber drivers are independent contractors and not direct employees of the ridesharing platform. As a result, Uber does not pay its drivers a salary or hourly wage.
Besides, the company doesn’t apply the minimum wage law to its independent contractors. Many Uber drivers earn below the national minimum wage while others earn significantly above their province’s minimum wages.
Most Uber drivers engage this gig as a side hustle and can work based on their timing and convenience. Therefore, they earn a percentage of the fares that riders pay, including tips, bonuses, and overtime pay.
How Uber Calculates Driver Earnings
As noted earlier, Uber doesn’t have a specific or fixed salary for its drivers, as Uber drivers are offered flexible working operations. Hence, drivers in the same region can earn different rates.
Some essential factors determine the amount you can earn for every Uber trip. Uber calculates the driver’s earnings every week and deposits the same into the driver’s bank account. The total weekly payment is calculated by summing up the following:
- Trip fares (including surge pricing).
- Cancellation fees
- Referral rewards
- Tolls reimbursement
- Other miscellaneous payments.
Also, the company subtracts the following to arrive at the total payable amount:
- Uber fees for cash and non-cash trips.
- Device subscriptions.
- Booking fee
- Vehicle leasing fees.
- Other miscellaneous corrections.
Therefore, to get an accurate picture of how much an Uber driver earns in Canada, there’s a need to consider the cost of Uber rides and the number of expenses that Uber drivers incur.
How Uber Drivers Earn Per Ride
In determining how much Uber drivers make weekly or annually, we need to consider how much an Uber ride cost on average. Each Uber ride fees vary by city, province, and vehicle classifications.
Uber rides are usually charged on specific variables, such as the standard or minimum trip fare (base fare), booking fee or rider fee, and surge pricing. Standard fare and booking fees are fixed costs that every rider must pay, and these rates vary by city and province.
Surge pricing usually applies when riders demand, or request is high, with low drivers supply. Riders pay Surge Pricing plus the standard fare and typically cost more.
Therefore, each ride is calculated by time and distance of travel.
Ride = Basefare + Time + Distance
Ride = Basefare + Time + Distance + Surge Pricing
Uber Services in Canada
With more than 10,000 cities and millions of Uber ride requests daily, Uber has established itself as a reliable alternative to traditional taxi services. Here’s a list of Canadian cities where the Uber service is currently available:
- Fort McMurray
- London (Ontario)
- Niagara Region
- Prince George
- Quebec City
- Red Deer
- Rest of Quebec
- St. John’s, NL
- Trois -Rivieres
What Are the Best Times of the Day to Drive Uber in Canada?
Sometimes, when you’re too conscious of how much you want to make per hour or per day, you might end up overworking yourself and yet be unable to realize your target.
If you’re going to make some extra cash, it is best to know the strategic times to maximize your work time and make more money.
In most cases, prime hours (3 pm to 6 pm) in major Canadian cities are usually appropriate to get behind the wheels. At this time, many people are just getting off work and will require a ride home.
Also, late-night hours (11 pm to 2 am) can fetch you extra cash, especially on weekends. Ride services are usually on demand during this time of the day, as people who visit bars, clubs, and casinos will require affordable transportation to get home.
Uber tracks the popular hours that people need ridesharing services, which usually have higher rates. Generally, it would help if you considered Thursday (evening), Friday (evening), Saturday (all day) and Sunday (afternoon).
Some Canadian Uber drivers on Reddit report that they can earn as much as $20 to $30 per hour on some of the above days and times.
Factors That Affect Uber Driver Earnings
Uber driver earnings per ride vary by cities and provinces. Some hot spots and locations usually have high driver demands, making up to $25 per hour. Few drivers have also reported making less than $10 per hour in some cities.
Timing and Days of the Week
Closely related to the above are the week’s days and time you decide to get behind the wheels. You should note that there are slow days and there are busy days.
Auto insurance is mandatory in Canada. As an Uber driver, you need to get a commercial or personal policy for the ridesharing business.
You need to consider the operational cost and vehicle maintenance in your earnings. These include gas, maintenance and repairs, car washes and interior cleaning, car payments, etc.
Uber driving services are classified by vehicle types – UberX, UberXL, Uber Black, etc. the rate you’re paid per trip depends on your vehicle type. For instance, luxury vehicles such as Uber Lux or Uber Green typically have a higher cost per kilometre than standard cars such as UberX or Uber Pool.
You need to realize that your earnings as an Uber driver qualify for self-employment taxes. The Canada Revenue Agency will not overlook your Uber income. As independent contractors, Uber drivers must report and file their income taxes with the CRA.
How to Become an Uber Driver in Canada
Perhaps you want to consider Uber driving as a side hustle or a full-time job. The process is straightforward and well-outlined on the Uber Canada website.
First, you need to sign up as a driver with your name, email, phone number, the city you intend to drive in, and referral code (if any). However, you must meet the requirements, which vary between provinces. Generally, to meet the requirements, you need to:
- Meet the minimum legal age to drive in Canada and your city.
- Have at least one year of driving experience.
- Have a valid driver’s license.
- Submit proof of residency in your city or province.
- Have a valid insurance policy if you plan to drive your car.
- Submit background check information.
- Submit documents and photo, including vehicle registration
- Have eligible vehicles (each city has its regulations for vehicles and driver certification).
Tips To Earn More as an Uber Driver in Canada
- Minimize your expense and maximize your earning opportunities.
- Take advantage of surge pricing to increase your earnings.
- Plan places for breaks and always look refreshed.
- Keep essential accessories like a phone charger handy.
- Be courteous, clean and polite. It could earn you five-star ratings and higher tips from riders.
- Manage your time effectively.
- Familiarise yourself with the Uber ride app and the city roads.
- Schedule your time to work on weekends, holidays, and prime hours.
- Get a suitable vehicle.
An average Uber driver in Canada makes approximately $20,000 to $45,000 or more per year. Some full-time Uber drivers who work overtime claim to make as much as $65,000+ annually.
Uber driving is a profitable side hustle, and under the right conditions, you can make some extra cash in your spare time.
However, as with other businesses, apart from the risks attached to driving strangers around, there are off days when the earnings might not seem encouraging.