How Much Should You Tip Your Uber Driver?

Have you ever wondered about the appropriate amount to tip your Uber or Lyft driver? Or if you should even tip them at all?

This is a common question, and for good reason. It’s important to know whether tipping a rideshare driver is appropriate and, if so, how much you should give them. Read on to get the scoop about tipping Uber and Lyft drivers and how to do it correctly.

Table of Contents
  1. Should You Tip Your Uber Driver?
    1. Is it OK Not to Tip the Uber Driver?
  2. How Much to Tip Your Uber Driver
    1. When Should I Tip the Uber Driver Extra?
  3. How to Tip Your Uber Driver
    1. Tip Through the Uber App
    2. Give a Cash Tip
  4. Final Thoughts

Should You Tip Your Uber Driver?

You might wonder if it’s really necessary to tip your Uber driver. The general answer to this question is “yes.”

First, rideshare drivers play a critical role in the service industry. Their work is similar to other delivery jobs that are traditionally tip-based. And driving is a very stressful activity. It’s why many of us choose to use services like Uber instead of driving ourselves. 

Also, people often drive for Uber as a side hustle to make extra money with their car, and the base pay isn’t all that great.

You might think that the amount you get charged for your Uber trip is what goes to the driver. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. For example, if your Uber ride costs you $25, your driver probably gets half of that. 

Uber drivers get paid a flat rate for each trip. And while half of your Uber bill might seem like decent pay, remember that drivers must also take expenses off that pay.

Their income must cover the gas they spend to get you from point A to point B and any maintenance their vehicle needs to stay on the road. They also need to purchase car insurance.

At the end of the day, the tips make it possible for Uber drivers to make money in their spare time.  

Is it OK Not to Tip the Uber Driver?

Generally speaking, you should always tip your Uber drivers. However, in the case of poor service, it’s okay not to tip the driver. Examples of poor service that may validate you not tipping the driver include:

  • Rude behaviour
  • A smelly car
  • A dirty or messy car
  • Driving in an unsafe manner (please report this to Uber)

However, if the car is clean, the driver is polite, and gets you to your destination safely, please tip your driver. 

If you’re worried about tipping because of the extra money you’re spending, use this list of money-saving Uber hacks to find other ways to save while still tipping your driver.

How Much to Tip Your Uber Driver

There are unwritten guidelines for how much to tip your Uber driver.

The minimum you should tip your Uber driver is 10%. So, on a $40 bill, you’d tip the driver $4. 

Other people prefer to tip an Uber driver the way you would a server in a restaurant. That would mean you’d tip them 15% to 20%. So, on that same $40 bill, you’d tip between $6 and $8.

15% or 20% is a more common calculation to use when tipping the Uber driver. So, if you don’t want to come off as a cheapskate, stick to 15% or more. 

When Should I Tip the Uber Driver Extra?

You might want to give your Uber driver an even bigger tip if they went above and beyond in providing you service. 

For example, maybe the driver was a pleasure to chat with. Maybe they provided bottled water to drink or candy to snack on. 

Or maybe the driver gave you some great tips about where to dine, the best pubs in the area, or how to get a killer deal on event tickets in the area. 

Another situation where a driver may deserve an extra tip is if they return a lost item to you. Uber charges customers $20 for lost item returns, and all that money goes to the driver to compensate them for their time and money. 

After all, if they’re returning an item you left in the car, they cannot make additional runs. However, if the item has a high monetary value or sentimental value, you may want to tip them extra for returning it. 

Moral of the story: Always tip your Uber driver unless the service is horrible, and tip them a minimum of 10% or more for great service. 

How to Tip Your Uber Driver

Wondering how to tip your Uber driver? Your best bet is to choose one of the following two options:

Tip Through the Uber App

The easiest way to tip an Uber driver is through the Uber app. The app will give you an opportunity to rate your driver after your Uber ride is complete.

The app will then ask you if you want to tip the driver through the app. You’ll be able to select “yes” or “no,” and then you’ll be asked to choose a tip amount. 

If you choose to tip through the app, Uber gives the money to the driver with their regular pay. 

Give a Cash Tip

Many riders give their Uber driver a cash tip at the end of the ride. Uber drivers often prefer cash tips as they immediately get cash in their pockets. 

Just hand the driver the cash tip at the end of your ride, and thank them for the great service. However, if you don’t have cash on hand or prefer to use the app, you can also do that. 

Your Uber driver will appreciate the tip no matter what method you use to get it to them.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how much to tip the Uber driver is important. Uber and Lyft drivers work hard to get people to their destinations on time, and driving can be stressful. 

Show your Uber driver some love by tipping them for a job well done.

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About Laurie Blank

Laurie Blank is a blogger, freelance writer, and mother of four. She’s psyched about teaching others how to manage their money in a way that aligns with their values and has been quoted in Bankrate.

She's a licensed Realtor with Edina Realty in Minneapolis, Minnesota (also licensed in Wisconsin too) and has been freelance writing for over six years.

She shares powerful insights on her blog, Great Passive Income Ideas, that will show you how you can create passive income sources of your own.

Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank or financial institution. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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