Any rideshare driver will tell you that it’s feast or famine when it comes to ride requests. If it’s the weekend or an event is in town, you’re going to see a surge in rides. But if it’s just a regular Tuesday evening, you may be lucky to make ends meet.
Finding hotspots in your town can help you maximize your earnings and offset those inevitable slow days.
Head Downtown, or Follow the Crowds
Knowing your city is key. Where are the crowds on a Friday night? Where does everyone go after work, when visiting, or on the weekends?
Maybe it’s the nearby park on a Saturday afternoon. Maybe it’s the string of restaurants on Main Street on a Friday evening. Consider nearby neighborhoods that may have large populations and foot traffic.
In cities like New York or Los Angeles, which are both top cities to drive for Lyft or Uber, hotspots are everywhere. These cities have massive populations and large amounts of tourists at all times, so it’s easy to get a ride request from just about any location.
If you’re new in town, you can use Yelp or Google reviews to help you find popular spots in town. The busier the area or street, the better your chances of getting ride requests.
Predict when surges might occur in these popular areas of town. If you live near churches, you might expect a surge in ride requests around 12pm on a Sunday. If you live in a college town, you can expect a surge on Friday and Saturday nights.
There are also online tools, like the one offered by Alvia, that list popular destinations in major cities as well as the best times to drive, according to other drivers.
Know Local Events
Know what’s going on in your town. Keep a pulse on local events, like festivals, fairs and concerts. These are the days you want to be out driving. Large events can be especially profitable, as most people don’t want to have to deal with traffic.
Use apps and local events calendars to find out what’s going on near you. Don’t be afraid to travel to a nearby city, especially if there’s a big event in town. It will probably be well worth the drive to take advantage of the surge.
You can also use an app, like Gridwise, to help you find nearby events.
Know the Areas to Avoid
It’s just as important to know the areas in town where you’re not likely to get many – or any – ride requests. This way, you don’t waste your time going to these dead parts of town.
You may also want to know which areas are dangerous and avoid these spots, too. Even if these areas are considered hotspots, your safety is more important than making a few extra dollars.
Once you’ve identified the most popular spots in your town and you know the best times to drive, you can start building your schedule around this information to maximize profits.