In the first week of March, Reedst The team released our official information 2020 RIDES survey, It measures the driver's income and satisfaction. The survey shows that the driver's income is much larger than the previous year. This is the first time that driver revenue has grown in years, and it looks like the situation is improving.
We released the survey on March 6. About 10 days later, cities across the country began a blockade to try to stop the spread of the new coronavirus and COVID-19. The carpooling business was suddenly interrupted.
I originally intended to provide advice and tips here so that the rider can understand how to make the most of this disadvantage and continue to make money. However, things have changed so fast that I have now convinced the best, in fact, all the driver can do is stop driving.
For good health, you should stop driving first. This pandemic is real and serious. It is extremely contagious and spreads like wildfire. The last thing a driver needs to do is to be trapped in a small enclosed car, such as a car with 15 to 20 random strangers every day.
Close contact with many different people every day can bring you huge risks. Social evacuation is almost impossible while driving, and it is recommended that you do not keep a distance of six feet from passengers in a regular-sized car. This is almost the ideal condition to promote the spread of COVID-19.
However, if you decide to drive only because you really need money, you may be disappointed because many businesses are gone. I know this because we just completed a new COVID-19 ride-sharing survey. In that survey, we asked drivers about their status in the post-coronavirus world. This is the result.
Driver income has fallen by at least 80%
In the last survey we completed just a few weeks ago, the amazing change was that the driver's performance changed from a good one in a few years to a basic shutdown.
If you are a driver negatively affected by this crisis, please rest assured, You are not alone. Every pilot is on the same boat.
The main sources of carpooling business have been closed. They include:
- Commute every day.
- After-hours entertainment travel, including restaurant and bar business, concerts and sporting events.
In this era of blockade throughout the city, commuting to work every day is almost dead. Only "basic" workers are allowed to commute. We estimate about 10% of the labor force. As a result, 90% of ride-sharing drivers commuting to work have disappeared. If you make $ 80 a day in your commute business, you can now make about $ 8. Health risks are hardly worth it.
Entertainment venues have been closed nationwide. There are no more concerts. There are no other sports events. The bar and restaurant are closed. All the main sources of night business have disappeared.
The airport accounts for about one-third of the driver business. The airport is almost completely closed, with only a little business. The planes are still in the air, but they are empty. According to airlines, "they are trying to fill even 15% of seats." USA Today.
What should I do?
For drivers who rely on carpooling to make money, the most natural thing in the world is to turn to delivery. For Uber carpool drivers who want to switch to Uber Eats delivery service, the friction is minimal.
One-third of drivers told us in our recent survey that they would not deliver at all. But 56% of people told us that they are either already delivering the goods, or have just signed to deliver the goods, or are considering doing so.
Why the delivery will not succeed
These responses pose at least two potential problems for all delivery drivers, whether they started before or after the pandemic. The problem is that if 56% of ride-sharing drivers start shipping, it will really cut the business that any driver gets. There may not be 15 or 20 drivers waiting in line for the same request, instead of having two or three other drivers wait for each incoming request. Of course, this means that each driver will get less business.
Another potential problem is that even though more drivers are pouring into the delivery system, fewer customers have ordered. This seems counterintuitive, because you will think that more people will order and deliver because they should not go out.
But people can still shop at the grocery store and cook at home, which is much cheaper than buying takeaway food from restaurants. Many people did not place orders because they also lost their jobs and now want to save more money.
At the same time, more and more drivers are entering the system, and many customers are losing. For the driver, another way that could have been relatively smooth to make a living with a car will not achieve the effect we want.
Another big question in the minds of many riders is how safe the delivery business is in view of the coronavirus. Obviously, this is much safer than driving, but it also has its own dangers.
Delivery drivers usually have to walk into the restaurant to pick up customer orders. This involves close contact with restaurant employees and customers. If you walk into a restaurant once a week to get food, it may be fine. However, if you do this several times a day, the risk will increase each time.
Many drivers are also worried that they will be infected with viruses when they come into contact with food packaging. This is a reasonable worry. Learn There is evidence that coronavirus can maintain infectivity on cardboard and paper for up to 24 hours. This means that drivers should use multiple techniques to ensure safety when touching bags and boxes that transport food.
However, many of these technologies involve the use of products that are no longer available in stores. For example, the driver may wish to wear sterile surgical gloves during work, but he cannot do this because it is almost impossible to buy anywhere. However, if he already has something on hand, he can use it, but best practice recommends that you change a new pair of gloves with each new customer. If the driver has to deliver 15 times a day, he needs at least 15 pairs of gloves every day.
One thing that surprised me when talking to other drivers was that when considering their options, few people mentioned that government assistance was a last resort. Their initial thoughts were about other work they could do. They are willing to work. They want to work. They do not want any form of government assistance. But this is one of those times, and even those who do not want any help from the government may be wisely adopted.
The newly passed stimulus bill contains provisions for independent contractors including Uber and Lyft drivers. Regardless of the unemployment benefits in your state, the federal government will provide $ 600 per week for four months. The stimulus package also made it possible for the state government to pay for unemployment Insurance For the first time to an independent contractor.
Unemployment insurance, combined with the federal government ’s $ 600 per week subsidy, should go a long way on helping carpool drivers maintain their livelihoods while helping shut down the entire economy.
However, There is a small obstacle. This happened so quickly that the states failed to update their rules, procedures and websites fast enough to keep up with the pace of development. If you apply for unemployment insurance online, you will most likely encounter a questionnaire asking who your "employer" is. But Uber and Lyft are not your employers. You are an independent contractor. Therefore, technically, you cannot answer this question. However, if you leave it blank, the site will reject your application and may not even be able to submit it for manual review.
Speaking of those artificial reviews, it seems that most states only need to hire half of the citizens to review unemployment applications. In the last two weeks, there have been 10 million unemployment applications. No country has been established to deal with this fierce attack. Even though the money is yours technically and legally, it does not tell you how long it will take to put it into use.
This is indeed a rare and unusual situation. At those times, there seemed to be no solution for almost every turning direction.
My main recommendations for carpool drivers are:
- Apply for any government assistance and assistance available, including unemployment insurance.
- Stop carpooling and stay safe.
- If you finally want to deliver, please learn how to protect yourself from the spread of viruses from food packaging to you.
- No matter how much money you have, be frugal and try to make it as long as possible until the government aid comes into effect.
Remember, you are not alone. We are all in the same boat. This is affecting everyone. If you feel panic while sitting alone at home, please know that you are not the only one. Give someone a call and keep as much interpersonal communication as possible (but not physically).
But the most important thing is to stay inside! That is the only way we can overcome this matter. We will all have to suffer for several months, but if we stay at home, then we can start to return to normal life afterwards. If we do not do this, it will continue, much worse than a two-month national sleep state.