How Much Do Uber Drivers Make in California in 2024

How Much Do Uber Drivers Make in California in 2024

Did you know that Uber drivers completed over 7 billion trips in 2022? That’s almost double 2017 numbers according to Business of Apps*. With so many passengers requesting rides, there’s never been a better time to join Uber’s network of drivers. But how much do Uber drivers make in California? 

Driving for Uber offers the opportunity to work for yourself, to your own schedule. You can work as much or as little as you’d like, either as a full-time job or a part-time hustle. 

You’ll be meeting lots of different passengers, so if you’re a people person, driving for Uber could be right up your street.

In this post, we’ll be looking into the earning potential of an Uber Driver in California, and sharing some tips and tricks to make the most of your pay. 

How Much Could I Earn as An Uber Driver in California?

The amount you could earn as an Uber driver is up to you! More time behind the wheel means more money in the bank. 

A study from Ridester in 2020 estimated that:

Uber X drivers earn $18 an hour

Uber Black drivers earn $25 an hour

Assuming a 40 hour working week, Uber X drivers could expect to earn around $30,000 per year based on earnings alone. 

If an Uber Black driver consistently earns $25 an hour, they can expect a yearly salary of $52,000. For some trips, this can be as high as $200 an hour.

However, this figure doesn’t factor in location, surge pricing, bonuses and tips which we’ll get into further down. 

If you’re thinking of becoming an Uber Black driver, you can read more about Uber’s requirements here. However, you’ll first need to sign up as an Uber driver and get some experience before you can upgrade to Uber Black. 

Also, make use of the Greenlight Hubs! Ask a member of staff how you can become an Uber Black driver and increase your earnings. 

How To Get Started As An Uber Driver in California

Signing up to Uber is simple, and can be easily done from here. You’ll need to provide Uber with some personal information and details about yourself and your car. Then you’ll be asked to do a background check which is also completed online. Uber will require a copy of your driving license so have that to hand when you sign up, as well as any permits or licenses your city requires. 

 Once you’ve completed your application, the next step is insurance. 

Getting Livery Insurance With INSHUR 

Did you know? 

Uber’s standard insurance only covers you for third-party incidents where you’re not at fault. Any damages caused by you are not covered – which could lead to some expensive bills in the event of an incident.

Plus in order to drive for Uber Black, you’ll need an extra level of livery insurance.

We’ll be launching in California very soon, bringing Uber Black drivers like you our “Excellent” rated Livery insurance policies. You’ll be joining thousands of Uber drivers who already trust INSHUR with their coverage. 

Sign up now to be first to know when we launch in your area!

How Uber Calculates Driver Earnings

How exactly does Uber calculate your earnings as a professional driver? 

The answer can be more complicated than you think.

To calculate what a driver has earned, Uber use a few different metrics.

These are:

  • Driver Location – are you in a busy city or in a rural area
  • Surge Pricing – this is where passenger demand outstrips available drivers. You’ll earn bigger fares during these times, such as rush hour, after a big sporting event or during bad weather events (please only drive if it’s safe).
  • Tips – Drivers keep 100% of the tips they earn, so it pays to keep a clean car and a friendly attitude.

While an average driver’s base salary in California could be $30,000 per year, there is potential to earn over and above this with Uber Black. 

In fact, according to Indeed, Uber drivers in California could potentially earn $65,000 per year. However, this is before taxes and operating expenses such as vehicle upkeep and fuel.


In areas with wealthier customers, Uber Black drivers have reported earnings of between $100 and $200 an hour! Of course, this is the very high end, and it’s important to remember that you’ll be accepting fewer trips than UberX. However accepting Uber Black rides can be very lucrative as riders are willing to pay premium fare for a luxury ride. 

Tips and Tricks for Keeping Costs Down

With gas and oil prices creeping higher every day, driver expenses can eat away at your earnings. 

The RideshareGuy spoke to one Uber Black driver who said his expenses average around 40% of his revenue. However, he clarifies this covers his vehicle repayments, insurance, parking and airport fees, his personally funded pension contribution – everything. Plus, some of these are tax deductible!

So what can you do to keep costs down?

Using a site like GasBuddy can help you find the lowest gas price in your area. Type in your city, choose between fuel types and compare real-time prices. 

Keeping your car interior clean and tidy means you won’t have to worry about a hefty cleaning bill in future. Spot tidying and emptying out any trash from the end of your day could also positively impact tips!

Choose to roll down a window instead of using the air-conditioning – unless of course, the Arizona heat is becoming truly unbearable! And in milder winter conditions, wear an extra layer before putting on the heat.

And finally, make sure you’re routinely maintaining your vehicle to a high standard. Flat tyres consume more gas, as well as unnecessary baggage in the trunk. And of course, driving safely The safer you drive, the less likely you are to be involved in an accident. So be calm and slow, take it easy and stay alert.

In Conclusion

Driving for Uber has great earning potential, with some drivers earning well above the median average for Arizona.

You’ll work to your own schedule, and choose your own hours. Plus there are some fantastic benefits for maintaining a high driver score, such as fully funded tuition. We’ll get into this in a future article, so keep your eyes peeled. 

We hope that this article helps you work out if driving for Uber is worth it for you. Take into account that you keep 100% of the tips you make, and Uber Black drivers earn significantly more than Uber X drivers. So once you have some experience under your seatbelt, you can level up your vehicle and your earnings. 

Why Should I Get Livery Insurance with INSHUR?

In order to drive for Uber Black, you’ll need commercial auto insurance in addition to your personal coverage.

This is because Uber expects its Uber Black drivers to hold a higher level of coverage as a premium service. 

Usually, you would visit a broker and spend days waiting for your documentation to come through, meaning potential lost earnings while you wait.

With INSHUR, you’ll be able to purchase your livery coverage online. Our policies are 100% digital, and we have a dedicated support team ready to help you in Spanish or English.

We’ll be launching in California very soon, bringing Uber Black drivers like you our “Excellent” rated Livery insurance policies. You’ll be joining thousands of Uber drivers who already trust INSHUR with their coverage. 

Sign up now to be first to know when we launch in your area!

*Business of Apps – Uber Stats

Not found