Last Friday, we had a Radar AMA session with Gbenro Ogundipe, an Uber driver/partner who’s based in Abuja. Everyone who was interested in knowing what driving an Uber in Nigeria is like asked all their questions and got some witty answers in return. We had fun, they had fun, Gbenro had fun. For the full gist, you can visit the full thread, but I think you should finish reading this post first. 🙂
1. Drivers keep 75% of the fare
2. Payments are made weekly
Uber pays weekly with the business week ending at 4am on Monday. On Tuesday, you’ll get a report showing your activities for the week and how much you’re due. Thursdays are paydays, and that’s when the credit alert from your bank will come in.
As for cash rides, you’re basically a cash collector, so you’re to submit all cash accrued to your corresponding Partner. Uber never asks for cash. They take their percentage from whatever card transactions you might have gathered over the week, so don’t worry about owing Uber – it almost never happens.
3. Partners make as much as N100,000 in a week
If you are also a Partner, you can make between N40,000 – N100,000 a week as a partner. Gbenro thinks this amount can be more if you have time to drive yourself and you use your own car.
4. Building your business to work without incentives is important
According to Gbenro, if you want to last long in this business, you have to create a model that is not reliant on incentives. Uber has some great incentives (for instance, you get a bonus of N40,000 after 20 trips for every Partner or Driver you invite) but if that’s the only thing you chase, you might as well be working a pyramid scheme.
5. So also is having a good, fuel efficient car
This one here is a no-brainer. You’re going to be driving around a lot, so a fuel-efficient car is needed if you don’t want to spend all your money on fuel. Gbenro recommends Hyundai Accent, Toyota Corolla or Kia Rio. In his words, “[they] are some of the best Uber X cars.”
6. …and sorting out your insurance
While it’s compulsory for all cars to have comprehensive insurance, Uber is not particular about the insurance provider. The main thing is to get insurance that covers you in the event of an accident. Gbenro suggests you get a Broker who’ll get you the best insurance rates available.
7. You can make as many as 100 trips per week
About 100 or 120 trips taken per week cos an average of N800, according to Gbenro. Remember these are Abuja stats, so number of rides in Lagos could be less (because the traffic and roads are worse) and the fares could be more.
8. Fuelling costs up to N35,000 a week
You’re going to be driving a lot so you should be ready to shell a few bucks to fuel the car. Gbenro thinks a Toyota Camry takes between N25,000 and N35,000 a week to refuel. All these things are dependent on the type of car, engine size and number of trips, of course.
9. You can pay for a N2m car in 6 months
There are people who buy cars to be used solely for Uber purposes. If you’re thinking about making this move, Gbenro says you can get your money back (for a N2m car) in 6 months – if you’ll be driving yourself – or 18 months, if you’ll be using a driver.
10. About 50% of rides in Nigeria are paid for in cash
Not a lot of Nigerians are comfortable with leaving their card details on an online platform, so this statistic is not surprising. In order to provide the best user experience, Gbenro suggests you have a lot of change at hand. You certainly don’t want a rider to rate you less because they have to leave their change with you.
11. Hotels and malls are good places to scout for rides
Uber recently published the top destinations in Lagos and hotels and shopping centres made up 28.1% and 26.1% of the rides respectively. Gbenro agrees with this and according to him, he gets a request as soon as he arrives at these zones.
12. Finally, weird things will happen
Well, duh. You’re going to have all sorts of strangers in the car with you so this is bound to happen. For Gbenro, it’s getting propositioned by young ladies, or having a guy mope throughout the ride because his girlfriend was a tad overfamiliar with Gbenro.
In his words, “Weirdest thing, is kinda ongoing, getting propositioned by young ladies. One actually asked me to show her the ring, how long I had been married etc. Asked if I had a single siblings, lots of personal questions, ended up giving me her CV and taking a Church IV”