The multi-national corporation built on the backs of unsuspecting, underinsured uberX drivers gleefully shouted to the media this week that its “partners” in San Francisco make a median of $74,000 a year.
Hold up a second. Let’s break down the numbers:
Uber says that “business income” is based on “at least” 40 hours a week. First, it’s probably closer to 60 hours a week. Second, note the qualifying phrase “business income.” That means revenue, not straight up salary. The difference is important, because revenue has to then be tempered by the cost of operating. Read on.
- A typical taxi driver puts 50,000 miles a year on the vehicle. Using the government rate of 56 cents per mile to reimburse for mileage, gas, maintenance, and wear and tear on a car, those 50,000 miles a year will cost an uberX driver $28,000.
- In addition, there is insurance. If uberX drivers want to avoid losing their life savings in an accident, they need to get primary commercial automobile liability insurance coverage. It will cost around $5,000 per year more than regular car insurance.
- Taxicab drivers also incur a variety of other costs such as tolls, parking, carwashes, etc., which account for another $3,000 per year.
After three years, that family car would now have at least 150,000 miles on it, rendering it practically worthless for resale or trade. So guess what? Time for a new car, even before the old one is halfway paid off.
“We know where this road ends,” said Dave Sutton, spokesperson for the ‘Who’s Driving You?’ campaign. “It ends with Uber getting rich without taking any responsibility, while its drivers wreck their cars and accept all the risk. Uber’s like a casino: The house always wins.”