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New York City Driver Information

Update for NYC applicants

Because of TLC regulations, we’re currently not accepting new drivers in New York City. To join the waitlist, create an account with Lyft.

To start earning sooner, consider signing up to drive in New York State and New Jersey.


Information for active NYC drivers

This page provides information about city regulations, document requirements, and insurance coverage, needed to drive with Lyft in New York City.

If you're a driver in any other city in New York State, visit this page instead.

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Driving and going online in NYC

If you can't go online, it's because demand is too low in your area. See the video below for an explanation of how driving works in New York City:

To minimize downtime and stabilize driver earnings, the number of cars that can be on the road in New York City is limited based on passenger demand. This means when you’re online, you should receive more rides and be able to earn more per hour. Plus, you’ll spend less time waiting for your next ride.

During periods of low demand, you may have to wait to go online or drive to a busier area, but we’ll show you where and when to drive to maximize your earnings.

With driver priority, you can go online whenever and wherever you want. If you think you should have priority to drive, keep in mind the list of priority drivers is refreshed every 7 days on Friday. You'll receive a notification via email and in-app on Friday if your status changes.

Learn how driver priority works and see tips for going online below.

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How driver priority works

Drivers who maintain an acceptance rate of 90% or above and have completed 100 rides in the prior 30 days can drive whenever and wherever they want. To continue having priority, be sure to maintain your acceptance rate and ride total. You can view your acceptance rate and total ride count in the Driver Dashboard.

Rides given with Express Drive or Wheel Chair Accessible (WAV) vehicles also have priority to drive.

Currently, driver priority status updates every 7 days on Friday, and stays in effect until the following Friday. This means you should receive a notification via email and in-app on Friday if your status changes. For example, if you hit 90% acceptance and 100 rides on Wednesday, you’ll receive the notice and see the changes in your app on Friday.

If you lose priority, you'll have an opportunity to get it back the following Friday as long as you achieve the acceptance rate and ride count requirement.

If you don’t have priority to drive, see these tips for going and staying online while you work to get priority.

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Go online anywhere during high demand times

High demand times are busy hours during the week where you can go online and drive wherever you want, such as morning and evening commutes.

To help you plan ahead, we'll display upcoming high demand times in your Driver app. Swipe up on the console card on your map screen to see the best times to drive throughout the week. Set a reminder for specific high demand times by toggling the bell icon on.

High demand times are helpful even if you have priority, so you know when you’re most likely to stay busy with rides.

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Tips for going and staying online

  1. Start where and when it’s busy: Increase your chances of going online by driving in areas with high demand, and during peak hours and high demand times.
  2. Accept rides to keep driving: Only cancel a ride if you really need to. We may have to take you offline if you miss or cancel two rides in a row.
  3. Move to busy areas: If demand drops, try moving to a busier area to stay online. You may see orange on the map showing areas with high demand. Tap and hold an orange area to navigate there.

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About airport queues

JFK and LGA airport queue spots will be limited. This means there can only be a certain number of drivers in the queue at a given time.

This limit applies to all drivers, even those with driver priority. You can check the airport queue in your app before going to the airport to see whether or not the queue is full.

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Frequently asked questions

How are my incentives affected?

If you have an active Personal Power Zone or ride streak, you will not be taken offline, even if demand drops while you’re online.

Can I switch between rideshare services?

Switching between rideshare services is still possible. However, if you are online and miss two or more Lyft rides, we may have to take you offline. If you drive with another service, be sure to go offline.

Can I claim scheduled rides?

No, drivers won't have the ability to claim scheduled rides in New York City.

What are the orange areas on the map?

You may see orange areas on the map that show places with high passenger demand. If you drive to the orange area, you’re more likely to be able to drive and stay busy with rides, but your spot online is not guaranteed. Tap and hold an orange area to navigate there.

example guaranteed spots

What are guaranteed spots?

If you see orange stars on the map, these are areas of very high demand. Tap on the star to save a spot online in that area. If you choose not to navigate there, you may not be able to drive in your current area because of low demand, but you can always look for other busy areas. Here's how guaranteed spots look in the app:

example guaranteed spots

 

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What you need to drive with Lyft in NYC

Drivers are required to maintain current documents. Failing to update a required document before the expiration date results in temporary deactivation.

Use your Lyft Driver app or Driver Dashboard to upload your documents.

Vehicle requirements

All vehicle requirements in New York City are governed by the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC).

Document requirements

See details and sample images of each required document below.

  1. Driver's license
  2. New York State vehicle registration
  3. TLC inspection
  4. TLC driver license - Issued by Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC)
  5. Vehicle insurance
    1. FH-1 Insurance - Standard Insurance
    2. Certificate of Liability Insurance (COL) - Commercial Liability Insurance
    3. Declaration Page - Driver’s List
    4. How to upload your vehicle insurance documents

Driver's License

Drivers are required to have a valid driver's license. Driver's license can be from any state, as long as you have a current TLC driver license.

License

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New York State or New Jersey vehicle registration

Drivers are required to upload a copy of their New York State or New Jersey vehicle registration.

New York State registration example

Registration

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TLC inspection

You must submit one of these two:

  • Blue Base sticker
  • TLC inspection certificate

Inspections are valid until the marked expiration date. If no expiration date is marked, Lyft requires a new inspection one year after the inspection date.

Inspection

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TLC driver license

Drivers must have a TLC Driver License issued by the Taxi and Limousine commission (TLC). Current (not expired) For-Hire Vehicle License or a Medallion FHV License are also acceptable.

Get a TLC Driver's License.

For-Hire License

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Vehicle insurance

All drivers must have a valid vehicle insurance in their Lyft Driver app. Upon expiration, all drivers must upload their new vehicle insurance.

Which documents do you need to update your vehicle insurance?

  You own your car You rent your car
FH-1 Insurance Yes Yes
Certificate of Liability insurance Yes Yes
Declaration Page (or "Driver List") No Yes, if your name is NOT on the Certificate of Liability

 

What happens if you do not update your insurance documents by the expiration date? Your vehicle will be deactivated until you update the required documentation.

How and when do you renew your vehicle insurance?

  You own your car You rent your car
Where do you renew your insurance? Go to your insurance broker to renew your policy Ask the vehicle/fleet owner for the updated insurance documents
When?

At least 1 week before the expiration date.

Check the expiration date on your FH-1 to know when it's time to renew

At least 1 week before the expiration date.

Check the expiration date on your FH-1 to know when it's time to renew.

Which documents do you need?
  1. FH-1
  2. Certificate of Liability
  1. FH-1
  2. Certificate of Liability
  3. Declaration Page (or "Driver’s List")

 

fh1 expiration example
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FH-1 Insurance

What is this document? Standard driver insurance certificate

Who needs it? All TLC vehicle drivers (you!)

Who’s name is on the document? The owner of the car

fh1 example

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Certificate of Liability Insurance

What is this document? The proof of insurance coverage and policy limit

Who needs it? All TLC vehicle drivers (you!)

Who’s name is on the document? The owner of the car

Note: If your name does not appear on the document, you must provide a Declaration Page (or Driver’s List) listing your name and matching policy number.

certificate of liability insurance example

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Declaration Page - Driver’s List

What is this document? A list of drivers covered under the insurance

Who needs it? A renter who’s name is not on the Certificate of Liability

Who’s name is on the document? Authorized drivers associated with the vehicle

Note: If the policy numbers on the Certificate of Liability and Declaration Page (or Driver’s List) do not match, you must provide a Policy Cover Sheet.

declaration example 1

 

declaration example 1

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How to upload your vehicle insurance documents

When should I upload my vehicle insurance documents? Before your policy expiration date

how to upload insurance documents

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New York City driver regulations

Make sure to follow these rules when giving rides in New York City, and to keep an eye on your email for important news and updates from Lyft.

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Hourly Driver Mode limits

In addition to Lyft's mandatory break requirement, New York City regulations require that drivers:

  • Provide rides for no more than 10 consecutive hours
  • Provide rides for no more than 60 total hours within a 7-day period

Only time spent in actual rides count toward these limitations.

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Best practices

  • Follow all airport rules
  • Don't accept street hails
  • Don't accept cash for rides
  • Don't wait in taxi lines
  • If you run into any issues on the road, let us know

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Know your insurance coverage

  • Review Lyft's insurance policy here
  • View your insurance in the app: Settings > Car > Lyft insurance

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In-person support (Lyft Hubs)

We're opening Lyft Hubs across the country to offer in-person support for drivers. Your local Hub is a one-stop shop for answers on everything from setting up direct deposit to discovering where you’ll get the most ride requests.

Visit the New York City Hub.

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Moving to or from New York City

If you're already a driver in a different state, and you're moving to New York City, we're currently not accepting new drivers in New York City because of TLC regulations. To continue earning with Lyft, consider driving in New York State and New Jersey.

Moving from New York City to a different state? Find your new market here to see what steps you'll need to take.

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Need something else?

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