Rideshare drivers weighing options because of high gas prices

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Uber and Lyft drivers’ take-home pay is dropping as gas prices soar to record levels.

Torri Cowans has been driving for Uber and Lyft the last couple of years but as prices at the pump soar, she’s feeling the pinch.

“Oh, my goodness. It’s kind of like I’m really just wanting to sit still because of the simple fact that you’re if you’re not making the money, you’ll be out there for a long period of time to make up for that tank of gas in which you’re spending,” Cowans said.

While customers may be paying more to ride, Cowans said drivers aren’t getting an extra fee as drivers are responsible for paying for gas and each time gas goes up it cuts into their earnings.

Right now it’s costing her $50 to $60 to fill up her tank and to make that money back you have to be out driving for at least four hours.

“Before I would use up a tank of gas for a couple of hours and then, you know, I would make that money back but now I’m a little bit hesitant because I’m not sure if I will be able to make that money back because it’s costing so much to fill up on one tank of gas,” Cowans said.

I reached out to both Uber and Lyft for a statement on the matter.

Lyft said its investments in programs like our fuel cashback program GetUpside partnership and the Lyft direct cashback debit card are designed to directly save drivers money at the pump.

According to Uber, drivers can save up to 25¢ per gallon through cash back with GetUpside.

“It goes right back to saying where do you get that $0.25 off somewhere where it’s for $4.40, $4.30 or is it somewhere where it’s a little bit, maybe $4.20 or something of that nature?” Cowans said.

Drivers said it’s a catch 22 as prices go up, they have to drive more to earn more to cover the costs using more gas to do that.

“Looking at the cost of what I’m making to benefit me, is it going to be beneficial to drive or not?” Cowans said.

Both Lyft and Uber said they care about their drivers and their platform only works if it works for drivers.

They said they will continue to monitor gas prices and listen to drivers over the coming weeks.