Complete Guide to Loans for Uber Drivers

Updated on April 9, 2024

At a Glance

  • Uber drivers have options for securing funds, including unsecured personal loans, dealer financing, secured loans with collateral, and bad credit loans for car purchase or expenses.
  • SBA loans were an option, but they are currently unfunded.
  • For varying credit profiles, recommended lenders include AmOne for fair credit, Spring Loans for bad or no credit, Upgrade for good credit, and BestEgg for strong credit profiles.

The rise of Uber has made decent-paying work accessible to many who might otherwise struggle to find a job. As an Uber driver, all you need is a car and a driver’s license to get started earning far above minimum wage.

However, there are costs involved in becoming an Uber driver, especially if you don’t have a car. Or, if you’re already an Uber driver, maybe you have to pay for a car repair or upgrades that you don’t want to or can’t cover out-of-pocket.

One way that you can cover the upfront costs of becoming an Uber driver is by taking out a personal loan. Personal loans are a great option because they can be used for almost anything and often have low rates and favorable repayment terms.

This guide goes over which loans for Uber drivers are available, whether or not Uber drivers qualify for SBA loans, and more.

Types of Loans Uber Drivers Can Consider

Here are some types of loans Uber drivers may want to consider:

Unsecured Personal Loans

Taking out a personal loan can give you access to larger sums for purchasing a car than a regular auto loan or, if you already have a car, you can use the funds for repairs or upgrades to it.

Personal loans often have relatively low, fixed interest rates and you can choose a repayment term that fits your budget. The application and disbursement process usually only takes a few days so you can get your money fast.

Most personal loan eligibility requirements are based on your credit history and income. The better your credit score, the lower the rate you will typically receive.

You may also want to learn more about personal loans for those who are temporarily employed as lenders may not consider Uber drivers full-time employees.

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Dealer Financing

Another type of loan to consider is dealer financing.

With this option, you can obtain financing straight from the car dealer. These loans work like other auto loans, except that the car dealer originates the loan instead of a bank or other financial institution.

Bear in mind that since these are private loans between both parties, they can be rather expensive compared to traditional auto loans.

Secured Car Loans & Secured Personal Loans

Secured car loans and secured personal loans are options suitable for individuals without the best credit or income that may not be approved for unsecured loans.

Secured loans allow you to qualify for relatively low interest rates by using your car or something else as collateral for the loan.

If you add a cosigner to your application, you may also be able to qualify for a substantially lower interest rate. However, if you miss payments, you may lose the car, which, if you’re an Uber driver, would result in loss of income.

Bad Credit Car Loans & Bad Credit Personal Loans

Bad credit car loans and personal loans are designed for individuals with a relatively low credit score and no cosigner, who might not otherwise qualify. The interest rates on these loans will be higher than a normal auto loan or personal loan, but the qualifying requirements are much lower.

Once you make a certain amount of payments on time, you can refinance your bad credit car loan and obtain regular interest rates if you can improve your interest rate during this time.

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SBA Loans for Uber Drivers

Under the CARES Act, the Small Business Administration (SBA) created new programs to support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, including those who were self-employed, gig workers, sole proprietors, or independent contractors, meaning most Uber and Lyft drivers qualified for these loans.

The SBA loans fund created by the CARES Act is now out of funding and no more SBA loans are available at this time.

No new applications for COVID-19 relief loans or grants are being accepted, though the SBA is still offering PPP loan forgiveness and EDIL increases. You can learn more on the COVID-19 relief options page of the SBA website.

6 Best Personal Loans for Uber Drivers

As an Uber driver, whether you’re looking to cover expenses, upgrade your vehicle, or invest in your business, obtaining a personal loan can be a strategic move. It’s essential to find a lender that recognizes the unique nature of your income and work status. Below, we explore lenders who are favorable to gig economy workers, taking into account various credit backgrounds.

Spotlight Loans (Best for Bad Credit)

Spotlight Loans understands the unique needs of Uber drivers when it comes to financing. Their specialized loan options cater to rideshare drivers, providing quick and hassle-free financial assistance to help individuals get on the road and maximize their earning potential.

Spotlight Loans

4.8
Stilt rating
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

None

Fixed APR

6.63% and up

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: n/a
  • Variable APR: 4.99% and up
  • Loan amounts: $100 – $5,000
  • Repayment: Depends on choice of lender

Qualifications

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Have a checking or savings account
  • Have regular income
  • Have a fair credit rating

Pros

  • Spotlight Loans is willing to work with individuals who have less-than-perfect credit, making it a viable option for those who may struggle to secure loans from traditional lenders​​​​.
  • Spotlight Loans offers same-day approval and funding, which is beneficial for those in urgent need of funds. This makes it a good option for emergency financial situations​​.
  • Unlike traditional payday loans, Spotlight Loans provides the option to repay the loan over a period of months, offering more flexibility in repayment planning​​​​.

Cons

  • One of the most significant drawbacks of taking a personal loan with Spotlight Loans is the potentially high interest rates. With APRs that can be much higher than traditional personal loan lenders, this can lead to substantial interest payments over time​​.
  • Spotlight Loans offers loan amounts that are relatively low, which may not be sufficient for all borrowers’ needs​​​​.
  • Spotlight Loans services are not available in all states, so it’s important to check if you reside in an eligible location before applying​​.

AmOne (Best for Okay to Good Credit)

AmOne stands out for Uber drivers with fair to good credit. They match drivers with lenders who are likely to understand the fluctuating nature of gig economy earnings. Their service, which conducts a soft credit inquiry, helps Uber drivers explore loan options without harming their credit score, ensuring they can keep their finances on track while they continue to navigate the roads.

AmOne Personal Loan

4.5
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

600

Fixed APR

3.99%-35.99%

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: 600.
  • Fixed APR: 3.99%-35.99%.
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000.
  • Repayment: 1 to 7 years.

Qualifications

  • Must be at least 18 years old.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • While there’s no specific income requirement, a consistent source of income is essential for the applicant.

Pros

  • Suitable for individuals with lower credit scores.
  • No cost for the matching service.
  • Attractive loan rates.

Cons

  • Acts as an intermediary, not a direct lender.
  • Risk of multiple contacts from prospective lenders.
  • Lack of clarity on lender details.

Spring Loans (Best for Bad Credit and No Credit)

Spring Loans offers a lifeline to Uber drivers who struggle with bad credit or have yet to build a credit history. With a model that looks beyond credit scores and considers income stability, Spring Loans can provide financial solutions that take into account the inconsistent cash flows that are often part of the gig economy.

Spring Loans Personal Loan

4.2
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

None

Fixed APR

27.00%

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: None.
  • Fixed APR: 27.00%
  • Loan amounts: $3,000.
  • Repayment: 48 months.

Qualifications

  • Demonstrate a recurrent income.
  • Minimum age prerequisite: 18 years.
  • Validate U.S. citizenship status with an SSN.
  • Provide a legitimate U.S. driver’s license or a state identity card.
  • Establish a functional bank account for incoming deposits.
  • Adhere to any specific demands by the loan provider.

Pros

  • Open to applicants with any credit background.
  • Four-year loan period aids in structured financial management.
  • The $3,000 offer addresses several short-term financial challenges.
  • Wide-reaching eligibility criteria invite a broad spectrum of applicants.
  • The focus on dependable income over job title benefits varied income sources.

Cons

  • The set 27% APR is higher than many alternatives.
  • Restriction to a $3,000 loan might not cover all financial outlays.
  • Possessing specific IDs is mandatory, sidelining some applicants.
  • A prerequisite for an ongoing bank account may limit certain users.

First Premier Lending (Best for Bad Credit)

First Premier Lending is attuned to the needs of Uber drivers with less-than-stellar credit. They offer a chance to secure funds that could be pivotal in maintaining or upgrading a vehicle, which is essential for an Uber driver’s livelihood. Their process acknowledges the potential and current financial reality of applicants rather than focusing solely on credit history.

First Premier Lending Personal Loan

4.2
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

None

Fixed APR

27.00%

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: None.
  • Fixed APR: 27.00%.
  • Loan amounts: $3,000.
  • Repayment: 48 months.

Qualifications

  • Maintain a consistent source of income.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Possess valid U.S. citizenship and a legitimate social security number.
  • Hold a current U.S. driver’s license or state-issued ID.
  • Keep an active bank account for direct deposit.
  • Satisfy any lender-specific criteria, such as credit rating, borrowing history, or place of residence.

Pros

  • No minimum credit score requirement allows accessibility for those with varied credit histories.
  • 48-month term provides clarity and allows for long-term financial planning.
  • Specific loan amount of $3,000 can meet many short-term financial needs.
  • Broad set of qualifications make the loan accessible to a wide range of people.
  • Emphasis on consistent income, not necessarily employment type, allows flexibility for borrowers.

Cons

  • A fixed APR of 27% is relatively high.
  • Loan amount is capped at $3,000, which might not cater to larger financial requirements.
  • Requirement of a U.S. driver’s license or state-issued ID could exclude some individuals.
  • Mandatory active bank account could be limiting for those who are unbanked.

Upgrade (Best for Good to Great Credit)

Upgrade is an excellent option for Uber drivers with good to excellent credit looking for competitive rates and terms. Their loans can be particularly helpful for larger investments, such as a newer car model to meet Uber’s luxury service standards or adding advanced safety features to ensure higher ratings and more business.

Upgrade Personal Loan

5.0
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

560

Fixed APR

8.49% - 35.99%

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: 560
  • Fixed APR: 8.49% – 35.99%
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Repayment: 3 to 5 years (7 years on some larger loans)

Qualifications

  • Possess an active bank account.
  • Able to provide a legitimate email address.
  • Minimum age requirement: 18 years (19 for Alabama residents).
  • Credit score of 600 or higher.
  • Annual income of $25,000 or more.

Pros

  • Willing to accommodate borrowers with a credit score as low as 560.
  • Offers flexibility with a range of loan amounts from $1,000 to $50,000. This can be suitable for both small and large financial needs.
  • Provides options for repayment, allowing borrowers to choose a timeline that best suits their financial situation.
  • Once approved, borrowers can access funds in just one day, which is useful for urgent financial needs.

Cons

  • Origination fees can go as high as 9.99%, which might add a significant cost to the loan.
  • Apart from the origination fee, there are fees for late payments and failed payments, which can add up if one is not careful.
  • While there is an option to extend repayment for larger loans up to 7 years, it’s not standard for all loan amounts.

BestEgg (Best for Good Credit)

BestEgg provides Uber drivers who have maintained a good credit rating with a straightforward loan application process and quick funding, which can be crucial for immediate vehicle-related needs or unexpected expenses. Their competitive interest rates and reputation for strong customer service make BestEgg a solid choice for drivers looking to invest in their Uber business while managing their financial health.

BestEgg Personal Loan

4.5
Stilt’s lender ratings reflect the findings and opinions of our editorial staff. Our scoring methodologies consider a wide array of factors and data points for every lender, offering, and financial solution.
Min. credit score

600

Fixed APR

8.99-35.99%

Variable APR

N/A

Overview

  • Minimum credit score: 600.
  • Fixed APR: 8.99-35.99%.
  • Loan amounts: $2,000-$50,000.
  • Repayment: 3 to 5 years.

Qualifications

  • Targets borrowers with good to excellent credit; fair credit may qualify.
  • Minimum credit score of 600.
  • At least two years of credit history.
  • Minimum annual income: $3,500 from various sources like employment, alimony, and more.
  • Debt-to-income ratio: 40%, or 65% when including a mortgage.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen.

Pros

  • Soft credit check available for pre-qualification.
  • Offers a diverse spectrum of loan amounts.
  • Provides options for secured loans.
  • Direct payments can be made to creditors for debt consolidation.
  • Late fees are not charged.

Cons

  • Charges an origination fee.
  • Doesn’t offer rate discounts.
  • Initial payment date isn’t customizable.
  • Lacks a dedicated mobile app for loan management.

Reasons an Uber Driver Might Need a Loan

One way that Uber differs from other jobs is that you need a piece of equipment, namely a car, that fits certain requirements. Getting the right vehicle can incur substantial costs, as you can see in the section below.

Upgrade Current Vehicle

Uber has certain vehicle requirements that you must meet if you want to qualify for a driving position.

First, the car must be less than 15 years old. Also, Uber must deem the car as in “good condition,” without any visible blemishes or cosmetic problems.

Since the criteria exclude the vehicles of many lower-income workers, prospective drivers must pay to remove damages from their cars, or even buy a new car entirely.

Purchase Car to Become a Driver

Purchasing a newer car is the only option for people who want to become Uber drivers but have cars that are more than 10 years old, or who do not own a car at all. However, many simply cannot afford to cover the cost of a newer car upfront, which is where loans can be helpful.

How to Use a Loan to Become an Uber Driver

Once you have the funds in hand, you can take all of the steps necessary to become an Uber driver. See the following section for a breakdown of the process.

1) Buy a Car with a Personal Loan or Auto Loan

First, pick a specific car that you plan to purchase with your car loan, or a couple of cars that you will consider, and note the prices. Make sure that you request a loan amount that will supply you with the necessary funds to purchase this car.

2) Apply to be an Uber Driver

With your car at the ready, now you can submit an application to Uber. Completing an application with Uber is fairly quick, and you can typically pass the background check and start driving within a week.

Meeting Uber’s Car Requirements

If you qualify to become a driver, you then have to make sure that your car meets Uber’s minimum requirements. The main requirements for cars to b eligible for Uber are:

  • The vehicle should be 15 years old or less
  • The vehicle should have 4 doors, with seating and seatbelts for at least 4 individuals
  • The vehicle should not be salvaged or rebuilt
  • The vehicle should not be a rental vehicle (unless through Uber)
  • The vehicle should not have any clear cosmetic damage, commercial branding, taxi paint jobs, or missing pieces

3) Use Your Uber Income to Make Payments

Once your vehicle is certified and you begin driving, you’ll start earning income. With this income, you can make payments on your personal loan or auto loan.

Tip: Setting up automatic payments (autopay) is a great way to make sure you don’t miss any!

What Happened to Uber Car Financing?

Uber has obviously had a surge of popularity over the past decade, with more people using the app as passengers, and more and more people becoming drivers to make some money.

Even with so many people becoming drivers, Uber wasn’t really happy with the numbers and tried to lure even more people behind the wheel.

This is how they came up with their (now defunct) Uber financing problem. While it seemed like a great idea in the beginning, this poorly executed program allowed many drivers with bad credit to get a loan—but at great cost.

According to the NPR Marketplace, the Uber terms were almost impossible to keep, and the price tag was pretty hefty. You could end up paying $1,000 every month for a Kia Optima, and you’d have to pay an interest rate of well over 22%. That’s a fair amount of money to pay for just one car.

Plus, once someone took out a loan from Uber, the payments were automatically taken from their paycheck. This was great if you had a good income from Uber, and low payments to make—but if your income was low and you had a ridiculous payment to make, you’d end up burying yourself in even more debt.

Towards the end of the program, Uber reached a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission for predatory lending practices and had to pay $20 million to drivers in 19 cities.

On top of the things outlined above, the FTC also accused Uber of exaggerating how much drivers could make and misleading them on the Uber loan terms.

Renting a Car Through Uber

Uber now allows drivers to rent cars through its partners. Cars come with insurance, basic maintenance, unlimited mileage, and more.

This is how it works:

  • Pick a car from one of Uber’s vehicle partners with no or low upfront costs.
  • Use the car to drive for Uber, making money that you can partially use to pay for the car.
  • Return the car when you’re done.

You can learn more about renting a car through Uber here.

Are There Payday Loans for Uber Drivers?

Uber drivers are often in need of money. If it’s not to buy gas, then it may be for something like reconditioning their cars.

For them to get as many clients as possible, their vehicle needs to be in peak condition—which is why so many people are tempted to opt for payday loans, many of which don’t require a credit check.

Payday loans (sometimes called cash advance loans) come with extremely high interest rates and short repayment terms. If you can’t pay off your payday loan on time, you may have to take out another to pay off the original loan—often leading to a cycle of debt that is hard to get out of.

We recommend avoiding payday loans if at all possible. Exhaust all the options listed above before even considering taking out a payday loan.

Read More

Final Thoughts on Loans for Uber Drivers

Driving for Uber is an accessible means of income for many, including immigrants and noncitizens, but the main obstacle for many is getting a relatively new and expensive vehicle.

Loans for Uber drivers are a solid option for covering this cost or for making repairs or upgrades to a current car. With a new or upgraded car from a personal loan or one of the other options listed above, you can gain access to a huge income opportunity.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can Uber Drivers Get Personal Loans?

Yes, Uber drivers can get personal loans. They are generally considered self-employed, and lenders will look at their income and credit history to determine loan eligibility.

What Types of Loans are Available for Uber Drivers?

Uber drivers can access various types of loans, including personal loans, car loans (for vehicle purchase or upgrade), and payday or short-term loans.

How Do Lenders Verify Income for Uber Drivers?

Lenders may verify income for Uber drivers through bank statements, tax returns, and sometimes through summaries provided by Uber showing earnings history.

Are Loan Terms Different for Uber Drivers Compared to Traditional Employees?

Loan terms for Uber drivers might differ due to the nature of their self-employed status. Lenders may consider them higher risk, which could affect interest rates and eligibility criteria.

Can Uber Drivers Get Loans for Vehicle Purchase or Upgrade?

Yes, Uber drivers can get loans specifically for vehicle purchases or upgrades. Some lenders offer auto loans tailored to rideshare drivers.

What Should Uber Drivers Consider Before Applying for a Loan?

Uber drivers should consider their ability to repay the loan, the loan’s interest rate, repayment terms, and how the loan fits into their overall financial plan.

How Much Can Uber Drivers Typically Borrow?

The amount Uber drivers can borrow depends on the lender, the driver’s credit history, income, and ability to repay the loan. It varies widely from small amounts to larger loans for vehicle financing.

Is It Challenging for Uber Drivers to Get Approved for Loans?

It can be challenging for Uber drivers to get approved for loans due to variable income. However, a solid earnings history and good credit can improve approval chances.

Are Interest Rates Higher for Uber Drivers?

Interest rates for Uber drivers may be higher if lenders perceive a higher risk due to fluctuating income. Rates vary by lender and the driver’s credit profile.

How Quickly Can Uber Drivers Access Loan Funds?

The time to access loan funds varies by lender. It can be as quick as a few days or could take longer, depending on the loan type and approval process.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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