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How Old Do You Have To Be To Drive Lyft & Other Lyft Driver Requirements

Last updated 03/18/2024 by

Ossiana Tepfenhart

Edited by

Fact checked by

The exact age requirement for a Lyft driver varies from place to place but typically ranges from 21 to 25. You will need to furnish proof of your age through a driver’s license.
During times when employment is shaky at best, it makes sense to consider getting a side gig. Driving for Lyft remains popular, especially when people hear about how many full-time Lyft drivers there are. It’s one of the better jobs in the gig economy and one of the most common ways to make money with your car.
If you want to drive for Lyft, then you’ll need to know what to expect and what’s expected of you. However, younger drivers might want to check out age requirements before they get the Lyft driver app. So, how old do you have to be in order to drive with Lyft?

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What are Lyft’s driving age requirements?

Lyft’s driver age requirements change depending on the driver’s address. In most parts of the country, the minimum age requirement ranges from 21 to 25 years of age. However, in certain areas (such as New York City), the age minimum is as low as 19.
The only way to find the age requirement for your area is to visit Lyft’s website, where they have state and city requirements.

Pro Tip

If you cannot find the specific age requirement for any city or region, don’t be afraid to contact Lyft directly. They’re more than happy to help.

What other requirements does Lyft have for new drivers?

It’s important to remember that requirements can vary from state to state — and yes, that goes beyond things like the minimum age. However, if you want to get started as a Lyft driver, you’ll need to abide by these requirements.
  • A valid driver’s license. You’ll need to have a driver’s license uploaded to the Lyft platform before you can drive for obvious reasons.
  • A clean background check. You have to agree to a background check if you drive for Lyft. You cannot be a sex offender, have driving-related convictions, or have recent drug-related driving violations. On a similar note, felonies involving fraud, drug use, acts of terror, or serious bodily injury can also disqualify you.
  • A DMV check. This is basically a background check for your driving record. If you have driving-related convictions, more than four moving violations (like traffic light violations) in the past three years, or a serious moving violation (like driving on a suspended license) in the past three years, you won’t be able to drive for Lyft.
  • Insurance coverage. You need to show proof of insurance coverage with a recognized insurance company before you can drive. What type of insurance policy you need can vary from state to state, but you’ll typically want comprehensive and collision coverage.
  • Registration. You have to have a current registration on your car, as well as a current vehicle inspection sticker.
  • Valid license plates. You need to have license plates on any car you use as a rideshare driver.
If you’re still looking for the right auto insurance policy, you can compare your available options using the tool below.

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Pro Tip

Many states require you to have commercial auto liability insurance, as well as standard collision insurance. At the very least, you’ll need to have a personal auto policy with collision coverage and liability coverage.
In New York City, Lyft drivers are also required to get certification from the Taxi and Limousine Commission. This costs quite a bit of money and carries additional insurance requirements.

What are the vehicle requirements for Lyft?

Lyft driver applicants can use their own cars for the service, but that car must meet certain requirements based on varying local regulations. However, every Lyft vehicle must have four doors and at least five (but no more than eight) seatbelts.
There are also other national vehicle requirements worth noting.
  • Few visible signs of damage from accidents. This includes large dents, faded paint, massive paint scratches, or broken windows. On a similar note, all your vehicle’s safety features have to be in good working order.
  • Not a taxi or a stretch limo. There are several other vehicle makes that do not pass the vehicle requirements on Lyft. You may need to check to see if your car’s make and model are on that list.
  • Must pass a state inspection. What the inspection covers will vary, but generally this process will make sure your car is in driving shape.
IMPORTANT! Most states require that your car is no older than 12 years old. Check your individual state requirements on the Lyft driver app.

What if you don’t own a car but want to drive for Lyft?

Recently, driver requirements stopped including a car. If you want to drive for Lyft, you now can now opt for Lyft Express Drive. This is a service that allows you to rent while you earn money as a Lyft driver.
Qualified Lyft drivers can use this as a way to get their vehicle requirements met, even if they don’t own a car right now. This is one of the best ways to get into a side job that will help you raise money while you wait for a new car.

Pro Tip

You can also use loans for Uber and Lyft drivers to buy a car. These loans have a lower down payment requirement and are more welcoming to applicants than traditional auto loans tend to be.

Does Lyft accept temporary plates or paper plates?

Yes, Lyft accepts temporary plates as part of their required documents if you’re waiting for your valid license plates to be delivered. As long as they are state-issued, they meet Lyft vehicle requirements.

What should you know about Lyft’s background checks?

Lyft really cares about hiring people who will keep passengers safe. That’s why they do not one but two different background checks. One check focuses on driving history, while the other one is more about criminal history.
Keep in mind that the following issues typically disqualify applicants from driving with Lyft.
  • Drug-related driving violations. This includes things like DUIs, DWIs, or driving a car while having illegal drugs on you.
  • Criminal driving charges. For example, this would include vehicular manslaughter or a “hit and run” accident.
  • Fraud charges. If you have certain types of fraud charges (such as insurance fraud) on your record, you probably won’t be able to drive with Lyft.
  • Theft and property damage claims. This can vary from state to state, but if you have larceny charges, you probably can’t drive for Lyft.
  • Sex offenses. Being on the SO registry means you cannot become a Lyft driver in any state.
It’s worth noting that most convictions (aside from violent crimes and sex offenses) will fall off your background check after seven years. When it comes to moving violations like reckless driving, Lyft only checks for the last three years of driving history.

Pro Tip

Lyft requires real-time updates of your driving record from a third-party company. If you get arrested after being hired as a driver, you can still end up getting fired for that new offense.

How long do you need to wait for a background check from Lyft?

It can take up to two weeks for Lyft to complete both a traffic and a criminal background check. If you need money fast and don’t want to drive year-round, then you may need a holiday hustle instead.


Do Lyft drivers ask for age?

You have to be at least 18 years old in order to ride a Lyft unattended. If a Lyft driver suspects that you are underage, they reserve the right to ask you for proof of seniority.

How old can your car be for Lyft in Indiana?

In most cities, your car has to be from 2006 or later. However, if you work in Gary, Terre Haute, or Muncie, your car has to be from 2008 or later.

Is Lyft a good summer job for a college student?

It depends on whether you’re old enough to actually become a Lyft driver in your state. Since many college students are under 21, this option isn’t always doable. We suggest checking out our list of college jobs instead.

Key Takeaways

  • The exact age requirements to become a Lyft driver vary from location to location.
  • Most areas require people to be at least 21 to 25 years of age.
  • Part of the application process includes a background check and a driving record check.
  • The best way to determine your eligibility is to download the Lyft app and apply.
  • Other important requirements include a valid driver’s license, valid license plates, proper insurance coverage, and a working car.
  • If you do not have a car, you can rent one from Lyft Express.

Consider alternative side gig options

Do you want to make extra money? Driving for Lyft has become one of the more popular ways to earn living in the gig economy, but it’s not for everyone. As this SuperMoney article suggests, there are risks that come with programs like Uber and Lyft.
If you aren’t sold on this side gig, don’t worry. We got more information on our ranking of the best online side jobs you can try right now. If you’re looking to work away from the computer, get a complete list of available side gigs right here.

SuperMoney may receive compensation from some or all of the companies featured, and the order of results are influenced by advertising bids, with exception for mortgage and home lending related products. Learn more

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