What is rideshare insurance, and do you need it?

A woman drives a car with a passenger in the backseat.Image: A woman drives a car with a passenger in the backseat.

In a Nutshell

You have unique insurance needs as a rideshare driver. Rideshare insurance provides vital protection, covering gaps between your personal auto insurance and the coverage you have from the rideshare company that employs you.
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Having the right insurance coverage as a rideshare driver is crucial.

Personal insurance may not cover you when you’re providing ridesharing services. And while you get some coverage from the rideshare company you work for, it doesn’t protect you during every period you’re operating a vehicle for hire.

That’s where rideshare insurance comes in. It fills the gap between your personal policy and the one provided by your employer. Let’s explore what this coverage is and how it benefits you as a rideshare driver.

What is rideshare insurance?

Commercial ridesharing companies are a relatively new option for public transportation, and their popularity has grown in recent years. These companies use smartphone apps to match drivers with people seeking a ride.

The three most popular companies in this space are Uber, Lyft, and Via. The drivers who work for these companies use their personal vehicles to transport passengers for a fee.

Ridesharing companies provide some insurance coverage to drivers, but these policies don’t deliver complete protection. If you work for a rideshare company, consider getting ridesharing insurance to help fill the gap between your personal insurance and the coverage provided by your employer.

What does rideshare insurance cover?

Three periods need to be covered when you’re on the job as a rideshare driver.

  • Period 1: The first period is when you have your app on and are waiting for a ride request.
  • Period 2: This is when you’ve accepted the request but haven’t picked up the passenger yet.
  • Period 3: The third period is when a passenger is in the vehicle.

Typically, your personal insurance doesn’t provide coverage during any of these three periods.

The insurance provided by your employer (the rideshare company) may cover the second and third periods — when you’ve accepted a ride request and have a passenger in the vehicle. But typically, it doesn’t provide coverage for the first period when you have your app on and are hoping to get a ride request.

In many cases, rideshare insurance — that’s additional to your personal and company-provided coverage — covers drivers during that first period when waiting to get a request from a future passenger. By doing so, this coverage provides protection you may not be able to get from other types of insurance products.

Why rideshare drivers need rideshare insurance

Rideshare insurance protects you while you’re waiting to get a ride request. If you have a mishap during this window, you can rest easy knowing you have coverage to ease your financial burden.

Without this coverage, you may have a gap in your insurance protection. That gap could leave you vulnerable if there’s an accident or injury while waiting for your next passenger’s ride request.

Is rideshare insurance included in car insurance policies?

Typically, a standard personal car insurance policy doesn’t cover driving for a rideshare company.

Standard personal car insurance stops providing coverage when a driver logs into a ridesharing app to indicate they’re available for service. And the protection provided by a personal car insurance policy doesn’t resume until the rider has left the vehicle and the ridesharing transaction has ended.

Some insurance companies allow you to include rideshare insurance as an add-on or endorsement to an existing personal insurance policy. You can also purchase a full ridesharing insurance policy. This coverage includes personal and ridesharing coverage in a single, standalone product.

Auto insurers that offer rideshare insurance as a standalone policy

The following companies offer rideshare insurance in a standalone policy. Each policy includes personal and ridesharing coverage.


Esurance calls its rideshare insurance product ShareSmart. This product covers gaps at all stages of the ridesharing process, ensuring that you’re protected from start to finish.

ShareSmart is available to all drivers in specific states who qualify for an Esurance policy. And, if you’re already an Esurance customer, you have the option to add the endorsement when your policy renews.

But this product is only available in California, Illinois and New Jersey.

Mercury Insurance

Mercury offers rideshare insurance that helps reduce your risk if an accident happens during the time between fares. If you have an accident and are at fault, Mercury’s coverage will pay to fix the damage to the other car and cover expenses related to any injuries. This insurance product will also pay for fixing your vehicle at one of Mercury’s authorized repair facilities. (Both of these coverages are subject to policy limits and eligibility.)

Mercury’s rideshare insurance covers the driver and the car’s passengers. You can get this coverage by purchasing a policy that includes personal and rideshare insurance. Mercury doesn’t offer rideshare coverage in every state, so you’ll need to check with the insurer to see if it’s available where you live.

Farmers Insurance

Farmers offers rideshare insurance that protects you while you’re waiting to be matched with your next customer. This coverage pays for expenses if you suffer an injury or damage your car.

You can get this coverage by purchasing a policy that includes personal and rideshare protection. And if you already have a personal auto policy from Farmers, you can add rideshare coverage by calling your agent.

FAQs about rideshare insurance

What company is best for rideshare insurance?

Price will be a top consideration when deciding which company is best for any type of car insurance. Prices can vary, so get more than one quote. And when comparing prices, also consider the amount of the deductible, which is the amount you pay out of pocket before your insurance takes over.

How much does rideshare insurance cost?

Rideshare coverage is a type of car insurance. The cost of car insurance varies depending on factors like your driving record, location, age, and the car you drive. Also, prices vary depending on the type and amount of coverage provided.

Do I need rideshare insurance if I drive for Uber?

Rideshare insurance can benefit you if you drive for Uber. It does so by closing gaps in coverage between your personal car insurance and the protection provided by the rideshare company that employs you.

Next steps

If you’re considering getting rideshare insurance, research the insurers we’ve listed to see which ones provide coverage in your state. Then, get a quote for rideshare coverage.

About the author: Warren Clarke is a writer whose work has been published by Edmunds.com and the New York Daily News. He enjoys providing readers with information that can make their lives happier and more expansive. Warren holds a Bac… Read more.