Rideshare insurance is special coverage for drivers for Uber, Lyft and similar services. It fills the insurance gaps between a personal auto insurance policy and the coverage provided by a rideshare company. It's sometimes called "transportation network company" coverage by insurance companies.

What insurance do Uber and Lyft drivers need?

If you drive for a company like Uber, you may want additional insurance in case of accidents during the time your rideshare app is on but you don't have a passenger yet. This time period is commonly called the "gap."

What are the rideshare "periods"?

  • App is off: You're driving for your own personal trips. Your personal auto insurance policy covers you.
  • Period 1 (the "gap"): App is on but no ride request yet. The insurance provided by ridesharing companies is limited during this time and your personal auto policy may not extend into period 1.
  • Period 2: App is on, you've accepted a trip and you're on the way. You typically have coverage from the ridesharing company.
  • Period 3: App is on and you have a passenger in the car. You typically have coverage from the ridesharing company.

Who offers rideshare insurance

Here are examples of rideshare insurance options. Auto insurance companies with rideshare insurance might not offer it in all states. If your insurer doesn't offer it, and you don't want to switch companies, commercial auto insurance is another option. It's insurance specifically for people who use their cars for business. But it's often more expensive than getting rideshare coverage.

Allstate Ride for Hire: This coverage fills the gap between an Allstate personal auto insurance policy and the coverage from a rideshare company. Allstate says it can cost as little as $15 to $20 a year.

Erie rideshare insurance: Erie customers can get extra coverage by designating their policies as business use. Erie says the extra cost can be about 30% more than a personal auto policy.

Esurance ShareSmart: Available in California to fill the coverage gap in Period 1. Based on EverQuote's analysis of filings made by Esurance with the California department of insurance, the increase for ShareSmart starts at 5% to 10% for liability coverage.

Farmers rideshare insurance: A Farmers add-on will fill the coverage gap in Period 1. Based on EverQuote's analysis of rate filings made by Farmers, adding their rideshare coverage can add about 38% to the cost.

Geico rideshare insurance: Geico's rideshare policy covers both your personal trips and rideshare trips with one policy.

Mercury Ride-Hailing Insurance: Fills the coverage gap in Period 1. Mercury says it can cost as little as 20 cents a day.

Progressive rideshare insurance: Progressive offers an endorsement that will cover gaps. The price increase is 5% to 15%, based on EverQuote's analysis of Progressive's state insurance filings.

Safeco RideSharing Coverage: Fills the coverage gap in Period 1. Safeco says the extra coverage will likely cost less than $10 a month.

State Farm Rideshare Driver Coverage: This extends your personal State Farm auto policy into the time you're driving for Uber, Lyft or another rideshare company. It even extends coverage for medical payments, roadside assistance and rental reimbursement into your rideshare driving time. State Farm says the extra coverage usually adds 15% to 20% to your State Farm premium.

USAA Rideshare Gap Protection: Fills the coverage gap in Period 1. USAA says it can cost as little as $6 a month.

Uber and Lyft insurance

Uber and Lyft provide insurance to drivers who have accepted a ride and through the time passengers are dropped off. Here's what they offer.

Uber insurance

App is on and you're waiting for a trip

(period 1)

Uber provides:

  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $25,000 property damage liability.

You accept a trip or you have passengers

(periods 2 and 3)

Uber provides:

  • $1 million liability per accident.
  • $1 million uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury, covering injuries to any person in your vehicle caused by a driver without insurance or without enough insurance.
  • Collision and comprehensive insurance for damage to your own vehicle, as long as you also have these coverage types on your own personal auto policy. This has a $1,000 deductible.

Lyft insurance

App is on and you're waiting for a trip

(period 1)

If your personal policy will not apply during this time, Lyft provides:

  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $25,000 property damage liability.

You accept a trip or you have passengers

(periods 2 and 3)

Lyft provides:

  • $1 million liability per accident.
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury, covering injuries to any person in your vehicle caused by a driver without insurance or without enough insurance. Lyft's limits for this vary by state.
  • If you have collision and comprehensive insurance on your own personal auto policy, Lyft provides collision and comprehensive insurance for damage to your vehicle. This has a $2,500 deductible.

What happens if you don't have rideshare or commercial auto insurance?

Lyft and Uber insurance provide some limited coverage during period 1, as shown above. But if that's your only insurance for period 1 you will have pay out of pocket if you cause an accident with more damage or injuries.

For example, if you cause $50,000 worth of property damage to someone else in Period 1, Lyft or Uber insurance pays only $25,000. And if you back your car into a pole, there's no collision insurance from Lyft or Uber in Period 1.

Also, if your insurer finds out you're driving for a rideshare service and you haven't mentioned it, you could have a claim denied or your policy cancelled. That's another reason to get the right insurance.