Toronto rideshare platforms have been active since Uber’s grand entrance in early 2012. Uber has since held their spot as the dominant rideshare app, with the only real competition being the taxi industry.
Now, in late 2017, new competitors will be on the road competing for the rideshare crown. Riders are already using platforms like Facedrive and Uber. Meanwhile, InstaRyde, Lyft, and Taxify are gearing up for launch by the end of 2017.
So what are the key differences between the rideshare platforms?
Lyft is set to launch in December 2017, and they are no stranger to competition with Uber. The company offers a similar range of service types as Uber, covering standard vehicles as well as premier style vehicles.
Lyft has been marketed as the “fun rideshare app”. When the platform first started, riders would strap a big pink moustache to the grill of their vehicle. Now, in most cities, Lyft drivers display a Lyft Beacon in their windshield.
Safety is important to Lyft. Passengers are given full details on the drivers vehicle, everything from license plate, to model, to vehicle color. Lyft also offers the services of a 24/7 Trust and Safety Team only a click away through the app.
Riders who are feeling charitable can opt in to the Round Up And Donate program. All fares will be rounded up to the nearest dollar and the difference will be donated to a charity of the rider’s choice.
Lyft offers 5 car service options.
Lyft is the cheapest option and is a sedan seating up to 4 passengers.
Lyft Plus will call a larger vehicle which seats up to 6 passengers.
Lyft Line is a car-pooling option and pairs you with other passengers along the same route.
Lyft Premier is a luxury car service seating up to 4 passengers
Lyft Lux is the top of the line super luxurious black vehicles with top rated drivers.
The car service you provide determines the rates that you will be paid. The Lyft having the lower rates and the Lux service having the highest. There is also a Prime Time charge for rides that take place during busy times of the day.
Lyft’s takes a commission of 25% of the total trip fare for all car service types. Driver tips are not affected by the commission that Lyft charges.
Drivers will benefit from weekly Power Driver bonuses and referral rewards. Existing drivers who refer new drivers to the platform will receive a cash bonus as a reward.
Express Pay through the Lyft app can be used to withdraw earnings whenever the driver wants.
On the road since October 2017, Facedrive offers the city a more sustainable approach to a rideshare app. Electric, Hybrid, and Gas energy options are available allowing riders to choose the impact their commute will have on the environment.
With sustainable rideshare at the forefront of Facedrive’s mission statement, it is clear that working towards a greener future is a big part of their platform. Facedrive believes in doing business fairly and equitably, treating both passengers and drivers in the highest regard.
For passengers, Facedrive offers a strong opposition to price gouging techniques like surge pricing. The company also claims to have the lowest rates.
For drivers, Facedrive claims the highest driver pay among the platforms in the city.
Facedrive riders can choose between 2 car service types.
Facedrive Sedan is the cheaper range of the scale and can carry up to 4 passengers.
Facedrive SUV is suitable for moving larger groups of up to 6 passengers.
Each vehicle type comes with the option of either an Electric, Hybrid, or Gas powered engine.
Drivers of electric vehicles will see the same rates as their gas counterparts within their vehicle class.
Facedrive’s commission fees are between 10-15% of the total trip fare. Passengers can also add a tip for the driver after the ride. Drivers who meet qualifications will benefit from profit sharing with the company. This is a bonus no other Toronto rideshare platform offers.
An insurance plan is also available through Facedrive and Northbridge Insurance. Up to $2,000,000 in liability insurance will cover drivers while they are transporting a passenger.
InstaRyde, a company who started their rideshare journey in Toronto, are once again operating in the city. They offer four main car services, Ryde, RydeXL, Platinum, and PlatinumXL.
InstaRyde knows how important the driver is to the trip experience. Their website states “We believe that happy drivers translate to a positive rider experience”.
One way they keep their drivers happy is through the bonuses they offer. Cash and gas credits are available for completing a certain number of trips within a time frame.
There are 4 service types offered by InstaRyde.
Ryde is the standard service and features vehicles with a 4 passenger capacity.
RydeXL has a passenger capacity of up to 7 passengers. Vehicle types are usually SUV’s and minivans.
Platinum is InstaRyde luxury car service, feature higher end vehicles with a 4 passenger capacity.
PlatinumXL is the luxury SUV service, vehicles generally have leather interiors and a passenger capacity of 7 people.
The rates are based on vehicle type, time in car, and distance travelled on the trip. Passengers have the option to tip the drivers.
InstaRyde takes $0.99 as well as $0.30 + 2.9% (of the total fare). These are the lowest commission rates a Toronto rideshare platform has to offer. They also offer their drivers some great bonuses and referral rates.
Rewards of up to $1000 are possible if you complete enough rides in a given time frame. Gas credits are also available, drivers earn $50 if they complete 50 trips within 14 days of their first trip.
Uber has so far been the king of the road in Toronto. They are the most recognizable brand and have been driving the longest. Uber offers a full range of car services from sedans and SUV’s to luxury vehicles and rider accessible services.
Business and luxury car services are the focus of Uber’s branding. They entered the rideshare business offering luxury black car services at the click of a button.
Since then they have included options like economy fare sedans and wheelchair accessible rides.
Uber offers 9 service options on the streets of Toronto.
UberPOOL is a car-pooling service in a 4 passenger sedan.
UberX is the standard option featuring sedans with 4 seats.
UberXL is a service which calls vans and SUV’s that can seat up to 6 riders.
UberSELECT is a step above UberX, featuring higher rated drivers and higher end vehicle models.
UberSUV similar to UberSELECT but vehicles are high end SUV’s seating up to 6 passengers.
UberBLACK is the original car service, high end black cars driven by highly rated drivers.
UberTAXI hails taxicabs from the Uber app and riders are charged through the app.
UberASSIST is an option for riders with accessibility needs. Helping passengers in an out of the vehicles is a requirement when driving for UberASSIST.
UberWAV is a service option allowing riders to request Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles.
The rates vary between each car service. UberX and UberPOOL sit at the bottom end of the pay scale. The highest rates come from driving UberSUV or UberBLACK.
Drivers can also take advantage of surge pricing, which is in effect during busy times.
Uber takes a 25% cut of the total fare as a technology licensing fee.
Drivers can benefit from Uber perks like discounts on automotive services, phone plans, and tax services. There is also a referral program in place for referring drivers who complete a certain number of trips.
Coming Soon: Taxify
Taxify offers services to both individuals and businesses, which can be switched with the touch of a button. Riding as an individual works much like Uber. Request, Ride, and Pay.
At the end of each month, you will be sent a bill when operating under the business service. Along with your bill, you will be given a report which details all of the months trips.
Taxify offers 4 car services from sedans to SUVs.
Taxify Private is the basic car service comparable to UberX, seating 4 passengers.
Taxify XL is a service offering larger vehicle types such as SUVs and minivans, seats up to 6 riders.
Taxify Lux calls top rated drivers in high end vehicles seating up to 4 passengers.
Taxify WA offers a wheelchair accessible service, providing riders a vehicle to accommodate their needs.
Passengers pay the driver either in cash or through the Taxify app. Taxify will make weekly deposits directly to driver’s bank accounts every week.
On average, Taxify takes a 15% cut of the fare as a commission percentage.
Drivers can earn bonuses for completing a certain amount of trips in a given time frame. This can help drivers boost their earnings through the week.
Drivers can sign up for all of the Toronto rideshare apps and “drive” for all platforms at the same time. The company behind driving app Mystro makes switching between platforms easy! The app allows users to seamlessly switch between Uber and Lyft, allowing them to make the most of their time. Once the ride has been accepted, drivers will be signed out of any rideshare app they are not currently using.
Mystro plans to add other rideshare platforms to their service as the app continues to grow.
The Toronto rideshare scene will meet 3 new ridesource applications by the end of 2017. InstaRyde, Lyft, and Taxify are all set to launch by the end of the year, bringing the total number of rideshare platforms up to 5.
InstaRyde offers high driver payouts with excellent bonus incentives.
Already on the roads, Facedrive brings the advantage of reducing carbon footprints by offering green, low emission vehicle options.
The most well known rideshare alternative, Lyft, brings their awesome Power Driver bonuses to Toronto’s rideshare drivers.
Uber offers the most service types of the bunch and has great driver perks like discounts on automotive services.
Taxify offers low commission rates and the option to accept cash as well as payment through the app.
All in all, the 5 Toronto rideshare apps represent an evolving rideshare industry and a great opportunity for motivated drivers. Drivers will have more flexibility in terms of the services and the experiences they wish to offer. Be sure to check each platform out and decide which option works best for you and your lifestyle.
Have you signed up for one of the alternate rideshare apps? We would love to hear about your experience with either of the companies, share your stories in the comment section!