This Week In Rideshare: Dara, Minneapolis, and California.

4 min readAug 25, 2023

Dara moonlights as a driver, a mayor vetoes a bill, and Uber raises the minimum age. LegalRideshare breaks it down.

MONDAY 8/21/23

A new study looks at delivery drivers’ working conditions. Business World reported:

The conditions of gig workers at local ride-hailing and delivery platforms have shown no improvement since last year, according to a study, highlighting financial insecurity and safety risks due to limited protections.

None of the ten platforms demonstrated fair pay and representation among workers, Fairwork said in a statement e-mailed to reporters on Thursday.

On fair management, two out of the ten platforms (GrabCar and GrabExpress/Food) received a point for having formalized processes that allow workers to appeal decisions.

“Platform-related indebtedness, a major finding in this year’s study, pertains to a situation where gig workers become indebted — to informal money lenders, vehicle companies, operators, and contractors — in the aspirational process of gaining access to platform work,” said Cheryll Ruth R. Soriano, the principal investigator at Fairwork Philippines, in a press statement.

“The end result is the rider or driver being chained to platform labor for survival, working longer and harder hours to make a living.”

TUESDAY 8/22/23

Uber’s CEO Dara Khosrowshahi reviews his ‘nightmare’ while moonlighting as an Uber driver. Fortune reported:

The initiative, called Project Boomerang internally, saw Khosrowshahi driving the streets of San Francisco on several occasions. When asked about his worst “nightmare” experience, he revealed it wasn’t actually involving any passenger he picked up in his car.

“It was when I was a courier,” Khosrowshahi told the WSJ. “I was trying to deliver food and I couldn’t find where to drop it off. Trying to figure out the maze of apartment complexes was a challenge.”

Back in 2021, Khosrowshahi told the New York Times that he “nearly got killed” by traffic when the San Francisco Giants were playing.

On the bright side, Khosrowshahi said his work experience had taught him that Uber needs to do more to make its drivers passionate about what they do.


Instacart’s business slows as it heads for IPO. Insider Intelligence adds:

While Instacart’s revenues rose over 30% year-over-year (YoY) to about $1.4 billion in the first half of 2023, its gross transaction volume grew just 5% YoY, per The Information.

It is questionable whether that growth model is sustainable, which is problematic given that Instacart executives may begin their IPO pitches to investors as early as next week, per Bloomberg.

Instacart’s slowdown in its core delivery business is a marked contrast with the 27% and 10% growth reported by DoorDash’s and Uber’s delivery services over the same period. While both those companies primarily provide restaurant delivery, they are rapidly growing their grocery businesses. For example, our forecast expects DoorDash to make $5.26 billion in online grocery sales this year, which is over nine times the $580 million it generated in 2020.

THURSDAY 8/24/23

Minneapolis mayor vetos what would have been a major win for drivers. Fortune adds:

The mayor of Minneapolis on Tuesday vetoed minimum wages for Uber, Lyft, and other ride-hailing drivers, a move one city council member described as “an inexcusable betrayal of Minneapolis workers.”

Mayor Jacob Frey instead negotiated with Uber, securing an agreement for higher pay for only those drivers.

In his veto message, Frey wrote he “secured a commitment from Uber” that drivers picking up passengers in Minneapolis or driving within the city will make the city’s minimum wage of $15 an hour. The company also committed to paying Uber drivers at least $5 for any trip in the metro area.

Lyft drivers are not covered by the mayor’s deal.

“This veto is an inexcusable betrayal of Minneapolis workers,” Wonsley said in a statement. “The ordinance was developed over eight months of consultation with drivers, city staff, and national experts.”

FRIDAY 8/24/23

Uber raises the age to drive in California to 25. AP business reported:

Uber raised the minimum age requirement for most of its new drivers in California to 25 on Thursday under rules the company said are necessary because of the rising costs of commercial auto insurance in the state.

The new rule applies only to drivers signing up to transport passengers with Uber’s ride-hailing platform, and not for those delivering food with Uber Eats. Previously, people as young as 21 could sign up to drive customers, and the age limit for deliveries was 19.

Those under 25 who activated their accounts prior to Wednesday can continue to drive for Uber, the company said.

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