- Uber has launched a debit card, in partnership with Marqeta, Mastercard and Branch, that offers instant pay for drivers upon the completion of a ride, according to a press release issued Thursday.
- The card offers drivers up to 10% cashback on gas and 12% cashback on charging for electric vehicles, depending on the level of Uber Pro status and on the vendor at which the fuel is purchased, according to the company’s website.
- Cashback on fuel became a widespread perk for delivery and rideshare drivers earlier this year as companies responded to rising fuel prices. Many aggregators have also added instant pay to aid retention in recent years.
The card is an expansion of Uber’s Uber Pro loyalty program for drivers. Drivers who reach a higher status in the program receive more cash back on gas purchases, according to the press release. The lowest-level members receive a minimum of 2% cashback. The program includes a “business checking account,” though it is not clear what differentiates this from a standard checking account. Workers can choose to deposit their earnings from individual rides into their accounts as soon as the rides are over.
Uber Eats began levying a $0.35 to $0.45 fuel surcharge on customers in March to offset some of the impact of spiking gas prices. DoorDash and Grubhub began offering relief on gas payments for drivers that same month. ASAP, previously branded as Waitr, added a gas card in March that offered drivers 5% off at most major gas stations.
The instant pay also fits into a broader trend predating the COVID-19 pandemic. As early as 2019, QSRs were experimenting with instant pay to boost retention. This tendency continued through the tight labor market of the last few quarters, with Sbarro adding instant pay in March, and Grubhub adding an instant pay option for delivery drivers in June.