Metromile to offer per-mile insurance option to Uber driver partners

Editor’s note: In order to focus on our personal pay-per-mile insurance offering for low-mileage drivers, Metromile no longer offers rideshare insurance.

We are thrilled to announce an innovative solution for driver partners of Uber’s Transportation Network Companies in California, Washington, and Illinois! In our ongoing effort to empower drivers, we have obtained approval for a personal auto insurance product that recognizes and covers the dual nature of rideshare vehicles for personal and commercial use. Driver partners can now feel secure about their insurance coverage and not live in fear of being dropped by their carrier just because they participate in an Uber TNC.

Sign-up will begin in February 2015. Uber driver partners who are interested can add themselves to our waitlist at master-devwww.metromile.com/uber.

The beauty of the Metromile experience revolves around the ability to measure miles. Because we can tabulate all miles driven, it becomes a matter of distinguishing personal miles from “rideshare miles” – specifically, those driven from the moment a driver is matched with a rider until that passenger safely exits, thereby ending the trip. Metromile and Uber will coordinate to verify those timeframes and miles. For each monthly bill, rideshare miles will be subtracted from the total, and the driver is only billed for the personal miles. Rates will still vary by individual, but these are no different than how Metromile determines pricing for current (non rideshare) drivers.

This separation of coverage could translate into big savings for drivers who log most of their miles due to rideshare trips. On average, Metromile customers who drive less than 10,000 personal miles a year are saving 40%-50% on insurance premium.

Not only do drivers have the potential to save money, but ultimately they finally get peace of mind. They no longer have to live in fear of being denied coverage by a personal auto insurer because they participate in an Uber TNC, nor will they worry about coverage during formerly-ambiguous gray areas. Commercial coverage provided by Uber during actual Uber trips is still maintained and does not change because of this partnership.

HOW DID WE GET HERE?

The controversial issue of coverage for rideshare drivers has been debated for several years now. Calls for regulation abound, and several states have recently passed laws requiring more explicit coverage (CA AB2293 , IL SB 2774, and CO SB 14-125).

Why has it been so confusing and frustrating? It comes down to two aspects: 1) creating insurance products that recognize and cover the duality of personal and commercial functions for a single vehicle, and 2) clarifying who is primarily responsible for coverage at different times, or “modes” of a rideshare driver’s activity. These modes have been more commonly and frequently described as “periods”:

Period 1:  driver is actively seeking riders (app is on)
Period 2:  driver has been matched to a rider and is en route to pick up
Period 3:  rider has embarked vehicle

Periods 2 and 3 are covered by the commercial policy of the TNC (Transportation Network Company). Only in 2014 did legislation clarify which type of insurance products would be possible for coverage during Period 1. (States differ on effective dates by when drivers need to choose). Those options are:

1.  Personal auto insurance that recognizes TNC use
2. Commercial insurance (separate from the policy provided by the TNC)
3. Primary liability insurance provided by the TNC

Metromile is proud to offer a solution for option 1!

Other insurance providers are piloting new products as well, but it appears as if they will be charging customers more for this expanded recognition and coverage. Typically, option 2 is expensive and not realistic for drivers to afford long-term.

Outright ‘personal’ time has been relatively more clear:  the rideshare app isn’t on and the driver isn’t actively looking for riders. Thus far, personal auto insurance hasn’t traditionally included coverage for anyone using their car for rideshare (or livery) services. That’s old-world thinking though – when no one could imagine a time where a personal vehicle could also be successfully employed for, essentially, commercial use (i.e. as a cab).

No one can deny the rapid pace of innovation across industries today. Ultimately, it’s the consumer who experiences any Imbalances when adjacent services and products don’t keep pace within their ecosystem. At Metromile, we are motivated by our mission to revolutionize the auto insurance industry – we couldn’t be more excited to bring this new tangible solution to the driver community!

Stay tuned for more!

16 responses to “Metromile to offer per-mile insurance option to Uber driver partners

    1. Thanks for the question Bryan!

      Currently, this program is designed for Uber driver partners only. If driver partners of Uber’s Transportation Network Companies choose to sign up for per-mile insurance with Metromile, only miles driven with Uber will be subtracted to calculate the personal miles that will be charged on their bill.
      At this time we are focusing our efforts on ensuring the successful kick-off of our relationship with Uber, and delivering a positive experience for driver partners of Uber’s Transportation Network Companies . All other miles will not be distinguished and will be charged as personal miles on a per-mile insurance policy.
      Drivers who participate in other rideshare companies wont get miles subtracted for any rides that are not with Uber, and any claims filed during those timeframes will have a high risk of denial

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

  1. Will this now be mandatory for all Uber drivers?

    The subtext in this annoucement seems to imply that both Metromile and Uber (correctly) acknowledge that drivers who are on traditional personal plans lack adequate coverage.

    This has been a huge criticism of mine against rideshares – I’m glad to see Uber taking this first step, and I hope others follow suit, and that this (or similar plans from other insurance providers, if they introduce such options) is made mandatory for all rideshare operators.

    Smart move, Metromile!

    1. Thanks for the support S. A. De Silva!

      Our per-mile insurance is not mandatory, but we strongly encourage all drivers to have appropriate coverage and are proud to offer a legal option for Uber driver partners.

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

    1. Hi Jeremy,

      Thanks for reaching out. If you’re involved in an incident that requires filing a claim, your Uber commercial coverage applies during periods 2 & 3. Please file with Metromile if the incident happened during Personal use or Period 1.

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

  2. I’m curious if the product will allow us to keep our existing personal insurance with another carrier for personal driving, but allow us to be insured in the "phase 1" period with Metromile. I drive a lot of personal miles in addition to uber driving and Metromile is not practical and affordable for me as a regular full-time personal policy. However, if I can cover myself and just be charged for use during Phase 1, that would be exiting! Thanks.

    1. I am also interested in this as well. Having Metromile as my primary insurance while driving for Uber would be very much worth it. But I don’t want to switch my existing personal policy as it would be considerably more expensive. I want Metromile and Uber to cover collision/comprehensive while on the clock. But also keep my existing personal coverage for when I am not driving with Uber. There should be an option for those of us wanting to pay for per-mile insurance, but only while actually with the app on.

      1. Hi Josh,

        Thanks for reaching out. The Metronome device needs to be plugged in at all times as a Metromile customer. Unfortunately we are unable to deduct personal miles from your bill, so you would be paying for those as well even if you had another personal policy.

        Happy Driving,

        Brittany
        Team Metromile

    2. Hi Todd,

      Unfortunately we are unable to deduct personal miles and you must have device plugged in at all times. Thanks for checking us out!

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

    1. Hi Tony,

      We cover you during personal driving and period 1. For questions regarding Uber coverages, please reach out to your local Uber support team.

      Thanks!

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

    1. Hi Scott,

      Thanks for reaching out! We launched the product last week. Please sign up here: master-devwww.metromile.com/uber

      Happy Driving,

      Brittany
      Team Metromile

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