“There is no employment relationship, direct or indirect, between the company and the drivers, so the laws, regulations and other legal rules on labor or social security, such as the Labor Law, the Insurance Law Social, its Regulations and other applicable legislation”. This is how the Didi mobility platform for driver partners begins.
Mobility applications opened a new labor landscape. On the one hand, they provide freedom, flexibility and opportunities to people who, at times, had no other option.
But on the other hand, the legend of these platforms is: “Take advantage of free time to generate profits”. Under this logic, the drivers of these companies are not recognized as “workers” or “employees”, but as “driving partners” and this implies a fundamental difference in terms of labor rights.
Do Uber and Didi hire their drivers?
driving partners as “the natural person who has a registered account in the Uber App and who drives a partner’s vehicle”. This means that, as in the case of Didi, they only accept the terms and conditions to access and use the platform, but they are not recognized as employees of the company.
In these same terms, the driver acknowledges that the company does not provide transportation or mobility services and, therefore, “does not constitute DiDi as a provider of transportation services, nor a mobility operator, and that said services will be provided by the driver. without being an employee of the company.
For this, drivers pay a commission to use these platforms – which, depending on the app – and, additionally, pay taxes to the SAT (something that the technology companies have not yet done).
These taxes correspond to an ISR that varies depending on the total income, plus 8% VAT if they are registered under the correct tax regime and activities, which would be “passenger ground transportation service through a technological platform” . Otherwise, 16% is charged.
Are Uber and Didi responsible?
Saul L. was a taxi driver for 25 years until he decided to try his luck at Uber. To his surprise, the mobility platform offered tools that taxis did not have and for this reason he decided to stay in the app, the same one in which he has already been working for seven years.
Although mobility platforms do not offer traditional benefits, such as social security, bonuses or vacations, according to Saúl, one of the main reasons why he values the mobility app over traditional taxis is because of the security tools.
Knowing who gets into your car, their rating and having services like Ride Check or a 24-hour support line is something that Saúl considers a success of mobility apps.
On the other hand, Leticia “N” said that she started working at Uber a month ago and one of the reasons why she was encouraged is because she only has women. Since November 2020, the app allows female drivers to choose the option of only transferring women.
Cecilia Román, safety communication leader at Uber, mentioned that this is the “Ellas” function and that it allows female drivers in the country to choose if they want to receive trips only from female users.
“It is a function that they can activate and deactivate directly from the driver application, at any time of the day, for as long and as many times as they wish,” she added.
To sign up for the platform, it is mandatory for all drivers to have specific insurance. These vary depending on each mobility platform but, in the case of Uber, they count on the driver having to pay.
According to the testimonies of driving partners, although they agree that many procedures have to be carried out and that the process could be facilitated, when the incident is reported, the platforms and insurance are effective in responding to accidents.
The payment scheme of a driving partner
The payment scheme varies depending on each application, driver and vehicle. The driver who drives an UberX 12 hours does not earn the same as the one who works five, but with an Uber XL.
On the other hand, Didi is characterized by offering “reward bonuses” for completing a certain number of trips, while there are other platforms such as inDriver that offer a “fairer payment scheme”, in which the price is previously agreed between the driver and customer and not based on the algorithm.
However, what Uber and Didi do agree on is that the driving partner has to pay a commission, which can vary from 15% to 35%, depending on the trip, in addition to federal and state taxes.
According to Víctor Barjas, partner of an Uber and Didi fleet, the payments are weekly. The “outages” in the California app start on Monday at 4 a.m. and end on Monday of the following week at 3:59 p.m. The Chinese app works in the same way, but its cuts are made on Sundays at midnight.
Requirements to be an Uber or Didi partner
When Uber started in Mexico, in 2013, it was required to pass five exams to be a driving partner, which included: an exam on knowledge of the city, a psychological exam, a face-to-face interview with a human resources staff, taking your non-criminal record and an anti-doping test.
However, Cecilia Román mentioned that mobility services are regulated at the local level, so the filters vary depending on each state, but that three are applied throughout the country: validation of documents, from official identification to documents that correspond to the vehicle; a psychometric test that is applied digitally, and the company is in charge of doing the criminal record check, since in some states it is difficult to obtain it.
Román mentioned that only 12% of applicants pass the three security filters.
you can find the information to register as a partner driver in Uber.
Didi does not have these psychometric tests and requests that the applicants themselves submit, in addition to the rest of their documents, the non-criminal record letter.
you can find information to register as a driving partner in Didi.