Uber Driver Sleeps in Her Car Because She Can't Afford Rent Anywhere Near Where She Works

In San Francisco, almost half the rides taken in the city are with Uber, and that number is growing. But so is economic inequality.

"I'm trying to be extra quiet," Terri White, one of the city's thousands of Uber drivers told Vice News as she prepared to leave for work.

It was just 2:30 AM. Like many SF drivers, White can't afford to live in the city. Instead, she commutes from Stockton, California, 83 miles away every few days. 

"Someone's always going somewhere in San Francisco," she remarked, rolling into the city at 5:30 AM.

Terri White, like many drivers, coordinates her naps around surge pricing and never sleeps a full night. Two years ago, White worked for a call center, but enjoys Uber more, despite the commute and strange hours. 

“I love people, I love being able to breathe the air, I’m not confined to a desk, and I can do what I want,” White told VICE News correspondent Nellie Bowles. “I don’t have to wait for someone to relieve me for a break or a lunch, I just do it.”

After rush hour, she pulls over in a quiet spot to nap for a few hours.

"I just had this idea to sleep in my car because I didn't want to drive when I was tired and I just feel like it was safer," White said.

"I've met drivers... literally saying that they've been working for like two days straight after lunch," she added.

While Uber does not encourage employees to sleep in their car, White told Vice News she estimated 1 in 5 SF drivers do the same. 
With Uber, she can work as many hours as possible, versus their competitor Lyft.
Drive, nap, repeat.


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