Why Struggling Actors in Los Angeles are Working for Uber

Struggling actors in Los Angeles are now working for Uber.

In the past, aspiring actors would turn to the restaurant industry for extra cash, but many struggling artists are turning to Uber to make extra money. As the New York Times reports, “over the last two years droves of [actors and artists> have gone to work for ride-sharing services...because of their flexible hours and, until recently, decent pay.” Krystel Harris, a 27-year-old actress, tells the New York Times, that a typical job at a restaurant or boutique can hurt one's success in the film industry. “I was a lead hostess at three different restaurant,” she says. “It really didn’t allow for much flexibility at all. I ended up getting fired for going to an audition. Even when I got my shifts covered, they gave me a hard time.” In addition, Carlton Totten explains that driving for Uber allows him the ability to build his brand. He once stopped shaving “because a casting director was looking for someone with stubble” - a major issue for restaurant managers looking for clean cut employees. However, the glory days maybe over.

“Two years ago, drivers for Uber and Lyft could hope to make as much as $25 an hour, according to interviews with more than a dozen Los Angeles-based drivers. Today, with a glut of Uber and Lyft cars on the road, those drivers say that their average fares have dropped from $2.40 per mile in December 2013 to $.90 per mile for most trips after Uber’s most recent rate reduction this month.”

So it puts aspiring actors in a dangerous position. Do they continue driving for Uber and make less money or do they go back to serving tables? Totten mentions to the Times that he may work for Postmates, “the app-based service that delivers artisanal food in under 60 minutes and guarantees its drivers a minimum of $25 an hour.” “You can’t live on this anymore,” says Totten. And so it’s on to the next thing — all the while scanning the casting calls.

What do you think of Uber actors? Share with us your thoughts in the comments below!

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