North Carolina Driver Information

This page provides information about vehicle, driver, and document requirements, state regulations, insurance coverage, and city-specific requirements, needed to drive with Lyft in the state of North Carolina.

To apply to drive in North Carolina, submit an application online or in the Lyft Driver app –– download it from the App Store (iOS) or the Google Play store. To be approved to drive, applicants must meet these requirements.

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What you need to drive with Lyft in North Carolina

Drivers are required to maintain current documents. Failing to update a required document before the expiration date results in temporary deactivation.

Use your Lyft Driver app or Driver Dashboard to upload your documents.

Vehicle requirements

Different regions in this state have specific vehicle age requirements. Click here to see if your vehicle qualifies. All vehicles must meet the following criteria:

  • 4 doors
  • 5-8 seats, including the driver's
  • Permanent license plate
  • Not on the list of ineligible subcompact vehicles
  • Not a taxi or stretch limousine
  • Not titled as salvage, non-repairable, rebuilt or any other equivalent classification

See if your car qualifies for Lyft Lux or Lyft Lux Black to earn more on each ride.

In select cities, you can rent a car through Express Drive with standard insurance included.

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Driver requirements

  • Valid driver’s license — Temporary or out-of-state licenses are also acceptable.
  • You must be 25 years or older to drive.
  • Pass a driver screening, which reviews your driving history and criminal background check. Learn more about driver screenings.
  • Any smartphone that can download and run the Lyft Driver app. See phone software recommendations.


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Document requirements

*Vehicles registered outside of North Carolina will need to submit a vehicle inspection from a licensed location.

North Carolina vehicle inspection

Drivers in North Carolina are required to have a vehicle inspection from an approved vehicle station. Here's how:

  1. Find an inspection station near you here
  2. Upload a photo of the completed form in your app or Driver Dashboard

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Emblem and placard requirements

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Lyft trade dress emblem

Drivers are required to display the Lyft emblem while in driver mode. The Lyft emblem is Lyft’s official trade dress. It helps passengers and law enforcement identify your vehicle.

windshield setup

The Lyft emblem and placard should be displayed in the lower corner of your front and rear windshield on the passenger side every time you enter driver mode. Make sure to remove the emblem and placard when you are not in driver mode.

Lyft emblem

If you’ve just been approved to drive, you should receive your Lyft emblem and placard shortly. If you didn't get one or need a new one, order one in your Dashboard. While waiting for it to arrive, you may print a temporary emblem.

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License plate number placard

Starting October 1, 2019, drivers in North Carolina are required to display their vehicle’s license plate number in a legible font on the front of their vehicles. 

You can use this form to create a temporary printable copy of your license plate number to display in your vehicle.  Please use this template to write in your vehicle’s license plate number. Print this template and write your license plate number in a large font.

Display it on the front of your vehicle while you are picking up passengers, as pictured above. Failure to display your license plate placard when approached by an officer could result in a fine.

A permanent placard showing the current license plate on file will be sent to your shipping address and will arrive 1-2 weeks after being approved.

To change your address:

  1. Open the Lyft Driver app
  2. Tap the menu icon in the top left
  3. Select 'Settings'
  4. Select 'Shipping Address'

To update your license plate:

  1. Open the Lyft Driver app
  2. Tap the menu icon in the top left
  3. Select Documents
  4. You can see your vehicle(s) and update your license plate if necessary

Drivers are welcome to visit the Lyft Hub for in-person support or to request a new or replacement placard. See Hub location and hours here.

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North Carolina driver regulations

Be sure to follow these rules when giving rides in North Carolina, and keep an eye on your email for important updates from Lyft.

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Hourly driver mode limits

In North Carolina, Lyft’s standard time limit for driver mode applies.

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Annual vehicle inspection

All North Carolina drivers must have their vehicles inspected annually to meet state safety requirements. If your car has North Carolina plates, no further action is required. Out of state vehicles must undergo an inspection at a facility licensed by the North Carolina Department of Transportation.

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Driving in South Carolina

If you plan to drive in South Carolina, the state requires your vehicle be inspected by a certified mechanic licensed in South Carolina.

Get the inspection form here. Once the inspection is completed by a mechanic in South Carolina, upload it in your Driver app or Driver Dashboard.

See our South Carolina article to read more about rules and regulations you'll need to follow while driving there.

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Best practices

  • Display all required emblems and placards
  • Always have your driver’s license and insurance document
  • Follow all airport rules
  • Don't accept street hails
  • Don't accept cash for rides
  • Don't wait in taxi lines

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Know your insurance

Review Lyft's coverage here.

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Moving to or from North Carolina

If you're already a driver in a different state, and you're moving to North Carolina, send us a message with the following info:

  • The date you're moving
  • Your new shipping address
  • North Carolina vehicle inspection*
    A clear photo of your vehicle registration**

*Vehicles registered outside of North Carolina will need to submit a vehicle inspection from a licensed location. Find an inspection station near you here.

**If you were already required to upload your vehicle registration when you became a driver, you do not need to send it in again.

If you plan to drive in South Carolina, the state requires your vehicle to be inspected by a certified mechanic licensed in South Carolina. Learn more here.

Moving from North Carolina to a different state? Find your new market here to see what steps you'll need to take.

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Need something else?

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