It’s becoming more and more common for people to talk about their “side gigs” rather than their jobs.
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Sure, you might have a full-time job.
But you also might have a gig on the side that helps you earn some extra money instead of having to get a part-time job.
These gigs, like writing for magazines, driving for Uber, or doing some transcription work on the weekends, can give you spending money, money to save, or even extra cash to pay your bills every month.
A popular gig right now is delivery driving.
There are several companies that pay people like you to deliver orders to customers from restaurants or stores around your area.
These jobs are flexible, allowing you to work whenever you have time available, so you can be in charge of how much you work and how much you earn.
DoorDash is one such legit company that I’ve heard a lot about, so I wanted to dig in, see how it all works, and give you the scoop here, just in case it’s one you’re considering.
What Is DoorDash? How Does It Work for a DoorDash Driver?
DoorDash helps customers get food delivered from restaurants from which they order.
Some restaurants don’t have employees dedicated to delivering, so they outsource this task to people who want to deliver under flexible hours and conditions.
DoorDash probably works with most of your favorite restaurants, including pizza places, fast food restaurants, and even your local favorites, depending on your area.
Chipotle, The Cheesecake Factory, and Freshii are just a few top names that partner with DoorDash to bring customers the food they love from their favorite restaurants.
Where Does DoorDash Operate?
DoorDash is quickly expanding across the United States, so it’s more possible than ever that it’s available in your town or city.
The company once catered only to major cities in various states like most similar companies do as they grow, but it’s now available in smaller areas with participating restaurants.
You can click on this link to go to the Locations page and see if your area is one in which DoorDash is available.
As long as one or two popular restaurants in your town or surrounding towns participate, you could earn some decent money as a delivery driver.
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Who Can Become a DoorDash Driver?
DoorDash delivery drivers are known as Dashers.
DoorDash does have some requirements for its Dashers to begin working with the company:
- Must be 18 or older
- Must have a reliable, working mode of transportation (some cities allow bikes, but most require a motorized scooter or car)
- Dashers need a valid driver’s license and social security number
- Must be willing to have a background check run on you and you need to pass it
You’ll also need to live within a reasonable distance from areas that use DoorDash if your city or town doesn’t.
You don’t want to be driving farther than it’s worth just to make deliveries.
Will I Be an Employee?
No, you will not be an employee of DoorDash.
DoorDash hires independent contractors, who are people who work for themselves.
Because you’re not an employee, you have a bit more flexibility in how you work.
You can deliver for multiple companies and choose the hours you want to work, for example.
Independent contractors are responsible for paying their own taxes, though, so it’s important that you’re setting aside money from each paycheck to make sure they’re covered.
DoorDash won’t pull this money aside for you when you get paid like an employer would.
What are the Benefits of Becoming a Dasher?
Even though you’re not an employee of DoorDash, you’re entitled to some awesome benefits as an independent contractor and Dasher.
One of the perks that Dashers love most is the ability to choose the hours you want to work.
You can sign onto the app, indicate that you’re available for deliveries, and then start delivering to customers when orders come in.
Another cool aspect of DoorDash is that Dashers can even earn when they’re traveling!
For example, if you live in Miami but take a vacation to Los Angeles, you can use the app to deliver orders in Los Angeles.
This way, you can take your gig with you wherever you go to keep earning money in your spare time.
DoorDash also doesn’t require you to have any specific type of vehicle or go through vehicle inspections to start driving.
Just make sure your vehicle is reliable enough to get you to customers’ homes fast.
Finally, there’s not a long waiting period for you to begin receiving orders.
Once you’re approved by DoorDash as a Dasher, you can start using the app right away to find people to deliver to in your area.
How Can I Sign Up?
To sign up for DoorDash, you’ll first need to fill out an online application with your basic details.
DoorDash will let you know how the background check process works and when to complete that.
You’ll then need to complete a driver orientation course that introduces you to the company and being a Dasher.
It basically entails reading material and some videos that will help you learn what you need to know.
Once you’ve made it through the training, you can continue to sign up for your profile, get the app, and start working.
To officially become a Dasher, you’ll need to successfully complete one delivery that you can do immediately or schedule for a later date or time.
Then, you’re free to choose whatever deliveries you want to complete.
How Much Do DoorDash Drivers Earn?
If you’re considering becoming a Dasher for DoorDash, you probably want to know how much you can make, right?
Of course you do!
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The answer isn’t really a simple one, because your pay can vary depending on how many deliveries are in your area, how much you work, how much you get tipped, and other factors.
DoorDash uses a basic model for payments.
Dashers get a base pay plus pay for promotions plus tips to come up with their final pay.
The base pay is what you receive for the delivery, no matter what.
It takes into account the distance you travel, how much time the delivery will take, and how desirable the delivery is for Dashers.
Promotional pay is for bonuses, peak time deliveries, and other extras.
DoorDash sometimes has challenges that reward Dashers for completing specific goals and tasks to give them incentive to stay active on the platform.
Then there are tips, which is the tips customers pay you for your services.
This amount is up to the customer, and they aren’t required to leave any tip.
However, you could end up earning a lot just from tips alone if you have some good tippers on your deliveries because you keep 100% of those tips.
Some areas have higher base pays than others, so some of your pay will depend on where you live.
Generally, you should expect to earn somewhere between $10 to $15/hour on an average shift, but some shifts could generate less or more, depending on tippers and how many deliveries you get.
How Does Payment Work?
DoorDash pays its Dashers weekly!
Everything you make one week from Monday to Sunday will be paid the following week, including your base pay, promotional pay, and tips.
DoorDash pays via direct deposit, so it might take a couple of business days for your money to show in your bank account, depending on how fast your bank is.
You can also choose to use Fast Pay, which gets you paid faster, but also takes a $1.99 fee from your earnings.
You can set up Fast Pay in the app, and it takes about a week to get it fully set up and ready to work for your next payment.
Earning More with DoorDash
There are a few ways that you can earn more with DoorDash than just hopping on the app and choosing whatever deliveries are available.
It can take some time to find a system that works for you and settle into a money-making routine, but you’ll get the hang of it the more you Dash.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
- Pay attention to peak times. The app should let you know when higher-paying gigs are available during peak delivery hours, during which you can earn more money.
- Utilize bonuses. The app will also note any challenges or incentives you can complete to make more.
- Try to grab less desirable deliveries. These are ones that might take longer to do, so some Dashers won’t want them. DoorDash typically gives a higher base pay for these.
- Definitely work holidays! Holidays are shifts that are tough for DoorDash to cover, so you can swoop in and grab up a lot of business on them.
- Don’t stick with just DoorDash. Although you might love it, you can probably earn more if you work with at least one or two other platforms, too, especially if you want to make this more of a full-time gig.
Is DoorDash a Good Job?
I dug through a lot of reviews from DoorDash drivers from places like Reddit, online forums, and Glassdoor, to see if there were any trends in positives and negatives of the company from a Dasher perspective.
Overall, it looks like DoorDash is a decent place to do something fun, make use of your spare time, and earn extra cash.
Like any of these similar business models, you’re not guaranteed a set hourly rate because the rate depends on a lot of different factors.
Still, getting paid around $10 to $15 an hour, on average, for a side gig isn’t too shabby.
People seem to really enjoy the flexibility it offers and many say the pay is pretty good for this type of business model, especially if you’re in an area with several DoorDash restaurant partners.
Of course, there are some drawbacks, like the additional wear and tear you put on your car to make deliveries.
In some areas, you might also have trouble finding places to park when you deliver.
You’re also responsible for paying for gas, which can get costly the more you drive.
These drawbacks, however, are similar for other driving gig jobs, too, and are not exclusive to DoorDash.
There are several other companies with business models similar to that of DoorDash, and you might decide that one of them is better for you.
I’ve listed a few of the company’s top competitors below.
Each one has different areas that they’re more available in, so depending on where you live, one could be a better fit for you.
Postmates is a delivery service for restaurants and other places, like office supply stores, department stores, and more.
Fleet drivers take home 100% of everything they earn and get weekly deposits made to their account.
You can also cash out your pay whenever you want!
This food delivery service works with large chain restaurants like KFC, Pizza Hut, and Denny’s.
You’ll make your own schedule to deliver whenever you have some free time, and you can earn about the same hourly wage as you would with DoorDash, on average.
UberEats is Uber’s version of delivery driving.
You can sign up to deliver on a flexible schedule.
UberEats offers a similar payment method to DoorDash’s Fast Pay known as Instant Pay, which lets you get your money up to five times per day.
Instacart pays you to deliver groceries to homes, but you can also use it to shop for customers in addition to delivering.
As a shopper and deliverer, you can make even more money than you would for delivering or shopping alone.
You’ll get paid for batch orders, and Instacart will let you know your payment estimate based on the orders.
You also get to keep all the tips you make.
This service from Amazon pays drivers an average of $18 to $25 an hour to deliver Amazon packages near your home.
You can manage all your deliveries using the Amazon Flex app.
Conclusion: Working for DoorDash Review
DoorDash is an excellent and fun way to make extra money in addition to a regular job every month.
Although this gig won’t be for everyone, it could work out well for you if you live in a busy delivery area with lots of partnered restaurants close by.
If you’ve driven for DoorDash, we’d love to hear your experiences in a comment below.
Let us know when you drove, about how much you earned, and what area you delivered in.
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