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If I told you that you could make an extra $1,000 or more each month delivering meals from popular restaurants, would you be interested?
Chances are you would at least hear me out, right? Well, it is possible with DoorDash—a food delivery service that works like Uber and has partnerships with hundreds of popular restaurants in your area.
But you probably still have a few questions that need answering before you go and sign up. And it is always a good idea to do your research, especially when something sounds too good to be true.
DoorDash is a completely legitimate side hustle where you can make a significant income working part-time hours. It just comes down to your unique financial situation.
If you have reliable access to a car and feel right at home when you are driving, you will want to continue reading. You very well may have found your next side hustle. So, without further ado, our DoorDash Driver Review.
What Is DoorDash?
DoorDash is a delivery service that provides its customers with an option to have their favorite meals delivered right to their doorstep. Traditionally, most restaurants do not offer delivery, except for pizza and Chinese take-out.
DoorDash acts as a food liaison, connecting people with their favorite restaurants through one convenient delivery service.
The company is providing opportunities for both restaurants and drivers-for-hire to profit from the high demand for delivery services in our modern economy. Nowadays, it seems like everyone is taking advantage of the gig-economy, thanks to Instacart, Airbnb, Uber, Lyft, and other tech powerhouses.
With DoorDash, customers get their favorite meals delivered straight to their door, restaurants get to reach more customers, and best of all, you can get a slice of the action whenever (and just about wherever) you want as a delivery driver.
How Does DoorDash Work?
Have you ever used the popular ride-share service Uber, or its close competition, Lyft? Well, DoorDash works similarly, except customers are ordering food instead of rides. In fact, Uber also offers an almost identical delivery service called Uber Eats.
But just in case you are unfamiliar with Uber or Lyft, let’s walk through the process quick.
A Mobile Friendly Business
As a DoorDash driver or “dasher”, you run your entire business from your mobile phone. And I say your business because dashers are considered independent contractors.
Which means you are your own boss. If you ever dreamed about escaping the corporate rat race, now is your time to shine.
You set your hours and work as often as you want. You can even decide whether you want to preschedule your shifts or just pick them up on-demand.
Just keep in mind that the on-demand shifts have slightly lower availability. DoorDash does this to keep competition lower during scheduled hours for the drivers that took the time to preschedule a shift.
It is to keep things fair, so all drivers have a more predictable income. The flexibility DoorDash affords its drivers make this the perfect side hustle for college students.
Guarantees per Delivery
One of the best advantages Dashers have over other delivery drivers is the opportunity for a more predictable income. Every time you receive an offer for delivery, the app will show you a minimum pay guarantee.
That way you can decide if a delivery is going to be worth your time before you accept it. Nearly every other delivery service (think Uber, Lyft, Postmates, Instacart) is not as generous with this.
DoorDash Delivery Driver Sign-Up
It is incredibly easy to sign up to become a DoorDash Driver. Just head to their website (or Click Here), and select “Become a Dasher” at the bottom of the homepage.
Then, if you meet the eligibility requirements, you can fill out an online application and submit to a background check.
Once approved, you will receive a starter kit, which you can either have delivered to your home or choose to pick it up in person if you decide to attend a DoorDash orientation event.
Your starter kit consists of an insulated delivery bag, which will keep your deliveries fresh and warm. You will also receive a “red card.”
This card is used to activate your account and serves as a prepaid debit card in case you ever have to cover the cost of the food at the restaurants you pick up at.
The card is just a precaution, though, as most customers pay for their food through the same app, they use to request a delivery. This is just one of the many ways DoorDash has its drivers’ backs.
Where is DoorDash Available
DoorDash is widely available in just about every mid-size to major city in the U.S. But to make things even easier, you can quickly find out if DoorDash is available in your area by entering your zip code at their website.
Your zip code is also one of the first things DoorDash asks for in the signup process. So you will know right away if the opportunity is even available in your area before you waste your time going any further.
How Much Money Do DoorDash Delivery “Dashers” Make?
As it goes with any side hustle, when you deliver for DoorDash, you get out what you put in. The more hours you work, the more money you will make.
It is important to note that several key factors affect the amount of money you can make, including the time of day, day of the week, and the area you are delivering in.
As we all know, peak business hours for most restaurants tend to be weekend dinner hours, which means dashers tend to see an increase in delivery opportunities during these same times.
But when it comes down to it, the DoorDash algorithm calculates your pay per delivery based on three main factors: A $1 base fee from DoorDash, pay boost calculations, and tips you get from customers.
The $1 fee may not seem like a lot, but it is what DoorDash pays you out of their pocket for every delivery you accept no matter what.
Also, DoorDash includes a pay boost algorithm for each delivery which is determined by things like order complexity and the distance you must travel.
The tips, on the other hand, while not guaranteed, are 100% yours to keep. DoorDash does not take a cut of your tip earnings, but it is up to you to provide excellent service to increase your tips.
Requirements to Become a DoorDash Driver:
Becoming a DoorDash driver or dasher is relatively easy. There are four main requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Have a valid driver’s license and insurance
- Have access to a smartphone
- Pass the required background check
If you can meet these four requirements, then you will earn money delivering for DoorDash. You do not have to own a personal vehicle, just a valid driver license and proof of insurance will do. And in some cases, you can also make your deliveries by foot, scooter, or bike if it’s practical for you to do so.
DoorDash Delivery Driver Benefits Package
One of the most impressive features that DoorDash offers its drivers is access to health, dental and vision coverage. Not many other side hustles provide access to benefits like this.
DoorDash has partnered with Stride Health to aid their dashers in finding affordable coverage. While it may not be comparable to a traditional benefits package offered by full-time employment, it is almost unheard of in a part-time side hustle gig.
Dashers also have exclusive access to Everlance, which is a mileage and expense tracking service for freelance workers. Everlance offers a free three-month trial of its premium service to all DoorDash drivers.
Ultimately, Everlance will help you when tax season arrives.
DoorDash Driver Costs
While you can make a decent side income driving for DoorDash, you also need to take your expenses into account. Just like any self-employed professional, dashers will also have costs to monitor and track.
DoorDash does not cover the cost of, or reimburse drivers for any of the following items:
- Smartphone service plans
- Vehicle depreciation
- Mileage driven
In addition, other expenses such as accounting services or other regular business operating costs are not covered. You are responsible for running your own business as an independent contractor.
On the bright side, however, you can write off all the operating costs listed above-come tax time. In the end, you just have to weigh out the financial decisions for your unique situation.
- Set your own hours
- See earnings for each delivery opportunity before you accept it
- Access to affordable health benefits and other services
- Very easy to start with minimal requirements
- Keep 100% of Your Tips
- It is FREE to sign up!
- No reimbursements for things like gas or vehicle maintenance
- Unpredictable earnings for slower business hours
- Earnings fluctuate depending on location
Related: Best Apps to Make Money (For Real)
4 Reasons Why We Like Being a DoorDash Driver
- Upfront Earnings — DoorDash is extremely transparent on how much you can earn for each delivery you accept. Unlike similar services, DoorDash will show you the exact amount you can make before you accept the delivery.
- It’s Easy to Begin — There are minimal requirements to start driving for DoorDash, and in many cases, you can begin collecting your earnings within a week (or less) after your first delivery.
- Be Your Own Boss — You are an independent contractor. This gives you full control over how many hours you choose to work. In many ways, it’s like owning your own business
- Higher Pay — DoorDash drivers, often report earnings much higher than that of competing delivery services. And they have a reputation for higher pay per delivery than their competitors.
Wrapping Up: DoorDash Delivery Driver Review
If you are looking for an easy side hustle where you can make a substantial income working part-time, on your own terms, DoorDash deserves some serious consideration.
Like most services of this nature, it’s far from a perfect platform. But DoorDash has earned a reputation as one of the more reliable companies in its industry.
Aside from being a legit way to earn a side income online, there are very few requirements to begin driving, and the low startup costs make this a very attractive side hustle.