What is DoorDash?
DoorDash is a meal delivery service that has made life much easier for food lovers across the United States and Canada.
Founded in 2013, DD has now expanded to thousands of cities across these two countries.
The beauty of DoorDash lies in the fact that it allows customers to order food from restaurants that don't have their own delivery service. This means that people can now enjoy the delicacies of their favorite restaurants without ever having to leave the comfort of their homes.
DoorDash has been a game-changer in the food industry, making it possible for people to enjoy restaurant-quality meals anytime, anywhere and of course, for all of you potential Dashers (that's what DoorDash calls their drivers), it represents an opportunity to make some side money.
5 reasons why DoorDash is amazing for consumers
- Convenience: DoorDash makes it easy for consumers to order food from their favorite restaurants without leaving their homes.
- Variety: With thousands of restaurants to choose from, DoorDash offers a wide variety of cuisines and options to suit any taste.
- Flexibility: Customers can place orders for delivery or pickup, and they can track the status of their order in real-time.
- Quality: DoorDash partners with top-rated restaurants to ensure that customers receive high-quality, restaurant-grade meals.
- Rewards: DoorDash offers a rewards program that allows customers to earn points for every dollar spent, which can be redeemed for free food and other perks.
How does DoorDash work?
DoorDash works by partnering with restaurants to provide a delivery service. Customers use the DoorDash app to order food from their favorite local restaurants.
A DoorDash driver (Dasher) picks up the food and delivers it to the customer's doorstep (or wherever the customer has arranged pickup).
Customers can track the status of their order in the app, and they can also leave feedback and rate their delivery experience, which, of course, they often do. Feedback and ratings are EXTREMELY important to Dashers, and we'll cover that soon.
Here are the top 20 restaurants on DoorDash
- The Cheesecake Factory
- Buffalo Wild Wings
- Olive Garden
- Red Lobster
- The Habit Burger Grill
- Outback Steakhouse
- PF Chang's
- BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
- Fogo de Chao
- P.F. Chang's
- Yard House
- Dave & Buster's
- Bonefish Grill
- Buca di Beppo
- The Capital Grille
- Carrabba's Italian Grill
- TGI Fridays
- On The Border
For more information on the location of each business, please visit https://ir.doordash.com/news/news-details/2022/The-100-Most-Loved-Restaurants-on-DoorDash-Revealed/default.aspx.
How to become a DoorDash driver
If you're interested in becoming a DoorDash driver, the first step is to sign up on the DoorDash website or through the app (link below with instructions).
You'll need to provide some basic information about yourself, including your name, address, and social security number.
Once you've signed up, DoorDash will run a background check to ensure that you meet the company's driver requirements.
Complete steps to sign up for DoorDash.
- Go to https://dasher.doordash.com/en-us on your web browser.
- Click on the "Get Started" button located in the middle of the page.
- Enter your email address and create a password for your account.
- Select the mode of transportation you will use for deliveries (car, bike, scooter, or walking).
- Enter your personal information, including your full name, phone number, and home address.
- Provide your driver's license number, expiration date, and state of issuance (if you will be delivering by car).
- Upload a photo of your driver's license (if applicable) and a profile photo of yourself.
- Agree to the terms of the Dasher Agreement and the Independent Contractor Agreement.
- Consent to a background check by providing your social security number and date of birth.
- Once you have completed all the required fields, click the "Continue" button to submit your application.
- Wait for DoorDash to review your application and contact you with further instructions.
What to expect as a DoorDash driver
As a DoorDash driver, you can expect to spend a lot of time on the road! You'll be responsible for picking up food from restaurants and delivering it to customers, but you knew this already.
DoorDash drivers use their own vehicles to make deliveries, so you'll need a reliable car and a valid driver's license (we cover requirements below) and a smile. Don't forget that smile!
DoorDash driver requirements
To become a Dasher, you'll need to meet certain requirements and here they are!
Official DoorDash Dasher Requirements
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Have an iPhone or Android smartphone (version 5 or newer).
- Have a valid driver's license (if delivering by car or scooter).
- Have valid insurance (if delivering by car or scooter).
- Have access to a vehicle or mode of transportation, such as a car, bike, scooter, or motorcycle, that meets the requirements of your market.
- Have a Social Security number (only in the United States).
- Be able to pass a background check that includes a review of your driving history and criminal history.
- Have a checking account to receive direct deposits for your earnings.
- Have the ability to communicate effectively in English.
- Be able to lift at least 30 pounds.
- Be able to work in the United States or Canada, depending on your location.
- Be able to provide proof of your eligibility to work in your country of residence.
- Complete an online or in-person orientation session, if required in your market.
How much money can you make with DoorDash?
According to sources such as Indeed and Glassdoor, the average hourly pay for DoorDash drivers is around $15-$20, but it can obviously go much higher for the right person in the right area.
- Base Pay: The base pay for each delivery typically ranges from $2 to $10, depending on the factors mentioned earlier.
- Promotions: Peak Pay and Challenge Bonuses can add an extra $1 to $5 per delivery during busy times or for completing a certain number of orders.
- Tips: Tips can vary widely, but on average, drivers earn about $5 per delivery in tips.
- Dasher Challenges: Challenges can offer anywhere from $5 to $500 in extra earnings, depending on the specific challenge and your market.
- Referral Bonuses: Referral bonuses can range from $50 to $500, depending on your market and the number of referrals you make.
Based on these numbers, drivers can earn anywhere from $10 to $25 per hour, depending on the factors mentioned above.
It's worth noting that earnings can vary widely based on location, time of day, and other factors, and DoorDash does not provide a specific earnings guarantee, because, well, they can't. I'm sure they could give an official average if they wanted to, but they don't do that, either.
How to maximize earnings with DoorDash
To maximize your earnings as a DoorDash driver, you'll need to be strategic about when and where you work. Busy times and popular areas can be more lucrative, but they can also be more competitive. You can also increase your earnings by providing excellent customer service and earning positive ratings and reviews.
That's all well and good, but let's dive into more ways to make that cash, because that's why you're here.
Here are some good tips to maximize your earnings with DoorDash
- Acceptance rate: DoorDash drivers should aim to keep their acceptance rate above 70% to remain in good standing with the company and be eligible for bonuses.
- Completion rate: Maintaining a high completion rate (above 90%) is important to continue receiving orders and earning money.
- Average order value: Drivers can maximize their earnings by delivering larger orders, which often result in higher payouts.
- Mileage rate: DoorDash pays drivers a mileage rate for each delivery based on the distance driven. Drivers should track their mileage and ensure they are being paid fairly for their time and expenses. We recommend Everlance.
- Timing: Delivering during busy times, such as dinner rush or weekends, can result in more orders and higher earnings.
- Accepting large orders: Drivers can earn more money by accepting larger orders, which often have higher payouts.
- Avoiding low payout orders: Drivers should avoid accepting orders with low payouts, as they may not be worth the time and effort required to complete them.
- Referral bonuses: DoorDash offers referral bonuses to drivers who refer new drivers to the platform. These bonuses vary by market, but can range from $50 to $500 per referral.
- Promotions: DoorDash offers promotions such as Peak Pay bonuses and Challenge Bonuses, which can increase drivers' earnings during busy times or for completing certain goals.
- Partner restaurants: Accepting orders from DoorDash's partner restaurants can result in higher payouts and exclusive deals for drivers.
- Time management: Drivers should manage their time effectively to complete deliveries quickly and move on to the next order, increasing their earnings.
- Efficiency: Using tools like thermal bags and planning routes effectively can help drivers complete deliveries more efficiently and maximize their earnings.
- Pay attention to details: Drivers should double-check order details and ensure that they have all necessary items before leaving the restaurant to avoid making mistakes and wasting time on additional trips.
- Customer service: Providing excellent customer service, such as communicating with customers about delays or issues and being friendly, can lead to better ratings and more orders.
- Quality control: Checking orders for accuracy and ensuring that they are complete before leaving the restaurant can reduce the risk of complaints or negative ratings.
- Tips: Drivers can earn additional income through tips from customers, so providing excellent service and communicating with customers effectively can lead to higher tips.
- Refunds: Drivers should handle refunds or other issues with orders professionally and efficiently to avoid negative ratings or penalties from DoorDash.
- Don't Eat The Customers Food And Get Caught On Video Where It's Then Posted To TikTok: Just kidding, kind of.
Vehicle Requirements for DoorDash Drivers
Any vehicle is suitable for delivery with DoorDash as long as it operates and if it requires insurance, that you maintain this insurance.
Delivering for DoorDash on a Bike or Scooter
DoorDash drivers can deliver on a bike or scooter in some markets. Take note, bike and scooter delivery is not available in all areas.
Delivering for DoorDash Without a Smartphone
A smartphone is required to deliver for DoorDash. The DoorDash Driver app is used to receive and accept delivery requests, communicate with customers, and track earnings.
How DoorDash Handles Taxes for Its Drivers
DoorDash does not withhold taxes. You are considering an independent contractor, therefore you will receive a 1099 in January of the following year for the previous years earnings (if over $600) and you will be required to pay taxes based on those earnings.
This, however, represents a unique opportunity as you are now your own business!
- Mileage deduction: Gig drivers can deduct the mileage they drive for work. For 2022, there are two rates: for miles driven between January 1 and June 30, 2022 it is $0.585 and for miles driven between July 1 and December 31, 2022 it is $0.625. Again, we recommend Everlance.
- Health insurance premiums: If you pay for your own health insurance, you may be able to deduct those premiums on your tax return.
- Self-employment tax deduction: Gig drivers are considered self-employed and must pay self-employment tax, but can deduct half of this tax on their tax return.
- Car expenses: Drivers can deduct car-related expenses such as gas, repairs, and maintenance, based on the percentage of miles driven for work.
- Office expenses: Home office expenses, such as a portion of rent, utilities, and internet bills, can be deducted for gig drivers who work from home.
- Phone expenses: Gig drivers can deduct the portion of their phone bill related to work, such as calls or data usage while on the job.
- Food expenses: If you purchase food while working as a gig driver, you may be able to deduct those expenses on your tax return.
- Business travel expenses: If you travel for work, such as to pick up or deliver orders, you may be able to deduct travel expenses such as airfare, lodging, and meals.
- Education expenses: If you take courses or attend seminars related to your work as a gig driver, you may be able to deduct those expenses on your tax return.
- Retirement contributions: Gig drivers can contribute to a traditional IRA or other retirement account and deduct those contributions on their tax return, reducing their taxable income.
While DoorDash is a popular meal delivery service, there are several other options available to customers and drivers.
Some popular alternatives include Grubhub, Uber Eats, and Postmates.
What Do You Think?
Are you ready to become a Dasher? Hopefully this information was helpful and you found enough insight to make a decision. Remember, though, there are a lot of other options such as those listed above, and there’s nothing that would preclude you from working for more than one company.
Either way, DoorDash is a legitimate side gig for the right person. You work your own hours, take the deliveries you want, and if you play your cards right, you’ll make decent money ($25/hr average).