Is DoorDash a good way to make money? Pros, cons, and reviews

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Making extra money is always a top priority for people, and many wonder if DoorDash is a good way to do that. 

DoorDash is a food delivery service that has been growing in popularity in recent years. If you’re looking for an easy side hustle, DoorDash might be worth considering.

But is it really worth it working for DoorDash? 

We understand the dilemma of choosing the right gig for you. You could be wasting time working for DoorDash or missing out on opportunities to make some extra money if you don’t know the basics and learn from other people’s experiences before jumping in.

In this post, we gathered the most important information about becoming a DoorDash driver. We’ll let you know how much you get paid working for DoorDash and whether it’s worth your time and effort. 

We also added tips from experienced Dashers to put this comprehensive guide and help you decide if a DoorDash side hustle is a good option for you. So, keep reading without skipping!

What Is DoorDash?

DoorDash is an app that allows people to order food from their favorite restaurants and have it delivered directly to their door. 

Users can browse through the app’s extensive restaurant and shop database, read reviews from other users, and view the menu and delivery fee before making a purchase.

Once an order is placed, DoorDash assigns the nearest available Dasher (driver) to pick up and deliver the food to the customer’s specified location. Customers can also track their order in real time via the app’s built-in GPS system.

How Does DoorDash Work – What to Expect When on the Job

The increase in demand for food delivery services opened up many opportunities for drivers looking for a side hustle. 

DoorDash is a popular option for drivers as it offers a flexible schedule, allowing you to choose when and where you want to work.

What Does a DoorDash Driver Do?

As a DoorDash driver, you can expect to pick up and deliver food orders from restaurants or establishments to customers’ doorsteps. The app will assign an order to you based on your location and the restaurant’s proximity to you.

You’ll use your own vehicle to pick up orders and then deliver them to the designated address. As a driver, you may also be responsible for providing customer service, such as answering questions about the food or delivering it promptly. DoorDash drivers are essentially the middlemen (or women) between the restaurant and the customer. 

How Much Physical Work Does DoorDash Require?

If you’re someone who hasn’t experienced becoming a delivery driver, you’re probably wondering how much physical work does DoorDash require?

DoorDash requires a fair amount of physical work. You’ll be driving around in your own car to pick up and drop off orders and navigate your way around traffic and obstacles, so you’ll need to be comfortable with that.

Picking up and dropping off food orders will require some physical activity. You’ll need to be able to lift and carry heavy items, as some DoorDash orders can be quite large. All in all, it’s a reasonably active job that will keep you driving or on your feet most of the time.

What Are My Expenses with DoorDash?

Delivery driving with DoorDash is a great way to earn extra income on your own schedule. But what are the actual costs of being a driver? Here’s a breakdown of some of the most common expenses:

  • Gas – You’ll need to gas up your car to make deliveries. How much this costs will depend on the gas price and how far you’re driving for each delivery. If gas prices are high, you have to factor in whether the gas cost of accepting one job is worth the pay.
  • Vehicle Costs – In addition to gas, you’ll also need to factor in the cost of continued maintenance and upkeep for your vehicle. It could include things like oil changes, new tires, etc. A lot of these costs will be dependent on how often you’re using your car for deliveries if you own the car outright or are still paying for your car loan.
  • Food and Drink Expenses – You’ll likely want to keep yourself fueled with food and drinks when making deliveries. This isn’t a mandatory expense, but if you plan to buy food or drinks while out on the job, it’s important to factor in those costs.

How to Become a DoorDash Driver?

If you’re interested in becoming a Dasher, you have to meet the following requirements and complete the signup process to be approved.

Driver Requirements

  • You must be 18 years old or older.
  • You must have a car, scooter, or bicycle (in select cities).
  • You must provide a valid driver’s license number in your name.
  • You must provide your Social Security number (the US only).
  • You must consent to a background check.

Signup Process For New Dashers

If you meet the driver requirements, you must complete the application process. 

You can go to the DoorDash app or website and start the signup process. Below are the basic steps:

  1. If DoorDash is available in your area, you can download the app on iOS or Android.
  2. Go to the DoorDash signup page and follow the steps. Ensure that you have the
  3. DoorDash will conduct a background check once you finish the signup process. It will take around 5 to 10 days or longer to complete. 
  4. If you pass the background check, you’ll get an email notification with further instructions on activating your account and starting dashing.

How Dashers Get Paid

One of the most common questions about becoming a Dasher is if DoorDash is profitable. 

Many potential drivers often wonder how much the pay rate is and if they can make a decent living off this job.

How Much Does DoorDash Pay?

The DoorDash hourly pay heavily depends on the area you’re driving and the demand. Unlike other full-time work, you get paid as a Dasher for every delivery you make. 

That means that a Dasher working in Los Angeles, for instance, will have a different DoorDash hourly pay from a Dasher working in Detroit.

But to give you an idea of how much a Dasher could earn per hour, the job site Indeed has an estimate of $16.12 per hour

According to the site, Dashers can earn a maximum of around $34.95 per hour and a minimum of $7.25.

How is DoorDash Pay Calculated?

When working for delivery companies like DoorDash, it’s very important to understand how pay is calculated. After all, this will directly affect how much you’re actually earning per hour.

According to the DoorDash website, the payment breakdown is as follows:

  • Base Pay – Dashers can earn a base pay for each delivery. The base pay depends on the estimated duration, distance, and desirability of the delivery. Base pay can range from around $2 to $10 per delivery.
  • Promotions – On top of the base pay, DoorDash also has promotions like Peak Pay and Challenge Bonuses, which are often available in high-demand areas or periods. Promotions are added on top of the base pay and can help increase your earnings per delivery.
  • Customer Tips – Customers also have the option to leave tips for their Dashers. This is completely optional but it’s a great way to earn more money on each delivery. Since 100% of tips go to the Dasher, this can be a major fraction of the total income.

DoorDash Payment Options

There are two ways you can get paid as a DoorDash driver: direct deposit and Fast Pay. 

If you choose direct deposit, this is done on a weekly basis. You’ll be paid for all the deliveries you have completed from Monday to Sunday of the previous week. 

The payment will be deposited directly to your bank account and may take around two to three days for processing. This means that you could expect payment by Wednesday.

If you need the money ASAP, then there’s also a Fast Pay option. With this option, you can instantly withdraw the money but there’s a corresponding fee. Each Fast Pay transaction costs $1.99.

Does DoorDash Pay For Gas?

The rising gas prices are one of the major concerns for many Dashers. After all, this is a driving job, and you’ll be using your own car to make deliveries.

So does DoorDash pay for gas? No. Unfortunately, DoorDash doesn’t reimburse drivers for gas. You’ll have to factor in this when considering becoming a Dasher.

However, the good news is that DoorDash has programs to help Dashers cope with the high gas prices. For example, DoorDash has gas rewards programs like Weekly Gas Bonus and 10% Cashback on Gas. 

Is DoorDash Worth It After Taxes?

As a DoorDash driver, you’re responsible for filing your own taxes. Many Dashers often wonder whether it’s still worth it to work for DoorDash after taxes. While some people might think that nothing will be left, experienced Dashers disagree.

According to Dashers on a Quora thread, working as a DoorDash delivery driver is still worth it. 

When you file your income tax as an independent contractor, you’ll have to deduct your business expenses like gas, car maintenance, etc. 

However, if you accurately keep track of these expenses, you’ll find out that the tax deductions are reasonable.

Of course, this will still depend on the tax rate in your area. But overall, since everyone who works anywhere in the US should pay their taxes, earning from DoorDash even after taxes is worth more than not earning at all.

What Do People Say About DoorDash? Pros and Cons Working as a Dasher

Now that we’ve looked at how DoorDash works and how much you can expect to earn, it’s time to look at the advantages and disadvantages of working as a DoorDash driver.

Pros:

  • Flexible Hours – One of the best things about working for DoorDash is that you can choose your own hours. You’re not tied down to set shifts like many other jobs. This means that you can work around your schedule and only take delivery orders when convenient.
  • High Market Share – DoorDash has a 58% market share in the United States. This benefits Dashers because there’s a high demand for their services. In other words, you’re more likely to get delivery orders when you’re online and available. According to many DoorDash drivers on Reddit, what they like about Doordash is that when you log into the app, they make sure you’re busy and receive orders.
  • Driver-Focused – Many Dashers appreciate that Doordash as a company is driver-focused. This means that the company is always looking for ways to improve the Dasher experience. For instance, DoorDash focuses more on completion rate than acceptance rate, which benefits drivers because you’ll not be forced to accept orders that you can’t complete.

Cons:

  • No Guaranteed Income – One of the biggest disadvantages of working for DoorDash is that there’s no guaranteed income. This is because you’re only paid for the deliveries that you make. If there are no delivery orders available, then you won’t make any money.
  • Demand Depends on the Area – The demand for Dashers depends on the area where you’re located. If you’re in a smaller town or city, there might not be as much demand for DoorDash deliveries. This means that you might have to travel further to make deliveries, which isn’t always ideal. In other instances, Dashers are forced to accept low-paying deliveries when the demand is low.
  • App Interface Is Not As Smooth – Some DoorDash drivers on Reddit have complained that the DoorDash app interface isn’t as smooth as it could be compared to other apps like UberEats. This can affect the Dasher experience especially when they are driving.

How to Earn More with DoorDash

While there’s no guaranteed income when working for DoorDash, there are a few ways that you can increase your earnings.

1) Work During Peak Hours in Your Area

One way to make more money with DoorDash is to work during peak hours in your area. This is when the demand for deliveries is high and you’re more likely to get delivery orders.

2) Deliver in Areas with High Tip Potential

Another way to make more money with DoorDash is to deliver in areas where the customers typically give higher tips. 

For example, delivering in business districts and affluent neighborhoods is more likely to result in higher tips compared to college dorms.

3) Complete More Deliveries

You can also earn more money with DoorDash by completing more deliveries. The more deliveries you make, the more chances of getting more tips. You have to be strategic in choosing the orders. 

Focus on orders that are easy to complete with decent pay. Some orders might pay a bit lower but if it takes less time to complete, you can end up making more money in the long run by completing more deliveries and getting more tips. 

4) Use a Car With Good Gas Mileage

If you’re using your own car to make deliveries, it’s important to have a car with good gas mileage. This will help you save money on gas and increase your earnings.

5) Earn Top Dasher Status

A top Dasher is a DoorDash driver who consistently receives high ratings from customers and completes deliveries quickly. 

If you can become a top Dasher, you’ll be able to access more exclusive opportunities to make more money. You’ll get priority access to $30 or more in total cart value.

6) Try Multi Apping

Multi Apping is the practice of using several delivery apps simultaneously. This can help you fill in the gaps if the demand is low with DoorDash in your area. Check out DoorDash alternatives like Grubhub, Instacart, Shipt, Uber Eats, and Postmates.

Conclusion: Is DoorDash Worth It?

DoorDash is a great way to make extra money, but it’s important to consider the pros and cons before signing up to become a Dasher. If you’re looking for a flexible gig that you can do on your own schedule, DoorDash is worth considering. Just remember that there’s no guaranteed income and you have to put in the work to succeed.

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