How Much Money Can You Make Driving for DoorDash?


If you have a car and spare time on your hands, you may have thought about driving for DoorDash to make a little extra cash. But as with most side hustles, there are costs associated with it. You’ll give up your free time, and you’ll be putting more wear and tear on your vehicle, so you want to make sure your DoorDash income will be worth the effort.

According to the company, “What you make as a Dasher depends on where, how much, and what time of day you choose to earn.” But that doesn’t tell us a whole lot. So let’s break down DoorDash pay a little further.

How DoorDash pays its drivers

DoorDash delivery drivers, also known as Dashers, can receive up to three types of pay while they work:

  • Base pay: This is guaranteed, and the rate depends on the estimated time, distance, and desirability of the offer. You’ll be able to see this rate before you accept the offer.
  • Tips: Customers may tip you at any point. This isn’t required, but many customers do include a tip. Drivers keep 100% of their earned tips.
  • Promotions: DoorDash runs three kinds of promotions that can result in additional earnings. They are:
    • Peak Pay: The Promos tab of your app will identify Peak Pay opportunities, which pay more than the average offer.
    • Challenges: You can earn money by completing challenges, like finishing a certain number of deliveries within a certain time period.
    • Delivery Streaks: This can give you additional money for completing consecutive orders while on a dash.

A lot depends on when you choose to work, where you’re located, and whether you go after the promotions when they’re available. If we’re talking about averages, Dashers usually earn about $17 per hour, according to Indeed. But that’s the national average. Those in larger cities could see higher rates.

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Dashers are typically paid weekly through a direct deposit to their checking account, though there is an option for daily pay if you’re willing to pay a small fee. Those with the DasherDirect Business Prepaid Visa Card also have the option to get instant deposits for no fee as well as 2% back on gas purchases.

How to increase your pay

There are several things you can do to maximize your pay as a Dasher, including:

  • Work around mealtimes: This is when most customers will be in need of your services, enabling you to pick up several orders in a row. Special events, like major sports games, can also be a great time to make some extra cash.
  • Position yourself in a popular area: Station yourself near popular restaurants so you can fulfill orders more quickly.
  • Take advantage of promotions: Check the Promos tab of the app every time you log in so you don’t miss out on opportunities to earn additional pay.
  • Be prompt and professional: Delivering high-quality service may increase your odds of getting tips from customers.
  • Leverage your earnings history: Your DoorDash app tracks your earnings history over time. You can use this information, along with knowledge of when and where you worked on those particular days, to figure out which times and places tend to result in the biggest paydays.

Like any side hustle, your pay is probably going to be a little unpredictable, depending on your availability and the demand for your services. But driving for DoorDash is flexible, so you can always try it out and see how you like it. If it’s not for you, you can throw in the towel and check out other side hustles instead to see if any of them can grow your savings account balance even faster.

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