How Much Money Can You Make Driving for Uber Eats?

If you’re looking for a side hustle and own a car, bike, scooter, or pair of walking shoes, you may have considered delivering food for Uber Eats. As one of the main drivers behind the gig economy, Uber offers flexible work with weekly payouts and transparent compensation.

But just how much you can make as an Uber Eats driver will depend highly on your ability to profit from promotions, surge times, and tips. With that in mind, let’s take a look at how much you can expect to earn from this popular delivery service. 

How much do Uber Eats drivers make? 

The average hourly pay rate among Uber Eats delivery drivers nationwide is about $18, according to ZipRecruiter. At $18 an hour, you would gross about $720 weekly and about $3,120 monthly, assuming you worked 40 hours per week. 

This is only the average among delivery drivers. Depending on your market — both the demand for Uber Eats orders and the supply of other deliverers — your effective hourly rate could be much higher or lower than that. 

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ZipRecruiter reports seeing hourly wages as high as $25.24 and as low as $8.17. Reddit users, for their part, seem to agree that you’re more likely to make between $10 and $15 an hour on a normal day. 

As far as how Uber calculates your pay, time and distance are key factors, according to its website. The farther the distance from the merchant to the drop-off point, as well as the time it takes to complete the trip, will influence the total payout. Likewise, accepting multiple pickups and dropoffs within the same trip can increase your fare, and the availability of other drivers and demand in your area impacts this too. 

Location will also play a huge role in how much you can net as an Uber Eats driver. If you live where Uber Eats usage is heavy, you might stand to gain more as a delivery driver. Drivers in places with high demand are also more likely to see driving promotions from Uber. 

According to ZipRecruiter, the top three cities with the highest annual Uber Eats salaries were Berkeley, California ($50,004), Bailey’s Crossroads, Virginia ($47,548), and Daly City, California ($47,323). 

Is driving for Uber Eats really worth it? 

For some people, yes, driving for Uber Eats is worth the extra money. You can set your own hours and work around your schedule, thus giving you a way to turn your free time into capital. 

Your payouts are also super quick. Uber will transfer your payment to your checking account weekly, or let you cash out immediately with the Uber Pro debit card. Weekly payouts can motivate you to hit your savings goals, as you can see progress every week. 

If you’re treating Uber Eats as a full-time job, however, it might not be sustainable long term. Even if you were to earn $50,000 a year, you would still be making less than the median salary in the U.S. ($74,580 in 2022). And to get to that maximum salary, you would likely need to work more than 40 hours a week, possibly even more than five days a week. 

At a certain point, the flexibility begins to turn inside out, as you become constrained by your own schedule, thereby exploiting your own labor.

Don’t forget about other factors 

You should also consider other factors, like taxes. When you’re self-employed, you pay your own taxes, which will reduce your effective hourly earnings. Likewise, as a self-employed person, you’d miss out on cheaper health insurance, 401(k) matching, and other benefits that come with employment at a company. You’ll also need to worry about more wear and tear on your vehicle

Depending on your area, however, delivering for Uber Eats could help you add more income to your budget, especially if you can take advantage of promotions and peak times. Setting realistic expectations for your hourly wage can help you decide if it’s worth your time, as you might find more long-term value through other paths, like education, that lead to a more sustainable career. 

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