How Much Do Postmates Drivers Make?

Delivery company Postmates offers income opportunities for individuals who sign up as couriers. It is interesting to note that in a short span of time, the startup company has raised an initial 16 million dollars in venture capital, and has penetrated cities across the US, including New York, Chicago, Denver, Boston, Portland, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, the San Francisco Bay area, and more.

The company operates a mobile app that enables customers to order products from shops in the US. Couriers, dubbed Postmates, need to live in one of the markets served by the San Francisco-based company offering quick on-demand delivery service. To get started, postmates drivers simply log on to the app, receive delivery requests, and then navigate to the restaurant or store.

Payment structure

Postmates drivers handle deliveries for food or small items like home and office supplies. They basically earn a flat fee plus the earnings per mile between the pick-up and drop-off points. On top of the earnings, there are tips that customers may indicate inside the app after delivery is completed. Postmates has a blitz pricing similar to ride-sharing firm Uber’s surge pricing. That means that during peak hours, delivery fees are increased.

If it is an individual’s sole job, and the person works during the morning, mid-day, and evening, the earnings may range from $75 to $100 per day. Earnings may be higher when there are events going on or there is inclement weather. Drivers who only work to earn extra bucks on the side can make $100 to $150 a week.

The earnings depend on the hours allotted, or an average of eight dollars to 15 dollars per hour, including tips.  The rates also vary depending on the markets served. In the Orange County/Los Angeles area, the estimated earnings potential for a Postmates courier hovers in the $10 to $18 per hour range (before expenses). The earnings potential (or number of jobs that can be done per hour) may be limited by factors beyond the control of the courier.

Payment schedule

Postmates drivers are paid four to seven days after their deliveries.  As independent contractor, drivers need to factor in vehicle-related expenses that come with the work. They rack up a lot of miles and must be ready for the wear and tear on their vehicles. On the other hand, knowing how to make one’s way to certain places is a definite plus point. It must be noted that certain areas are meant for bikers and walkers. Drivers must therefore find what areas they can navigate and fit them best.

The reality is that payout structures may be changed by the company. Drivers have earned up to 25 dollars an hour consistently. This was during the stage when the startup company was onboarding couriers as they entered the market.

The actual average wage may be rounded off to $9.23 per hour, recent reports reveal. It is well below San Francisco’s minimum wage per hour, but Postmates drivers can exert efforts and devise strategies to maximize their earnings.

For the right person who will be satisfied with a decent form of supplemental income, being a Postmates courier can be fun. As a part-time job for students or working professionals paying off loans, working for the on-demand delivery platform can be very helpful. Individuals who expect a high-paying gig may do well to check other income-generating alternatives.

Postmates has been noted to be at a distance, or still far from being able to compete with actual rideshare driving. Uber drivers  are bound to earn more than the average Postmates courier. Nonetheless, Postmates continues to grow. In fact, it has emerged as a great alternative for drivers who cannot work for ride-sharing giants like Uber due to certain requirements. Bike couriers also happen to fare well in densely populated cities like Seattle and San Francisco. Since bike maintenance is more cost-effective than car maintenance, couriers using their bikes save a few dollars an hour.

Postmates’ growth curve has been shared by Chief Executive Officer Bastian Lehmann on leading social media sites, generating numerous comments. Some people have tweeted him to put customers and not to forget good service. Others have noted the amazing work the company has done. A tech enthusiast acknowledged that Postmates has been a well-executed service. Customers stand to gain much from the logistics company’s service.

For people on the other side of the equation, or those who work as couriers, the service may be a worthwhile undertaking. Being a Postmates courier, many people note, may not be the ticket to riches, but it does offer a sensible way — particularly for individuals who are not at all picky with work — to kill time, and earn along the way. An upside is that couriers work their own hours. A courier may end up traveling miles away into a bad neighborhood to deliver a snack to a college kid who may not give a tip.

Few downsides

Another downside is that drivers may wait a long time to pick things up in certain states.  The waiting time is a hurdle that some drivers shrug off.  A number of Postmates drivers typically do multiple jobs simultaneously, thereby increasing their earnings.

Some couriers have stated that they are not inclined to quit their regular day jobs just yet to work for Postmates. As those who have tried being a Postmates courier confirm, the pay is not mind-blowing.

In any case, it has emerged as a viable part-time work that may evolve into something bigger. As Postmates co-founder and CEO Lehmann said, the  median earning per hour during peak times is $19. It lets people earn more than most other part-time jobs, then.

Lehmann co-founded the on-demand delivery company back in 2011. The idea for Postmates came to mind after spending some time looking for a simple solution to move goods around a city.

He later pursued this notion of “ride-sharing for stuff” through AngelPad in San Francisco. That is where he met Postmates co-founders Sean Plaice and Sam Street. The Postmates business highlights how tech platforms are helping build sustainable and economically empowering communities.

You may also check how much do Uber and Lyft drivers make here.