Some Postmates customers may occasionally see a “No Couriers Nearby” message when trying to order food on Postmate
. While it is less common in major cities like New York City and San Francisco and more common in rural areas, it can happen anywhere.
Here is what you need to know about this error on the Postmates app and what to do about it.
Table Of Contents
- What Is the “No Postmates Couriers Nearby” Message?
- Reasons for the “No Postmates Couriers Nearby” Error
- How to Fix “No Postmates Couriers Nearby”
- What Happens If Postmates Can’t Find a Driver?
- What Happens If Nobody Picks up My Postmates Order?
- Can You Cancel a Postmates Order If It Takes Too Long?
- How to Cancel a Postmates Order
- Wrapping It Up
What Is the “No Postmates Couriers Nearby” Message?
The “No Postmates Couriers Nearby” message on Postmates can sometimes appear when opening the app.
When that happens, you won’t be able to order from some or all restaurants in your area.
Instead, they will change to gray.
We know it can be frustrating to see this message, but don’t worry – you may be able to fix it.
Related: No Uber Eats Couriers Nearby error
Reasons for the “No Postmates Couriers Nearby” Error
The most common reason for seeing the “No Couriers Nearby” error is that no delivery drivers are close enough to the local restaurant to pick up your food.
There may be a delivery driver far away, but the delivery time would take too long for Postmates to assign them the order.
That’s why this error might only cause certain restaurants to become available.
The available drivers might be closer to those restaurants than others.
A Postmates driver can decide to stop working at any time.
As a gig worker, a Postmates courier doesn’t have the same contractual obligations as regular delivery workers.
That’s also why you may be more likely to see this error on holidays.
Sometimes, drivers may be available but busy picking up other orders.
Finally, the error may be due to a glitch in the system.
The courier app might not be working correctly, for example, so drivers might not be seeing your order.
How to Fix “No Postmates Couriers Nearby”
Typically, you have a few options if you get the “No Couriers Nearby” error.
Your best option is usually to wait 5-15 minutes and try again.
Remember, as independent contractors, Postmates delivery workers can go online and offline whenever they want.
Some might only work for an hour a day, while others might work only in the evenings and nights after they finish their regular jobs.
If you wait a short time, more drivers may come online, and they may be able to take your order.
That’s especially true in major cities like New York.
Sometimes, waiting just two minutes makes a big difference.
Similarly, drivers that have been delivering other orders may finish what they were doing and become available to take yours.
Also, some drivers may simply be driving around, waiting for orders to pop up.
Even if they were outside the service area of the restaurant a few minutes ago, they might enter it while driving around.
Another workaround is switching to the pickup option instead of delivery.
Postmates offers two options: delivery and pickup.
When you place a pickup order, you will have to go to the restaurant to get your order yourself.
While that might be an inconvenience, you also won’t have to pay any delivery fees, so you’ll save some money.
If no couriers are around, picking up your order yourself might be your best bet.
Additionally, some users have reported that by switching to the pickup option and back to delivery on the app’s homepage, they were able to fix the “No Couriers” available error.
This error might show up when there is a shortage of drivers so as not to overwhelm the system.
You may also get this error if your location services are off or Postmates doesn’t have access to your location.
Turn on the GPS services on your phone.
Go to your settings, find Postmates in your apps, and go to the permissions section to give it access to your location.
What Happens If Postmates Can’t Find a Driver?
If there are no drivers in your area when you want to place your order, you just won’t be able to place it.
Sometimes, however, there will be drivers available in your area at the time you place your order – but not when it comes time for your order to be picked up.
In that case, Postmates may expand the search area to look for drivers further away.
If it still can’t find a driver, you may have to wait – or you may be able to cancel your order and get a refund.
What Happens If Nobody Picks up My Postmates Order?
Even if Postmates drivers are in the area, they may not pick up your order.
Postmates drivers are independent contractors, and they are not required to pick up an order that gets placed nearby. Postmates can’t force them to do that.
It’s important to note that Uber acquired Postmates.
As of now, Postmates continues to operate as a standalone app, though you can link your Uber account to Postmates.
You may also notice that the interface on the app now looks very similar to the Uber Eats interface.
In either case, as Uber slowly integrated Postmates with Uber Eats, some drivers have migrated to other apps.
In general, Uber Eats has more requirements for drivers than other apps.
For example, you need to be 19 years old to sign up to work on Uber Eats and, by extension, Postmates.
On the other hand, you only need to be 18 years old to work on Grubhub.
The fewer drivers there are, the less likely it is to find one for your order, even if some are technically available.
If nobody picks up your Postmates order, try increasing the tip.
If that doesn’t work, you can wait or cancel your order for a refund.
If you wait a long time and your order doesn’t get picked up, and you don’t cancel it yourself, it will usually get canceled automatically.
Can You Cancel a Postmates Order If It Takes Too Long?
Yes, you can cancel your Postmates order if it takes too long.
If you are hungry, it might not be worth it to wait and hope that a driver will take your order.
After all, you can’t know for sure that a driver will show up – for all you know, you may wait for hours.
Instead, cancel and place an order on another app, pick up some food from your nearest KFC, make a quick meal, or get some cereal and milk.
You can cancel orders without contacting support in the app as long as a driver has not been dispatched to the restaurant.
Do You Get Charged for Canceling?
Sometimes. If you cancel your order after waiting only a short time, you may get charged a cancellation fee.
On the other hand, if you have been waiting a long time, Postmates may waive the cancellation fee.
It depends on a variety of factors.
Some factors that may come into the equation are whether the restaurant started preparing your order, whether the food is ready, and whether a driver has picked it up.
If the restaurant hasn’t yet started preparing your food, you can always get a full refund.
Otherwise, you may have to pay for the food, the delivery fee, and/or a cancellation fee.
It also depends on whether you cancel the order yourself or it gets canceled by the restaurant or delivery driver.
Will Postmates Refund the Cancellation Charge?
Possibly. If there was a cancellation charge, your best bet is to contact support and explain the situation.
If you are not sure whether there was a cancellation charge, you can find out by going to your order history, clicking on the order you canceled, and viewing the receipt.
To dispute a cancellation charge, visit the Postmates Help section.
Scroll down to the bottom and tap on “I was charged for cancellation” to dispute a cancellation charge when the restaurant or delivery driver cancels the order.
You can also get help by following these steps:
- In the bottom-right corner of your app, tap on “Account.”
- Click on “Orders.”
- Tap on the order you need help with and follow the prompts. You may need to click on “Get help” and then “Past order.”
As the Postmates app becomes more integrated with Uber Eats, the interface and in-app help section will start to look more similar.
How to Cancel a Postmates Order
To cancel an order on Postmates, follow these steps:
- Open the app and find your live order screen.
- Click on “Cancel Order.”
- There will be a pop-up informing you of charges associated with the cancellation. To confirm the cancellation, click on “Cancel Order” again.
- Select a reason why you are canceling the order.
- Click on “Done.”
Wrapping It Up
The “No Couriers Nearby” error is pretty common, especially outside major cities.
However, it usually goes away if you wait a short while.
It can be frustrating to see this error, but there are typically other options available.
For example, you can check DoorDash or Grubhub – often, there will be drivers available on those apps, and you may even find restaurants you like more.
In short, don’t panic! If you see this error message, you may just need to wait it out. In the worst case scenario, you can try another app to get your delivery quickly.