As recent as a few years ago, if you wanted food delivered you, you had limited choices. Typical delivery food options included the local pizza establishment or Chinese food restaurant.
Times have since changed.
These days, there’s a lot more variety thanks to advancements in the industry.
These advancements came about largely in part because of food delivery apps like Uber Eats and Postmates. These services combine the efficiency of delivery with the ease of online ordering to bring on-demand food delivery to hungry customers. Drivers can earn extra cash by hopping on this food delivery service trend and accepting delivery fees for their efforts.
Postmates is ideal for those seeking a job with flexibility. Couriers are able to choose when and how often they want to make deliveries all on their own terms. Besides this freedom, couriers have access to Postmates Plus Unlimited perks, which is free of charge.
These awesome perks can be yours if you become a courier. To assist you with this transition, we have put together this helpful guide. The information below will help get you started and help maximize your earning potential.
Identify if Driving for Postmates is Right for You
If you have never worked as a driver before, there are a lot of things to consider before diving in head first. Many people become couriers because of the flexibility. Even so, there are major pitfalls that can prevent drivers from making a profit.
For example, it is somewhat easy to fall into bad work routines. After all, who wouldn’t want to stay in bed on a cold day? Regardless, being your own boss has two-sides.
One of them is occupational freedom, the other side is that you have to keep yourself motivated and on track. This can be challenging if you are not used to the responsibility.
Another thing to consider is your personality. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Delivery drivers that do very well are very customer-centric. This means they do not mind taking the time to make each delivery worthwhile for the recipient.
More often than not, those who are willing to go the distance are extroverts. Due to this, very outgoing people tend to earn the most.
What Should Couriers Expect to Earn?
On average, the total amount of profit earned will depend on the restaurant in which the order is placed. In general, the nicer the restaurant the more money you can expect to earn.
Beyond that, payments are issued based on various portions of the delivery. The first major milestone you’ll complete as a driver is when you pick up an order.
Every minute a driver spends waiting at the pickup location is timed and recorded. Next, each mile that a delivery driver travels to make the delivery is logged. The final major payment milestone is when the driver drops the delivery off.
During this time, couriers may be tipped. This is not monitored, meaning that drivers can potentially pocket a huge sum of money. It’s important to note that the total payout for each delivery will vary based on your city.
How much you make at any given time will also depend on whether you are driving during Blitz. However, Postmates courier earnings typically range from $10-$18 an hour if they accept all Postmates delivery requests.
Questions to Ask Yourself Before Becoming a Postmates Driver
Am I comfortable with driving for more than 6-hours a day?
Not everyone will want to sit in a car staring out the windshield for extended periods of time. Especially during a traffic jam or longer commute to a restaurant.
Other issues that may get to you over time are bad weather and rude drivers. Depending on your city, these obstacles may hinder your ability to make as much money as you would like.
Am I Ready to Be Self-Employed?
Being an independent contractor can be intimidating and there are some risks to consider. For example, you must pay taxes on the amount of money you earn. Your earnings will not exclude tax.
Delivery drivers also do not receive paid vacations or time off. Meaning that if you are unable to work, there is no safety net.
Do I Have the Discipline to Work on My Own Schedule?
Talking yourself into leaving your house when you’re tired or when there’s bad weather is hard to do. Unless of course, you have the mental discipline needed to keep you motivated. Remember, there are drivers who are willing to get out there and work as hard as they can. You must be ready to hustle if you want to make any kind of profit.
Postmates Driver Requirements
Since delivery drivers only have to worry about making timely deliveries, the vehicle requirements are much more relaxed compared to rideshare services.
Any drivable vehicle that allows you to pick up and deliver orders is acceptable. This means that you can make a delivery in a beat up old van if it has enough life in it to get you to the destination on-time. That’s right, unlike Uber and Lyft, Postmates does not require a vehicle inspection.
Delivery drivers must also have valid insurance if they plan to use a car as their primary means of delivery. This policy must cover at least the state minimum requirements and your name must be on it.
Other than those two rules, anything goes. Couriers do not need their name on the registration to make deliveries and the vehicle does not need an inspection each year.
With that in mind, if you’re looking to work as a rideshare driver on top of driving for Postmates, it may be wise to invest in a decent car. Here’s our list of the best cars for Uber and Lyft to help you to find the right car.
Also see: Learn how to get started driving with Amazon Flex to maximize your earnings today.
How to Sign Up For Postmates
The application process for working as a Postmates driver is an simple:
1. Go to the Postmates website and create an account.
With this set-up, go ahead and complete your profile. Common information needed for this section is your name, date of birth, email address, and phone number.
In this section, you’ll also be asked to include your primary type of transportation.
P.S. Don’t forget to use a Postmates referral code to maximize your signup bonus!
2. Fill out the Postmates Fleet Agreement
After signing up, you will be asked to fill out the Fleet Agreement on fleet.postmates.com, which outlines the rules that Postmates has for their couriers.
3. Complete the Background Check
After signing the fleet agreement, you’ll need to authorize and pass a background check before you complete your profile to verify that you don’t have a previous criminal history or driving-related violations.
In the background check, Postmates will ask you for your social security number and any incidents relating to:
This background check usually takes 3-10 days. However, that time frame may vary.
4. Log In and Get Started!
With all this information in place, it is time to log in! Go ahead and log into your dashboard. From there, you can set up your direct deposit, view the welcome kit, and activate your Postmates Prepaid Card.
Once this is complete, download the Postmates app, sign in, and accept your very first delivery!
Maximizing Your Postmates Earnings
Now, how exactly do you beef up your weekly paycheck? Before we begin, there are a couple of things we need to go over.
First of all, until you get the hang of working as a driver, expect your paycheck to be on the lower side. This is normal for the first few weeks. Delivery drivers will need time to get familiar with the process before feeling completely confident.
For more information on how to make the most of your earning potential, check out these resources:
Other Tips & Tricks
Get Familiar with Your Area
Each city, location, street, an area of town is different. Due to this, new drivers should get familiar with the area they will be working in. Knowing your city like the back of your hand will help you identify which roads are the best to take.
Keep in mind, Google Maps may show you the optimal route to take if the road conditions are up-to-date. Construction or traffic may cause a 25-minute delivery to take 45 minutes instead.
Accepting requests from high-end restaurants will help increase your earning potential. Since these locations tend to have higher priced items, accepting orders from these spots will increase your profits.
This is a much quicker and easier way to make money as opposed to making a bunch of small McDonald’s deliveries.
Deliver 5-Star Customer Service
When you do make your delivery, take the time to make a great impression. Go the extra mile for your customer. Deliver the order to the customer in person. Let them know that you care and appreciate their business.
Doing this in a friendly, approachable way is a great method to use for generating tips. If done correctly, the number of tips you earn may end up being the bulk of your weekly earnings.
To achieve this within your first few deliveries, there are a few tricks to keep in mind. For starters, make sure that you are delivering the correct order. Before you leave the restaurant, grab napkins, sauces, utensils, and anything else the recipient might need. These items are crucial.
Delivery drivers that have everything the recipient needs will increase their probability of earning a tip. Without these items, you may tarnish the customer’s opinion of the service, which can prevent them from ordering again in the future.
Once you deliver the order, make it a point to give the recipient the receipt. Do not ask the customer if they want the receipt – instead, hand it to them.
Make sure your name is on the receipt and remind the customer to keep it in case something is not right with the order. This not only shows that you care, but it also reinforces the customer’s experience as a good one.
People that receive this type of exceptional service tend to remember it. People are more likely to tip if they are handed a receipt rather than being asked if they want to see it.
This position offers the same occupational freedoms experienced by Uber and Lyft drivers. Postmates requests are issued the same way as Uber or Lyft. Delivery drivers receive order requests based on location and availability.
Still, there are major differences between being a rideshare driver and a food courier. One of the most noteworthy differences is Postmates’ relaxed vehicle regulations. Drivers can make deliveries in any functioning vehicle, regardless of how old it is or the make and model.
With fewer hoops to jump through, delivery drivers can start taking requests sooner. Due to this, becoming a courier is a great option to consider if you do not have a vehicle that would pass an Uber or Lyft vehicle inspection.
If you are interested in working as a courier, check out our definitive guide to Postmates and get started driving today!