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Tips for First Time DoorDash Drivers

Keep these tips in mind when you begin your time as a Dasher.

1. Understand the Process and Technology

If you have questions about the process, you can always contact Dasher Support via chat or phone at (855) 431-0459.

During a lull in deliveries, click through the DoorDash app to get used to the technology.

The DoorDash site is full of helpful tips for new drivers as well.

2. Get to Know Your Delivery Areas

Get to know your delivery areas as soon as possible.

Learn the locations of restaurants and figure out the quickest ways to reach residential areas.

Take different routes every once in a while within your delivery areas, so you feel comfortable making your detours if necessary.

Sometimes the biggest streets are the slowest during rush hour, sporting events, or lunchtime.

3. Plan Your Routes Carefully

Part of quickly reaching your destinations means planning your routes carefully.

For example, you may want to avoid busy highways where traffic backs up frequently.

Spending an extra minute planning your route can save lots of time in traffic.

4. Bring the Necessary Gear and Supplies

Necessary gear and supplies for Dashers make delivery easier and safer for everyone involved.

Items covered by DoorDash include:

  • Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) such as required masks, gloves, and hand sanitizers

Other items not provided for free may be purchased in the Dasher Gear Store.

Items to make delivery by car include:

  • To keep food warm, they have insulated totes, pizza bags, and catering bags.
  • Drink carriers to prevent spillage while in transit
  • Brand car magnets, parking signage, and shirts to make delivery drivers more recognizable.

Bike Dashers’ lives are made easier by using necessary gear, such as:

  • Reflective safety armbands
  • Bike helmets
  • Phone mounts to view their delivery route.

Delivering During Peak Hours vs. Regular Hours

Peak Hours are some of the best times to drive for DoorDash.

Driving during peak hours, such as lunch and dinner, can be an excellent way to make more money.

You’ll likely have more orders during a shift, and you can get peak pay.

However, the shift will be busier, so you won’t have as much downtime between orders.

That can be stressful on new dashers or dashers who don’t know the surrounding area.

screenshot showing doordash peak hours and the best times to doordash

If you want to take it slowly for your first few dashes, you may want to avoid peak hours.

Then, you’ll be able to get some orders, but you won’t have to work constantly.

However, that also means you won’t earn as much.

Holidays often have promotions as well, and you can deliver on those days to earn a Dasher bonus, which Doordash will explain to you in your app or through text message.

Frequently Asked Questions

You may still have questions about how to DoorDash. Here are some answers.

Can I deliver for DoorDash without a hot bag?

While you can deliver for DoorDash without a hot bag, you shouldn’t. For one, some restaurants won’t allow you to take an order without a hot bag.

You also risk getting lower ratings from customers. The bag can provide customers with peace of mind that you took good care of their food.

Can somebody else ride with me while driving for DoorDash?

You can have passengers ride with you when you drive for DoorDash. However, you need to be the one driving, and you need to have a valid driver’s license and valid insurance.

What happens if I need to cancel a DoorDash order?

To cancel an order before you pick up the food, you can go to the Help section in the app.

Then, you can unassign yourself. After picking up food, you will need to contact support to unassign yourself from the order.

In either case, you’ll need to share why you’re unassigning yourself, and it will lower your completion rate. If you cancel too many orders, you are at risk of being removed as a Dasher from the app for good.