Being a Doordash dasher and making food deliveries on DoorDash is a great way to make some extra cash in your spare time.
Earning potential depends on your location as well as how much you work and when you work.
If you want to maximize your earning potential, you’ll need to work efficiently and be smart about which deliveries you take on and how you complete your trips.
(Disclosure – We independently research our content to provide free advice for you. We may get compensation if you sign up with services, or purchase products through our affiliate links.)
Doordash Driver Tips For New Dashers
You’ve probably already seen the How To Dash page on Doordash (if not, go check it out). Below, we’ve put together some helpful pro tips for maximizing your Dasher income with DoorDash.
Work as efficiently as possible to maximize your delivery numbers.
At the end of the day, your earning potential rests in the number of food deliveries you take on. That’s why it’s important for you to work as efficiently as possible to maximize your order numbers and improve your potential pay.
As a Doordash dasher, the more that you can compress your delivery times, the more orders you will be able to squeeze into your shift.
One way to work more efficiently is to cut down on your drive time. Here are a few insider tips for getting to the restaurant and delivery destination as quickly as possible:
- Know where you’re going. Driving in the wrong direction is a big waste of time. Make sure that you take an extra few seconds to review your route before getting in the car.
- If you can’t find the restaurant, call them. If you have a hard time locating the restaurant, don’t un-claim the order. Call the restaurant and ask for cross streets.
- Check traffic before you leave. Making sure that you take the fastest possible route to your destination helps you save time so you can take on more orders. Always check the traffic, and choose the less busy route.
- Read customer instructions before delivery. Customers will often leave additional instructions on their order to help you locate their home faster, such as the location of their building or a gate code. Check these out before you head their way.
Another way to improve efficiency is to keep things like extra napkins, straws, and utensils in your vehicle. That way, if the restaurant does not include these items when you pick up the delivery, you can slip them in before you drop the order off at the customer’s house.
Letting the customer know that you’ve added these items is a great way to earn extra tips.
Be strategic about the orders you pick up
Another way to boost your earning potential on DoorDash is to be more strategic about the orders that you pick up.
Each time you get a DoorDash order request, the app lets you know where the restaurant is (including the distance from your current location) and what the order value is. You then have 60 seconds to accept or decline the order.
You do not have to accept every order that comes your way.
If you are more strategic about the orders you pick up, then you are able to increase your chances of maximizing earning potential during your shift. Typically, larger orders come with bigger tips and are more likely to be worth driving a further distance for.
Additionally, picking up orders that are closer to one another allows you to take on more deliveries in the same shift.
For example, you may decide that any orders under a certain order-total threshold are not worth your time unless they are in the immediate vicinity. Taking on smaller orders that are further away uses up time that you could be using to focus on larger orders that are likely to pay more.
Similarly, you may decide to only pick up orders that are in a certain mile radius from your current location. That means you won’t have to drive too far to complete the order, which takes time away from the rest of your shift.
That said, it’s important to note that, if you don’t accept an order, there is no guarantee that the next order that comes your way will be bigger or closer. Similarly, not every large order will lead to a big tip. You could end up spending a significant amount of time picking up and delivering a large and difficult food order only to walk away with no tip at all.
Dash during the busiest hours for higher earning potential
Another way to maximize your earning potential is by dashing during the heaviest order times of the day and the most busy delivery days of the week. Though the busiest order days and times will depend on your particular location, there are patterns in nearly every area:
- Weekend nights tend to be the busiest and most lucrative delivery times.
- The sweet spot for lunch deliveries is between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on weekdays.
- The dinner rush takes place during anywhere from 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. during the week.
- Breakfast time is less busy for DoorDash deliveries and may not be worth your time.
The only way to know for sure when the busy hours and days are for your location is to experiment a little. Try picking deliveries during different times of the day and days of the week to see when the greatest demand is in your area.
Not only will there be the potential for more orders (and tips), but you will be able to make more money per hour as you won’t have to wait and waste time between order requests.
In addition to the standard Doordash dasher busy times when people are likely to order, you should also take into account the weather when choosing your DoorDash shifts. People are more likely to order food to be delivered when it’s raining or snowing out.
Picking up deliveries during poor weather periods is a great way to earn big tips since most customers will be happy to have a convenient way to get their food.
Another thing to mention is that DoorDash provides incentives for dashers who make deliveries during the busiest times of the day, typically during the lunch and dinner rushes. Known as “Busy Pay,” this incentive will vary depending on demand in your area. However, you will be able to see the amount before you accept the delivery.
Check to make sure the order is right before you leave the restaurant
The amount of earning potential for DoorDash dashers is not just a matter of how many deliveries they can take on.
Tips also play an important part in how much DoorDash drivers can earn in a typical shift.
For this reason, it’s important to make sure that the order is correct and complete before you make the delivery to the customer. Even though it may technically be the fault of a restaurant that an order is incorrect, the customer may take it out on you by not giving you a tip.
Checking to ensure that the order is correct does take some extra time. However, it’s worth it in the end when you are able to provide a satisfying experience for the customer, especially if they decide to reward you with a larger tip.
To save time in making sure the order is right, you can review the order on the app before you enter the restaurant. That way, you can quickly scan the order in the restaurant to ensure that everything is there.
If you find that something is missing in the order, you can then request it from the restaurant before heading to the delivery location. Veteran dashers know that restaurants often forget to include drinks with the order.
Always check the app to see if any drinks were ordered so that you can ensure that the drinks make it to the customer.
Bonus Tip: Refer other Doordash dashers to earn extra cash
As a bonus tip, another easy way to make money through DoorDash is by referring new drivers. DoorDash makes it easy for drivers to refer others to the company, allowing both the referring Dasher and the referred Dasher to benefit from special bonuses. The DoorDash referral bonus amounts vary by location and tend to change depending on the market in the area. To see the referral rates for your area, check out your local DoorDash city page.
You can refer new Dashers through text message, email, Facebook (and Facebook Messenger), and Twitter. In order to get credit for a referral, you’ll need to make sure that the new Dasher has included your phone number on the sign up page under the “Referrer Phone #” field. These referral bonuses are then added to your weekly pay once the referred Dasher completes a certain number of deliveries within their first 30 days.