Driving with Uber Eats and DoorDash - How to make sure you get the most out of your time
Driving for food delivery services can be a lucrative way to make good side income, but you need to do it in a strategic manner. Instead of writing a full blog, I will highlight key important details that I find helpful during my own delivery jaunts on the platforms. These are applicable for both DoorDash and Uber Eats, but some tips are more geared towards behaviors of one app than another.
*Editorial notes - If you are signing up for Uber Eats and do not currently have an account, please consider signing up using my promo link here *
Choosing your adventures (accepting pickups)
Accepting pickups is almost as crucial as the delivery process itself. This will very largely depend on your own market. For reference, I am located in the Phoenix market, so I understand that Tempe and Phoenix related areas are good areas to pick up in.
Focusing on your dense populated areas as this will yield you more orders per hour, as you spend less time navigating back to those areas to receive orders. This is something where DoorDash can go against you as leaving an area that you are dashing in reduces orders significantly, where as with Uber Eats, any zone is open for deliveries. When you have a hotspot area (Uber Eats) or a "Very Busy" with peak pricing you should attempt to stay in that area at all costs as you'll get additional money on top of your base rate and tips
Stores is probably, if not, the most important part of selecting pickups. Stores will determine if you:
- Go to that store all the time, no reservation
- Consider that store, depending on the location and store
- BLACKLISTED - Under no uncertain terms should you ever pickup from this story. If you do this, you might as well take a $10 bill out and hand it to the customer on delivery
Stores I will consider without hesitation:
- Pasiano in Tempe: This place earns a #1 selection criteria as it is not difficult to get to, has orders ready to go each and every time when I arrive, and is a smooth pickup
- Tempe Food Court - This earns a #2 selection criteria for a few reasons. Early on in the start of this food court, it was very long and turbulent weight as you waited for your order without any reassurances if it would be 5 minutes or 50 minutes. However, Uber Eats and DoorDash will occasionally subscribe your number into their ordering system so you can receive text messages when your pickup is ready. When this happens, you can pickup and go. If it is not ready or you do not get that, do not consider rushing to the store as you may be waiting.
- Filiberto's (any location) - This earns itself a #3, a permanent blacklist. Continuously this is one of the slowest and sometimes most busy restaurant to pickup from. They are not friendly and as a delivery driver, you are a last class citizen and will be served essentially last after walk up and drive through customers. There is no fast lane, there is not fast pass, do not pass go and do not collect $4.50 for 6.5 miles.
If you are multi-apping with Uber Eats and DoorDash, you must be good at mutli-tasking and good at staying off from the bottom of your screen... My note regarding the previous comment is with Uber Eat order acceptance, which will pop up a message about 1/3 of the screen near the bottom (think keyboard area) that shows you details about the proposed pickup. If you are on Android ensure that Uber Eats and DoorDash are immediately your last two apps. As such, you can app switch while this notification comes up to see the mapper of where it is planned to go. If you have two apps and one of them is not UberEats (or is further down in your list), you will not be able to use the screen to navigate to that app.
Orders will come in from every direction, specially if you are keeping on app "online" (e.g. DoorDash attempting to pause your Dash after declining a handful of orders). In this case where I am on a pickup and I feel like I am most likely not going to be able to do more than one pickup (or already have two pickups). You will need to decline orders from one or another app consistently or evaluate your risk tolerance on taking more than one app's orders. I only suggest this if you are on your last drop off or know you will be finished with that order very quickly.
The biggest note to take away from this sections is - DOORDASH ORDERS ALWAYS TAKE PRECEDENCE. I highlight this as I was not aware of the more stringent timing DoorDash requires of their dashers opposed to Uber Eats. DoorDash has guidelines that state orders should be picked up at X time and delivered by X time. If you do not, for one reason or another and are late (event 10 minutes past), you may qualify for a late or very late delivery which is an infraction. One infraction is not generally terms for deactivation, but multiple will definitely get your account jammed up.