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How Much Does Doordash Pay its Dashers? Understanding the Pay Model

What can you expect to earn delivering for Doordash? How much money does Doordash pay? Is there a salary range to help you figure out if Doordash delivery makes sense?

One woman went viral on TikTok showing weekly earnings as much as $1,900 per week delivering full time. On the opposite end of the spectrum, some have claimed that Dashers only get $1.45 per hour.

Which is true?

This article is part of the Doordash Delivery Driver series. At the bottom of the page you can see more articles in the series.

Both can be true. Both can be way off. There are so many many factors involved that it's impossible to give a single number and say “this is what you will make.”

Anyone who tells you otherwise is either misinformed or lying to you.

Here's what I can tell you: As a Dasher you have more control over what you can earn than you might think.

How much does Doordash pay Dashers? In the end, it depends.

Doordash affiliate link and image advertising to Earn money on your terms Start delivering, with a picture of a Dasher delivering on a bicycle.

I think the best way to answer the question about how much you can make on Doordash is to understand how Doordash drivers get paid. We'll dig into how the pay model works. From there, you can get an idea how it can work for you. Read on and we'll talk about:

One thing I should note: This article is about the typical pay for Doordash delivery drivers in the United States. We'll talk further down about some exceptions, either due to local laws or because the food delivery service is testing a feature.

A person's hand holding a stack of money next to a wallet with a phone lying on it, with the Doordash Dasher app home screen appearing on the phone screen.

How much does it pay to be a Doordash driver?

The most important thing to understand in this whole discussion is that a food delivery driver for Doordash is not an employee.

We are independent contractors.

What that means is that we're providing services as a business. We are paid on a delivery by delivery basis, meaning we're trading tasks for money instead of time.

As an independent contractor, there is no guarantee. State or Federal minimum wage does not apply. There is no hourly wage or salary. You're also on your own for expenses. A realistic understanding of pay takes the cost of using your car and other expenses into account..

Job sites like Indeed and Glassdoor often throw out pay figures of $14 to $17 per hour. The problem with those is that it's all self-reported income. However, because pay isn't by the hour, those estimates are not often accurate.

But here's the beauty of delivering for Doordash: You are free to determine whether or not you will accept any delivery offer that Doordash sends your way. In fact, their own Independent Contractor Agreement states that accepting and rejecting deliveries is a way that you can negotiate your price as a contractor.

Screenshot of the Doordash Independent Contractor agreement definition of an independent contractor, with the following highlighted: they are free to negotiate their compensation by among other things accepting or rejecting the opportunities transmitted through the Doordash platform by consumers, and can make such decisions to maximize their opportunity to profit.
In their definition of being an independent contractor, Doordash states that you have the opportunity to negotiate your prices by accepting or rejecting delivery offers.

What does this mean?

It means you're running a business. It means you need an entirely different mindset. And, it means you have a lot of control over how much you can make.

When you run a business, you have no guarantees. There are things about your market that will impact what you can make. However, you have a choice about how you handle those factors.

Six factors that impact Doordash driver earnings

Doordash drivers are paid on a delivery by delivery basis. When you complete a delivery, you are paid for that particular delivery.

Pay for a delivery is made up of:

  • A delivery fee, paid by Doordash
  • Incentive or bonus pay from Doordash
  • Customer tips

Screenshot from Doordash's explanation of their pay model that states "We know that Dashers like you have a lot of choices, which is why we've created a pay model that is designed to make earnings fair and transparent for every delivery.Below is more detailed information about how earnings work." Below that statement is a graphic that states that Base Pay + Promtions + Tips = Total Earnings
Screenshot from Doordash pay model page.

Here's how it works in a nutshell: Doordash will send a delivery offer to you on the Doordash driver app (known as the Dasher app). It will give you information about where you're delivering, how far you might drive, and a minimum amount of money you will be paid.

It's like this: The food delivery service Doordash is coming to you and saying “I'll give you this much money to complete this delivery.” You can decide to accept that pay or say no thanks.

When you accept a delivery and complete it, you get paid. The number of deliveries you accept and complete, and the payment you receive for those deliveries ultimately determine how much you earn.

While we're not paid an hourly wage, I do still believe that the best way to measure your pay is to look at the hourly average profit. We'll talk about that more when we look at expenses (the sixth factor in this section).

We'll look deeper at the three pay elements I mentioned, as well as three other factors that impact what you can make. The following factors determine how much drivers make delivering for Doordash:

  • The Doordash base pay or delivery fee
  • Doordash incentives such as Peak Pay
  • Customer tips
  • Market conditions where you deliver
  • Time
  • Expenses

The Doordash delivery fee

Doordash pays a delivery fee for each delivery. By their description, base pay ranges between $2 and $10 depending on time, distance and desirability. (You may notice that I use base pay and delivery fee interchangeably)

Base pay is DoorDash’s base contribution for each order. This will range from $2-10+ depending on the estimated time, distance, and desirability of the order. Deliveries that require Dashers to travel a longer distance, that are expected to take more time, and that are less popular with Dashers will have a higher base pay. Base pay will not change based on the customer tip amount.

Doordash description of Base Pay.

On most deliveries, you can expect the delivery fee to be between $2 and $4. In a recent experiment where I accepted 200 straight delivery offers, 78% of those deliveries had a delivery fee of four dollars or less. The average base rate on those deliveries was $3.18.

The minimum pay is $2.00. In practice that's usually only paid on deliveries where more than one order is delivered at a time. As of the original writing of this article (May 2022) Doordash has typically paid a minimum of $2.50 on single orders. They dropped that minimum from $3.00 in August of 2021.

Desirability can be the biggest wild card in Doordash driver pay, as well as the biggest unknown. If Doordash has trouble getting drivers to accept a delivery, they may use the lack of desirability as a reason to bump up the delivery fee.

Doordash Incentives (Peak Pay, Challenges, Guaranteed Earnings)

Here's the thing about using independent contractors: Doordash can't assign deliveries to you. They cannot require you to accept offers. A company is not allowed by law to control your work as an independent contractor or determine what work you will perform.

This creates a problem for Doordash. What if busy times mean there are more orders than drivers? Doordash solves this by offering incentives to encourage drivers to deliver during peak hours and unexpected busy periods.

The most common incentive from Doordash is Peak Pay. Doordash pays an extra bonus, per delivery, to Dashers in a particular zone at a particular time. Sometimes it's scheduled for anticipated peak times, and others it's adjusted on the fly (such as in bad weather).

The home screen on the mobile app for Dashers has a map of the delivery zones in the area. If there is Peak Pay available, Doordash shows the peak pay offers on the map.

You can also tap the Promos tab on the app and see a list of scheduled Peak Pay promotions.

Screenshot of a delivery zone map on the Dasher app that shows delivery zones and what the peak pay is on some zones.
Screenshot of the home page of the Doordash app for Drivers showing busy and peak pay zones.

Doordash also offers challenges and guarantees. You may receive a bonus or guarantee if you complete a certain amount of deliveries in a time frame. Doordash may guarantee a certain total pay if you meet a criteria, and if what you earned is less than the guarantee, they make up the difference.

A common guaranteed pay is a sign on bonus for new drivers who are guaranteed an amount if they complete so many deliveries in their first several weeks.

Customer tips

Customers are asked to add a tip when placing their order. The customer tip is included with the peak pay and delivery fee on the offer screen when you get a Doordash delivery offer.

Doordash states that Dashers receive all tips that are paid through Doordash.

The amount that customers tip often makes or breaks a delivery and whether that trip was worth taking. There's a lot more range in customer tip amounts than in the base pay.

This is why it's critical for Dashers to understand their ability and right to accept and reject delivery offers. The thing is, the delivery fee is usually so low that most deliveries don't pay enough to cover the time and expenses involved. The tip is the wildcard that often determines whether or not a delivery is worthwhile.

Doordash does not always display the entire amount you will be paid. For instance, if a customer is tipping $10 and the delivery fee is $2 for a total of $12, Doordash may only display an $8.00 payment on the offer screen. Dashers often call this hidden tips. As a result, total pay may actually end up higher than what Doordash states.

I'm finding that hidden tips happen such a small percentage of the time that it's still better to make decisions based on what Doordash displays, rather than rolling the dice thinking there MAY be a hidden tip.

Market conditions where you deliver

The first three factors: delivery fee, incentives and tips, determine pay for a particular delivery. These next three have more to do with how many deliveries you can complete.

It's important to remember that just because someone does well on Doordash in one city, it's not a guarantee that one can have the same kind of success in a different market.

The city or part of the country you are in can make a difference in how many opportunities you get and what kind of opportunities are available.

Even the particular part of a city makes a difference. I make more downtown than in certain suburbs.

There are really four main things that are impacted by where you are:

  • Frequency of delivery opportunities
  • The type of local restaurants in a market
  • Driver saturation
  • Tipping behavior

Doordash has a larger share of the delivery market in some cities than in others. According to Statista, in April 2021 Doordash had 74% of the San Francisco market but only 31% of the Miami market. If you're in a smaller community with fewer restaurants, that can meant there are fewer delivery opportunities.

Some areas have a higher concentration of fast food restaurants, and others might have more higher end restaurants. Customers often tip based on the value of the food, so the type of restaurant can make a big difference in what you get.

A major issue can be whether there are more Dashers available than delivery orders. Such driver saturation can lead to fewer delivery opportunities.

Finally, some parts of the country seem to tip better than others. When tipping is such an important piece of the earnings puzzle on Doordash, that makes a difference.

Sometimes the conditions of your market can be the thing that decides whether Dashing is a profitable opportunity.

Time

I believe that the amount of time it takes to complete a delivery is the most important AND the most overlooked factor in how well you can earn.

When dining out was cut back at the start of the pandemic, my average hourly earnings skyrocketed. The average pay and tip was about the same. The one major difference was how many deliveries I could complete in an hour. Traffic was gone, parking was no longer an issue, deliveries were fast.

I've tracked my earnings for four years, and each year the average hourly rate has climbed. Delivery pay actually has dropped quite a bit in that time. The one factor that has improved at the same rate was the average time to complete a delivery.

Think about it: If the average delivery pay is eight dollars, three deliveries an hour pays $24 compared to $32 if you complete four per hour.

This is why I think it's the most overlooked factor: Very few Dashers take the estimated time into account when deciding if they should take a delivery. What looks like a good paying offer that takes a long time can pay far less per hour that completing several shorter lower paying deliveries.

Expenses

Let's go back to the thing I said earlier: As an independent contractor you are running a business.

Business income isn't measured by how much money is coming in. Actual earnings for a business are the profits. It's all about what's left over after expenses.

Most delivery drivers have a very significant expense that they don't often think about: Use of their car. That cost goes far beyond gas and oil. Every mile is a mile closer to major costs such as tire replacement, timing chain work, brake jobs, etc.

What that means is, every mile costs money beyond just gas. It's important to understand the overall cost of using your car so you can understand what it's costing to perform a delivery.

The ultimate measurement for whether any week, day, month, or individual delivery has been good is your profit per hour. I usually calculate my overall cost at about 30 cents per mile, and subtract that from my earnings.

A twenty dollar delivery looks great. But if it requires driving 30 miles out and back, at 30 cents a mile that's $9.00 in cost, meaning the delivery actually paid only $11.00. All of a sudden that's not so great.

However you measure your cost per mile, whether it's the IRS standard allowance per mile or your calculation of actual costs, there's an important reality. The more you drive, the less you have less in your pocket as a result.

My formula for profit per hour is this: Total Earnings minus 30 cents per mile = profit. Profit divided by total hours on deliveries = profit per hour.

How to use those factors to improve your Dasher pay

As much as I've said this, it's worth repeating again:

As an independent contractor for Doordash, you are running a business. If you treat this like a business, you dramatically increase your earning potential.

You have the ability to make your own decisions, set your own hours and determine how to operate your business. I believe you have more influence over what you can make than any pay formula Doordash puts together could have.

I have another article with 63 tips to help you make more on Doordash. In that article, all 63 ideas fall under four major tips:

  • Treat this like a business
  • Find ways to increase earnings
  • Avoid losing money
  • Deliver more quickly

You can read that article for more in depth ideas, tips and tricks. However, I want to look at each of the main four ideas in light of the six earnings factors that were listed earlier.

Treat this like a business

There's a lot of debate out there about whether Doordash is exploiting workers by signing them on as independent contractors. I believe they are exploiting the use of contractors in a lot of ways. However, because we are independent contractors, WE have the power to make sure we're not exploited.

The best way to avoid exploitation is to embrace the idea that you're running a business and to claim the rights of business ownership for yourself.

If I wanted to sum that up in two statements, it would be this:

  • Remember that you're the boss, Doordash is not.
  • Treat Doordash as your customer, not your employer

And here's how that applies to the factors above: Think of Doordash delivery offers as bids for your services.

Think of delivery offers as bids for your services.

If you ran a high end restaurant and someone came in insisting they only pay three dollars for your Prime Rib dinner, no one in their right mind thinks you have any duty to accept that offer. Think of delivery offers the same way.

Look at your acceptance and rejection of offers as a business decision rather than an assignment by an employer. That will give you greater control over your earnings.

You get a lot further if you treat this as your own delivery business instead of just a delivery job.

Set your price and expand revenue sources.

The first thing I would tell you to do is set your own price.

More than that: Don't just look at the dollar amount. Look at the bigger picture and set your price based on how much a delivery pays for the time you put into it.

I've found the best way to do that is to estimate what a delivery will pay per minute. At the time of this writing, my price is 50 cents per minute ($30 per hour). If a delivery offer is five dollars, I ask myself if I can get it done in ten minutes. If it's a $15 delivery, I need to be done within a half hour.

What I found a long time ago was, when I started setting a price, my earnings became much more consistent. I didn't have as many peaks and valleys as far as hourly earnings.

If a Doordash offer doesn't meet your price, let it go.

But the other part of it, when it comes to running like a business and seeing Doordash as your customer is this: If Doordash isn't offering enough for your services, someone else probably will. If you expand your opportunities, you're more likely to find a customer who meets your price.

Too many people make the mistake of thinking either or. “I'm not making enough on Doordash so I'll quit them and try Uber Eats or Grubhub.”

It's not either/or. It's both/and. One of the worst business decisions you can make is to have only one customer.

Avoid losing money

Sometimes the decisions you make can cost you more money than what you make.

This is where expenses really come into play.

Money being wasted as illustrated by a hundred dollar bill being run through a meat grinder.

Think about the costs related to providing deliveries. Factor the cost of driving your car into your delivery acceptance decisions. If a fifteen mile delivery costs five dollars in vehicle costs to complete, it doesn't make sense to accept it if it at less than cost.

There's a bigger picture here as well. Don't make decisions that will get in the way of your ability to earn. That's known as opportunity costs.

If you don't make sure you have the right insurance and your car gets totaled, you may not have the money to get your car repaired. In fact the cost of the repair could be far greater than you earn, especially if you only do this as a side hustle.

The same thing is true with car maintenance. If your car needs major repair and you don't have the money, you not only are stuck with the repair costs, but without a car you can't make more money.

If you drive a lot for business, set money aside each week for future car expenses. I put 30 cents per mile into a car fund, then pay for my maintenance and fuel costs out of that fund. Doing so also means I have the money available when I need the big ticket items such as new tires or brakes.

The bottom line is, treating your delivery work as a business means taking some financial responsibility. Make good decisions both in what offers you accept, and in what you do with your money. That will protect you from losing more than you bring in.

Deliver more quickly

While we can't control the customer's tip or even Doordash's pay model, we CAN control how quickly we work. Completing more deliveries per hour means higher pay per hour.

In my first few months as a driver, I was averaging 1.9 deliveries per day. Now it's more than 3 per hour. Basically I gave myself a 63% pay raise.

There are a lot of things you can do to improve delivery time, including:

  • Paying more attention to how long a delivery offer will last (saying no more often to longer trips)
  • Improved driving patterns
  • Learning where to park
  • Figuring out how to improve turnaround time in restaurants (appearance and professionalism are huge in this area)
  • Communication with the customer to head off delays in the handoff.

Is Doordash full-time job or part time?

Remember that this isn't a job. That might sound nitpicky, but it's important because pay is on a delivery by delivery basis.

The flexible ability to set your own schedule makes Doordash a great part time gig. It's ideal for a second income on top of another job, a way to pay off debt, or to get extra income to save for something you may never have afforded in the past. It's a fantastic way to get extra cash.

It is also very possible to make Doordash delivery a fulltime thing.

I've delivered in the gig economy for several years. The reality is it pays much better than my previous job as a business manager for a non-profit organization.

Personally, I work with several customers including Doordash. I do know of some who do well at this fulltime delivering exclusively for Doordash.

Being self-employed, no one is limiting the hours you can work. If you need extra money, you can work the extra hours.

If you choose to deliver full-time, I highly recommend that you really take serious this idea of operating it as a business. You can read more on thing things to consider if you're thinking of being a full-time gig worker in the delivery space.

Wrapping up: How much do Doordash Drivers make?

It all depends.

Obviously, amount per delivery is a factor.

Even more, it depends on what you put into it. Your decisions matter. Did you make profitable decisions about what to accept? And how quickly can you get things done?

Delivering for Doordash and other food delivery services (and package delivery services as well) can be better paying than a lot of side gigs out there. Sometimes it's better than a lot of full time options.

If you're not careful, if you choose the wrong deliveries, or your market just doesn't provide enough options to keep you busy enough, it may not pay all that well.

I won't tell you that you'll definitely make $1,900 per week. In the right place with the right amount of effort, it's possible. I won't tell you that you'll crash and burn, either.

My advice is, don't look at this as a job opportunity with a set wage. The numbers are too inconsistent. Evaluate it as a business opportunity: What's the potential for you in your area?

Affiliate link Doordash driver banner image that says Earn money on y our terms - Start Delivering.

Dashers are self-employed. It's really up to you how you run your business. Sometimes a business model doesn't work in your market.

But if you're setting your price, deciding the best times to do business, and opening things up to other customers, you might be surprised at how well Doordash can pay. If you want to give Doordash a try, use my referral code and see how it works for you.

Frequently questions about how much money Doordash pays

Frequently asked questions illustrated by a pile of question marks with one question standing out in red.

How much does Doordash pay per hour?

Doordash does not have an hourly pay rate. Doordash pays by the delivery.

You can measure your performance by your hourly average. I believe that's a good practice as it lets you see how certain days, weeks, or even individual deliveries compare to one another.

Hourly earnings or averages vary widely, depending on several factors. The offers you accept and how quickly you complete them makes a difference.

My profit per hour has often been over $30 per hour. Some will tell you their hourly rate falls below minimum wage. Ultimately, it depends on you, your decisions, and your market.

Does Doordash have an hourly guarantee or contribution?

Doordash does not have an hourly guaranteed amount in their general pay structure. Unlike Grubhub, Doordash does not provide and additional contribution to meet an hourly minimum.

Are there any instances where Doordash does pay hourly?

There are a few exceptions depending on location. Some cities are requiring a minimum hourly rate. Proposition 22 in California requires Doordash to pay a minimum based on time on deliveries and the number of miles driven. Other cities and states may impose hourly minimums as well.

As of May, 2022 Doordash is testing an hourly pay concept in Lansing Michigan. Dashers can choose whether to earn by the order or by time. Those who choose a time pay model get $14 per active hour plus tips. Time between deliveries does not count. Dashers getting hourly pay can only reject one offer per hour.

I have no idea how long they will continue this trial or whether it will spead to other locations.

Should I measure hourly time in Dash time or Active time?

Doordash measures both active time and dash time. Active time is the time actually performing deliveries, such as driving to the restaurant or taking food to the customer. Dash time is the total time logged into the app as ready to take offers.

Personally, I measure my hourly earnings by how much time I'm out there intending to make money on deliveries. That's more in line with Dash time. However, I'll count time that I'm delivering for someone else or returning from long distance trips and not logged into a Dash as part of my total time.

In my opinion, dash time is the more accurate measurement of the two. Counting only the time on deliveries creates an inflated picture of what you're actually making. This is especially true if you reject a lot of deliveries, as the time spent waiting for a good offer is time that you're not earning anything.

What is the average Doordash salary for drivers?

There is no such thing as a salary for Doordash drivers. Dashers are not employees, thus salary really doesn't apply.

There's also such a wide range of time that Dashers put into delivery work. Some will dash 60 hours a week or more. A large majority of drivers put in four hours or less per week. That makes it impossible to really rely on an ‘average salary.'

How much does Doordash pay per mile?

Doordash does not disclose how miles figure into the pay formula.

Some drivers evaluate delivery offers by the pay per mile. However, that varies based on all of the pay factors, so there is no set pay per mile.

I feel like Doordash claims that distance enters into the base pay can be misleading. I've had several deliveries that are longer than average (over seven miles) that still only paid the minimum delivery fee. Overall, the average delivery fee per mile does go up slightly, but not enough to say that distance is a significant payment factor.

What does Doordash pay per delivery?

I usually expect $2 to $4 in Doordash base pay for any given delivery, with the rest coming from customer tips. Doordash pay per delivery is made up of a delivery fee, incentives, and customer tips. Doordash claims that the base pay can range from two to ten dollars, but my experience shows the vast majority of delivery fees are less than four dollars.

How much can you make per week on Doordash?

What you make in a week depends on a lot of factors. How many hours did you put in? What kind of deliveries did you accept? How busy was your market? A person who averages $25 per hour and works 12 hours per day would bring in $2100 gross income before expenses. In my experience, that's not impossible but may not be common.

How much can you earn per month on Doordash?

Like hourly and weekly totals, it all depends on how much time you put in, what kind of deliveries you accept, and what your market is like. In the example above, a person earning $25 per hour, 12 hours a day for 30 days a month would gross $9,000. I think that in a lot of markets that's achievable, if you're willing and able to work that many hours.

That's a decision you have to make: Is it worth the wear and tear on both yourself and your car?

Can you make six figures yearly delivering for Doordash?

Roxanne Rojas, a Dasher in California, had a TikTok video go viral where she showed weekly Doordash earnings as high as $1,920. That much per week for a year would be very close to $100,000 per year.

Is it possible? Yes, depending on the deliveries you take and what's available in your location. I personally average a higher amount per hour. However, I also wouldn't want to work that many hours.

I wouldn't be surprised if anyone is earning more than $100k per year on delivery. Of course, expenses make it harder to clear that much money. It's not unrealistic and some are quite happy to work that many hours.

I wrote more about this concept after an Uber Eats driver made nearly $8,400 in a month.

Can you make a full time-living delivering for Doordash?

Yes, it is very possible. I think your chances are better if you open yourself up to other delivery companies.

The flip side is whether you're really making as much delivering full-time as you think. Full-time delivery means significant driving. Are you taking car costs into account? Full time delivery without paying attention to expenses, taxes etc can create some real financial problems.

How is the Doordash base pay determined?

Doordash claims base pay is determined by a combination of distance, duration, and desirability of an order. There is a pattern of slight increases in base pay for longer deliveries, but it's very slight. Doordash does not make their formula public.

Is Dasher pay based on the customer's delivery fees?

Doordash says that their delivery fees are not influenced by the size of the customer's tip.

This is an issue because of Doordash's previous pay model. The base pay was a flat one dollar but it would increase if the customer tip was small or there was no tip. That led to a lot of accusations and Doordash was forced to change the pay structure.

Under the new pay model, Doordash says that desirability is a factor in the base pay. Desirability is Doordash's term for the popularity of a delivery or if it's likely that drivers would accept it. If a customer doesn't tip, the delivery is probably less desirable, and Doordash may increase the base pay.

You could say that in practice, not much has changed but Doordash just isn't as transparent about how they do things. In the end, base pay is still somewhat determined by the tip.

Can Dashers influence base pay?

There's a theory out there among Dashers that if more orders are rejected, Doordash will be forced to increase the pay.

With the way that Doordash uses desirability to determine the delivery fee, there may be some truth to that theory. Ultimately Doordash needs to make sure a delivery is completed and sometimes that many involve increasing pay to make it attractive.

At the same time, I think Doordash has a pretty good idea how all the patterns work and probably isn't as influenced as we think.

Personally, I don't believe in rejecting deliveries to try to influence the pay. If I didn't like an offer the first time around, I doubt I'll like it better with a small increase in pay.

I do turn down a lot of offers. It's not to try to force a change. It's simply that if an offer doesn't meet my price, I decline. Simple as that.

How does acceptance rate impact Dasher earnings?

There are two ways that I see acceptance rating making a difference in your earnings.

The first is that a very high acceptance rate can limit your earnings. If you take deliveries that pay very little for the time and distance involved, your average hourly rate will be lower.

Skilled Dashers who recognize profitable opportunities will often earn more with a lower acceptance rate.

The second way it can impact earnings is if you are in an area where it's difficult to get on the schedule to deliver. If you can't log in, you can't make money. Doordash has a special status for drivers who meet certain criteria (including a 70% or better acceptance rate) called Top Dasher. The primary benefit of being a Top Dasher is that you can log in to deliver at any time.

I did an experiment where I accepted every delivery offer for 200 straight deliveries. The purpose was to see if delivery offers were better as Top Dasher (half the deliveries) than when I wasn't. I did not see any evidence at all that delivery offers were any better when I was Top Dasher or when I had a higher acceptance rating.

Do Doordash customers tip well?

In my experience, tips are much lower on Doordash than they are on Grubhub and Doordash. I've read some national comparisons showing the national average tip on Doordash is about 15% lower than on Uber Eats or Grubhub.

I don't think it's so much that Doordash customers tip less. It's more that Doordash recommends a smaller tip. When you place an order for delivery on the major platforms, the service provider automatically includes a suggested tip amount while giving you the chance to adjust it.

Doordash seems to recommend a lower tip far more often the others.

Out of curiosity, I started an order on Doordash, Grubhub, and Uber Eats for the same meal from the same restaurant. The suggested tip on Grubhub for the $42 meal was $11.22. Uber Eats defaulted to a 15% recommended tip at $7.96. Doordash came in lowest, at $5.50.

Side by side by side screenshots of order screens for the same order on the same restaurant for Grubhub, Doordash, and Uber Eats, with Grubhub suggesting a $11.22 tip, Doordash suggesting $5.50 and Uber Eats defaulting to $7.96 for the tip.

Can Dashers tell how much the tip is?

Doordash just offers what the total pay will be when they present an opportunity. They do not break it down by delivery fee, incentive and tip.

However, with base pay almost always in the two to four dollar range, it's easy to tell if the customer didn't tip very much. If total pay offered is four dollars or less, it's pretty easy to figure out that the customer either left a very small tip or none at all.

Screenshot of a Doordash delivery offer that displays a $2.75 payment that includes customer tip.
This delivery offer had either no tip or an extremely low tip.

Other than estimating, Dashers don't know until after the delivery is complete what the actual amount of the tip was.

Does Doordash steal tips?

To date, no hard evidence has been found that Doordash has stolen tips from drivers.

There was some controversy over their old pay model that made it look like they were taking tips. In that model, Doordash added more to their base pay (which was only a dollar) if the customer tip was low or if they didn't tip at all.

Doordash wasn't stealing tips, however the pay structure was misleading and they were forced to change the pay model.

There are instances where the customer tip does not go entirely to the driver (or doesn't at all). If an order is placed through the restaurant instead of on the Doordash app, the restaurant can decide how much of the tip goes to the driver and how much goes to their own staff.

Does Doordash hide tips?

Sometimes Doordash will hide a part of the payment. This is often referred to by Dashers as hidden tips. Doordash will display a lower amount on the offer screen when the actual total pay is higher.

In an interview with Harry Campbell on the Rideshare Guy podcast Doordash president Christopher Payne stated: “So one of the things you're talking about is the tip, and we'll show the Doordash component and a portion of the tip. But we cap that because we found that a lot of people were just waiting for the big tips.”

In other words, Doordash decided that there were enough Dashers just waiting for extremely large orders that they needed to disguise some of those offers, thus they decided to cap or hide part of the tip.

In the study I mentioned earlier where I accepted 200 straight deliveries, 16% of the deliveries had a hidden tip. The highest hidden tip was $6. The next highest was $4.50. The average amount of additional hidden tip on those was $1.71 and 60% of hidden tips were less than two dollars.

Hidden tips happen on Doordash. However, in my experience the additional amount is pretty small on average.

Can Doordash customers change the tip after the delivery?

Doordash customers who did not tip when placing the order can supposedly add a tip later. If they did place a tip and were extremely unhappy with their service, it may be possible to get a refund of their tip from Doordash by contacting customer support. I have not seen any instances, however, of Doordash taking back any tip that has been paid to a Dasher.

How does Doordash pay its drivers?

Doordash drivers can be paid one of three ways:

  • By direct deposit into their account
  • Using Fast Pay, where for a $1.99 fee money can instantly be deposited to a personal debit card
  • Deposited immediately onto a DasherDirect debit card, offered through Doordash, once a dash is completed.

How often does Doordash pay Dashers?

Direct deposit happens on a weekly basis. If a Dasher has not withdrawn available funds using Doordash Fast Pay or through the DasherDirect debit card by the end of business on Sunday, those funds are then sent to the Dasher by direct deposit.

What day is payday for Doordash drivers?

If you use Direct Deposit, Doordash processes the ACH direct deposit to your financial institution on Monday. Most Dashers will see the deposit in their bank account on that Tuesday. Some banks may make those funds available immediately or can take a couple of business days. Bank holidays may impact what day funds are deposited.

If you use Fast Pay, funds become available as soon as you complete a dash. A dash is a term for a time period in which you are available to accept deliveries on Doordash. As soon as you end your dash, the total pay for all deliveries completed in that dash are added to your available earnings and you can cash for the $1.99 processing fee. You can only use the Fast Pay feature once a day.

If you have the DasherDirect debit account, a special debit card offered by Doordash in conjunction with Payfare, and you have elected to have your funds deposited to your card, your earnings are automatically deposited onto your Dasher Direct card the moment you complete a Dash.

Does Doordash charge drivers a percentage or service fee?

No. Doordash does not charge Dashers to deliver. They simply pay whatever delivery fees, incentives and customer tips that are earned on your deliveries. The only real service fees related to dashing are the $1.99 processing fees charged if you use Fast Pay to receive your payments early on your bank debit card.

Does Doordash pay extra for gas?

Doordash does not reimburse their contractors for gas purchases or for mileage. Doordash simply pays drivers the delivery fees, incentives, and customer tips. Dashers are on their own for cost of fuel and other expenses related to delivering for Doordash.

In March, 2022, Doordash did announce a gas rewards program as a temporary way of offsetting higher than usual fuel prices. That program included a weekly reward of $5, $10, or $15 depending on how many miles were driven for deliveries. It also included increasing the cash back for fuel reward on the DasherDirect card from 2% to 10%.

At the end of April Doordash announced they were extending the program. What they did not announce was that they were actually discontinuing the weekly supplement. They never actually announced that to Dashers in any communication or press release. Instead, buried a statement in the FAQ section of their gas rewards page that the weekly gas challenge was not extended.

Screenshot of an FAQ on the Gas Rewards page for Doordash Dasher support

The Doordash Delivery Driver Series

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