an image showing a blog header for grubhub vs doordash article for gig drivers

DoorDash vs. Grubhub: Which is Better For Drivers in 2023?


What makes one food delivery app better for drivers than another? There are lots of things to consider, and in this blog post we’ll cover them. You might be new to gig driving, or maybe you’re ready to switch up to try a different food delivery app. In any event, you’ll have to make up your own mind about who wins the DoorDash vs. Grubhub contest. We just want to present some facts and background in this post that will make that task a whole lot easier. 

Here’s what we’ll consider:

Grubhub driver pay or Doordash driver pay: Which is better?

The latest figures from Gridwise show that both DoorDash and Grubhub offer decent earnings. The fairest comparison is probably gross earnings per work hour. There’s literally almost no difference, with Doordash showing an hourly figure of $15.28, and Grubhub coming in at $15.49. 

A graph showing doordash vs grubhub average hourly earnings

Source: Gridwise

The numbers for gross earnings per trip show Grubhub with a substantial edge over Doordash, $10.26 vs. $7.93 per trip, respectively. Tips also look better at Grubhub, where the median tip earnings per trip amounted to $5.00, while average Doordash tips came in at $4.17.

A graph showing grubhub vs doordash average earnings per trip

Source: Gridwise

A graph showing doordash vs grubhub tip earnings

Source: Gridwise

When it comes to gross monthly earnings and referrals, though, Doordash has it all over Grubhub. Dashers averaged $227.25 per month, while Grubhub drivers yielded only $132.57. What’s with the difference in the data? It might be that there is more business for DoorDash than for Grubhub. It may also be showing us that drivers could tend to work more hours for DoorDash than they drive for Grubhub. 

A graph showing doordash vs grubhub driver pay

Source: Gridwise

Referrals are another way for drivers to make money, and there’s a big difference there. Grubhub doesn’t offer money to drivers for referrals in most cities. DoorDash, on the other hand, has a rather strong referral program. 

How much does a DoorDash driver make with referrals? It depends. Drivers receive bonuses for referring drivers who made a requisite number of deliveries in a given period of time. The bonus amount varies, based on the offers DoorDash makes at different times. Most likely, these would be based on the company’s need to attract new drivers. 

We won’t drill down into regional data here, but it’s true that historically, DoorDash and Grubhub each dominated markets in different areas of the country. Yet, in the last year, DoorDash has overtaken Grubhub just about everywhere. According to this article from Visual Capitalist about which companies dominate the food delivery business, DoorDash commanded 53% of the food delivery business in 2021, while Grubhub had just 21% of market share that year. Industry specialists credit an aggressive marketing strategy and superior technology for DoorDash’s dominance.

This difference, in how much of the market each company has, can hold different meanings for drivers. You may want to drive for DoorDash because it’s the biggest company, but there might be less competition in your market area if you were to drive for Grubhub instead. Do some digging, and use the Gridwise features Where to Drive and When to Drive to see which app is making more money for drivers in your area.

Now that we’ve found out some things about the financial factors, let’s look at other considerations to keep in mind when you decide whether Grubhub or DoorDash is the best app for you.

Grubhub vs Doordash: Which company makes it easier?

While it’s good to discover the answer to “How much does Doordash pay an hour?” and to find out all the facts about Grubhub driver earnings, there’s more to the story. For starters, it’s important to know exactly how to become a DoorDash driver and learn about the ins and outs of how to become a Grubhub driver.

What are Grubhub requirements for their partners (aka drivers):

  • a “people person”
  • a positive attitude
  • excellent communication skills
  • punctuality
  • age 18 or older, and 21 or older in Las Vegas
  • ownership of an iPhone with iOS 11 or higher, or Android with 5.0 or higher
  • data plan
  • checking account for direct deposit
  • clean criminal and driving records
  • for car delivery: valid driver’s license (2 years or more if 19 years or older; 1 year or more if 28 years or older), plus auto insurance
  • for bicycle delivery: valid state ID, driver’s license, or US or global passport

What does Doordash require for their dashers (aka drivers):

  • proof of being 18 years of age or older
  • an iPhone or Android phone (preferably not one that has been “jailbroken” or “rooted”)
  • valid domestic driver’s license
  • auto insurance (if using a car)
  • bicycle, motorcycle, or scooter in certain cities
  • clean driving and criminal records

It seems that DoorDash is somewhat less selective than Grubhub, at least at first glance. Let’s look at how to sign up with each of them to get more insight.

How to sign up to be a Grubhub driver

For Grubhub, you can apply through the website on your computer or a mobile device. While you’re waiting for the company to confirm that you meet the basic requirements, including passing the background check, there are one or two more steps.

First, you’ll download the app. There’s no interview process to determine if you’re a “people person” or have a positive attitude, but you will be asked to undergo an online onboarding process that teaches you how to use the app, how to treat customers, and how to be as efficient as possible about making deliveries.

Once you prove you’ve completed the videos, and have been fully approved, you will then wait for your official GrubHub insulated bag and Grubhub driver card to arrive in the mail. 

How to sign up to be a Doordash driver

DoorDash also offers the ability to sign up through the website. Once you sign up, you can download the Dasher app and wait for your application to be processed. Your wait might seem less excruciating if you complete the onboarding videos in the meantime. Similar to the videos presented by Grubhub, these will give you the information you need to be a successful Dasher. Once you’re approved, DoorDash will send along your thermal delivery bag and your Dasher Red Card. 

Acceptance times vary depending on the speed of the background check process. Usually you can anticipate approval within a week to ten days. That’s pretty much all you need to get started, but if you want to be successful, there are some more measures you’ll need to take.

Gearing up as you get going

We mentioned that the companies provide you with a thermal bag for carrying food, but we’d be lying if we told you that’s all you need. That little bag won’t hold much. It won’t prevent spills, either. If you want to do this job right, you’re probably going to find that you need more equipment. This can include

  • extra insulated bags
  • beverage holders
  • crates or boxes to prevent spills
  • extra napkins and condiments
  • a flashlight or headlamp
  • safety equipment for your vehicle
  • your own food and beverages so you don’t go hungry and can stay hydrated

While much of this gear isn’t exactly essential, it can certainly help to raise your level of professionalism. It’s hard to get good ratings from customers if food spills out the side of a container, or a plastic bag splits from the weight and wetness of an upset cola drink. It’s also wise to protect your own vehicle from damage. Food and beverage spills can create unintended petri dishes where bacteria and mold can fester—not to mention unpleasant odors!

If you’re serious about delivery driving with DoorDash or Grubhub, getting the right equipment is crucial. Read this Gridwise post for suggestions that will help get you geared up right.

Business strategy: how to make money with DoorDash and Grubhub

Once you have signed up with your app of choice, have been approved, and have the right equipment, you’ll need to create a winning strategy. Delivery driving isn’t getting any easier in 2022. While business is still brisk, there’s more competition, and the costs of running a gig driving business are higher than ever.

That’s why you can’t just “play at” being a delivery driver. You need to treat your driving gig for what it is: your source of income, and—a business! Here are some things you need to do.

  1. Keep your driving earnings separate from your personal accounts. 

It’s always smart to separate your business income from your personal assets. Having an LLC does that for you. If you’re shy of the red tape that you think starting an LLC might entail, don’t worry. There’s a service that cuts right through it all. Nearside Sprout offers an efficient, easy, and inexpensive way to set up a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) that you can use to minimize tax exposure and liability. 

With Nearside Sprout, all you have to do is fill out a simple form. From there, all the mind-numbing paperwork will be taken care of, and you’ll have a real, no kidding, business entity of your very own. Sign up with Nearside Sprout and get real about your business.

  1. Decide when and how much you’ll work.

Will you work just a few hours a week, or full time? With both Grubhub and DoorDash, you can either choose blocks of time, or make yourself available for deliveries on the spur of the moment. Your earnings will reflect how much you work, of course. The flexibility of delivery driving affords you the chance to choose work patterns that fit your lifestyle, which is a huge advantage. No matter how much you choose to work, though, you’ll need to manage your earnings and maximize them, so that you can make the most money in the least amount of time.

  1. Track your miles and analyze your earnings.

To be successful at any business, you need to know how much you’re making in a given period of time. Delivery driving is different from a job that gives you hourly wages. Rates vary as do the number of trips you might make on a given shift. To see how much you need to drive to reach your goals, you need to track your earnings.

screenshot of the gridwise app showing the earnings expenses and mileage tracker

Gridwise makes this supremely easy. All you have to do is link your app to Gridwise, and your earnings will be seamlessly and confidentially recorded. You can see your earning patterns graphically, and literally get the full picture of your success for any time period you choose.

Gridwise is also the best DoorDash or Grubhub mileage tracker you can get, and it’s free! Simply log in to Gridwise when you go on a shift, and you’ll know the number of miles, so you have a record of your working miles to deduct from your taxes.

Whether you do DoorDash or Grubhub, make sure you drive with the best rideshare and delivery driver assistant app.

Download the free Gridwise app now!

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