Delivery driving is a hustle, so if you’re going to work hard, you’ll want to choose the right service to drive for.
In this blog post, we’ll review companies you’ve heard of before and introduce you to some that might be new to you. You’ll get detailed information about the best delivery driver apps and develop insight that lets you choose the right one for you. We’ll check out
- what a good food delivery company looks like
- how well the top companies “deliver”
- ways to pump up your income
What a good food delivery company looks like
What makes delivery driver apps worth working for? That depends. Some let you have full flexibility, while others force you to set your hours but offer predictable income. Some will keep you crazy-busy, while others will send you fewer but more profitable orders. Let’s look at these and other features that food delivery companies offer drivers, creating a fuller picture of what a good food delivery company looks like.
- Popularity: How well-known is the company? How many drivers do they already have? There might be a lot of orders going through your company’s app, but if there are already too many drivers, you might not get as many as you need to make enough money.
- Flexibility: If you drive for other companies or need a more flexible schedule, this could affect your choice. Alternatively, you may prefer a routine, so less flexibility may work for you.
- App performance: There’s probably nothing worse than working for a company with a substandard app. You want dependability, accuracy, and ease when dealing with your app.
- Job expectations: It pays to know the exact duties you’ll be expected to perform given a certain company’s requirements. Is there shopping involved, for example, or is it just a grab, go, and deliver kind of job?
- Earnings: Your bottom line can be a big factor when determining whether a company is viable. But its also not everything.
- Bonuses and perks: You’ll want to know what kinds of bonuses and perks await you when you choose to drive with a particular food delivery app.
- Ease of signup: Not many drivers want to jump through hoops just to be able to drive for a certain company, but working with a selective one can have its advantages. Recognizing that its reputation rests on the safety and reliability of its workers is a good quality for a company to have. All the companies have requirements for age, driver’s license and/or state ID, insurance, and vehicles. And of course, you will have to pass a criminal and DMV background check, at minimum, to work as a delivery driver.
A note for newbies: If you’re just starting your delivery driving gig, you’ll want to know about how to get signed up, what equipment you might need, and how to maximize earnings. This Gridwise blog post about DoorDash basics will be a big help.
Also, we’re focusing on major/well known companies in this article, so if you don’t see your service listed, it’s not because we don’t think it’s worth the hustle!
We cover a lot, so here’s a list of the companies reviewed in this post:
How well the top companies “deliver”
Keep in mind, as you read about each delivery driver app, that you might have your own preferences and priorities. Here we hope to offer objective information that will help you to determine which company you, the driver, think is the best food delivery app.
By clicking on the company name at the top of each evaluation, you can visit the sign-up page for the driver app of your choice.
- Popularity: You’d have to live under a rock to avoid knowing about DoorDash. It is widely known, and well-liked. The downside of there are many drivers, or “Dashers,” already signed up, so the waiting list could be long.
- Flexibility: DoorDash makes it possible to schedule blocks of time to deliver, or, if there’s enough demand, to turn on the app whenever you feel like dashing for dollars. Those who schedule blocks will be prioritized when it comes to getting requests for orders. Drivers who earn Top Dasher status can decide to dash at any time, 24/7.
- App performance: The Dasher app and the DoorDash website are reliable and easy to navigate. You can find the answer to just about any question you might have through these resources.
- Job expectations: Dashers mainly pick up meals and deliver them to customers, but there are times when shopping is involved. This might consist of picking up some items at a convenience or specialty store.
- Earnings: DoorDash isn’t the highest-paying delivery app, but its consistency in requesting orders might make up for it. According to Gridwise figures cited in this blog post, Dashers earn about $15.00 per hour.
- Bonuses and perks: Peak Pay and Challenges incentivize drivers to hustle a little harder and earn more. Further deals and discounts are available through the DoorDash Perks and Rewards Program.
- Ease of signup: Becoming a Dasher is relatively easy, provided there aren’t too many drivers in your area. There are occasions when waiting lists delay your official acceptance, but it’s rare that DoorDash will totally turn away qualified drivers. To get the full story on signing up for DoorDash, read this Gridwise post.
|Consistent and busy due to popularity
|Work could be restricted to scheduling blocks
|App and website are easy to use and comprehensive
|Might get placed on a waiting list before being onboarded due to its popularity
|Partnerships with large companies like Walmart
|May have to shop, which may or may not be your preference
- Popularity: Uber Eats’ market share is growing, making it a strong competitor. This means you’ll likely have plenty of deliveries in most areas.
- Flexibility: Uber Eats is flexible. You can switch between rideshare driving and food delivery whenever by using the Uber app.
- App performance: The Uber app is very reliable and easy to use.
- Job expectations: Most of the time, Uber Eats drivers pick up restaurant food orders and deliver them to customers. There will also be orders from convenience stores and drug stores from time to time.
- Earnings: In 2022, Gridwise figures show Uber Eats drivers earn about $16 per hour, on average.
- Bonuses and perks: There’s extra pay to be had for delivering at busy times and meeting the criteria of promotions. A new Uber Eats Pro program will offer many of the same perks Uber rideshare drivers receive.
- Ease of signup: Becoming an Uber Eats delivery driver is fairly simple and easy to do. This Gridwise post offers a detailed description of what it takes to drive for Uber Eats.
|Uber Eats Perks
|Uber Eats Considerations
|Established company with further growth potential
|Occasional shopping at convenience spots and drug stores can take a lot of time
|Good pay and very flexible hours along with perks and bonuses
|Orders can be on the small side
|Ability to switch between delivery and rideshare, if you’re qualified and experienced
- Popularity: Despite some strong competition, it’s still rather popular, especially with restaurants. Grubhub is seen as a more customer-service oriented operation than other delivery companies.
- Flexibility: Grubhub drivers usually will schedule blocks, but it’s also possible to toggle on a “deliver anytime” option within the app, depending on the volume of orders coming in during a given period.
- App performance: The Grubhub app is slick, and the website is comprehensive.
- Job expectations: Grubhub drivers work mainly with restaurants, but there are convenience store orders that make shopping a possibility. Grubhub even has its own convenience portal called Grubhub Goods, where customers can place orders for these items.
- Earnings: Gridwise figures show Grubhub driver earnings to be on a par with DoorDash, at an average of $15.50 per hour. Other reports cite Grubhub as being the best paying food delivery app, with earnings as high as $16.70 per hour.
- Bonuses and perks: Grubhub has opportunities to earn more through Missions, which challenge drivers to complete a set number of deliveries in a given time period, along with special offers such as occasional sweepstakes. Read more about how Grubhub drivers earn extras on the company’s website.
- Ease of signup: Grubhub has requirements for drivers that go beyond their age and vehicular qualifications. The company chooses drivers based on their potential for successfully dealing with people. Read more about Grubhub’s specific requirements in this Gridwise post.
|Extra requirements to qualify to drive that are based on people skills
|Diversification through Grubhub Goods portals
Note: to drive for Caviar, you must sign up for the driver app for DoorDash first.
- Popularity: Caviar is a subsidiary of DoorDash, so you can probably count on getting a lot of orders from one or both of them once you are onboarded. Driving for Caviar means delivering orders from four- and five-star restaurants, so you’ll need to live in an area where fancy eating places abound to get Caviar orders. Usually, this means being located in or around major urban centers.
- Flexibility: Drivers can work whenever they want by simply turning on the app, or choose hours they wish to be available. Remember, the best and maybe the only times to work will be when people order high-end meals, namely lunch and dinner hours.
- App performance: Caviar orders are handled through the DoorDash app, which is a very high-performance interface for both drivers and customers.
- Job expectations: Caviar drivers pick up from restaurants and deliver prepared meals. They can use a car, bike, or scooter, or walk to deliver in selected areas.
- Earnings: Drivers get a commission of every delivery and get to keep all their tips. As the orders will total up to far more than the average burger, fries, and a soda, Caviar could rank along with Postmates as the best paying food delivery app. Reports on Caviar earnings range from $16–$25 per hour, according to Gigworker.
- Bonuses and perks: There is a referral program and bonuses for working at peak hours. Milestone incentives might offer an extra $150 for completing a given number of assignments in a month, or $5 extra for delivering in certain areas at certain times.
- Ease of signup: Working as a Caviar courier is not an entry level job. The company requires at least two years’ experience as a rideshare and/or delivery driver before they will even consider you. The rest of the process is straightforward, although there are interview questions you must answer. Gigworker lists the requirements here, and this Gridwise blog post gives you an overview of what it’s like to sign up and work for Caviar.
|High hourly earnings
|Limited availability of orders
|Orders more likely to be clustered at dinner hour (5 pm–9 pm) rather than all day or into the late evening
|More money for fewer deliveries
|Delivery driving experience required
- Popularity: Foxtrot is a high-end delivery company that does business in Washington, D.C., Dallas, and Chicago. Drivers, or “couriers,” as Foxtrot calls them, deliver food, wine, and specialty items offered in their local specialty cafés and markets.
- Flexibility: While no scheduling blocks are involved with this service, you will have to be available often enough to receive orders for delivery.
- Job expectations: Most deliveries are within a 1.2 mile distance from the store, so the requirement to deliver within 30 minutes should not be a big problem, by car or bike.
- Earnings: Earnings are estimated at $12 per hour, but with the high price points of these orders, tips could bump up this figure even more.
- Bonuses and perks: There are perks such as free coffee, milestone delivery incentives, and a growing benefits program. This might include paid time off as well as company discounts at the Foxtrot stores.
- Ease of signup: You will be fully vetted by Foxtrot before being onboarded. They wish to partner with “the best of the best,” which means you’ll have to meet basic requirements and have familiarity with the area where you work. Plus, extraordinary customer service skills are a must if you want to drive for Foxtrot.
|Deliveries are contained in a small area
|Available in just a few areas
|Potential for big tips along with perks, delivery incentives and a benefits program
|You will be vetted to high standards required to become a courier that works with “the best”
Note: to sign up for Waitr, ASAP, and Bite Squad, you must use the Delivery Logistics site linked above.
- Popularity: These companies provide a platform for ordering food and getting it delivered to customers who aren’t in large urban centers. Rather than serving, and competing in, the major cities, these companies put their focus on smaller markets. These services operate in the suburbs around Washington, D.C., and in cities like Minneapolis, and various college towns in Florida and Columbus, Ohio.
- Flexibility: These apps allow you to work when you want, without scheduling restrictions.
- App performance: All these services work on the Delivery Logistics app. While this provides a broader platform with more resources, it limits customization for individual services.
- Job expectations: These services all deliver food from local restaurants, with the amount of driving depending on the distances from the restaurants to the customers. In rural areas, this can be considerable.
- Earnings: These companies claim that earnings are as high as $16 per hour, but drivers don’t always agree. Drivers Instant earnings withdrawals are available. This article from sidehustl.com covers more details.
- Bonuses and perks: Tips are common for Waitr drivers, and Delivery Logistics offers all its drivers perks and discounts.
- Ease of signup: Signing up through the Delivery Logistics app is straightforward, and requirements are not overly restrictive.
|Waitr/ASAP/Bite Squad Perks
|Waitr/ASAP/Bite Squad Considerations
|Great for drivers in suburban and rural areas
|Earnings might be lower than some other services
|No vehicle inspections, fast sign up without overly restrictive requirements
|Activity could be limited by the number of restaurants and density of the population served
- Popularity: Gopuff is more than a food delivery service. Its growing popularity and expansion are fueled by a relatively recent infusion of investor capital. Referring to its delivery drivers as “partners,” the company offers its drivers some special advantages.
- Flexibility: You must schedule shifts, and be sure to report to the warehouse on time to be a Gopuff partner.
- App performance: The app allows you to schedule your shifts in advance, manage your earnings, and contact support. The Gopuff app receives high marks from drivers.
- Job expectations: Gopuff customer orders are fulfilled through Gopuff distribution centers, so there is no need to deal with shopping or restaurant staff. Deliveries have time windows for completion which some drivers may or may not find restrictive.
- Earnings: Gopuff is especially popular with drivers because the company passes the fees it collects from customers directly to Gopuff’s drivers—aka partners! That’s right. They don’t have a “take rate” because they don’t take anything from the fees. Gopuff makes money by selling goods directly to their customers. There is also a guaranteed minimum pay for each shift. Gopuff partners make about $15 per hour, plus tips and bonuses.
- Bonuses and perks: There are bonuses for completing extra orders, as well as for delivering during peak hours. Gopuff offers perks and discounts through partnerships with other companies.
- Ease of signup: Requirements are not stringent, but you will have to prove that you know how to operate the software before you can start delivering. Gopuff provides online training and testing through the app. Learn more about Gopuff in this blog post from Gridwise.
|Guaranteed pay and high earnings alongside tips and bonuses
|Short delivery windows could be restrictive
|Direct pickup of deliveries, eliminating the need to deal with restaurants and stores
|Scheduled work times required
- Popularity: There are not many households that don’t get packages from Amazon, so you can be sure that there will always be enough deliveries to serve your local area. Amazon Flex drivers deliver packages and they deliver food, too. Amazon Fresh allows customers to order groceries from Whole Foods, a very popular grocery source indeed. In 2021, Amazon Fresh commanded about 25% market share.
- Flexibility: Despite the name “Flex,” this service requires drivers to schedule shift blocks in most cases. There are “Instant Offers” that come in from time to time, but these are not as lucrative as working a full shift.
- App performance: The Flex App is from Amazon, and for the most part it functions well.
- Job expectations: Flex drivers pick up orders from an Amazon service center, and then drive them to their destinations. Drivers say there are often a lot of items to deliver in a short time frames. . Some good news: Amazon Fresh drivers don’t have to do any shopping. They simply grab up the groceries and go.
- Earnings: Like many companies, Amazon provides a high potential earnings figure to entice more drivers to work for them, saying drivers can make from $18–$25 per hour; Gridwise figures reflect an average rate of $22 per hour. Check out the details in this Gridwise blog post.
- Bonuses and perks: Drivers earn points for being consistent in their performance. The rewards include cash back on purchases, preferred scheduling, and driver discounts. This post from the Gridwise blog will tell you more.
- Ease of signup: It’s easy enough to sign up for Amazon Flex, but you may not get onboarded for some time. Many drivers experience wait times as long as a few weeks before spots become available. Read more about how to become an Amazon Flex driver in this post from Gridwise.
|Amazon Flex Perks
|Amazon Flex Considerations
|High hourly earnings
|Drivers must schedule blocks but occasional “Instant Offers” do arise.
|Popular company with a lot of business
|There could be many deliveries in short windows of time
|Central pickup location
|Few or no tips due to nature of the service
- Popularity: Shipt had only 3% of the grocery delivery market share in 2021, but it’s still growing. Shipt drivers deliver groceries, along with other goods. This company is owned by Target, but it delivers goods from many other stores, including Best Buy, Office Max, Sephora, Bed, Bath & Beyond, and others. If you live in an area that doesn’t have many stores of this nature, this might not be the right app for you.
- Flexibility: Shipt offers their shoppers a great deal of flexibility. Shoppers accept orders and deliver them within a promised time frame, and do not have to work in scheduled blocks.
- App performance: The Shipt app offers store navigation, which helps to make shopping easier and less time consuming.
- Job expectations: Shipt shoppers wear company provided Shipt T-shirts. These help to identify you as a Shipt shopper as you accept orders, go to the store to shop for the items, and deliver them to the customer. Read this Gridwise post to find out more about what it takes to be a Shipt shopper.
- Earnings: Shipt shoppers are paid well, earning about $18.15 per hour, according to Gridwise figures.
- Bonuses and Perks: Shipt offers comparatively high bonuses to shoppers who rise to challenges or work during peak hours.
- Ease of signup: The hardest part of qualifying to shop for Shipt might be the required ability to lift 45 pounds. Apart from that, the requirements are rather reasonable. Read more about Shipt shopping, including incisive strategies, in this Gridwise blog post.
|Requirement to lift heavier packages Heavy shopping and a need to master store navigation through the app
|Flexibility lets you shop when you are available
|If you want to operate from an area without many of it’s partner stores, this may not be the right service for you
- Popularity: Instacart has the grocery delivery market pretty well sewn up, holding a 63% share in 2021. This service delivers goods from more stores than we can count. Check out the full range of companies which have partnered with Instacart on their website.
- Flexibility: You can work as a delivery driver, a driver-shopper, or an in-store shopper. Drivers schedule blocks and receive orders within the time frames they have selected.
- App performance: The Instacart app is extremely sophisticated, and includes software that maps out the floor plans of stores where shoppers are sent.
- Job expectations: The role of driver-shopper requires you to go to the store or stores indicated by the order, shop for the items, use your Instacart card to pay, and deliver the goods to the customer. Read more about this and the other potential ways to work for Instacart in this Gridwise blog post.
- Earnings: Gridwise data show that Instacart shoppers earn about $15–$16 per hour. This is before tips, which are usually rather generous. Instacart provides reminders for customers to tip the shopper for a job well done.
- Bonuses and perks: Much like Uber Pro, Instacart’s perks program, known as Cart Star, offers top drivers priority scheduling, and other useful offers such as $1 per hour or $10 per day childcare or pet care through a partnership with care.com. Bonuses are available for extraordinary performance as well as working during peak times.
- Ease of signup: Signing up with Instacart is not very difficult, but the requirements will vary according to which of the three roles you choose to pursue. Check out this Gridwise post for more details on signing up with Instacart.
|Seemingly endless earning possibilities by shopping for and delivering goods
|Shopping and delivering can be an intense hustle in tight time windows
|The leading company in grocery delivery is bound to be in business for some time to come
|Instacart’s popularity could cause competition among drivers, especially in densely populated areas
Now armed with the basic facts about these apps, you can choose the one that’s right for you. If you’re going to hustle to be a food delivery driver, make sure you choose a company that’s compatible with your lifestyle, available in your area, and likely to pay you well. You can always add to your basic earnings, of course, if you take your driving seriously and treat it like what it is: your business.
Ways to pump up your income
We’ve already mentioned bonuses, perks, and driving during peak times to increase earnings with these delivery apps, but these suggestions are not the only things that will help you earn more money. Here are further ideas to keep the cash flowing as you delve deeper into food delivery.
- Earn more tips. When you work harder, people notice. From projecting a positive attitude to using the right equipment, there are practices you can employ to entice customers into more lavish tipping. Read this Gridwise blog post to learn more about what it takes to earn bigger tips as a delivery driver.
- Strategize your driving. It’s obvious that orders will be plentiful around meal times, but are there other hours when lots of deliveries are being made? Check out Gridwise features Where to Drive and When to Drive to get real statistics from drivers in your area. You might discover some after school, weekend brunch, and late night snacking hours that get hot in places you might have never imagined.
- Be aware of conditions in your area. Traffic, weather, construction zones, and major events can affect your ability to deliver efficiently. Check Gridwise for information on what’s going on around you.
- Keep more of your earnings. We all know how fast money can flow out of our bank accounts. Driving expenses, especially fuel, are a big drain, along with car maintenance costs and repair bills. Gridwise offers drivers deals and discounts such as Gridwise Gas and Gridwise + ForeverCar that will let you hold on to more of the money you make.
- Use a free mileage and earning tracker. Knowing how much you’re making gives you a gauge to measure how close you are to your optimal driving strategy. Sync your delivery driving apps to Gridwise to seamlessly record your earnings. Record your expenses, from fuel to snacks, and use Gridwise’s free mileage tracker available to maximize that essential mileage deduction.
- Multi-app if you need to. Some experienced drivers have found success in working for more than one service. Learn more about the art of multi-apping in this Gridwise post, and find out how to juggle working for more than one app in the course of a day, optimizing your time and maximizing your earnings.
Delivery driving is a hustle, but it becomes far less of a hassle when you choose the right apps to work for and keep yourself informed about how you can make the most of every order you deliver. Gridwise is the best driver app, all-around, no matter how you answer the question “What is the best delivery service to work for?” Gridwise helps you meet your goals for making your job easier, more lucrative, and more enjoyable—so