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Postmates Driver Review: Pay Structure, Requirements & More

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WANT TO EARN EXTRA MONEY?

Working a part-time job is crucial for many people. Some full-time employees seek part-time gigs to make ends meet. Students and parents may not have the availability to work full-time. Fortunately, some modern part-time jobs offer flexibility, good income, and freedom.

One popular example is delivery driving for Postmates.

Postmates delivery drivers work part-time hours whenever they want. There are no minimum or maximum hours that drivers have to work. They simply turn on the Postmates driver app to accept delivery orders.

This flexibility is ideal for many people who need a solid part-time gig. Read our Postmates driver review to see if it’s a good fit for you.

About Postmates

Founded in 2011, Postmates is an online service that connects customers with local delivery drivers. These couriers are hired as independent contractors by Postmates. They pick up food and other goods for customers at local restaurants and merchants. Customers receive these deliveries within an hour.

Postmate services are available in 550 U.S. cities and accessible to 60% of the country. They process more than 3.5 million orders per month. The majority of orders made by customers are for restaurants and grocery stores. Postmates has been featured in press outlets including Yahoo Finance, Fortune, CNBC, and Hollywood Reporter.

Postmates Driver Pros And Cons

Google has over 800,000 results for ‘Postmate driver reviews’, so there’s tons of feedback to sort through. I checked out dozens of websites to read what Postmate drivers had to say. There were a lot of common pros and cons throughout these reviews. Below you’ll find a list of the popular pros and cons from Postmate drivers:

Pros

  • Your work hours are 100% flexible.
  • The driver app is user-friendly.
  • You can make quick cash with instant and weekly payouts.
  • There are many bonus opportunities for more money.
  • You keep 100% of the tips you earn.
  • The driver eligibility requirements are easy to meet.
  • You get to ‘be your own boss’.
  • You can take breaks or stop work whenever you want.
  • You don’t have to follow a normal part-time job schedule.
  • You may make a lot of extra money by working weekend nights.
  • The pay-per-delivery formula is easy to understand.

Cons

  • You typically can’t earn a full-time income.
  • You are not paid a set hourly wage.
  • You experience extra wear and tear on your vehicle.
  • You may deal with traffic and difficult travel routes.
  • There are no traditional job benefits.
  • You may not always get tipped by customers.
  • You rely on tips to make a higher income.
  • You spend more money on fuel.  
  • There may be little to no orders available sometimes.
  • It can be difficult to contact Postmates support.
  • Customers can cancel deliveries.
  • You may have difficulty finding parking spots.
  • You may experience long wait in between deliveries.
  • Your driver account is deactivated if you fall below a 4.7-star rating.

Overall, this feedback is very similar to many similar delivery driver jobs. Most drivers confidently say you can earn part-time income. You are totally in control of your schedule, so you can work a lot or a little. Postmates offers several bonuses that allow you to boost your earnings.

The list of cons mostly relates to the risks of being a Postmates driver. There’s no guaranteed hourly pay, and some days there might not be work available. Some people prefer making a set amount, so this job isn’t ideal for them. All jobs like this have similar risks, but they come with freedom and flexibility.

If you want to work a 100% flexible schedule and be your boss, consider becoming a Postmates driver. It’s very possible to earn the income you’d get at a traditional part-time job. Just make sure to understand the pay structure ahead of time. Below you’ll find lots of tips to boost your earnings, too.

Postmates Driver Qualifications

To become a Postmates delivery driver, you’ll need to meet the company’s requirements. The good news is that these requirements are pretty easy to meet. Below you’ll find a list of them from the Postmates Help Center and other resources.

  • You must be 18 years or older.
  • You must have access to an insured vehicle. Vehicles you can use include cars, vans, trucks, and even bicycles in some areas.
  • You must have a valid U.S. driver’s license.
  • You must pass a background check. The background check covers any criminal history and your record with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
  • You must own an Android or iPhone. You need a smartphone to use the Fleet app; this is the portal for Postmates drivers.
  • You must have valid insurance. This means you need auto insurance with your name on the insurance policy.

These requirements are very basic compared to other independent driving jobs. You just need to have a proper vehicle, insurance, and identification. You’ll know whether or not you passed the background check very quickly. Then you can move forward and become a Postmates driver.

How To Become A Postmates Driver

If you meet the qualifications above, go ahead and submit your Postmates driver application. The whole process is pretty simple and quick. Postmates outlines each step on their website. This is a summary of each step:

  1. Go to the Postmates website. At the bottom of this page, find and click the Join The Fleet link.
  2. Create an account using your e-mail address and a chosen password.
  3. Enter some basic details about yourself. You’ll be asked to provide your full name, date of birth, phone number, location, type of smartphone, your vehicle type, and a referral code if you’re using one.
  4. Enter your current home address. Postmates will mail your welcome kit to the address you provide.
  5. Complete the Fleet Agreement. The Fleet Agreement is the Postmates terms and conditions for delivery drivers.
  6. Consent to and pass the background check.
  7. Upload a profile photo.
  8. Log into your dashboard to set up direct deposit.
  9. Activate your Postmates Prepaid Card. This card is included in your Postmates welcome kit.
  10. Download the Fleet app to accept your first delivery. There is a link to the Fleet app available when you log into your Postmates account.

You’re all set to accept your first delivery order! Once you provide the info above, you’ll be accepted within 1-3 business days. Use this time to review the tips for Postmates drivers featured later on in this review.

How Much Do Postmates Drivers Make?

There isn’t a clear-cut answer to the question above. Postmate driver pay is based on many different things. First, Postmates uses a formula to determine driver pay per delivery. The formula has a few factors to it, and the rates vary in each city. This is the general calculation used:

  • X per pickup + X per drop off + X per minute waited at pickup location + X per mile for the distance between pickup and drop off locations

The formula does not include tips from customers or Blitz bonuses. Drivers keep 100% of the tips they get from customers. You can find the formula for your city in the Postmates Fleet Help Center. Below are a few examples from different cities. This gives you a look at how rates can vary:

  • Atlanta – $1.10 per pickup + $1.10 per drop off + $0.09 per minute waited at pickup + $0.66 per mile between pickup and drop-off locations
  • Boston – $1.12 per pickup + $1.12 per drop off + $0.10 per minute waited at pickup + $1.53 per mile between pickup and drop-off locations
  • Houston – $0.95 per pickup + $0.95 per drop off + $0.10 per minute waited at pickup + $0.71 per mile between pickup and drop-off locations
  • Kansas City – $1.00 per pickup + $1.00 per drop off + $0.10 per minute waited at pickup + $0.80 per mile between pickup and drop-off locations

To make things a bit more clear, I’ve come up with a scenario delivery for each city above. In this scenario, you spend 10 minutes at a pickup location. You also drive 5 miles between a pickup and drop off location. This is how much you would earn for base pay in each city:

  • In Atlanta, you would earn a base pay of $6.40 per delivery.
  • In Boston, you would earn a base pay of $10.89 per delivery.
  • In Houston, you would earn a base pay of $6.45 per delivery.
  • In Kansas City, you would earn a base pay of $7.00 per delivery.

The scenario above doesn’t include any tips or bonuses you’d get. Still, it makes it clear that earnings vary greatly in each city. The earning amounts below are based on reports from current and former Postmate delivery drivers. These reports come from all over the country.

  • Indeed.com shows that Postmates drivers earn an average of $24.61 per hour total pay. This hourly rate is higher than other reports, so it likely includes tips and bonuses.
  • Glassdoor.com shows that Postmates drivers earn an average of $11 per hour base pay. This means tips are not included in the hourly average.
  • Postmates drivers on several Reddit threads report earning anywhere between $10 to $16 per hour. Drivers didn’t indicate whether this includes tips and bonuses.
  • Postmates co-founder and CEO states that drivers earn a median average of $19 per hour.
  • The Rideshare Guy reported earning $12.97 per hour as a Postmates driver. This was based on one evening of work.
  • Rideshare Driver reports that Postmates drivers can usually earn between $8 to $15 per hour. It’s unclear if tips are included in this amount.

As you can see, these reports show a wide range of hourly earnings. Adding up each hourly rate equals a mean rate of $14.75 per hour. This seems pretty realistic based on the multiple reviews I’ve read.

How Does Postmates Pay?

Postmates offers two payment options. You can get instant deposits to your debit card. When you request an instant deposit, you’ll typically receive your earnings within 15 to 30 minutes.

There is a $0.50 fee per cash out when you use instant deposit. You can enable instant deposits in the Fleet app in the settings section.

Direct deposits are made weekly for any earnings you don’t withdraw via instant deposit. You get paid for any deliveries you completed Monday through Sunday during the previous week.

Most banks take about 24 to 72 hours to process direct deposits. This means you’ll usually receive your earnings on Wednesday or Thursday.

Top Tips For Postmates Drivers

Bonuses aren’t the only way to make more money as a Postmates driver. Current and former delivery drivers have posted many helpful tips online. These recommendations can make it easier to work for Postmates. You may be able to boost your earnings with them, too. Consider the suggestions below:

  • Keep food in the best possible condition. Make sure your Postmates delivery bag is always clean. Try to keep hot and cold foods separate. Many drivers suggest buying a cheap ice box for delivering beverages and other cold food items.
  • Buy a smartphone mount for your vehicle. Mounting your phone on your vehicle’s dashboard is a game changer. It allows you to view orders easily while driving safely. Phone mounts are pretty affordable and worth every penny.
  • Grab extra condiments and utensils for customers. Most restaurants have condiment bars with salt, pepper, ketchup, plastic utensils, and so on. Make sure to grab a variety of items for every delivery order. Many restaurants also have mints, so get a handful to give your customers.
  • Make sure to interact with your customers. Your only responsibility is to drop off food but always make an effort to be friendly. Greet your customers and ask them how they’re doing. Let them know you grabbed extra salsa or dipping sauces. Keeping it brief but sociable is your best bet.
  • Communicate any delivery delays to your customers. You’re bound to run into extra traffic or road work. This can throw off your delivery ETA, so make sure to let your customers know. Doing so allows customers to know why you’re running late instead of assuming it’s your fault.
  • Choose your work hours strategically to earn more. There will likely be more deliveries available on Friday and Saturday night. Areas with lots of businesses may place lunch orders during weekdays. Think about your delivery area to figure out the best times to work. This pretty much guarantees you’ll get as many orders as possible.
  • Keep your own work tools in your vehicle. Your car is pretty much your work office, so it should always be stocked with supplies. Have a car phone charger on hands at all times. Store water bottles and shelf-stable snacks for down times. Fill a grocery bag with extra napkins and plastic utensils. These little things can make delivering go as smoothly as possible.
  • Use the Fleet app to find the hottest delivery areas. The delivery driver app shows you where the most deliveries are. Stay as close to this area as possible while you’re working. You’ll get access to as many deliveries as possible, so you’ll definitely earn more cash.
  • Minimize driving whenever you can. There’s no reason to drive around in between delivery orders. Park your car in safe and well-lit areas to save fuel. Doing so will also cut down on your vehicle’s gradual wear and tear.
  • Always give customers their restaurant receipts. It’s unclear why, but many drivers say they earn more tips when giving customers their receipts. It’s a simple idea that may benefit you, so make sure to do this. You can ask a restaurant to print a receipt if they don’t automatically give them to you.
  • Keep track of how much money you’re earning. There are a few reasons why you should do this. First, it can help you find patterns where you’re earning the most money. You’ll also be able to determine how much money you’re making per hour. Lastly, you can determine how much fuel you’re using versus how much you’re paying for it.
  • Learn about taxes for independent contractors. Postmates delivery drivers are considered independent contractors. Different tax rules apply to this job because taxes are not automatically deducted from your earnings. Read the IRS page for independent contractors to find helpful information.

Final Thoughts

Postmates is an easy way to make extra money without the hassles of a regular part-time job. You get total flexibility to work whenever you want. This is ideal for many people who need to supplement their income. You can even work multiple driving jobs at once. Read these posts for some great examples:

If Postmates sounds right for you, start the signup process today. You’ll quickly be able to make money delivering food whenever you want.

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One Response

  1. Postmates user May 20, 2019

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