Postmate fleet review

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Postmates Employee Reviews

Easy but must be Self-Motivated`

Courier (Current Employee) - Las Vegas, NV - September 11, 2021

I got the job right out of high school. This was years ago, approx. 2015 at the latest. Postmates was just a startup at the time and they posted job availability on craigslist back then. I signed up online and they scheduled an "onboarding" for me to attend. I went and was pleasantly surprised to find out I had the job secured and was ready to start later that day. I remember back then, Postmates onlh ran on iOS and not android. So, back then they rented out "work phones" (iPhones) to us for work. I am almost 100% that they don't do it like that anymore.

The job is fun though. No boss. Work whenever you want. This job is perfect if you live in a 24 hour city. I live in Las Vegas so it's busy up until 1 am almost everyday. The pay isn't that good tho. To make as much as a minimum wage job you would need to do approx 5-10 deliveries a day. You get to CHOOSE which deliveries you decide to do. And most importantly, Postmates are independent contractors so they must handle there taxes at the end of the year a little differently. Most likely you will owe the IRS because they don't take your taxes out of your pay automatically like at most jobs. Because you are not an "employee".


No boss, Work on your own schedule, No supervision


low pay, pay for your own auto expenses


Postmates Driver Review – How to Make More Than Average

The first thing you need to know about delivering for Postmates isn’t they aren’t your average takeout service. Postmates is on-demand delivery for anything.

Want a beer at midnight? Postmate it!

Stuck at home with the stomach flu and need crackers and Gatorade? Postmate it!

Hosting a party tonight and realize you’re dangerously low on toilet paper? Postmate it!

Living in the age of on-demand delivery is great for anyone who wants a flexible side hustle. And this Postmates driver review will explain how you can start working for Postmates, how couriers make, and how Postmates stacks up to other side hustles.

Postmates Driver Review: Is delivering for Postmates a great way to earn extra money?

Postmates is a delivery service that was founded in 2011 and prides itself on delivering “anything, anytime, anywhere.” They deliver from more than 500,000 restaurants, grocery, and convenience stores in over 3,500 cities across the United States and Mexico.

If you’re interested in delivering for Postmates, you need to know that when they say you can get anything delivered, they really do mean anything. Here are a few real Postmates orders:

  • Ping pong balls
  • One package of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
  • $1,000 worth of Taco Bell
  • A drum set
  • 1,248 cans of Red Bull

Postmates has also been known for some pretty wild celebrity deliveries. Post Malone spent over $40,000 on Postmates deliveries in just 400 days. Chrissy Tiegen accidentally had 200 limes delivered to her house. Chance the Rapper has used Postmates to order a Big Mac Meal minus the burger, adult coloring books, an iPad mini, and seven PS4 controllers (all separate orders).

While celebrity orders might not be the norm, the point is that people can order pretty much anything through Postmates.

Postmates Delivery App

How to make money with Postmates

Working as a Postmates delivery driver offers some serious flexibility when it comes to making money. You don’t have to schedule your hours in advance, work a certain number of hours each week, or hit certain delivery minimums. You can just open the app and start delivering whenever you want.

Here are the Postmates driver requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have access to an insured vehicle, or a bicycle
  • Valid driver’s license, if you’ll be delivering by car
  • Have a smartphone to download the Postmates Fleet app
  • Pass a Postmates background check

As long as you meet those requirements, you can start to earn extra money delivering for Postmates. You can make deliveries via car, bike, scooter, or on foot. Postmate pay drivers based on the size of the order, distance, and difficulty – I’ll explain more about this further down.

Uber purchased Postmates in July of 2020 so it’s now part of the Uber/UberEats family.

Related: 13 Easy Ways to Make Money Fast in 2021

How to apply and start delivering for Postmates

Signing up to become a Postmates delivery person is a really simple process. Go online and get started at Postmates, then enter your email address and a secure password.

Postmates will ask you for your phone number and address so they can send you a Postmates card that you’ll use to pay for deliveries. You’ll be matched with the delivery location (what Postmates refers to as a market) closest to your address, but you can always change your delivery location if you need to.

Postmates will also ask for your Social Security number and date of birth so they can perform a background check. If you plan on driving for Postmates, which is how you’ll be eligible for the most orders, you’ll also need to enter your driver’s license number and expiration date.

After you’ve filled out your online application, it usually takes between 1 to 3 days for Postmates to verify your account before you can start driving. Postmates will send you a welcome packet, including a prepaid card and delivery bag.

Delivering for Postmates with the app

There are two different Postmates apps — an app for customers placing orders and another one for delivery drivers, called Postmates Fleet. As a courier, Fleet is what you’ll use to accept and fulfill deliveries.

The cool thing about working for Postmates is that you don’t need to schedule your hours in advance. This is different from services like DoorDash and Instacart where you must schedule your hours in advance.

When you are ready to work, you open the app and slide a button to start accepting orders. Delivery requests will pop up in the app, and you click “Accept” to take an order. The app pulls up a map to give you the quickest route to the store or restaurant. The order might already be placed and ready for you, or you may need to place the order yourself or shop for items on a list — you’re paid for any waiting or shopping time.

Postmates mobile app example

If the order was paid for in the app, you’re ready to deliver. Otherwise, you’ll use that prepaid card Postmates sent you in your welcome packet and send the purchaser a picture of the receipt and order total.

Example of the Postmates mobile app giving route information

The app shows you the shortest route to the delivery location, and the purchaser may give specific delivery details, like a gate passcode or instructions to leave delivery outside the back door. Any extra information you need to deliver will be in the app.

And that’s it!

How Postmates drivers are paid

Delivery drivers are paid weekly via direct deposit, and it takes about 2 to 3 days for your payout to show up in your bank account. You can keep track of your earnings for the day or week in the app’s dashboard.

If you want fast cash, you can sign up for Instant Deposit by linking your debit card to the Postmates app and cash out whenever you want. There’s no limit to the number of times you can use it, but there’s a $0.50 fee per Instant Deposit. You also need at least $5 in your Postmates account.

Postmates earnings in the Fleetapp dashboard

Read more at Work Online and Get Paid Instantly (More Than Just Survey Sites!)

How much do Postmates drivers make?

Postmates pays their delivery drivers rates based on pickup, dropoff, minutes spent in-store, and rate per mile. These rates vary by market, but here are some of the current rates in different markets around the U.S.:


Per Pickup

Per Dropoff

Per Minute

Per Mile

Houston, TX





Phoenix, AZ





Denver, CO





Chicago, IL





New York, NY





Nashville, TN





Columbus, OH



Tampa, FL



Seattle, WA





On top of base pay, Postmates couriers also keep 100% of customer tips.

Postmates has a couple more market-specific ways to earn. There are starter guarantees for new drivers, and as long as you complete a certain amount of deliveries in a set amount of time, you earn a bonus. You can also earn payouts for each new person you invite to start driving, as long as they complete a certain number of deliveries in a set amount of time.

Here’s an example of the starter guarantee where I live in Houston, Texas:

Example of Postmates Starter Guarantees

Starter guarantees change based on market demand availability of new delivery jobs. When I first published this article in 2020, the starter guarantee in Houston was $275 for completing 35 deliveries in 14 days.

But how much do Postmates drivers actually make?

Like I said, what you earn depends a lot on where you’re delivering. A Postmates delivery person in a big city will likely make more money because there’s a higher need and a higher level of difficulty, meaning it may be more difficult to get from place to place and restaurants might be busier.

Postmates CEO Bastian Lehman says that during peak hours, drivers have a median pay of $19/hour.

Drivers on Indeed reports earnings from $12.40-$37.40/hour, with an average pay of $21.06/hour. And on Glassdoor, drivers have reported base hourly earnings from $6-$26/hour, with an average base pay of $11.

Keep in mind, there are a couple of factors not mentioned in those figures that can affect your earning potential as a delivery driver:

  • Wear and tear on your car. When you put more miles on your car, that’s more frequent oil changes, new tires, brakes, etc.
  • Time between deliveries. Say one delivery took 20 minutes to make, but you might find yourself waiting 20 minutes before receiving your next order. You’re not getting paid for those 20 minutes, but you are waiting to work.

These are the same things you’ll need to think about if you’re considering rideshare driving or delivering for similar companies.

Read more at Best Side Hustles to Make an Extra $1,000-$2,000 Per Month.

Postmates Driver Alternatives

Like I’ve said a couple of times, Postmates offers serious flexibility. That gives you a better work-life balance if you want to make extra money, and that’s what a lot of Postmates couriers like about it.

However, if you’re not interested in delivering for Postmates, there are tons of other delivery services you can try. Delivering for more than one at a time is a great way to earn even more – it’s what a lot of the most successful drivers do to increase the amount of money they make delivering food.

Here are three other top companies worth checking out:

Postmates driver review – the final word

As long as there are orders in the app, delivering for Postmates offers a flexible schedule if you want to make some extra money. So if you’re looking for work outside the house, it’s an option worth checking out.

The downside is that some drivers find that they make less than expected because of factors like the time between orders and the wear and tear delivering can put on their vehicle. Keep that in mind if you do want to start delivering for Postmates.

And if none of these options do it for you, there are still lots of side hustle ideas. There’s no excuse not to start earning more money, especially if you want to destroy your debt, save more for retirement, fund an epic vacation, or just put more money in the bank.


Are there any Postmates tips and tricks that can increase my pay?

Yes, there are several ways to help you earn more money with Postmates!

If you’re able to deliver during peak pay hours, you’ll find more orders available on the app. The busiest times on Postmates are 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays are also some of the busiest days for drivers.

For ultra busy times, you may find orders with Blitz pricing. These orders have even higher payouts, but not all orders during this period offer Blitz payouts.

Markets sometimes have Hot Spots, which show up in the app like this:

The darker red the area, the more likely it is that you’ll get an order, so you may need to drive to a different location to increase your chances. The best way to find Hot Spots is to check the Fleet app during peak hours.

Postmates also offers a couple of different driver bonuses, and you’ll be notified about these in the app or via email. There are Crushers, which is a payout bonus for completing so many deliveries in a set time. You can also earn a Bonus per Delivery for every order completed in a certain time frame — it can be around $1 to $2 extra per order.

You can also turn on Auto Accept in the Postmates app to automatically take new orders, and this will reduce the amount of time you wait between orders. New orders are automatically added to your route, and you can turn it off or pause it at any time.

Read more at How to Make Money: Top 44 Ideas for 2020.

What happens if a customer cancels a delivery?

Unfortunately, some customer orders can get canceled for any number of reasons. A customer can change their mind, a restaurant might be too busy to take new orders, or have to close unexpectedly.

If the order was canceled when you’re on your way or already at a restaurant or store, you will still receive a small portion of your payment. For orders that have been paid for or in route to be delivered, you’ll receive your full fee. You probably won’t receive a tip, and you can do what you want with the order.

Does Postmates cover tickets, tolls, or other fees related to driving for them?

No. You will be responsible for these costs as an independent contractor.

Can I deliver in other places?

Yes. As long as you have location services turned on for the Fleet App, all you need to do is open it up and find orders. Realistically, you could be traveling and still earn some extra cash with Postmates.

Will I get to keep customer tips?

Yes, Postmates delivery drivers keep 100% of customer tips.

How about working for Postmates and taxes?

As a food delivery person, you are considered an independent contractor, meaning Postmates doesn’t withhold any taxes.

If you make more than $600/year with Postmates, they will send you a 1099-MISC form with your annual earnings. You should still report your earnings to the IRS even if you don’t make $600 with Postmates.

You can write off the mileage on your car, but you’ll need to be tracking that throughout the year. Postmates recommends using the Stride Tax app to track this.

Learn more about tax time at How to Handle Taxes for Your Side Hustle.

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Postmates Driver Review 2021: How Much Can You Earn?

1Available in 60% of the US, delivering for Postmates has become one of the most popular side hustles in today’s gig economy. Our Postmates driver review takes a deep dive into Postmates’ earnings with tips on how to generate more cash.

With more than half a million fleet members, Postmates has become one of the largest on-demand delivery companies in the United States. While mostly known for its food delivery service, Postmates offers on-demand delivery for almost anything.

Want a beer at 1 am? Need a pack of toilet paper? Need a new set of ping pong balls?

Postmates it. It’s fast, easy, and attractively accessible.

The drivers’ side of Postmates

Postmates Fleet

Using Postmates as a courier offers massive convenience, but how does it fare on the driver side? If you’re a serious side hustler, you’ll love Postmate’s flexibility.

There’s no need to schedule your time, hit delivery minimums, or work a certain number of hours. All you need to do is open the app and start delivering whenever you want for as long as you want.

The flexibility to work at your own pace makes Postmates a great money-making medium for anyone with free time (or the lack thereof, as they can work whenever time allows). It doesn’t matter if you have a day job or busy taking care of kids – you can hop onto your bike, deliver groceries, and make money asap.

While flexibility is one of Postmate’s strongest aces, it does come with several drawbacks. The pay isn’t mindblowing, and in some cases, it can be time-consuming.

Our Postmates drivers review offers comprehensive details about how much you’ll get delivering for Postmates using the Fleet app, a list of its pros and cons, and how to get started working as a Postmates courier.

Ready to make money with Postmates? Here’s everything you need to know.

See Related: Uber Eats vs Postmates – What is Better to Make Money?

What is Postmates?

Earn on your own schedule with Postmates

Postmates is a popular food-delivery service that employs a team of freelance drivers, or, as the company calls them, Postmates couriers. These couriers are tasked with delivering a wide array of items to people’s homes or even their offices.

The startup, which has raised $16 million in VC funds, has grown exponentially over the years expanding to cities including Boston, Denver, Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, New York, and Dallas, among others.

How does Postmates work?

Postmates Sign Up

Customers can make orders through the official Postmates website through the Postmate app available on both iOS and Android. Couriers use a separate app called Postmates Fleet, which they use to receive and deliver orders.

The Postmates Fleet app is used by thousands of independent contractors across the United States.

As a Postmates courier, your task is simple: Pick up items from stores or restaurants and deliver them to your customers. You can use any type of insured vehicle to complete your deliveries – this includes pick-up trucks, bicycles, or electric scooters – as long as they are in tip-top shape. You can even deliver on foot in some markets.

Once you accept a request through the Postmates Fleet app, you’ll receive instructions on what to do, where to go, and when you’ll pay the merchant using your very own Postmates prepaid card.

Completing these requests earns you weekly deposits which you can withdraw via your bank account – you can also cash out any time you wish for a small fee.

See Related: 8 Uber Alternatives to Earn Money: Best Apps

How to become a Postmates Fleet driver

Start Earning With Postmates


Thinking about joining the Postmates Fleet? Our Postmates driver review will tell you how. All couriers are required to pass minimal requirements which include the following:

  • You must be 18 years old
  • You mush have a valid driver’s license. If you’re delivering by foot or a bike, a passport will suffice
  • You must be able to pass the Postmates background check. This background check includes a thorough review of your driving record and criminal history
  • You must have a fully-functional smartphone that’s compatible with the Postmates Fleet app

Markets that do not accept walking deliveries and bike deliveries may be required to have a registered vehicle with auto insurance.

Using the Postmates Fleet App

Postmates Fleet App

Our Postmates driver review will not be complete without a comprehensive guide about how to use Postmate’s Fleet app. After being approved by Postmates to work as a courier, you can begin accepting Postmate driver jobs right away using the Postmates Fleet App.

Every time you log in, you’ll be matched with delivery requests from locals who are near you. Do note that these requests are based on your vehicle type; if you’re driving a larger vehicle like a cargo van, you’ll get larger orders.

Those who deliver by bike will most likely get single orders from customers who are located within close proximity.

If you’re interested in the delivery request, you can select “Accept delivery” before the time frame is up.

Couriers get to see a basic map of where they should go to, as well as an indication of Blitz pricing which can multiply your earnings during peak hours. Couriers may also select the auto-accept feature if they want requests to be automatically accepted.

Once you’ve accepted a request, tap on “Navigate” to determine the order location using your preferred navigation app, pick up the order, use your Postmates prepaid card to pay, then navigate to your drop off location. Once the customer has delivered the item, just swipe to complete the delivery.

See Related:15 Top Jobs Like Amazon Flex [Earn Extra Gig Income]

Pros of Postmates fleet

Postmates is a great side hustle for people who value their own time and have limited resources. Our Postmates driver review lists down all the benefits of joining the Postmates fleet.

  1. You don’t need a car

Postmates allows bike-only delivery agents in all of its markets in the United States, allowing anyone to generate income even if they don’t have a vehicle.

Other delivery platforms like Bite Squad or TaskRabbit require you to own a car or know how to drive one.

  1. The pay can be great – depending on where you live

If you live in a high-demand location, Postmates claims that you can make up to $25 an hour, inclusive of tips. This amount isn’t guaranteed, as your pay really depends on a plethora of factors.

The high earning potential, however, is way above other delivery services. Instacart shoppers, for example, only earn $14 an hour including tips.

  1. Delivery fees are influenced by distance

While other platforms base their fees on the size of the order, and not the distance, Postmates accounts for how far you travel to get the delivery done when determining your pay.

This encourages Postmates couriers to accept out-of-the-way jobs.

  1. Rush periods get you paid more

During peak hours, delivery fees may be increased by up to 50%. With Blitz Pricing, couriers are encouraged to work harder.

Cons of Postmates fleet

While there are so many reasons to join Postmates, there are a few drawbacks everyone should know. Our Postmates driver review lists down everything you need to consider.

  1. Postmates Fleet members are not officially employed 

All Postmates couriers are independent contractors, which means that they’re responsible for paying their own expenses like car insurance and fuel, tax liabilities, and expenses associated with illness or injury.

You also won’t get sick days, worker’s compensation, or paid time off.

Here are some safety tips for Postmates Fleet drivers.

Postmates Fleet Driver Safety

  1. You’ll have to cover your own expenses

Postmates couriers will encounter many overhead costs that may eat into their earnings. This is especially true for couriers with cars, as they have to deal with fuel costs, parking fees, vehicle insurance, and wear and tear.

By comparison, other delivery services like BiteSquad cover overhead costs at some point, allowing couriers to keep more of their earnings.

  1. It’s only lucrative in high-demand locations

Postmates is a great side hustle if you live in larger cities in metropolitan areas. If you live in rural areas, you may find it difficult to generate a sizeable income.

How much can you earn driving for Postmates?

How to earn with Postmates

There are a lot of things to consider when discussing how much you can possibly earn from Postmates. Our Postmates driver review lays out all the factors that can influence your pay.

The Postmates Pay Model

Postmates pays you for individual deliveries that you complete.

As of 2020, Postmates calculates a delivery fee based on the following components:

  • Pickup fee
  • Dropoff fee
  • Per-minute waiting at a restaurant/shop
  • Per-mile for the estimated delivery route from restaurant to customer location

Couriers also get to keep 100% of all the tips they collect from customers. The payments you’ll receive varies by market.

Ways to make more money with Postmates

Earning through tips

Postmates customers can tip couriers right through the app, with tips being sent after the deliveries are made.

While customers can tip couriers in person through cash, Postmates likes to keep their transactions cashless so they encourage customers to tip through the app instead.

When tipping in Postmates, customers can select between the default amounts of 10%, 15%, or 20%.

The platform generally holds tips for at least 24 hours before releasing them and in some exceptions, your tips may not show up for a day. In even rarer cases, it can take several weeks before a customer tips you. Our research indicates that customers mostly tip well through Postmates.

Do note that since tips are offered after the delivery, the quality of your customer service can have a direct impact on your tip amount – influencing it positively or negatively.

Bonuses and Incentives

Postmates offers a variety of incentives to encourage more deliveries from couriers. These include:

  • Guaranteed Earnings: Completing a specific number of deliveries within a time period earns you a guaranteed minimum payout
  • Bonus per Delivery: You can earn an additional payout bonus for each delivery accepted within a specific time window and specific zone
  • Crushers:  Completed a specific number of deliveries within a time frame and earn an additional payout bonus
  • Referrals: Each friend you invite to the Postmates Fleet that completes a number of deliveries within a time period earns you a guaranteed amount.

How much you’ll actually earn

The answer to how much you’ll actually get paid can be a tricky one since your income really depends on variables – and most of them are out of your control.

Postmates actually does a good job of informing potential couriers about their potential income with their list of market rates, but factors such as your effort, tips, and local demand will considerably affect this.

Our Postmates driver review discovered that some couriers can generate up to $20-$25 an hour, while others reported profit per hour as low as $10-$15.

As discussed, your pay very much depends on your personal effort.

How many deliveries do you intend to make?

Obviously, those who are able to make more deliveries within a specific time frame earn more, not only because they serve more customers, but because they’re more likely to reach Postmates’ bonuses and incentives.

Tips are another massive wildcard. More affluent areas will obviously have more customers that tip more, so being in a metropolitan city influences your pay significantly.

Your delivery performance also influences the number of tips you receive, so if you’re a bad performer you’re more likely to receive less.

See Related:16 Apps and Sites Like Thumbtack – Find Gig Jobs

Is Postmates driver worth it?

Postmates Couriers

Delivering for Postmates can be worth it – in the right circumstances. In some markets that have a higher market share with a lower ratio of drivers, Postmates can be a primary source of revenue.

In other low performing markets, it can be an option that you can mix with other providers.

In general, Postmates offers a fair way to make money with a system that rewards you based on your effort.

Whether Postmates works for you depends a lot on your location, your approach, and how hard you intend to work.

Related Resources

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Postmates logo


  • Don't Always Need a Car
  • Distance Based Pay
  • Good Delivery Volume
  • Bonus Opportunities


  • Safety as a Contractor
  • Expenses
  • Need Delivery Volume

Filed Under: Make Money

LIMA 2017 International Fleet Review

Signing up to be a food delivery person is a great way to earn extra cash on a flexible schedule. I recently signed up as a Postmates driver and tried out the service myself to see exactly what the process looks like.

In this article, I’ll take a close look at delivering for Postmates including how to get started, how much you can expect to make and additional tips to maximize your earnings.

4 Things to Know Before Delivering for Postmates

If you have a working smartphone and a clear background check, you can sign up to earn money by delivering for Postmates. Similar to DoorDash, GrubHub, UberEats and other food delivery services, Postmates hires freelancers to make deliveries from restaurants. You get paid by the company for each delivery, and you can also make tips.

I signed up to be a Postmates driver in Lexington, Kentucky, to see how much money I could make. After my first 10 hours delivering, I’d made $95.09. Below, I’ll share what I’ve learned so far about delivering for Postmates.

Before you get started, consider these four things to know about delivering for Postmates.

What Is Postmates?

Postmates is a food delivery and takeout service that lets customers order from nearby restaurants. If a customer places an order to be delivered, the nearest delivery person (or “Postmate”) is alerted to pick it up and complete the delivery.

There are two different apps for Postmates including the food delivery app for customers (iOS andAndroid) and the delivery app for freelancers (iOS andAndroid). Both apps are free to download and accounts are free to create. Of course, if you’re interested in delivering for Postmates, you’ll only need the delivery app, calledFleet.

Depending on where you live, Postmate delivery jobs may be available for drivers, bikers and/or walkers. Regardless of how you decide to deliver, you’ll still use the same Fleet app. 

Postmates does business inall 50 states. To see if it’s available in your area before signing up,enter your address online or in the Postmates app.

How Much Do Postmates Drivers Make?

Whether you sign up as Postmates driver, biker or walker, you’ll be able to choose how often you work. Because of the extreme flexibility, earnings vary greatly. 

How much you can make will also depend on where you’re delivering and what time of day you’re working. I’ve been using Postmates in Lexington, Kentucky, and tried to pick up shifts during lunch and dinner. I ended up earning between $8-$12 hourly as a Postmates driver.

Over the course of 10 hours, I averaged around $9.50 hourly and earned a total of $95.09. Below, you can see a breakdown of how much I made per delivery on a couple of the days I drove:

Past deliveries on the Postmates Fleet app

Postmates’ base pay includes a set amount for picking up an order, for dropping off an order, for each minute you wait in-store, and for the total distance you drive. In addition to Postmates pay, earnings also include customer tips. You get to keep 100% of customer tips which, in my experience, were usually added after I completed the delivery.  

Breakdown of earnings from a delivery on Postmates

Above, you can see the rates in my area, but rates vary from one location to the next. To see how much Postmates pays in your area, find your state on the company’s website.

Of course, there are expenses that come with the job if you decide to drive. These expenses include gas and the wear and tear on your vehicle.

You’ll receive a summary email each Friday that includes a breakdown of how much you’ve earned and how many miles you traveled while completing deliveries. That information should help you calculate your true earnings.

Keep in mind that as a freelance delivery person, you’ll need to hold out your own taxes. As a general rule, try to set aside 30% of your earnings for estimated quarterly tax payments.

To Maximize Your Earnings as a Postmate, Follow These Tips: 

  1. Take advantage of incentives. Postmates occasionally offers additional pay in exchange for completing a certain amount of deliveries. For example, when I first signed up, I had the opportunity to earn an additional $200 if I completed 30 deliveries before a certain time and date. Since then, a few incentives have popped offering an additional $60 for completing 15 deliveries by a goal date. Theseincentives may vary by location.
  2. Go to high demand areas if you’re waiting for orders. When you open the app, you’ll seehigh demand areas on the map. These are areas where a lot of orders are being placed. If you’re waiting on orders, hang out near these areas to maximize your chances of getting an assignment. 
  3. Accept multiple deliveries at once. You may have the opportunity to accept“batched” or “chained” deliveries. This is when multiple orders are available from the same or nearby restaurants that are to be dropped off in the same direction. Accepting these deliveries improves your hourly earnings since you’ll be completing more orders.

Keep in mind that your earnings will vary from hour to hour depending on where you live, how you’re delivering (driving, cycling or on foot), when you’re available and whether customers leave a tip.

How Does Postmates Work?

Postmates works by connecting customers to nearby restaurants and freelancers using the Fleet app. As a freelancer, you’ll be expected to use your smartphone to accept and deliver orders. You may also have to use your car, bike or another vehicle, but walking is an option in some locations. 

You’ll earn base pay for each delivery, bonuses when incentive qualifications are met and 100% of the tips that customers leave

If you’re thinking about delivering for Postmates, follow these steps to sign up and start earning money. 

Getting Started

To get started, download the Fleet app foriOS orAndroid. Once you open the app, click “Create Account.” You’ll be asked to enter an email address and a password as well as your phone number, your name, your address, where you plan to deliver and how you plan to deliver (car, bike, etc.)

You’ll also be asked to enter your driver’s license information, social security number and birthdate so the company can do a background check on you. While you’re waiting on your background check to be approved, you can take a profile photo for the app. I got background clearance on the same day I signed up. 

After you’ve completed these steps, your free delivery bag and a prepaid card should be shipped to the address you entered. You’ll get a link so you can track the shipment of your delivery bag and card.

When you get your card, you’ll need to activate it to start taking deliveries. Note that, in some cities, you may not need to use the Postmates card.According to the website, in these instances, your welcome kit will be sent after you complete your first delivery.  

Postmates Welcome Kit including a prepaid card

While I never received a free delivery bag, my card did arrive in the mail eight days after I applied.

Before you get started, you’ll be prompted to set up direct deposit and enter your vehicle information if you plan on driving. Once you’ve completed all of these steps, you’ll be ready to go online and begin accepting orders. 

Taking Deliveries

Once you’ve created an account, your background check has been cleared and you’ve activated your Postmates card, you can log in and start delivering. 

Postmates homescreen

To start accepting deliveries, you’ll need to be in a blue zone (shown in the screenshot above) and click “Go Online.” You can go online or offline at any time without having to schedule your shift in advance. 

When an order is placed near your location, you’ll receive an alert in the app notifying you. You’ll have a limited time to accept or decline the order in the app before it’s given to the next available Postmate. 

Accepting an order on Postmates

Unfortunately, you can’t see many details about the order, such as estimated pay or total distance, before you accept it. You’ll see only the restaurant and delivery destination indicated on the map as a labeled banner and a blue dot, respectively. 

If you do accept the job, you’ll see the address for the restaurant that’s preparing the customer’s order. You can click “Navigate” in the app to open up the map app of your choice. 

Once you’ve arrived at the restaurant, you can click on “Pickup Details” to verify the order is correct. Then you’ll slide the bar across the bottom of the screen to complete the pickup. Once you’ve picked up the order, you’ll see delivery details including the address, customer notes and if a contact-free delivery method is preferred.

What to do after you've picked up an order

When you arrive at the customer’s address, you’ll be able to take a photo of the order, send a text or call from a secure number to let them know you’re dropping it off.

Getting Paid

Once you’ve completed the delivery, the app will immediately begin searching for new assignments. You’ll also see a quick summary of your earnings across the top of the screen.

Earnings before a tip

In my experience, the tip was usually added afterward. You’ll get a notification when a customer adds a tip whether you’re online or not. 


You’ll receive payments via direct deposit to the bank account you listed when signing up.Postmates pays drivers weekly on Mondays for the work completed the previous Monday-Sunday. 

If you don’t want to wait for Monday, you can use your debit card tocash out instantly at any time for a fee of $0.50.

Final Thoughts (Pros & Cons)

Overall, delivering for Postmates can be a great way to earn extra money. While the demand in my particular area isn’t as high as it may be in others, I was still able to earn around $9.50 an hour. 

After trying out Postmates myself, here are the biggest pros and cons I found in freelancing for the company:

  • You can go online at any time
  • Keep 100% of customer tips
  • Incentives make it easy to earn bonus pay
  • Cash out instantly at any time
  • You may be able to drive, bike or walk depending on your location
  • No hourly pay means you could spend a lot of time waiting for orders and not getting paid
  • You can’t see the details, such how many miles you will travel or how much the delivery will make, before you accept an order
  • Because shifts aren’t scheduled, a lot of freelancers may be online at once. This can cause your earnings to be lower than expected, even during rush hours

In my particular area, I was able to earn more on average by delivering with DoorDash. That service’s “Peak Pay” function made it easier to earn more per delivery, and I was able to see more information about each delivery before I decided whether or not to accept it.

For me personally, the DoorDash app was a little easier to use and easier to earn with. Still, I can definitely see the potential in signing up for Postmates. How much you get paid per delivery varies greatly by location, and the incentives can lead to big bonuses. Also, being able to cash out instantly is a big perk.

If you do decide tostart delivering for Postmates, be sure to hold back enough of your earnings to cover your estimatedtax payments. If you make $600 or more in a calendar year, you’ll receive a 1099-MISC form. Even if you don’t earn that much, you’ll still be expected to pay the appropriate taxes. 

Have you ever worked for Postmates or a similar food delivery company? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!

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Fleet review postmate

Postmates Driver Review (and 4 Tips to Make More Money)

When it comes to signing up for one of the many apps that deliver dinner, groceries, or even your dry cleaning, there’s no shortage of companies claiming you’ll make money fast with their services.

Some have an easy application process, offer flexible hours, and can earn you a good amount of money. One of those apps is Postmates.

In this Postmates driver review, you’ll get all the information you need to start and succeed with this food delivery service. 

What Is Postmates?

Postmatesis an on-demand delivery service that’s been around since 2011. Its purpose is to serve anyone needing anything delivered at any time. From Pedialyte for your sick infant to late-night fast food, a Postmates fleet will deliver whatever you need. 

Postmates delivery is available in all 50 states and over 400 cities in the U.S. and Mexico. This means there’s a good chance it’s in your area.

If you’d like to become a Fleet member, there are only three requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Own a smartphone with the Postmates Fleet app downloaded
  • Pass a Postmates background check

There are no vehicle requirements; you can deliver by car, bike, scooter, or even on foot. Postmates sends you the supplies you need to deliver food including a free insulated delivery bag and prepaid card.

Postmates claims that on top of earning money for delivery, you’ll also earn money for miles traveled, time spent waiting to pick-up orders, and how many orders you complete in an hour. And you get to keep 100% of your tips. However, while many drivers report enjoying the flexibility and scheduling autonomy, others feel the pay is too low for the work involved and that the wear and tear on your car isn’t worth it.  

DollarSprout Rating3.5/5 stars

Postmates is an app-based delivery service available in all 50 states and Mexico. Signing up as a driver is a quick and easy process. It's possible to earn good money, but you will need to hustle to do so.

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  • Easy to get started
  • Flexible schedule
  • Instant pay option
  • Keep 100% of tips


  • Low pay
  • Long wait times at restaurants
  • Wear and tear on vehicle

How to Make Money Working for Postmates

If you’re interested in delivering food for Postmates, here’s what you need to know about how to apply, how it works, and how you get paid. 

How to apply for Postmates

You can sign up to be a Postmates courier by visiting the website or mobile app and clicking “Join the Fleet.” You’ll be taken to the application where you’ll create your free account and verify your identity.

Postmates application process

Postmates will need some basic information like your address, phone number, a profile picture, and driver’s license number (if you’re delivering by car). Then you’ll wait for your welcome packet, including the insulated bag and prepaid card, to arrive.

Note, however, some markets do not require a Postmates card. In those instances, you won’t receive your welcome packet until you’ve completed your first delivery order. 

To authorize your background check, you’ll need to provide your Social Security number and date of birth. You’ll also need to activate and link your Postmates prepaid card, upload a selfie, and download the app. Once that’s initiated, you just need to wait for an email with the next steps and instructions.

Once you’ve completed and passed your background check and received your welcome packet, you can start accepting delivery orders. 

Related: 15 Apps to Help You Make Money Delivering Things

Delivering for Postmates: How it works

postmates screenshot with map

Unlike other services, there’s no scheduling function in the Postmates app. You just need to swipe right on the white dot to receive alerts for new delivery requests and tap “Accept” to take the delivery.

You can also sign up for “auto accept” to have the next delivery offer automatically assigned to you.

The Fleet app will show you a map with the quickest route to your destination. When you arrive, the order will usually already be placed and waiting for you, but if you need to place it yourself you’re still paid for the time you wait.

If the order isn’t already paid for, you’ll pay for everything using your prepaid Postmates card. Then take a clear picture of the receipt, enter the total order amount, and deliver it to your awaiting purchaser.

Related: DoorDash Driver Review: How to Make Money Driving for DoorDash

How Postmates pays

Postmates couriers get paid weekly via direct deposit for deliveries made Monday through Sunday of the previous week. Payments typically post by Wednesday or Thursday.

postmates earnings screenshot

If you need your earnings earlier you can enable “Instant Deposit” from the Fleet App and select “Cash Out” to withdraw your earnings at any time.

For each order, Postmates guarantees a minimum payout before tips. There are also incentives and bonuses on top of that for “Blitz” pricing, every minute you wait for an order, and every mile you travel to deliver.

Rates fluctuate based on location, but for most places, the minimum is $4. Base pay for every pickup and drop off is upward of $1.00 each. For every minute you’re waiting for an order, you can add an additional $0.10. Once you leave the restaurant, each mile traveled to the drop off location is roughly an additional $0.60.

Postmates drivers always keep 100% of tips. Once a driver completes a delivery, the customer receives a notification asking them to tip and isn’t able to place another Postmates order until they take action on tipping in their app. It takes at least 24 hours for tips to show up in the Fleet dashboard.

Related: Instacart Shopper Review: Can You Make Money Shopping?

postmates faqs

FAQs to Know Before You Become a Postmates Driver

Although it seems like it’s easy to sign up and start making money as a Postmates delivery driver, there are still a few things you need to know.

How much money can I make working for Postmates?

In general, most Postmates drivers end up earning between $10-20 per hour depending on variables including location, average order size, and time of day. David Hopkins, a Postmates driver in St. Petersburg, FL, works a full-time job but delivers for Postmates as a way to make money before his afternoon shifts.

“Short trips are usually $4 per order. But if it’s a longer trip, it can range maybe from $5 to $8,” Hopkins said.

You can even deliver with Postmates outside of the original city you register in. This can be a great way to earn extra money during downtime on a work trip or while traveling in a different city. 

Related: 5 Ways Postmates Helps Drivers Out-Earn Other Delivery Gigs

Do I have to pay taxes on my Postmates earnings?

As an independent contractor, Postmates doesn’t withhold any taxes from your earnings. That means at tax time, you or a tax professional will have to figure out what you owe. But this could work to your advantage.

Since you’re covering 100% of your own business costs, you can often deduct them on your taxes. This includes things like mileage, tolls, and parking fees. You can also partially deduct items you use both personally and for your Postmates business, like your cell phone or car insurance.

Related: How to Avoid an Unexpected Tax Bill as a Side Hustler or Gig Worker

How can I maximize working for Postmates?

To ensure you make the most delivering for Postmates, there are a few things you can do:

  • Work in hot spots. These are areas in your market that have the best chance of getting delivery requests. You can find them on the Fleet app shaded in orange and red, and the darker the shade, the busier the area. They become visible after you complete your first delivery in a city.
  • Go online during peak hours. Delivery prices tend to increase during what Postmates calls “Blitz” pricing. These times are usually every day from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for lunch orders, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. for dinner orders (this is the busiest time of the day), and any time on the weekend. To ensure you receive orders during Blitz pricing, turn on your notifications. This way, you’ll receive a text when it goes into effect in your area. 
  • Maximize your opportunity for tips. Smiling, saying “thank you,” and using the customer’s name can all impact the size of your tip. When things don’t go as planned, communicate with customers to let them know an item is unavailable or there’s a delay due to traffic. Lack of communication, rudeness, or lateness might mean zero tips, and you definitely don’t want that.
  • Working fast. Postmates offers a “Crushers” bonus, meaning if you complete a certain number of deliveries within a set period of time, you can earn an additional payout bonus.

Hopkins also advises to treat your customers right, get their order right, and accept every order you can get. 

How does Postmates compare to Uber Eats and DoorDash?

While there are similarities among these popular delivery apps, there are also a few differences.

For example, with Uber Eats, a restaurant will always receive the order online. With Postmates, the courier may have to place the order. This means a slightly higher incentive for the Postmates driver who earns about $0.10 per minute of wait time. However, if it happens often enough, it may limit the total number of deliveries a driver can make during their shift.

With DoorDash, drivers must schedule shifts, whereas Postmates drivers can go online and pick up orders at any time.

And finally, drivers report that Postmates is the most tipping friendly of the three, automatically calculating and suggesting a 20% tip within the app.

Is working for Postmates stressful?

Being a Postmates delivery driver (or any gig economy worker) can be demanding. But more often, it’s a fun way to explore your city while making a little extra money.

Hopkins delivers on a scooter and says if you can manage your schedule right, it’s more enjoyable than stressful. “Most of the time it is fun, it just depends on the traffic,” he said. “You get to meet so many new people and I’ve found so many new restaurants that I didn’t know existed.”

Postmates Driver Review in Summary: It’s Worth Your Time

If you’re considering a food delivery service and want to get started ASAP, Postmates should definitely be on your list.

With no extensive orientation, no vehicle requirements, and instant access to “going online,” making money with Postmates is quick and easy compared to the variety of other delivery services out there. 

Be aware, though, that it can be difficult to earn money, especially in oversaturated markets. If that’s the case, try to be efficient with your deliveries. Pick peak times, communicate with your customers, and cluster your deliveries. If you do those things, Postmates could be a great side hustle for you. 

Related: 18 Ways to Make Money Shopping for Others

How MUCH MONEY Can you Make with Postmates --LA Postmates fleet Driver adventure 2

What’s it like to drive for Postmates?

Postmates is a popular app that uses couriers to deliver products to customers. It’s like Uber, but instead of moving people, they move products—including restaurant takeout orders, groceries, and some personal items.

If this sounds like fun to you, then driving for Postmates might just be the side hustle for you. Read on to learn more about how it works and whether or not it’s worth your time.

deliver with postmates

Postmates Driver Review

  • Sign Up Process
  • Earning Potential
  • Ease of Use
  • Gig Availability

Postmates Summary

If you live in an area where Postmates is popular, making local deliveries is a viable way to earn extra money in your spare time. The average Postmates courier earns $19 an hour, but you may be able to improve that by maximizing your tips.

How Does the Postmates Service Work?

Customers can order from a range of things such as food, groceries, and personal items. Then they have those items in an hour.

It’s extremely convenient for the customers, who place orders from their computers or smartphones.

The company started in 2011 and is based out of San Francisco. According to the Postmates press and media page, they:

  • have more than 800 employees
  • serve 3,500 cities
  • have more than 250,000 merchant partners
  • complete 5 million deliveries per month

No question, they’re moving a serious amount of merchandise. Or more accurately, their courier fleet is — which you can be a part of to make extra money.

Would you like a side hustle delivering a bit of happiness to customers—taking them that delicious slice of cheesecake they’ve been craving all day, or the sushi they just haven’t had a chance to break away from work to go get themselves?

Where Is Postmates Available?

Postmates is available in seemingly every city and, as it grows, is making its way to towns. For example, it’s available in Chicago and Joliet, Illinois, but not yet in outlying areas.

The website states that the service is available “anytime, anyplace” … but the following screenshot shows that’s not yet true:

postmates availability

Still, when I looked up options, I was pleasantly surprised at all restaurants available for me to order from. Naturally, the bigger the city you live in, the more likely Postmates has a strong presence there.

How Does Postmates Make Money?

Postmates charges a delivery fee on every order, ranging from $.99 to $9.99. (Typically, the delivery fee is between $3.99 and $9.99.)

The company keeps 20% of the delivery fee, and the driver keeps 80%. Postmates also charges customers a 9% convenience fee on each order, which customers seem happy to pay.

The company has raised over $900 million(!!) from investors to build and market the app. While not yet profitable on the whole, Postmates says they are profitable on a per order basis in 90% of their markets.

How Can You Make Money with Postmates?

It’s free to sign up to be a courier with Postmates, and you earn money completing local deliveries. The best part is that you get paid instantly via direct deposit into your bank account.

That’s really convenient, and you know you will be paid in full and on time, unlike with some other situations, so that relieves some stress that contractors can feel surrounding payment.

You can sign up to deliver here.

Postmates Driver Interview

I sat down with Side Hustle Show listener Clay Franklin of Nashville, Tennessee, to learn about his experience driving for Postmates.

He made $350 making deliveries last month, but called the gig a bit of a “gamble.” You don’t know how much each order will earn you before you take it, and you rely heavily on tips.

Clay also shared:

  • his inspiration for starting with Postmates (and other delivery apps)
  • how to maximize your tips and earnings
  • how the onboarding and delivery process works
  • what sucks about the gig
  • and more

How Much Do Postmates Drivers Make?

An average Postmates delivery fee is around $5. Of that, the driver makes 80%, or roughly $4.

On top of your share of the delivery fee, you also earn tips from customers.

In 2019, the average Postmates courier made around $19 an hour. Naturally, that means some drivers make more and others make less.

(I’ve seen Postmates ads advertising earning potential “up to $27 an hour.”)

It really depends on where you live, so make sure to do the research on your area before you sign up or make any changes to your schedule to accommodate this side hustle.

postmates driver app screenshots

The other thing to consider here is certain times of day — like lunch and dinner — may be busier than others. While some drivers do Postmates “full-time,” I suspect they may have longer periods in between orders in the middle of the day.

Benefits for Postmates Delivery Drivers

Employment benefits is one area that freelancers and other contractors talk about and need to consider carefully. Some traditional jobs still provide benefits, but most contracting situations simply do not.

Postmates may be changing that landscape for its fleet of couriers.

Postmates has begun a Fleet Advisory Board that focuses on benefits for couriers, such as healthcare, safety, and career development. They say:

“We’re committed to empowering our workers and building a platform that works for them. That’s why we created the Fleet Advisory Board (FAB), whose feedback is shaping policies on health care, safety, inclusion, career development, finances, and economic opportunity. We’ve worked closely with fleet members to connect Postmates to free healthcare savings, provide tools to take the stress out of choosing health insurance, and develop options for immediate access to earnings. We’ve helped more than 3,600 Postmates sign up for health, dental, and vision coverage and save hundreds of dollars a month. More than 30,000 fleet members have … claimed more than $5 million in write-offs.”

Not many organizations can say things like that, and is actually a major point of differentiation between Postmates and other delivery apps.

Do Postmates Drivers Get Tips?

Yes! And that’s is a good thing because without tips, you probably wouldn’t even be making minimum wage. With tips, however, you can create a viable side hustle or even a full-time job for yourself.

In certain locations, Postmates drivers are earning up to $25 an hour.

As with any position that involves gratuities, customer service is the key to making good tips. Show up quickly with a smile on your face, and be polite. In a word, be professional.

Postmates Driver Requirements

To begin delivering for Postmates, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be 18 years of age or older.
  • Have a valid driver’s license and an insured car (a bicycle is fine for more urban areas).
  • Have a phone capable of running the Postmates app.
  • Pass a background check.

All in all, it’s pretty easy to become a courier.

Sign Up / Onboarding Process

  • Sign up here.
  • You’ll be prompted to fill in your name and a password.
  • After you’ve created an account, they will send you an application. Fill it out.
  • Then you have to authorize Postmates to do a background check.
  • After that, you’ll set up direct deposit.
  • Then it’s time to activate your Postmates card (a debit card to pay for food that the customers have not paid for before delivery).
  • Once all this is said and done, you wait for further directions.

I did some poking around on various message boards, and the consensus is that the process is easy.

How to Maximize Postmates Earnings

There are many ways you can maximize your earning potential. By making sure you know your city, understanding peak hours, watching your costs, doing multiple deliveries at one time, and accepting tips, you can grow your earning potential.

Be on Time!

Happy customers tip more. They won’t be happy if you’re late. Make sure to schedule your stops so that all orders are on time.

Give Customers their Receipt

Even if they don’t ask for their receipt, give it to them anyway. Let them know that if they have any problems with their order, they’ll need the receipt to fix it. That goes a long way in making sure the customer knows that you care about them and their needs.

Showing that you’re looking out for them can help you earn more tips!

Do More to Make the Customer Smile!

Little things go a long way.

Keep a container in your car for things like ketchup and soy packets, sugar, salt, napkins, straws—anything you think they might need more of. Let them know you have these little bonus items, and ask if they need anything extra.

Keep the Customer in the Loop

A short text to let your customer know you are on your way helps them a lot.

If a mom can say, “Our burgers will be here in five minutes,” she’ll be happy and probably tip more.

Just please don’t text and drive! Do so when you’ve picked up their food.

Postmates drivers might consider adding Gridwise to your arsenal. Gridwise a cool app that helps rideshare and delivery drivers earn 39% more on average.

They do this through automatic mileage tracking, earnings comparisons across platforms, event and weather notifications, airport flight details, and more. These optimizations could mean hundreds of extra dollars a month.

What Sucks About Driving for Postmates?

Lack of Training

The one issue I see over and over again is that there is no real training on the app system for drivers. There was also no training built in on how to manage your time or how to line up your deliveries in a way that helps you get more deliveries done quicker.

In short, the couriers learn by trial and error. If you have trouble organizing your time and tasks, you probably won’t make very much money with Postmates.

You Don’t Know Your Delivery Destination Upfront

The other issue I found when poking around on gig-based message boards is that Postmates doesn’t tell you where the goods are supposed to be delivered until after you accept the gig. That means you have less information to help you decide which deliveries you want to accept.

Potential Lack of Demand

Something else to consider is your market. Simply put, do people in your area use Postmates?

If not, you’ll be left sitting and waiting, and since you get paid by the delivery, this can be a problem. Make sure to ask around to see if people in your area know about and use this service.

(If Postmates isn’t popular, but you still like the idea of doing a delivery side hustle, check out the list of alternatives below.)

When taking on this sort of work, you want to make sure what you earn will be worth the wear and tear on your car and any increased insurance costs. You’ll rack up miles quickly, and your policy may need to be changed.

Car Insurance

You must make sure to keep your insurance current while driving for Postmates. Postmates does not insure their couriers’ cars.

It’s your car, and that responsibility falls on you. Be honest with your insurance company. According to insurance agent and expert Jake Lang, your rates may increase when you notify your insurance company that your vehicle has been put into service as a courier vehicle.

Under some policies, damage is not covered in the event of a collision or other incident involving your vehicle while it contains product or while it is being used for courier purposes. Keeping it secret isn’t advisable, and could be considered insurance fraud.

Gas and Vehicle Maintenance

  • Postmates doesn’t pay for your gas, or maintenance on your car. All of this can get expensive.
  • Make sure to use a fuel-efficient car.
  • Make sure your car is in good working order.

You can, however, write off your mileage on your taxes. Per the IRS you can write off 57.5 cents per mile (2020 deduction rate) on your taxes. If you’re doing a lot of driving, it definitely adds up!

Pro Tip: Use a mileage tracking app like Hurdlr. Hurdlr automatically tracks your mileage, expenses, income streams, and tax deductions in real-time. On average, Hurdlr helps users find $5600 in deductions!

Vehicle Depreciation

Remember, your car’s worth goes down as your rack up the miles.

Income Taxes

As a Postmates courier, you’ll be considered an independent contractor. That means you’ll receive a 1099 form if you earn more than $600 per year from Postmates, and you’ll have to pay taxes on what you earn.

As a rule of thumb, set aside 25% of your earnings for income taxes. You may want to look into your state’s income tax laws as well. Depending on how much you earn, you may need to make quarterly tax payments.

Postmates Alternatives

Obviously, Postmates isn’t the only game in town when it comes to deliveries. In fact, one friend of mine recommended “stacking” several delivery apps to try and get orders going in the same direction to bump up his effective hourly rate.

Here are some Postmates alternatives to consider:

  • DoorDash – According to Indeed, the average driver makes between $10 and $17 an hour. Here’s our full DoorDash driver review.
  • Instacart – Earn $14-18 an hour delivering groceries around town. Here’s our full Instacart shopper review, featuring one side hustler who brought in $10,000 doing this in his first 6 months.
  • Shipt – This is a product delivery / shopping service owned by Target. Drivers can earn up to $22 an hour.
  • Uber Eats – The average driver makes around $10 an hour.
  • GrubHub – The average driver made $12 an hour, according to
  • Amazon Flex – You can earn $18 to $25 an hour delivering Amazon orders, groceries, and restaurant food. Amazon Flex is a little different than the rest because you earn a fixed hourly rate and choose blocks of time to drive.
  • PeaPod – With this grocery delivery service, you can earn $15.36 an hour (national average).
  • Deliv – You can earn up to $22 an hour delivering packages.

Of course, Postmates and other delivery apps aren’t the only way to make extra money. Here are some similarly time-flexible ideas.

Teaching English Online – Services like VIPkid connect you with students in China, and pay up to $20 an hour. This is one you can do from the comfort of your home, without the additional risks and costs, but there are a few more requirements to get started. And instead of doing deliveries in the evening, this usually takes place in the early morning hours because of the time zone differences.

Become a Mobile Notary – Loan signing agents have similar flexibility to Postmates drivers, but have higher earning power. Of course, there’s some upfront investment in education and equipment here.

Reselling on Amazon – Product flipping is nothing new, but this has the potential to be a little more time-leveraged down the road.

Become a Virtual Assistant – Many businesses need administrative help and don’t care if you work from home. Take inventory of your skills and go connect with potential customers.

Postmates Driver Review Summary: Pros and Cons


  • It’s easy to onboard and begin driving.
  • The qualifications are few.
  • You get to set your own schedule.


  • You have to rely on tips.
  • There are additional vehicle-related costs.
  • There is a lack of training for new drivers.
  • Some markets are saturated with drivers, and some markets don’t use the service much.

Delivering for Postmates: Conclusion

If you work as a Postmates courier, you’ll need to keep in mind that the area you live and work in can make or break you in relation so this gig. This is a good side hustle for those who:

  • Enjoy driving.
  • Enjoy making people happy.
  • Have a reliable, fuel-efficient car.
  • Look to make money quickly.
  • Have good customer service skills.

What do you think? Let me know your experience with Postmates in the comments below.

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last updated March 3, 2020


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Is Delivering for Postmates Worth It? – Review

Postmates is a popular local delivery app with a dense network of local merchants, many of which are small, independently owned businesses. These include restaurants, grocery stores, drugstores, liquor stores, and general-purpose retailers.

Operating in more than 100 metropolitan areas around the United States, Postmates is powered by a growing army of relatively well-compensated independent contractors — also called Postmates — capable of delivering most products an hour or less after they’re ordered.

If you’re looking to monetize your spare time by tapping into the gig economy as a delivery driver, Postmates is a great way to earn some extra cash. All you need is a car, bike, or scooter and a willingness to out-hustle your fellow couriers. According to the company, Postmates workers can earn $25 per hour or more in some markets at periods of peak demand.

Intrigued by the prospect of earning extra income with Postmates, one of the premier grocery and food delivery apps on the market? Read on to learn what to expect from the platform, what to watch out for, and how to maximize your earning potential.

How Postmates Works for Delivery Employees (Postmates)

If you’re willing to brave traffic, the elements, and the myriad pitfalls of the service industry, working as a Postmate driver is a great way to earn extra income outside of your day job, help pay the bills as you work toward a degree, or simply to fill the gaps between full-time positions.

As a Postmate, you’re classified as an independent contractor and aren’t entitled to a minimum wage or other protections afforded full-time employees. But Postmates brags that individual Postmate drivers can make $25 per hour or more. Although these results aren’t typical, they’re not bad for a job that doesn’t require a four-year college degree or even much on-the-job training.

Basic Eligibility Requirements

To make it through the initial round of the delivery agent application process, applicants need to meet some basic eligibility requirements:

  • Live in or near a Postmates market, although a Postmate can work in any of the company’s active markets once admitted to the app
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Own a functional bike, car, truck, scooter, or motorcycle, with valid vehicle insurance if required (Postmates also provides liability insurance up to $1 million per incident for each Postmate at no cost to the worker)
  • Have a valid driver’s license, even if you’re only delivering by bike

Postmate applicants often have previous delivery experience. That could mean they’ve worked directly for a restaurant, delivered for a logistics company like UPS or FedEx, or picked up hours with direct competitors like Instacart or Grubhub. But it isn’t a prerequisite.

Application and Hiring Process

Postmates’ initial application takes just a few minutes. You need to enter some basic biographical and contact information, including your full name, address, vehicle type, and the make and model of your mobile device.

You also need to provide your driver’s license number and Social Security number, and consent to a background check and driving history check (for Postmates with motor vehicles). Postmates doesn’t divulge what it looks for with these checks, but it’s safe to assume a recent felony conviction or pattern of vehicle accidents would be grounds for disqualification.

If you pass your background check, you’ll need to upload a profile photo and then wait for your Postmates delivery bag and prepaid debit card to arrive in the mail. You’ll pay for most pickups with this card. Once your card arrives, you’ll need to complete some final tasks and sign into the Postmates Fleet app for the first time.

Scheduling and Making Deliveries

If you’re approved to work as a Postmate, you can get to work right away. Whenever you want to make deliveries, simply indicate that you’re available in the app. When you open the app, you’ll see whether Blitz Pricing is in effect in your area (more on that below).

The delivery process is straightforward. For each accepted delivery, you’re shown the order’s complete contents and told where to pick it up. In most cases, the merchant receives the order well before your arrival and has it ready for you as you walk in.

However, it’s a good idea to call ahead to make sure this is the case and to check that the order is complete and correct once you arrive. Always ask for an itemized receipt from the merchant. It can come in handy if the customer disputes the accuracy of an order.

Under normal circumstances, you pay for pay-on-pickup orders with your Postmates debit card. Adding funds to this card is easy. If you find you’re out of funds when you arrive at the merchant, you should be able to execute a reload in a minute or two, with minimal impact on delivery timing.

For orders paid in advance, you simply confirm the order with the merchant and leave without exchanging any funds. You then take the goods to the customer, accept payment, and move on to the next delivery.


For each completed delivery, you’ll receive a payment broken down as follows:

  • A variable amount for each completed pickup
  • A variable amount for each completed dropoff
  • A variable amount (paid by the minute) for time spent waiting for the merchant to fill the order (if applicable)
  • A variable per-mile rate covering the distance between the pickup and dropoff locations
  • 100% of tips from the customer

Your entire account balance pays out via weekly direct deposits. Payments for activity during the prior Monday-to-Sunday period hit your linked account by midweek in most cases. If you need funds sooner, you can cash out to a linked bank account using Postmates’ Instant Deposit feature.

Note that while you’ll always receive 100% of customer tips, you won’t receive all the fees the customer pays. Postmates keeps a significant cut of customer-paid fees to cover its own expenses.

Postmates does its best to exclude cash-only merchants from its platform, but screening isn’t 100% accurate. If you find yourself at a cash-only business, you can notify Postmates support and pawn the transaction off on Postmates itself.

You never have to pay for deliveries out of your own pocket and shouldn’t do so under any circumstances, no matter how much the merchant pressures you.

Alternatives to Postmates

Postmates doesn’t have a lock on the local delivery market, of course. Opportunities to earn money by delivering everyday goods abound, thanks to:

Advantages of Postmates

Postmates’ top advantages for drivers include not requiring a car to work on the platform, potentially attractive pay, delivery fees proportional to distance, and demand pricing during busy periods.

1. No Car Necessary

If you’re an avid bike commuter, there’s a place for you at Postmates. The platform permits bike-only delivery agents in all its markets, allowing people who don’t own cars to earn some extra cash.

Other platforms, including TaskRabbit and Bite Squad, require you to have your own car or at least be comfortable with driving one.

2. Pay Can Be Attractive

Postmates brags that its delivery people can make $25 or more per hour, including tips.

Although this isn’t guaranteed, and you probably shouldn’t expect to earn so much on your very first shift, your earning power is higher here than in most other service-industry jobs — and on many competing grocery food delivery services. For instance, Instacart shoppers earn about $13 per hour plus tips, according to Glassdoor.

3. Delivery Fees Rise With Delivery Distance

To account for higher out-of-pocket fuel costs and greater time investments, Postmates compensates delivery people more for longer deliveries, increasing the likelihood they’ll accept out-of-the-way jobs.

Some competing platforms’ delivery fees are proportional to the size of the order, not the distance. That means drivers on long-distance deliveries must hope for higher tips, which aren’t always forthcoming.

4. Blitz Pricing Is an Additional Earning Incentive

Postmates’ Blitz Pricing feature offers a powerful incentive for idle Postmates, including those who haven’t signed up for shifts in advance, to get out to delivery hot spots during peak hours and make money.

By jacking up delivery fees by 50% or more, Postmates ensures its workers are compensated fairly during rush periods when they have to work harder. It also increases the likelihood of faster delivery for customers because there are more Postmates on the clock.

TaskRabbit and some similar platforms don’t have demand pricing for delivery jobs.

Disadvantage of Postmates

Postmates’ disadvantages include workers’ independent contractor status, potentially high overhead for those with gas-powered vehicles, and limited availability in smaller cities and metro areas.

1. Postmates Are Independent Contractors

All Postmates work as independent contractors. They’re responsible for tracking their own tax liabilities, paying their own expenses (such as fuel and car insurance), and eating the opportunity cost of an illness or injury (Postmates doesn’t offer workers’ compensation, sick days, or paid time off).

Postmates also don’t have much in the way of job security — they can be kicked off the Postmates app basically at will.

Pro tip: Because you’ll be running your own small business, it would be a good idea to use a cloud-based accounting platform like Freshbooks to track all your expenses. Then at tax time you can just hand everything over to your accountant or upload it into either H&R Block.

2. Overhead Can Eat Into Earnings

Postmates, particularly couriers using their own cars, deal with fairly high overhead costs that can eat into their ability to make extra money. They’re responsible for the cost of fuel, vehicle insurance, parking, and possibly other expenses.

By contrast, Bite Squad and some regional grocery delivery services cover overhead costs, allowing workers to keep more of their pay and tips.

Pro tip: You can also rent cars from Hyrecar and use them for the sole purpose of driving for Postmates or similar services.

3. Not Viable in Many Locations

Postmates operates chiefly in larger cities and metro areas. If you’re out in the boonies, Postmates isn’t a viable extra-income option. Larger logistics firms, such as Amazon, and regional grocery delivery services often have a presence in rural areas.

Still, they’re not guaranteed to pay as well or schedule workers as flexibly as Postmates.

Final Word

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median U.S. hourly wage paid by private employers was right around $30 per hour as of early 2021. Many jobs that pay more than $25 per hour require a four-year (or longer) degree, union membership, or many years of workplace experience.

Workers without these advantages, including millions of adults who string together multiple retail and food service jobs to support their families, often make far less — under $10 per hour, in many cases.

From this perspective, working as a Postmates courier is an attractive proposition, even if it’s not a full-time gig. All you need is a bike or car, a strong work ethic, and a willingness to move quickly when the job demands it. That’s less than many other sharing economy gigs require and might be enough on its own to make Postmates worth it in your book.


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