DoorDash Driver Guide
February 25, 2024

Beginner's Guide to DoorDash (Part 1)

Have you ever wondered about how you can make money with DoorDash? With over 450,000 merchants on DoorDash and a 38% share of the US delivery market, the opportunities are perhaps greater than ever. Making money through DoorDash shouldn't be a major challenge ' but if you're just getting started or considering whether DoorDash could be a good option for your needs, there's a lot to think about. Fortunately, in this two-part guide, we've outlined all of the key things you should know about getting started with DoorDash, from questions like 'does DoorDash reimburse mileage' and 'should you track miles with DoorDash' through to 'what day of the week does DoorDash pay' and 'how many hours can you dash per day?' and more!


Before we can look at the intricacies of DoorDash, we will walk you through how to get started. First, this means joining the roughly 2 million Dashers by opening a DoorDash account and creating a Dasher profile. Fortunately, this is a relatively straightforward process.

  1. First, sign up with DoorDash. For this, you will need both your phone number and email address and will need to create a profile. This must include your name and password details.
  2. Once you have input your personal details, you'll need to check you meet the DoorDash driver requirements. Fortunately, these are relatively simple to understand. You'll need to remember that you must be over 18 years of age. You must also have a vehicle with a valid driver's license, an iOS or Android phone, and insurance as an independent contractor. However, always check these before signing up to be sure you're eligible. If you meet all of these criteria, you can continue.
  3. Next, enter your vehicle details. Once this is done, you'll need to allow DoorDash to carry out a background check. Luckily, this will usually take just a few minutes. Once this is complete, you can then add banking information (to enable payments) and complete the sign-up process.

Once you have completed the sign-up process, you can apply for a Welcome Kit from DoorDash for your deliveries. The Welcome Kit is used instead of an in-person orientation and provides the key tools you'll need to begin doing deliveries. It includes an insulated hot bag to keep deliveries warm until they reach their destination, a red card, and a manual to help you get started.

Doordash food delivery driver


It's often not immediately clear how DoorDash pays its delivery drivers. However, the DoorDash delivery model is relatively simple to understand with little thought, so long as you've taken the time to consider the following questions. With careful delivery management and selection, it's possible to earn more through your DoorDash work. In fact, earning $500 a week with DoorDash is even surprisingly simple!

The Basic DoorDash Payment Model

As standard, DoorDash pays its delivery drivers based on three key factors: basic pay, promotional pay, and tips. This model means that DoorDash drivers don't necessarily earn a set price per hour. For example, some people earn as little as $15 per hour while delivering with DoorDash. However, with care, you can actually increase the amount you earn per hour through DoorDash deliveries.

The three payment structures include:

  • Base pay: The base pay is the minimum price you'll get for each delivery, guaranteed. Base pay normally varies between $2 and $10 per delivery, depending on the difficulty and length of the job.
  • Promotions: Promotions can be an excellent way to boost your income. Perhaps the most common promotion is the peak pay promotion, which offers additional income for Dashers during times when there are numerous orders and not enough Dashers online to handle them all. This promotion can bump up your base pay earnings, increasing your income. As such, it's not uncommon for dashers to try and take on additional work during peak times to bump up their income.
  • Tips: Tips are one of the most important aspects of a Dasher's income. Unfortunately, though, tips are hidden until you've completed an order, preventing Dashers from choosing more lucrative jobs. Fortunately, Para's powerful algorithm predicts these tips for you, enabling you to take on high-value delivery jobs rather than those that don't have any tips at all.

Does DoorDash Pay for the Food?

A common concern that many people have is, 'does DoorDash pay for the food?' Indeed, no one would want to take on delivery if it meant they had to pay the $100 bill themselves before getting paid! Luckily, this isn't an issue since the DoorDash red card allows you to pay for food that needs paying. In other cases, the food may have already been paid for in advance by the customer, so all you'll need to do is grab the food, pack it away in your DoorDash thermal bag, and go.

Does Doordash Reimburse Mileage?

One of the biggest costs for many DoorDash delivery drivers is the cost of mileage. Indeed, with gas prices (at the time of writing) reaching a staggering $4.60 or more for unleaded alone, it's easy to see why people are so worried about the cost of mileage. And, unfortunately, DoorDash doesn't directly pay for your fuel when doing deliveries, which is why it's so important to make use of a specialist delivery driver helper app, such as Para, to ensure you're taking on valuable deliveries that won't leave you making a net loss! However, DoorDash does provide 10% cashback when you pay for your fuel with the DasherDirect credit card, in line with the new fuel price rises, so you may want to consider using this to make the most of your deliveries.

It perhaps goes without saying ' you should always try to streamline your deliveries as much as possible to reduce the fuel cost per delivery!

What Day of the Week Does DoorDash Pay?

What day of the week does DoorDash pay? This isn't an easy question to answer since, technically, Dashers can request payment daily. Daily payments come with a $1.99 fee per transfer, meaning you'll receive less if you withdraw your earnings daily rather than waiting for the delivery time. However, this can help if you're in a pinch and need the cash quickly.

However, once you begin regular delivery driving, this may become less of an issue with a more stable weekly income from DoorDash. If you can wait to get paid rather than request Fast Pay, then weekly payments are paid by Wednesday for most Dashers and are paid for work done between Monday and Sunday, with the cutoff being Sunday at midnight.

Does DoorDash Give You a W2?

DoorDash does not provide a W2 form, but it does give a 1099-NEC form if you've earned over $600 or more in a financial year.


In order to optimize your earning potential, managing your DoorDash deliveries carefully is so important. As such, before you begin dashing, we recommend considering the following tips to optimize your DoorDash deliveries and earn more with DoorDash.

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Should You Track Miles with DoorDash?

Should you track miles with DoorDash? Should fuel prices continue going up, it's become more vital than ever that you track miles with DoorDash, to ensure your deliveries are bringing in more than they cost. Of course, the majority of deliveries, even for base pay, should be more valuable than the fuel cost alone.

However, this may depend on your car's mileage; if your car has low fuel efficiency, you'll inevitably end up paying more than you expect for fuel and end up with less in your bank at the end of the day.

Fortunately, the driver utility tool, Para can help you keep track of your miles and deliveries with Doordash. In turn, this may make it easier to monitor your deliveries and ensure your Dashing is profitable and earning a good income.

How Many Hours Can You Dash Per Day?

Have you ever wondered, 'how many hours can you dash per day?' If so, we have great news: you can use DoorDash 24/7 if you so want! DoorDash allows its drivers to work whenever they want, at any time of day ' so, if you wake up at 5 am with the sudden urge to do some deliveries, go for it!

Of course, there's a big limitation here. While DoorDash technically allows its Dashers to work 24/7, it still depends on whether there are any orders to be fulfilled. The largest number of orders are available during peak times, which usually come with promotional pay as well. By contrast, deliveries outside of peak hours are much fewer and farther between, so you should consider this when planning when to do deliveries.

In terms of how many hours can you dash per day, it's really up to you. However, we recommend focusing on increasing your hourly rate through high-quality, valuable orders and working for just one or two hours per day rather than trying to work for five hours per day at just $10 per hour with low rate orders.

Can You Manage Dashing Hours Through External Apps?

Managing your deliveries as a new dasher is hard, but the driver helper app, Para' can be highly effective in this regard. With Para, you can benefit from countless key features, allowing you to start your DoorDash journey on the right foot.

Benefits of Using the Para App

There are several highly influential features of the Para app that make it a popular tool for dashers looking to optimize their earnings, including:

  • Tip Prediction: Tips are one of the biggest earning sources for DoorDashers. Through Para, you can count on knowing the tip estimate before you go, helping you avoid low-paying jobs and take on jobs with your time. And, since DoorDash pays 100% of tips directly to its Dashers, and some tips can easily measure in the double digits, it's easy to see how this can transform your earning potential with DoorDash.
  • Drive time estimates: It's not always clear how long delivery will take, but the Para app makes it much easier to track delivery distances and times for each delivery. This can make it much easier to work out both expected time and fuel allowances, helping you determine the profitability of each delivery overall.
  • Streamline orders: Through tools such as the Para app, it's possible to streamline your deliveries and optimize delivery times, allowing you to potentially complete multiple deliveries on a single delivery run! As a result, you may be able to cut the overall mileage, time, and costs associated with running a delivery, allowing you to make more per hour in terms of net profits.
  • Multiapp: While DoorDash might command a large share of the US delivery market, it's not the only delivery team. As such, if you'd like to get more for your deliveries, you could consider delivering for multiple apps at once. For example, deliver for DoorDash, GrubHub, and Uber Eats simultaneously through the Para app and increases the amount you can make quickly!
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While using the Para app for your DoorDash deliveries is not necessary, it's a great way to boost your early dashing income. The potential for earnings through Para is massive ' depending on the tips you receive. So, why be disheartened early on? Start your dashing side hustle the right way and integrate the para app for the best results overall.


If you have been looking to get started with DoorDash, it's highly important to have a clear understanding of how DoorDash works, to begin with. Questions such as how the basic DoorDash model works, what day dashers paid, whether DoorDash gives you a W2 and the like are all common. However, we hope today's guide will have given you a little more understanding of these questions to help inform your final decision. And remember ' with a personal dispatch system such as Para, you can streamline your dashing activities and make the most of your brand new hustle.

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