DoorDash vs. Uber Eats: Which Earns More Cash?

One man, delivery guy in city, delivering pizza in city, holding pizza box.
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Side hustles such as delivering food and groceries have grown in popularity as a good way to make extra money. Startup costs are minimal if you already have a smartphone and a car. And in some areas, you may even be able to make deliveries on foot, by scooter or bike.

The pandemic caused a shift in the way people buy, making it possible to turn a side hustle into a full-time job. Uber Eats and DoorDash, two of the top platforms, are busier than ever. Both make it fast and easy to sign up for deliveries, but the setup and way they work are a little different.

The good news is, you can work with both companies to maximize your earnings potential. All you need is some information on how to make each work best for you. Here is a DoorDash vs. Uber Eats breakdown that compares how each app functions.

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DoorDash vs. Uber Eats: Requirements

The first thing to go over is who can sign up to deliver with Doordash or Uber Eats. Check out the following information:

Requirements DoorDash Uber Eats
Minimum age for car deliveries 18 21
Type of car No restrictions Must be 20 years old or newer and have two or four doors
License Valid driver’s license Valid driver’s license
Driving
  • Car insurance required
  • Clean driving record
  • One year of driving experience
Car insurance and registration required

One year of driving experience (three years if under age 25)

Bike or scooter allowed?
  • Bikes, scooters, motorcycles and walking deliveries allowed in select cities
  • Where bikes a scooter are allowed, can toggle between modes of transportation
Bikes and scooters allowed in select cities, 50cc maximum

Scooter deliveries allowed for drivers 19 and older

Bicycle and foot deliveries allowed for drivers 18 and older

Other Must pass a background check Must pass a background check

Verdict:

When comparing DoorDash vs. Uber Eats for accessibility, DoorDash wins. It has fewer requirements for drivers and the cars they can use to make deliveries.

How To Qualify As a Driver

If you qualify for either or both of the services, you can easily sign up online or by downloading the mobile app. It’s a good idea to download the app first thing because you will use it for everything from accepting deliveries to managing your account once you begin work. 

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How To Sign Up as a DoorDash Driver

Here’s how to sign up as a DoorDash driver:

  1. Apply online or through the mobile app.
  2. Upload a photo of your drivers license.
  3. Provide insurance information.
  4. U.S. Dashers must provide their Social Security number.
  5. Consent to the background check.
  6. Wait for the background check to clear.
  7. Finish setting up your account and adding your delivery type.

How To Sign Up as an UberEats Driver

Here’s the process for signing up as an Uber Eats driver:

  1. Apply online or through the mobile app.
  2. Upload a photo of your driver’s license.
  3. Provide insurance information.
  4. Provide your Social Security number.
  5. Consent to the background check.
  6. Wait for the background check to clear.

Verdict:

It’s a tie. Both apps have similar processes for signing up.

Making Deliveries With Uber Eats or DoorDash

Once your background check is approved, you are ready to get started. Make sure your vehicle is gassed up, you have an ID and a credit card — in case you need extra gas — and your phone is fully charged.

Go Online

Turn the app on and let it start notifying you of available deliveries. Both companies may suggest busy times or popular areas nearby, which may be paying delivery bonuses to drivers.

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Accept

When you’re offered a delivery, tap to accept the order and following the app’s instructions for picking up and delivering the order.

Payment-Required Deliveries

DoorDash will mail you a credit card known as a Red Card after you complete the first delivery that you can use to pay for select orders. You can choose to activate it and expand the types of deliveries you do or continue making simple deliveries that don’t require you to pay for orders at pickup. Some Dashers prefer to stick with deliveries that don’t require payments using the Red Card to save time at pick up and get more deliveries done.

Uber Eats deliveries are already paid for, so drivers don’t have to handle payments.

Following the Steps

Both apps make it easy to complete deliveries. You may even be asked if you’d like to accept a second order, typically from the same pickup location. Known as a stacked delivery, it’s a good way to make money faster, since you’ll get paid for two deliveries but have only one neighboring or same-restaurant or store pickup. Simply follow the map’s directions and check off or swipe the steps as you go. They may be:

  • You’ve arrived at the restaurant or merchandise location
  • You have the order(s) in hand
  • You have completed the delivery to the customer

Some deliveries may ask you to scan the item you’ve picked up, or take a photo of the order in the location you were asked to leave it, such as the front door. The process is designed to be as simple as guess-free as possible. If you get stuck along the way, both apps allow you to contact the customer if you can’t find an address or a customer you expected to come to the door isn’t answering.

Shift Scheduling

DoorDash has a unique feature Uber Eats doesn’t provide. You can qualify for early-access scheduling to lock in peak hours up to six days in advance. This means you have priority over drop-in DoorDashers during the blocks you’ve selected. To qualify:

  • Have completed at least 95% of your deliveries, have a customer rating of at least 4.6 and have completed at least five deliveries since the previous Friday
  • Have a history of 500 completed deliveries or more, have a completion rating of 95% and a customer rating of at least 4.6

Here’s more on how the two services compare:

Requirements DoorDash Uber Eats
Flexibility
  • Dash Now
  • Schedule time blocks
On-demand only
Prepaid card Red Card Not needed
Stacked deliveries Yes Yes
Gear required No, although you’ll receive a free insulated carry bag and face mask in the mail. You can buy other items in the DoorDash store. No, but there is a swag store with merchandise available.

If you’d like to run your side gig as a professional business, DoorDash may be the better option. You can expand the types of deliveries you do by activating the company Red Card for purchases, and the ability to schedule priority shifts can maximize your earnings. In addition, the free insulated bag is a nice perk, and a necessity to ensure food is delivered hot. You’ll pay almost $50 to buy one from the Uber Eats Shop.

Verdict:

To rate DoorDash vs. Uber Eats, Uber Eats is great for an easy but no-frills experience. But DoorDash’s trip scheduling and insulated bag can earn you more money by ensuring you drive at peak times and deliver hot food hot, which can earn you more tips.

How Much Money Can You Make?

Both platforms will pay you a combination of time–including waiting time to pick up a restaurant order — and mileage. You also have access to bonuses and incentives.

Additional earnings can be made from tips. It’s not unusual to accept a delivery for $5 and receive a $10 customer tip.

According to ZipRecruiter, Uber Eats drivers earn an average of $41,175 per year compared to DoorDash drivers’ $36,565. Whereas the 25th percentile for both services earn $27,000, the 75th percentile earn $44,500 and $41,500 with Uber Eats and DoorDash, respectively.

Here is how the pay works.

DoorDash Base Pay and Tips

The base pay range for a DoorDash delivery is $2 to $10. You’ll see a base pay before you accept the order so you know the guaranteed minimum you’ll make. The base pay may be higher after you complete the delivery if the waiting time was longer. Challenges and guaranteed-earnings periods offer additional opportunities to earn more.

Customers can leave a tip when they order the food and after. In many cases, the pay you see before you accept the order already includes a tip. But you may still have a chance to get an additional tip after the food is delivered. Tips are all yours to keep.

Uber Eats Base Pay and Tips

As with DoorDash, base pay is a combination of mileage and time spent on delivery. Uber doesn’t provide a range, but driver forums discuss a similar range to DoorDash.

You also receive a trip supplement in the event the time and distance were longer than Uber accounted for in the base pay. In addition, you can earn extra during surge times and boost promotions that increase your rate. You’ll see the amount of the delivery before you accept and can rest assured you’ll make at least that amount.

A customer can leave you a tip when they are ordering or after you deliver. Uber Eats also lets you keep 100% of your tip money. Tips may take a while to show after you complete your delivery but can be found on the daily summary page on the app.

Verdict:

Uber Eats has a slight advantage when it comes to earnings, at least for higher-earning drivers.

Options for Getting Paid

Both apps give you options when it’s time to get paid. Here’s how each service works:

Uber Eats

There are two ways to cash your earnings out:

  • Set up direct deposit. Earnings are closed out Monday at 4 a.m., processed for payment on Wednesday and deposited into your account on Thursday.
  • Request Instant Cash Out: An Instant Cash Out can be done any time during the week and sends the funds to your linked debit card or bank account by tapping on “Cash Out” in the app. It may still take up to three days to see the funds, depending on the bank. You can order up to five per day, but each comes with a 50-cent fee.

DoorDash

Like Uber Eats, you have two ways to collect your earnings.

  • Set up direct deposit. Weekly earnings are closed out and direct deposited into your linked account on Mondays. You’ll probably see the funds on Wednesday.
  • Request Fast Pay: Link a debit card to get paid anytime before direct deposit day. However, you must qualify for the service by completing at least 25 deliveries. There is also an initial seven-day processing delay and each Fast Pay request costs $1.99.

Verdict:

When comparing DoorDash vs. Uber Eats for payments, Uber Eats wins. Getting paid is easier and cheaper if you don’t want to wait for the weekly direct deposit.

How To Make More Money on DoorDash and Uber Eats

To make the most of your precious time, there are a few hacks you can try to bump up your earnings:

Tips To Earn More As a Delivery Driver:

  • Work during peak periods: You’ll typically earn a bonus amount, which can significantly increase your earnings. Peak periods may be late nights, weekdays at lunchtime or weekend evenings. The app will often notify you of high-demand locations.
  • Be choosy: Time is of the essence, so pick deliveries that are quick to complete. You may make more money doing two or three short deliveries than one longer-distance one, even it pays an extra dollar or two. You’ll also improve the odds of getting tips from more than one person if you can do more deliveries faster.
  • Accept stacked orders: Let Uber Eats or DoorDash organize your schedule by accepting multiple pickups and drop-offs in one order. By eliminating down time, you’ll make more in delivery fees and raise the odds of more tips.
  • Add small touches of service: Provide customers with extra napkins or mints from the restaurant pick-up location. Be friendly when you drop off the order. Send them a text letting them know you’ve left their items at the door as requested and wish them a great day. Small, personal details could help you earn a bigger tip.
  • Take a partner: Having someone who can stay in the car while you make the delivery so you don’t have to find parking, or who can help you navigate while you drive, can help you earn more by making the process run faster and smoother — as long as you don’t have to pay them.

DoorDash vs. Uber Eats: Which One Is Better?

To wrap it up, both delivery services have a lot going for them. Uber Eats is simple and user-friendly, and top pay is higher. DoorDash is also user-friendly, and it has more flexible features such as scheduling and fewer delivery vehicle restrictions. Both let you keep all your tips, and they offer incentives that can earn you extra money.

Final Take

You may find that one delivery app is busier in your area than the other. You may even decide to do both, picking and choosing each service’s peak periods for the best pay — or driving for both services simultaneously on slower days. That’s the beauty of a side hustle — you have options. Be creative and make the options work for you.

Delivery Side Gigs

How Much They Pay

Reviews

Comparison

Daria Uhlig contributed to the reporting for this article.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by DoorDash or Uber Eats. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, ratings or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by DoorDash or Uber Eats.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

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About the Author

Cynthia Paez Bowman is a personal finance writer with degrees from American University in international business and journalism. Besides writing about personal finance, she writes about real estate, interior design and architecture. Her work has been featured in MSN, Brex, Freshome, MyMove, Emirates’ Open Skies magazine and more.
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