How To Make Money with Postmates

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Postmates homepage screenshot

If you’ve ever wanted to know how to make money with Postmates, you’re in the right place because I’m going to show you just that in this article.

Postmates is just one example of a relatively new type of income opportunity that is dependent on technological advances which we didn’t have 20 years ago.

On-demand jobs like this allow you to work on your own schedule, utilizing your own resources and time and instantly connects you with someone who needs something done in your local area (in this case food delivery).

Making money with Postmates provides you with a side income doing something that isn’t hard for most people. You do not need any special skills or qualifications and you can do it on your own time and in combination with other side-gigs.

In this article, I’ll show you how to get started and you can decide if it’s something worthwhile. Here are some of the things I’ll cover in this post.

How Does Postmates Work?

Postmates is an on-demand company that offers food delivery from local restaurants and also other items sourced from local businesses.

They operate in all major American cities and depend on their fleet of independent couriers to do the deliveries for them.

Postmates offers a mobile app for both iOS and Android devices as well as a website. With the app, customers can place orders at local restaurants and have their order picked up by a member of the Postmates fleet who will delivered to them.

Postmates app displayed on mobile phones.

When you apply to deliver for Postmates, you’re applying to be a member of the Postmates fleet.

Postmates delivers anything from food from local restaurants to items like party supplies, office supplies, drinks, groceries and more. For $9.99 per month or $99.99 annually, customers can join Postmates Unlimited, a membership that gets them free delivery on orders over $12 and has a number of other benefits.

The service is convenient for people who want to skip restaurant lines but want to eat their favorite food or don’t have time to go shop.

For people who want to make money though, there are a host of other benefits besides the income opportunity.

How To Become A Courier for Postmates

Signing up to become part of the Postmates fleet is easy. You do not need any special qualifications or skills.

All you need to do is to make sure that Postmates is available in your local area then go to this page on the Postmates website and put in your email address along with a password to get started. Alternatively, you can download the Postmates Fleet app for your phone and sign up through that.

You will be required to tell Postmates a little about yourself by adding the following information.

  • Name and phone number
  • Mailing address (so they can send you a Postmates card to pay for deliveries that require in-store payment)
  • What market you’ll deliver in – they’ll match you according to the info you provided before.
  • Your drivers license info
  • What type of vehicle you’ll be using.

After supplying that information, Postmates will ask you to authorize a background check. You’ll need to enter your date of birth and your social security number. The SSN is needed for the background check to run correctly.

Finally, you’ll need to do the following to complete the signup.

  • Review the Postmates Fleet Agreement
  • Upload a profile photo
  • Add your referral code (if you have one)
  • Set up direct deposit so you can get paid
  • Activate your Postmates Prepaid Card once you’ve received your welcome kit

After you’ve completed all the steps above, your background check will begin and you can log in to the website and monitor your status.

Postmates’ welcome kit includes a free delivery bag and a prepaid card which are two things you’ll need in order to do deliveries.

The great thing about Postmates is that there are no fees to get started – it’s completely free to signup and start delivering. And there are no time commitments so you can deliver whenever you feel like.

Postmates offer some benefits to couriers. For example, if you’re looking for long term employment outside of the gig-economy, the company has partnered with a few organizations that offer opportunities for upward mobility. This may be especially beneficial if you’re a student or you’re a work-authorized immigrant.

Postmates will also help you with filing taxes and help you to find health-care for you and your family.

Besides these you can enjoy a side hustle that lets you

  • have a flexible schedule
  • earn more with weekly guarantees and keep all your tips
  • get instant deposits when you complete a delivery
  • see exactly how your earnings are calculated
  • get free weekly deposits you can cash out anytime

In the next section, we’ll see how much you can really earn with Postmates.

How Much Can You Earn with Postmates?

This is a question everyone needs to know the answer to before they begin. You want to know that you’re getting paid good money for your efforts before you get started.

Here’s a screenshot from an email I got welcoming me to Postmates after I signed up.

Screenshots from Postmates welcome email with photo and text

Right at the bottom there it says that “Postmates can earn $1,600 for their first 200 deliveries.”

This works out to be about $8 per delivery but payment for deliveries aren’t calculated at a flat rates. What you earn from deliveries includes:

  • an amount for each completed pickup that may vary depending on the city
  • an amount for each completed drop-off
  • a per-minute rate for the time you spend waiting at the pick-up location
  • a per-mile rate for the distance between pick-up and drop-off locations
  • 100% of the tips you earn

In the Postmates Fleet app, you can click on each earnings report after delivery to see how your earnings break down.

You can also earn bonuses and guaranteed earnings that vary depending on location. In Ft. Lauderdale, for example, when you complete 40 deliveries in just 14 days, you’re guaranteed $250 including your base pay and per delivery bonuses when you start delivering for Postmates.

There are also Inviter and Invitee payouts. When you invite someone to Postmates (they’ll use your referral code when signing up), you’ll get $150 once they complete 65 deliveries in 30 days. If you included a referral code when signing up, you’re an invitee and you’ll receive $525 guaranteed including base earnings and per delivery bonuses. (These rates are for Ft. Lauderdale, FL and varies depending on the city).

You can find information on how your delivery earnings break down by going to this page and navigating to the city you’re going to be delivering in.

Postmates pays you every Monday directly to your bank account for the earnings you made in the previous week (Monday – Friday). However, you can always withdraw your earnings at any time with their Instant Deposits feature.

How much you make depends on how many deliveries you do and how much time you put in. I think it’s a great side hustle where you can earn good money. In the next section, you’ll find some tips to maximize your earnings if you want to approach this gig strategically and make as much as you can.

8 Tips To Maximize Postmates Earnings

Here are some tips you can apply to when you’re delivering so that you can make as much money as you can with the time you have. This way, you can work smart and earn more.

1. Pass on your referral code

When you’re signing up for Postmates, you’re asked to fill in a referral code. If you have a referral code, you can earn an Invitee guaranteed payout which varies depending on where you’re operating.

When you invite others, you can also earn Inviter payouts per person when your invitee signs up, is accepted and does a minimum number of deliveries. For example, in Ft. Lauderdale, you’ll get $150 for each courier you invite who completes 65 deliveries in a 30 day period.

You may know someone who wants a little extra income that is perfectly suited to drive for Postmates. They get a payout and you get a payout once you commit to doing deliveries within that given time period.

2. Work towards a target income

You should establish a target income and work towards it. This way you’ll be able to decide how much time you’ll need to put into Postmates.

For example, if you want to earn say $2000 this month, this works out to about $500 every week. This means you’ll need to earn around $85 per day which means you’ll need to do around 10-15 deliveries per day.

When you set a target income and implement the other tips shown here, you’d be surprised at how fast you’re able to meet your target. Also remember to set a realistic target income, so if you know you only want to work a few days every week, maybe you won’t be able to do $500 a week but can do about $200 – $250. This means you can set your target income from Postmates to about $800 – $1000.

3. Be familiar with your city

Being familiar with the best areas in your city where locals are likely to order from is a must. Get to know these areas so that you don’t waste time driving around waiting for your phone to notify you about orders.

This will save you time and expense getting to and from pick-up locations and you may also be able to complete more orders if you’re parked near locations where you’re likely to get orders. After you’ve been doing Postmates for a while, you’ll most likely pick up on trends related to food delivery that will help you to save time, expense and make more money on deliveries.

4. Pick up orders closest to your current location

Don’t waste time on orders that are too far from your current location. You’ll spend a chunk of time getting to the pick-up location which you won’t be paid for. Postmates only pays a per-mile rate from the pick-up location to where your order is delivered. So stick with orders that pop up closest to where you are. This also ensures that you deliver your order within a reasonable time-frame.

5. Pick up & deliver multiple orders

Speaking of delivering orders within a reasonable time-frame, you should definitely try picking up multiple orders. Postmates guarantees delivery within 1 hour from when the order was placed. Pick up multiple orders and delivering them in the order they were placed and you should always be on time. You’ll make more per-hour this way and you’ll complete more deliveries which may qualify you for bonuses and special payouts if done within a certain time period.

6. Deliver during Blitz hours

Look out for Blitz pricing and deliver during these times. Blitz hours occur when the demand for delivery is high, usually during lunch and dinner time or in the evening on holidays or during events like Superbowl Sunday. You’ll earn more per delivery during these hours but only on certain orders. Not every order during Blitz hours is guaranteed to have Blitz pricing.

7. Great customer service = more tips

Tips will make up the bulk of your delivery earnings so it goes without saying that you’ll want to give great customer service to your customers. After delivery, customers are prompted to tip from 5%, 10%, 15% and 20% and are barred from making orders until they tip.

With excellent customer service, you’ll set yourself up to get tipped more around 20% than in the 5% range.

8. Use the Fleet app to find hot spots

The Postmates Fleet app shows you where the hot spots in your city are. In the app, the dark red spots indicate hot spots while the lighter orange spots are less hot. If you stay close to where the dark red spots are, you’ll be able to get and pick-up multiple orders which is one way to complete more deliveries in a short period of time, earning you more money.

Postmates’ Three Biggest Alternatives

Where there’s a successful business, you’ll find competition because if something clearly works then why reinvent the wheel?

Postmates three biggest competitors all use couriers to deliver food and other needed items to people in their local area.

  • GrubHub – GrubHub is just like Postmates but they only offer food delivery from local restaurants and diners. Their application process is similar if you want to become a driver but their payments work a little different.
  • UberEats – UberEats is a subsidiary of ride-share company Uber. To sign up to deliver food with UberEats, you’ll need to sign up with Uber as a driver. You’ll use the UberEats app though to find and accept food deliveries in your local area.
  • DoorDash – DoorDash is a little different from all the others because they’re available outside the United States in places like Puerto Rico, Canada and Melbourne, Australia. When you drive for DoorDash, you’re called a Dasher.

These are three great alternatives to Postmates that you can sign up for and work as a courier, delivering food for people in your area.

Final Thoughts On Making Money with Postmates

Postmates is just one on-demand company that offers an opportunity for people to make a side income by doing a task on their own schedule in this case delivering food and other items to locals who need the convenient service.

You can sign up easily and get started though their app or website and do deliveries when you want.

If you’re looking for some extra income as a student or just to earn some money to pay for your car or upcoming expense then this could be the opportunity you’re looking for. Join Postmates and start earning on your own schedule.


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