Today is my third day as an on-demand courier! So far, I’ve avoided traffic and have only gone on-duty late in the evening. We’re taking the training wheels off today, because I was on-duty during the morning and lunch hours. Here’s how it went.
Based on the few deliveries I’ve done, Caviar’s commission has been better than Postmates. So, I started with Caviar today.
First delivery (10:08 AM)
I drove toward the Downtown area and was on Hawthorne, near 12th ave, when I received my first dispatch, a delivery worth $8.92. The location was Delicious Donuts (12 SE Grand Ave, Portland, OR 97214).
I parked outside and carried the orange Caviar bag into the restaurant and confirmed my arrival via the app. The cashier saw me and said “Will be ready in a few minutes”. One thing I like about Caviar is that the restaurant or food establishment you’re delivering for is expecting you and they will recognize you by the Caviar bag.
Once I received the box of donuts, I confirmed everything was there and discovered that the customer was in the Northwest Portland area behind 23rd Avenue. I crossed the Burnside Bridge and stayed on Burnside westbound to this address. Smooth delivery.
Second delivery (10: 27 AM)
This time the work is worth $8.62. It was to the same donut place. I parked at the same spot and again the cashier was quick to get the donuts ready. Unfortunately, the customer was located at an office building at the heart of Downtown Portland this time. I was dreading this because it meant having to pay to park my car while I deliver the food. I ended up paying $0.40 to park for 15 minutes. Luckily, the customer wanted me to meet them outside so the delivery was quick.
After this delivery, Postmates’ Blitz Pricing was active so I decided to switch over for the lunch hours.
Takeaways From Morning Shift
If you’re driving during breakfast hours, camp out (park your car) close to places that sell breakfast food like donuts and coffee shops. Expect to deliver for working professionals. If you’re working during this time, prepare to pay for parking because professionals are typically located in busy areas of the city with parking meters.
I earned $17.54 for 1 hour 3 minutes of delivery (63 minutes) with Caviar before switching to Postmates. I was online for 1 hour and 51 minutes and did not get any tips.
First Delivery (11:34 AM)
Blitz was 1.5x. The restaurant was Maiphai Thai Cuisine, which is close to my last Caviar dropoff. I parked in the public lot across the restaurant without paying. I figured I could get in and get out before I get cited.
After confirming my arrival, I learned that the order had six items. This created some anxiety because waiting for everything to be done put me at risk of a parking ticket. Luckily, the order was completed and I got back into my car before anyone wrote me up. I was really excited to see the payout for this order when I verified the receipt because it was over $112.00. A 15% tip would be around $16!
Second Delivery (11:55 AM, stacked)
On my way to drop off the Thai food, another job became available. This is an opportunity for a “stacked” order. I decided to accept because the Blitz Pricing was 4x! This order was also Thai food, from Sunee’s Thai Kitchen. The first customer will have to wait a bit longer.
I arrived at Sunee’s Thai Kitchen and told the man at the register I was there for a Postmates order. He asked me, “You’re here for the big order?”. I looked at my phone and saw that the order was about 10 items! I said “Yes”
He rung me up and charged over $92 on the PEX card. I was drooling at this point because I know that a 15% tip would mean at least $13 on this order. Plus, the Blitz was 4x!
Now I have a tough decision: which order do I deliver first? I could deliver them in the order they came in or I can check with the app to see which one is closer and go there first. I decided to go with the latter since the dropoff for Sunee’s Thai Kitchen was closer. I made the delivery and earned $18.40. The 4x Blitz Pricing made this a huge haul.
Fortunately for me the Maiphai drop off wasn’t too far away and I made $9.00. About an hour later, I realized that I made an additional $12.15 on tips for the Sunee’s Thai Kitchen (a total of $30.55 for that order). I didn’t get a tip for the Maiphai. I think delaying the delivery to stack the Sunee’s Thai Kitchen order cost me the tip. Customers can see your GPS location on the app so they will know if you didn’t head toward them straightaway. Oh well. I still made off with $39.55 for about an hour’s worth of work, which is ridiculous!
Third delivery (12:54 PM)
This was for Los Gorditos at 922 NW Davis St, Portland, OR 97209. The Blitz was 1.25x now. Postmates is having a promotion this week called the Burrito Wars, where all burritos on their site are $3.
I had to wait 13 minutes before I got the burrito and headed off to the customer. But unfortunately, when I got to my car, I saw a yellow envelope on the windshield.
I was given a $39 parking ticket. There goes the earning for those Thai food deliveries.
Fourth delivery (1:10 PM, stacked)
As I was about to deliver the burrito, another job became available (1:10 pm). Blitz Pricing was now 1.5x so I accepted. It was another order for Maiphia Thai Cuisine. I was excited because I had a feeling the order would come with a big tips. But there was the parking issue. I parked without paying again across from the restaurant.
I got in and was told it’d be a long wait which made me cringe. I waited but kept looking outside toward the parking lot. Fortunately, I didn’t get another ticket. The order wasn’t as big as the previous two, only $84 dollars, but I still had high hopes for it.
I delivered both items in the order they came in. The burrito got me $11.80 plus a $1.80 tip. The Thai food was also $11.80 but the tip was $8.30.
Takeaways From Lunch Shift
You can expect to make good money during lunch hours due to high demand and therefore more consistent and larger Blitz Pricing multipliers.
Accept as many Thai orders as you can. Thai restaurants typically have items that cost $15-20 on their menu and they do a very good job of upselling customers on beverages and side dishes. Also, Thai food is a very social type of food. People typically order Thai food because the office or team is craving it. It’s not common that someone would place an order with a Thai restaurant for just one item. All these factors result in larger orders and if you do a good job with customer service, the tip you earn will be worth it.
Lastly, unless you need some thrill in your life, pay to park!