10 Best Ways to Make $500 a Week with DoorDash

10 Best Ways to Make $500 a Week with DoorDash

I never thought delivering someone’s late-night cravings would be so rewarding, but here I am, enjoying it and making good money on the side with DoorDash. If you're curious about how much you can make in a day with DoorDash, let me tell you, it's quite decent. On a great day, a Dasher can earn up to $25 an hour, potentially reaching $1,400 a week with a full 40-hour week. But let’s set a more realistic target – $500 a week. It’s a significant sum that can cover your rent, car payments, or utility bills. I discovered its value when I needed $500 instantly for an unexpected car repair. That extra cash can be a lifesaver.

1. **Identify High-Demand Zones**

Knowing where the action is can make all the difference. DoorDash highlights hotspots where order volumes are high. These hotspots can be dynamic (currently busy) or historical (consistently busy). Dynamic hotspots are shown as red circles on the map and typically occur during peak times like lunch and dinner. Historical hotspots, indicated by a flame icon, show areas that are generally busy throughout the day. While you don’t need to be exactly at the hotspot, being nearby increases your chances of receiving more orders. For first-time Dashers, it might be confusing, but think of hotspots as a guide to where the most orders are likely to come from. Scheduling your dash in zones with multiple hotspots can significantly boost your earnings.


#### 2. **Work During Peak Times**

Peak times are when demand is highest, usually during breakfast (8 AM - 10 AM), lunch (11 AM - 2 PM), and dinner (5 PM - 9 PM). Weekends are also prime time for dashing. Customers tend to tip more during these busy periods, and DoorDash often offers Peak Pay incentives, which add extra earnings for deliveries made during high-demand times. For instance, delivering during lunch and dinner rush hours means more orders, higher tips, and often, batch orders. Batch orders let you pick up multiple orders from the same restaurant or nearby locations, saving time and increasing your income. Additionally, some areas may have unique peak times depending on local habits and events. Keeping an eye on local trends can help you identify the best times to dash.


#### 3. **Select Orders Wisely**

Not all orders are created equal. Aim for orders that pay at least $2 per mile. This way, you ensure that your efforts are well-compensated. On slower days, you might accept orders with a lower rate, but prioritize high-paying orders whenever possible. DoorDash shows you the total amount you'll make for an order upfront, including base pay, peak pay, and customer tips, allowing you to decide whether it's worth your time and effort. High-paying orders often come from customers who tip well and from restaurants known for quick service. When you receive an order, consider the distance, estimated time, and potential earnings before accepting it. Declining low-paying orders can sometimes lead to better opportunities.


#### 4. **Invest in Essential Gear**

Having the right equipment can make your dashing more efficient. An insulated bag is crucial for keeping food at the right temperature, ensuring that hot items stay hot and cold items stay cold, which can lead to better tips and happier customers. Other essentials include a phone mount for easy navigation, a car charger to keep your phone powered throughout your shift, and a mileage tracker to monitor your expenses for tax purposes. Investing in a high-quality insulated bag and other gear can enhance your professionalism and efficiency. Also, consider having a good pair of comfortable shoes, especially if you do a lot of walking during deliveries. Additionally, having a backup phone charger or power bank can be a lifesaver on long shifts.


#### 5. **Leverage Multiple Delivery Apps**

Don’t limit yourself to DoorDash alone. Sign up for other delivery platforms like Uber Eats, Grubhub, or Postmates. This way, you can switch between apps during slow periods to maintain a steady stream of orders and maximize your earnings. Multi-apping allows you to be more selective with orders and ensures that you're always busy. For instance, if DoorDash is slow, you can switch to Uber Eats to keep the orders coming. This strategy can significantly boost your income and provide a more consistent flow of work. Multi-apping requires careful management to avoid overlapping orders, but it can be a highly effective way to increase your earnings.


#### 6. **Utilize Batch Orders**

DoorDash allows you to accept multiple orders from the same restaurant or nearby locations, which saves time and boosts your earnings. Look for opportunities to combine orders, especially during peak hours, to make the most out of your shifts. For example, if you receive two orders from the same restaurant going in the same direction, you can deliver both at once, saving time and earning double. Batch orders can significantly increase your hourly earnings by reducing travel time and increasing the number of deliveries you complete in a given period. Always check the delivery addresses and ensure they are in the same direction to optimize your route.


#### 7. **Take Advantage of Promotions and Incentives**

Keep an eye out for DoorDash promotions such as Peak Pay and guaranteed earnings challenges. Peak Pay offers additional earnings during high-demand times, while guaranteed earnings challenges provide bonuses for completing a set number of deliveries within a specific timeframe. These incentives can significantly boost your earnings. Participating in these programs can help you reach your $500 weekly goal faster. DoorDash often notifies drivers of these promotions through the app or via email, so make sure your notifications are enabled to take advantage of these opportunities. Additionally, some regions may have specific promotions or seasonal bonuses that can further increase your earnings.


#### 8. **Provide Excellent Customer Service**

Good customer service can lead to higher tips and better ratings. Be polite, communicate effectively, and ensure timely deliveries. Small gestures like thanking customers and providing updates on their order status can make a big difference in your earnings. High ratings and positive feedback not only boost your confidence but also increase your chances of receiving more orders. A polite message to the customer about their order status or a thank-you note can go a long way in improving your tips and ratings. Happy customers are more likely to tip generously and rate you highly, contributing to your overall earnings. Consistently providing excellent service can also lead to repeat customers who may specifically request you for future deliveries.


#### 9. **Experiment with Different Zones**

If your usual area isn’t bringing in enough orders, try different neighborhoods. Sometimes, suburban areas with fewer Dashers can be more lucrative than busy downtown zones. Experimenting with different areas can help you find the most profitable spots. Pay attention to where other Dashers are working and try new areas during peak times to maximize your orders and income. Keep track of your earnings in different zones to identify which areas are most profitable. Don't hesitate to switch zones if you notice a decline in orders or if other areas seem to be busier. Flexibility and willingness to explore new areas can lead to higher earnings.


#### 10. **Track Your Expenses and Earnings**

Keeping track of your expenses is crucial. Use a mileage tracking app to monitor your miles and calculate your deductions at tax time. Understanding your net earnings helps you ensure that your efforts are financially rewarding. Regularly reviewing your expenses can help you identify areas where you can save money, such as finding cheaper gas stations or improving your route efficiency. By accurately tracking your mileage and expenses, you can better understand your net income and make informed decisions about your dashing strategy. Additionally, consider setting aside a portion of your earnings for taxes, as DoorDash drivers are considered independent contractors.


### Final Thoughts

Earning $500 a week with DoorDash is definitely achievable with the right strategies. Focus on peak times, choose your orders wisely, and take advantage of promotions and incentives. By following these tips and staying dedicated, you can turn your side gig into a reliable source of extra income. Happy dashing!

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