How To Become a DoorDash Driver | 2022 Hiring Guide

We all want a job that comes with less stress, flexible hours, and enough pay to fund our daily expenses. For many people, being a DoorDash driver is exactly what they need either as a side hustle or full-time job.

DoorDash is a food delivery app that allows anyone in the US, Australia, or Canada to order food and drinks from any merchants supported on their platforms. They are part of the new gig economy operating like Uber Eats and Instacart and are available in over 7000 cities.

As a DoorDash driver or dasher, you make the delivery to the customer and get paid in return for your services. All you need is a vehicle and a smartphone. You can even use a scooter.

But before you make any decisions, you must understand DoorDash driver requirements. In this piece, you will learn all you need to know about the process and requirements for being a DoorDash driver. We also included a FAQ section to answer any questions you might have.

Requirements For Becoming A DoorDash Driver

The requirements for becoming a DoorDash driver are:

  • You must be 18 years or above
  • You must have a valid driver’s license
  • You must have a smartphone that can run the Dasher App
  • You must have a means of transportation (bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, car, or truck)
  • Your vehicle insurance must meet your state’s minimum policy requirements
  • You must provide your Social Security number
  • You must allow DoorDash to run a background check on your profile
  • You must pass the background check
  • Lastly, you must complete an in-person or online orientation process

Background Check

The DoorDash background check is the most significant factor in determining if you can deliver food items for DoorDash or not. It is similar to the assessment used by most employers in today’s work environment. 

Other ride-sharing platforms also conduct similar checks before onboarding drives on their platforms. Examples are:

  • Postmates, 
  • Lyft, and 
  • Uber

DoorDash uses this background check to look into your record to find out if you have any motor vehicle violations or any potential criminal convictions. It outsources the background checks to Checkr, a company specializing in background checks.

Checkr runs the background check when you provide your Social Security number during the application process. You must give permission to run the background check. Also, DoorDash can disqualify you if they see any offense they aren’t comfortable with within your personal history.

The background check investigates all possible criminal issues. It does a full Motor Vehicles lookup if you apply to use a motorcycle, car, or truck to make DoorDash deliveries.

The offenses that can disqualify you from driving on the DoorDash platform are:

  • Thefts
  • Felonies
  • Sexual offenses
  • Violent crimes
  • DUIs – Driving under the influence of drugs or/and alcohol
  • Property damage crimes, including arson

Vehicle Requirements

Unlike other riding-sharing platforms like Uber or Lyft, DoorDash does not have special vehicle requirements. All you need is a vehicle, a valid driver’s license, and insurance that meets state regulations.

The only two requirements are that you:

  • Have a clean driving record, and 
  • A properly insured vehicle

DoorDash has very flexible requirements for the kind of vehicle you may use. You can use the following means of transportation for delivery:

  • Cars and trucks of any model/year as long as they are in good working condition.
  • Motorcycles, bikes, and scooters for large urban markets that allow them.
  • Your two legs (on-foot delivery) for delivery in concentrated cities such as:
    • Chicago
    • Washington DC
    • Los Angeles
    • Denver
    • New York
    • San Francisco

It is interesting to note that DoorDash doesn’t carry out vehicle inspections. Furthermore, you can use a rented vehicle to work with DoorDash.

Suppose you don’t have access to your personal, borrowed, or rented vehicle. In that case, you should check during your application if your area allows delivery via bicycles, scooters, or even on-foot deliveries.

DoorDash will tell you the mode of transportation allowed for your working area in the early steps of the application.

Insurance Requirements

DoorDash requires that your insurance meet the minimum liability coverage requirements stipulated by state regulations. This applies if you use a car, truck, or motorcycle for delivery.

DoorDash also provides insurance coverage for Dashers. This commercial insurance policy coverage insures property damage and bodily injury for up to $1 million.

However, this coverage only applies to events that occur when you are on “active delivery” status; that is, you are yet to deliver the order items in your possession.

The coverage is non-applicable if:

  • You are yet to take possession of the deliverable items.
  • You have delivered the order items.

Steps For Applying To Become A DoorDash Driver

Applying to become a DoorDash driver is an easy process. The signup process takes less than 5 minutes from start to finish. The things you need for your DoorDash driving application are:

  • Personal information (name, phone number)
  • Your Social Security number (You don’t need the card)
  • Your vehicle license information
  • An Android smartphone or iPhone to download the DoorDash driver app after application

Have those things ready? Then you are set to begin one of the easiest jobs that offer good pay. Here are the steps:

Step 1. Visit the DoorDash signup page ( on your web browser and enter your email in the assigned field to begin the registration process. You will be notified if your application is accepted or not via email, so ensure you use an email address you have access to.

Step 2. Enter your full name, phone number, and a preferred password on the next page, then click on “Continue.”

Step 3. Select your vehicle type from the available options and type in your driver’s license number. You should also confirm that you have auto insurance. Hit the “Continue” button when you are done.

If your market area allows bike or on-foot deliveries, this step might look slightly different. Choose an option that works for you, then tap “continue.”

Step 4. Enter your personal information needed to run the background check. This includes your birthday and Social Security number.

Step 5. Take your time to read the background check, check disclosures, and authorization message. You can also select the option to “Receive a free copy of my background check report.” When you are done reading, authorize the required background check by hitting the “Continue” button.

Step 6. Download the DoorDash app on your smartphone via Google Play Store or the App Store. This marks the end of the application process. From this point on, it is simply a waiting game.

What To Expect After Applying To Become A DoorDash Driver

It takes between five to ten business days for your DoorDash driver application to be approved or rejected. Two major factors can influence the length of your waiting period. These are:

  • The background check: There are over 3,000 counties in the United States. Therefore, it can take a long time to search through all the individual criminal databases in those counties. If you have prior transgressions, expect your application to take as much as ten working days before you get a reply.
  • Motor Vehicle record check. Another factor that lengthens the waiting period is the Motor Vehicle record check. Some states will provide a report within a few days, while others can take more than a week before the report is back.

One tip can help you avoid unnecessary waiting periods: don’t use any strange nicknames in your DoorDash application. The best thing is to use your full legal name as it appears on your tax returns.

While waiting for your DoorDash application approval, you will also go through a DoorDash orientation.

The DoorDash orientation program is designed to teach you everything you need to know about working as a driver on the platform. There are three options to choose from. You can:

  • Arrange for an in-person orientation for a specific time,
  • Attend an orientation event at your DoorDash office, or
  • Request a DoorDash Activation Kit.

If you choose to request a DoorDash Activation Kit, you will receive a shipment that contains:

  • A manual
  • A complimentary hot bag
  • Your DoorDash Red Card

Whatever option you choose, you should look forward to learning the following from the orientation session/video/manual:

  • How to accept a delivery request
  • How to place the order at each restaurant
  • How to pay for the order
  • How to deliver a DoorDash order to a customer
  • The orientation also provides tips about
  • Getting help from the support team
  • How to obtain a consistent 5-star rating
  • Best times to schedule your Dash times
  • How to get paid

After the orientation, you will have to complete a quick quiz to measure how much you’ve learned. You must complete the orientation and the quiz as soon as possible. This can help fast-track the overall speed of the DoorDash approval process for you.

When DoorDash has received your background check results and motor vehicle record, it will review it alongside your application. After which, you’ll get a response through the email address you provided while signing up.

If your application is approved, you will be invited to a DoorDash location close to you to pick up the following:

  • A Red Card to use for purchasing orders from merchants, 
  • An activation kit, and
  • An insulated red-hot bag to help carry customer orders.

If there is no room for new applicants in your area, DoorDash will add you to the waitlist. The acceptance rate depends on the demand in your area. 

You will be invited to join DoorDash delivery drivers in your area when demand goes up, or any of the other drivers get deactivated or leave the platform.

Being on the waitlist means you are qualified to become a dasher, so you have nothing to worry about.

If your application gets rejected, you have two choices:

  • Move on, or
  • Ask for a report of the background check

If you have a clean record, you should ask for a background check report. It is your legal right. In some cases, your application got rejected because of a mistake or something as trivial as a blurry driver’s license picture. You can show them this mistake and get approved to join the platform.

If you have spots in your criminal or motor vehicle records, it is better to seek out other high-paying jobs that don’t require background checks.

The Bottom Line

Becoming a DoorDash comes with exciting possibilities. You get to work and get paid on your terms. You also have the choice of pursuing other job activities alongside your DoorDash delivery job.

If you like the sound of it, you can start your application immediately. Your application should get approved if you don’t have any criminal records or spots in your motor vehicle records. The sooner you sign up, the sooner you can begin making money from delivery.

All you need to become a DoorDash delivery driver are:

  • A means of transportation and license if you are using a car or truck
  • Social Security number
  • Smartphone

Throw in some dedication, and you’d be on your way to making easy money.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do DoorDash drivers make?

Short answer: DoorDash drivers can earn up to $25 per hour. However, there is a lot that goes into that amount.

Here is how it works. Doordash delivery drivers are paid when they make a delivery and not by the hour. Their payout per delivery is calculated using this formula: Base pay + Promotions + Tips = Total Earnings. 

The base pay is calculated based on three factors:

  • Delivery time
  • Distance
  • Desirability

DoorDash pays between $3 – $6 as base pay, but they can also earn above that range through tips. When a dasher receives an order request, they can see if the customer has left a tip for them. Sometimes, they only get to receive some of the tips.

Many Dashers often ignore low-paying orders, which often means that the customer didn’t leave a tip.

Promotions are incentives offered by DoorDash to their delivery drivers. These incentives are:

  • Peak Pay: Peak Pay is a bonus added by DoorDash to each order made during busy times and peak hours. For example, they may offer an extra $3 per order if the dasher accepts 80% of delivery opportunities between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Challenge Bonus: Dashers receive a challenge bonus from DoorDash when they complete a specified number of deliveries during a specific period. For example, drivers may get an extra $20 if they complete 20 deliveries in a single week. Some markets do not offer Challenges.

Generally, a DoorDash driver can expect to earn more if they live in a large city due to more demand. Those who put in more hours and take advantage of bonuses can earn more.

Is it worth it to be a DoorDash driver?

Yes. Being a DoorDash delivery driver allows you to work on your own schedule. You can choose to be a DoorDash delivery driver as a part-time or full-time job.

As a dasher, you get to choose your working hours and decide how much you earn on a given day. The only barriers to entry are:

  • A smartphone
  • A means of transportation

Some of the benefits of being a DoorDash driver are:

  • Extra money for those who have other part-time jobs
  • Freedom to work as a driver in over 7,000 cities
  • Flexible working hours
  • A transparent and scalable way to make money

When you work with DoorDash, you get paid weekly/daily. You can choose:

  • Direct deposits into your bank account,
  • No-fee daily deposits with DasherDirect (for US drivers only), or
  • Daily withdrawals with Fast Pay (for US drivers only)

Can someone ride with me while driving for DoorDash?

Absolutely, yes! With DoorDash, you are your boss. You can have someone in your vehicle as you make deliveries. This can be a friend, child, or spouse. DoorDash does not mind if their presence does not interfere with your work.

DoorDash drivers are considered independent contractors. This means they are free to conduct themselves in any manner if they do not expose DoorDash to any liability. As such, you can have someone accompany you on your deliveries, especially when you are making deliveries at a late hour.

However, you and you alone make the delivery. It is against DoorDash rules for your friend, spouse, or child to use your account or make deliveries for you. That could get your account deactivated.

Some customers and merchants will report your account if someone else shows up to pick up or make deliveries. Some drivers might get away with this if the other person is of the same gender.

Furthermore, it is not a great idea to bring little kids along when making deliveries. If your kid is old enough, they can keep you company or help with handling packages. However, only you should contact the customer.

What is the difference between being a DoorDash driver and a food delivery driver?

Strictly speaking, there is no difference. As a DoorDash driver, you are responsible for making food deliveries. These are key features that separate DoorDash drivers from other food delivery drivers:

  • Increased Pay: You can realistically earn more as a dasher since you can increase your pay with promotions and tips. Other food delivery services and eateries don’t usually offer as many opportunities as DoorDash.
  • Lower Age Limit: DoorDash’s lower age limit is 18 years old. Food delivery services like Grubhub require applicants to be at least 19 years of age.
  • Transparency: DoorDash offers a transparent payment system. You can tell how much you can expect to make from the order estimate when you receive an order. This allows you to have more control over your earnings.
  • Flexibility: DoorDash offers more flexibility as it allows you to choose your working hours. From the app, you can schedule your working hours in advance. You can also choose to start accepting deliveries at any moment by tapping “Dash Now.” Drivers that work for specific food services do not have this flexibility.

Can I use my DoorDash card for gas?

No! You cannot use your DoorDash card to pay for gas. To understand this better, you must know the purpose of the DoorDash credit card.

Customers make orders from their DoorDash app and pay using their credit or debit cards. Their food orders will appear in your driver app, and you can choose to deliver the order. 

When you choose to deliver, you will go to the merchant to purchase the food. Your DoorDash card is funded after you accept the food request. You then pay for the food with your DoorDash card.

This means your DoorDash card only contains funds when you have a food order to deliver.

Does DoorDash have a dress code?

No! There is no official dress code when making a delivery. However, that doesn’t mean you can wear anything.

Drivers are encouraged to dress professionally. Revealing and unprofessional clothing such as shorts, tank shirts, and flip-flops are not allowed. You can wear business-casual or semi-professional clothes.

If you are unsure of what to wear, put on a DoorDash t-shirt or polo shirt with a pair of decent jeans (or a skirt for ladies who don’t like jeans).

How old do you have to be to do DoorDash?

You must be at least 18 years old before you can apply to be a DoorDash delivery driver. If you are over 18, have a driver’s license, a smartphone, and access to a vehicle, you can be a DoorDash driver.

Being a DoorDash driver is one of the many ways to make money on your terms. We have other guides and resources to help those who want to make money while working flexible hours. Checked out our blog for more.