The “DoorDash” Yes – Here, There, Everywhere
The “DoorDash” Yes – Here, There, Everywhere

The “DoorDash” Yes – Here, There, Everywhere

DoorDashing – Skydivers Get Hungry Too

door dash
Please don’t yell at me!

My latest attempt of coming up with a new “Yes” idea came about four weeks ago when I questioned what it would be like to be a DoorDasher as I wanted some extra spending money. I also needed an excuse to complete my daily walking in order for my foot to heal more quickly and to prevent my physical therapist from giving me the whole, “I’m disappointed” ordeal. I hesitantly filled out my personal information and fought tooth and nail not to hit the, “Submit” button as I knew that by continuing to say, “No” to everything due to fear and anxiety would likely lead to increased misery. My passionate heart asked myself, “Ashlee, what did you just learn while working retail during a pandemic while guests complained about anything and everything? You don’t know what good things will come your way if you don’t try them! That’s right, you deserve to be happy!” I thought about my new, “Just say, ‘Yes’” ordeal and clicked the submit button. “Congratulations, Ashlee! You are now a Dasher and can begin right now!” Wait! Now? Tip for the newer Dashers, “Do not wear jeans on this job in the summer time!”

I filled up my somewhat gas-guzzling Jeep to the top and off I went for my first trip. My phone alerted me that I had my first order, so I naively took it despite not knowing that I wouldn’t be making much of a profit. It was a nice little donut and coffee shop near my place, so I grabbed it and drove to another DoorDash zone to deliver it. Yes, there are five zones in my area, so I can always find a delivery. I thought this was going to be “easy-money”, but no one informed me about the restaurants not beginning the orders on time, the COVID protocols in which you cannot check what’s in the bag, the heavy traffic, the numerous apartment complexes in which I have to navigate through followed by walking up four flights of stairs, the app glitches, the people who do not want to communicate when you cannot find them to drop off an order, and the fact that there are people who simply do not want to tip you. Another key factor is that you need to read the instructions for every order as some will not be too happy if you knock on their door while others will chase you off with a broom if you wake up their children or upset their dogs.

My journey has taken me to many interesting places to meet many interesting people. I have also discovered new areas of my community while finding new places to eat. Crumbl is now on my list of places to try as the cookies are gigantic and smell delicious, however, the line is somewhat of a nightmare unless you are a Dasher who gets to cut in line. Unfortunately, you never get to eat it unless the DoorDash server goes down, and you have no way of delivering the food. I even decided to take one of my friends out to eat at a local ma and pa restaurant that I never knew existed. Is DoorDash my dream job? No, writing is. However, saying, “Yes” to new adventures has led me to getting to know my city a little bit better, and the entrepreneur side of me is enjoying the challenge of trying to make a better profit each time I Dash. Who else gets excited about Amazon Prime Day so they can purchase better delivery carriers for larger orders? I will admit, DoorDash does get a little frustrating at times, because you really do have to put in some effort to complete the orders while also asking yourself, “Is it worth driving 12 miles to earn $6? You sometimes have to ditch the friends on a Friday or Saturday night if you want to earn the bigger tips. It is contract work in which you have to pick and choose your battles while also having to do basic math to figure out what is going to put money into your pocket. I have made as little as $17 per hour on my, “Everything is going wrong” days to as high as $50 per hour on my, “Thank you, kind tippers” days.

I have been all over the city (over 100 restaurants and homes to be exact) and have even been granted access to a secure oasis where people were sipping their wine on their boats or peacefully watching the sunset from their kayaks. Believe me, I wanted to stick around and hang out with the locals as they were all very kind to me, but I figured I didn’t want to abuse my privileges and possibly lose my chances of being a Dasher. I have delivered to hotel suites, to apartments in sketchy areas in the dark during a hail storm, to the CEO’s 12th floor office, a person’s lake home, to a baseball game, to a lawyer, to an architect, and I have even delivered to people who just finished up their indoor skydiving. I was having nightmares of missing orders during the first couple of weeks of Dashing, but those have quickly gone away, and I am finding myself being able to sleep through the night if I Dash until at least 7 or 8 PM. It is exhausting!

Holidays

I knew this past weekend was going to be a big weekend with it being Father’s Day. A lot of people don’t want to do the cooking and want delicious take-out food to celebrate with their families instead. While my mind is thinking, “My background in Applied Behavioral Science and Neurobiology did not tell me I would be delivering food to people!”, my entrepreneur portion of my brain is saying, “This is beyond brilliant! This is what people want, and I can make a lot of money off this if I work at it and learn the strategies.” My first order on Father’s Day was for Wal-Mart – one of the biggest fears of the Dasher as we usually won’t be paid or tipped much, and they usually require a great amount of driving. Thankfully, I was sent a nice contract to deliver one order for $23.50 which ended up taking me thirty minutes to complete. Things did not slow down as I was all over the map from 10:30 AM to 1:30 PM and then back at it again from 5:00-9:30 PM. While very rare, Father’s Day turned into my, “Everything is going right” day, so here’s $50 for your first hour.

While I rarely find a rude customer, there is one on occasion that may rate me low for no reason or even call me during my delivery to yell at me. I was no more than a block away from the customer’s home when they decided to call me and scream over the phone, “Are you lost?!” This is where my retail experience came in. I acknowledged what she said in a professional manner, explained to her where I was going, and I asked if that was not the correct route as I have once been sent to another place across town. She informed me that it was in fact the correct address but not the route she would have taken. It does feel a little uneasy knowing you are being watched by some, so I do have to laugh at myself when I get lost in an apartment complex and question whether or not the customer is watching me circle around the parking lot like an idiot and cheering me on to find their location. Hey, as long as this idiot gets the order to you on time and while the food is still warm, I do provide entertainment on the side. Eddy can vouch for yesterday’s delivery as he helped navigate me to his apartment over the phone. Suddenly, a celebration erupted over the phone as we worked together to get this disabled Veteran his groceries. Some of these people I deliver to are absolutely phenomenal, and I always try to type a nice message to each customer at the end of the delivery as I may be their only source of communication for the day.

Pros & Cons

Like any job, there are pros and cons. For most part, I really don’t mind the hustle and bustle, nor do I really care what people may think of me. I know my Grandpa – the former farmer and real-estate business owner – is looking down at me and saying, “Yes! That is how you earn that penny! You put your head down, don’t complain, and you get the job done while building up your community!” I truly didn’t know how much people were making until I tried Dashing myself. I was amazed when I saw my first paycheck and saw that I only worked 15 hours for it. Some people Dash full-time which I find amazing as you do have to put in some physical and mental effort into this job. My mind is constantly in business mode when I go to any job. When it comes to DoorDash, my mind may be thinking, “I’m helping this restaurant with their sales while also trying to earn my target profit per Dash.

Here are my pros and cons I have noticed thus far:

Pros Cons

Create your own hours

Order may not always be ready on time

Take breaks as often as you would like

Car wear and tear

Can easily make $20-24/hr or more (my record is $50)

Low base pay and sometimes low or no tips

Discover many new restaurants

If you have any suggestions on what new “Yes” adventure I should try next, please leave a comment below or email me. No worries, skydiving and concerts are on the list!

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