Doordash has become one of the most popular food delivery services, allowing customers to order food from local restaurants right to their door. However, one aspect of Doordash that often frustrates drivers is that the company doesn’t always show the full tip amount upfront when offering a delivery opportunity. This means drivers might unknowingly pass up deliveries that would’ve been worth their time and effort.
Luckily, there are some tricks that Doordash drivers can use to get a better idea of what the full payout (including tip) will be on an offer before accepting it. In this blog post, I’ll explain what hidden tips are on Doordash and outline actionable strategies you can use as a driver to reveal better tip amounts.
What are Hidden Tips on Doordash?
Doordash has a base pay model for drivers that varies based on factors like mileage, time, and desirability of orders. On top of the base pay from Doordash, customers have the option to leave a tip to thank their driver. However, Doordash doesn’t show the full tip amount to drivers upfront.
Instead, Doordash will show a “guaranteed minimum” payout when offering a delivery to a driver. This guaranteed minimum includes Doordash’s base pay + just a portion of the customer’s tip (usually $4-$5 of the tip). So if a customer leaves a $10 tip, Doordash might show a guaranteed minimum of $7 for the order.
The “hidden” part of the tip is the amount that’s over the $4-$5 minimum shown to the driver. This is frustrating for many Doordash drivers because you don’t know if you might be missing out on a much larger payout from a generous tipper.
Why Does Doordash Hide Tips?
Doordash claims that hiding full tip amounts helps ensure a more consistent delivery service. The idea is that by not showing big tips upfront, drivers can’t cherry-pick only the most lucrative orders. Instead, all orders have a shot at being picked up in a reasonable amount of time.
However, many drivers argue this system is unfair because you never know if an order is worth your effort until after delivery is complete. Without insight into full tips, it’s hard to run Doordash like an optimized independent business.
Regardless of which side you agree with, as drivers we’re stuck operating within Doordash’s system. So rather than wishing the system worked differently, savvy drivers have found some creative ways to get better insight on full payouts.
Guide to See Hidden Tips Before Accepting an Order
While Doordash tip hiding can be frustrating, drivers aren’t completely in the dark. With some creative methods, we can get better visibility into full payouts before deciding whether to accept or decline an order.
Here are actionable strategies Doordash drivers use to reveal better tip amounts:
1. Focus on Higher Paying Orders
While there’s no guaranteed way to know if an order has a hidden tip, focusing on higher-paying orders greatly improves your odds. Doordash will hide almost all tips over $4-$5 in the guaranteed minimum.
So seeing an order with a payout of $10, $12, $15 or more means the customer likely tipped decently. There’s a good chance much of that tip is hidden. Higher paying orders definitely warrant further investigation into potential full payouts.
2. Use a Time and Mileage Estimate
Knowing what Doordash’s base rates tend to be in your area can help you more accurately estimate order payouts. As mentioned earlier, Doordash calculates base pay based on mileage, time, and order desirability.
While exact pay formulas vary by location, a general rule of thumb is Doordash pays $2-$2.50 base pay per order + $1 for every additional pickup + $0.30-$0.60 per mile from the restaurant to the customer.
You can use those base rates as a benchmark. If Doordash is showing an upfront payout higher than the probable base pay rates, there is likely a portion of the tip being hidden.
For example, if you get an order request that is 5 miles from the restaurant to the customer, Doordash might be paying $2 base + $0.30 per mile, so $3.50 base pay. If the offer shows a $9 guaranteed minimum payout, there’s likely a $5-$6 tip being hidden.
3. Be Wary of Even Payouts
Oftentimes Doordash will show “even” guaranteed minimum payments like $6, $8 or $10. These nice round numbers likely mean the minimum tip is being shown rather than the full tip.
Seeing uneven payouts like $7.58 or $9.36 are good signs that you’re seeing the full payout amount including tip upfront rather than just a minimum.
4. Track Your Own Delivery History
While you may start out clueless about hidden tips with Doordash, over time patterns will emerge. Tracking your own delivery history using apps like Everlance or Stride can help uncover hidden tip thresholds in your region.
For example, if you notice that you regularly get additional payouts of $8 or more after completing orders shown as $10, it’s clear that orders with $10 upfront tend to have decent hidden tips in your area. Analyzing your own data is crucial to optimizing future order selection.
5. Decline If Uncertain
Don’t feel like you need to gamble on questionable orders if potential hidden tips are unclear. There will always be more delivery opportunities.
It’s often better to let questionable orders pass and instead, hold out for orders that clearly suggest higher hidden tips based on upfront payout amounts. Declining unclear payouts helps maximize your hourly earnings long-term.
6. Double Check When Order Gets Close
One last smart tip is to double-check order details when you get close to picking up an order. Swipe that you’ve arrived at the restaurant, then click on “view full payout details” where you will now sometimes see a higher payout than originally shown.
Doordash occasionally releases a larger portion of big tips to drivers once you are committed to completing the delivery. So double-check for any nice surprises!
Is it Worth Trying to Uncover Hidden Tips?
Dealing with Doordash’s hidden tip system definitely requires some savvy analysis. New drivers might simply take everything they see at face value. However, developing strategies to uncover bigger tips can make a huge earnings difference.
These tips require paying attention to details and tracking your own order history – but lead to better order selection. Choosing orders with higher potential payout makes the biggest impact on increasing your hourly pay with Doordash.
So while hidden tips create uncertainty, with smart strategizing you can still maximize earnings. Using these tips, you’ll learn to more accurately gauge potential payouts and focus on the best delivery opportunities. Over time patterns for your area will emerge.
Analyzing order data to inform future decisions is crucial to success as an independent contract delivery driver. So take the time to implement strategies to better see what a full tip might be. It definitely pays off to put in the effort to optimize order selection with Doordash’s less-than-transparent pay model.
How Do You Get Big Tips On Doordash?
Here are some tips for getting bigger tips as a Doordash driver:
- Provide excellent service. Going above and beyond basic expectations with friendliness, timeliness, order accuracy, and care can encourage customers to tip more generously.
- Communicate proactively. Send text updates if you’re running late, if there’s an issue at the restaurant, or when you’ve arrived. This sets expectations and shows effort.
- Check orders for accuracy. Double-check drink cup sizes, condiments, silverware etc. Missing items frustrate customers and impact tips.
- Keep hot foods hot. Use an insulated delivery bag to keep pizzas, soups, etc as warm as possible during transit. Delivering cold food disappoints.
- Follow delivery instructions. Read customer notes and follow any special requests. Customers tip for good attention to detail.
- Position leave-at-door orders neatly. Take a photo, ring/knock if asked, and place items neatly together. Make a good last impression.
- Send a friendly text upon delivery. A simple thank you for the tip has been shown to result in higher post-delivery tip amounts.
- Maintain a professional appearance. Wear clean clothes and be presentable when interacting with merchants and customers.
Going the extra mile in areas like this shows effort customers want to reward. Prioritize service and smarts for better Doordash tips over time.
In conclusion, viewing hidden tips on DoorDash can be a bit tricky, but it is possible. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure that you are getting paid for all of the tips earned through deliveries. It’s important to note that some tips may not be visible immediately and may be added to your pay at a later time.
Moreover, some customers may choose to tip in cash, which will not be reflected in the app. If you still can’t find the hidden tips, you can contact DoorDash support for assistance. Remember that tips are an additional income and it’s always at the discretion of the customer to tip.