What Is Postmates: Everything You Need To Know About Postmates

What is Postmates, and why is it so popular in America? Read the article to find out everything you need to know about Postmates.

With the popularity of eCommerce websites and apps, the world has become even smaller. No more worries about walking out yourself to buy something when you can simply click, scroll, add to a card, and place an order while relaxing on your couch.

Delivery apps are also part of the eCommerce industry that has made the world even easier. They save single adults or office working people the time to cook something for themselves.

During the pandemic, the biggest profiting industry was eCommerce, and the most-used apps were to order food or groceries. Since then, the demand for delivery apps has increased drastically.

So, you might be wondering, what is Postmates, and why is it so popular. Among many delivery apps, this is also one of them. You can either order or work for Postmates, but their purpose is the same as any other delivery app.

Here is a complete guide on what is Postmates and how it works:

History of food delivery

Before you know what is Postmates, you might be wondering what the history of food delivery is.

Food delivery services are not only popular in the U.S but worldwide. In fact, the concept of food delivery has a long history. No one really knows the origin of the delivery service; some believe it started in the 18th century in Korea for naengmyeon (cold noodles). In Europe, the first delivery service was in Napes, Italy, in the 19 century when a famous pizza maker delivered his pizza to the King and Queen of Savoy. Then it became a proper publicized service in the 19th century in India.

When eCommerce was introduced, initially, there were only online websites. The first-ever delivery website in the United States was World Wide Waiter. Then, delivery apps were launched, and slowly they spread throughout the world. Now, there are thousands of delivery apps and websites worldwide.

Why is food delivery so popular?

Food delivery services have become a global phenomenon. Every now and then, new websites or apps are launched with better services. This is because the competition in the eCommerce industry has spiked up drastically over the last ten years.

Delivery apps make it convenient whether you need food from your favorite restaurant or groceries to cook your food. They save gas and time for busy people and are quick to deliver them.

Food delivery websites saw their golden age during the pandemic. People couldn’t go out, so they would order food through these service companies more often. Even those who might have never used a delivery were forced to download it and order.

Over the years, people realized the convenience of these eCommerce websites; now, they are the most profitable business around the world.

Benefits of delivery apps

In recent years, especially during the COVID-19 lockdown, delivery apps gained a lot of popularity. Not only do these apps save time for office-going workers, but it is also safer for the environment. Furthermore, it can help jobless people earn some extra cash without worrying about any contract.

When we say environment, we mean: fewer people come out on the roads, only drivers make the deliveries.

Office workers often struggle during lunch hours because of the long waiting lines and the effort to go out and buy something. Through delivery apps, they can schedule their deliveries and eat food on time.

The concept of food delivery began for workers to earn extra cash. Many drivers consider delivery apps as a side hustle to pay bills or keep some savings.

What is Postmates?

It’s always a delight to know the basics of food delivery service. In the U.S., there are various delivery apps and websites, some of which are quite popular. So, then what is Postmates?

Postmates is a food delivery website and app. It is an eCommerce business that delivers groceries, alcohol, and food to customers. Postmates is promised to provide the fastest delivery through simple pick-up and drop-off service. It is one of the most popular delivery apps in the U.S right now.

Postmates was founded in 2011 by Bastian Lehmann. It is a solely American food delivery website that operates in more than 100 urban areas in the U.S. Currently, Postmates is under Uber Technologies Inc.

Whether you need to order grocery items or food from famous restaurants, Postmates will deliver it to your doorstep as soon as possible. It is the fastest delivery service, making it stand out from other delivery apps.

How does Postmates work?

Now that you know what is Postmates, you might be wondering how it works.

Postmates follows a similar business model as any other delivery service like UberEats, DoorDash, GrubHub, etc. There are courier boys employed under the company who pick up the products and deliver them to the destination.

Postmates is committed to providing the best delivery service in a short time, and they also have great customer service, available 24/7 to receive any confusion or complaints.

Using the Posmates app or website is not that hard. You can easily get used to it once you are familiar with its various features and options:

Signing up

As soon as you download the app ‘Postmates’ from the App Store or Play Store, you will be asked to sign up with your number or email. Note that you must be a citizen of the United States to be able to sign up for the app.

For the Postmates website, you can sign in through your number. Since the company is under Uber, you can sign in using your number registered on Uber.

Browse through options

Once you are signed up, there will appear a home screen with many options.

The app is divided into categories for food and businesses. You can filter out your desired food or item through the filter button. Postmates app will give you choices to pick from the options. You can order items from liquor stores, pharmacies, grocery stores, and restaurants.

Each category is subdivided into businesses that fall under it, so pick one based on your preferences and add it to the cart.

There is also another option in the app, ‘Party.’ If you order items from the businesses listed in that tab, you get free delivery. Note that the businesses listed are only for a certain time limit during which you can order.

You can search for a certain food or item through the search bar. Keep an eye on the promo codes and discounts because Postmates often gives those.

Payment options

After you are done filling up the cart with desired items, place the order. The app will direct you to the payment options.

Postmates only allows online payment. So, you have to pay by your card for the order to be confirmed. There is no other option for you to choose from.

Delivery process

As soon as the transaction is verified, the nearest postmate service provider (delivery person) will receive the notification to get your food or item delivered. The postmates are always nearby unless you order late or too early.

Since the app is committed to delivering items quickly, they will do anything to make sure you receive them on time. The postmates are given one hour to deliver the food to the destination; they use either a bike or car to deliver.

Track order

The Postmates app makes sure to keep their customers up-to-date with their rider’s destination so that they are ready to receive the order on time. You can easily track orders on the phone while you do your work.

As soon as the delivery person reaches your destination, you will get a notification from the app or a call from the person about your order to receive it.

Rate and tip

Every time you order something through the delivery app, once you receive it, you have the option to give ratings and tips. You can give a tip through the app and rate them.

Note that every tip the app receives is given directly to the postmate. None of it is taken by the company.

How much does Postmates cost?

Now that you know what is Postmates and how it works, you should also know the cost of buying items through the app. Although Postmates is one of the best apps to get your food delivered to you, it is very expensive.

Postmates demands a delivery fee and a service fee from the customers. The delivery fee is determined by how far or near your destination is from the restaurant or grocery store. Usually, the fee ranges from $3.99 to $5.99. Furthermore, you have to pay a 9% service fee with it.

Another thing to keep in mind is that if you order something that is less than $12, then you pay an extra $1.99 for a small-cart fee.

Is there a monthly fee for Postmates?

Postmates Unlimited is a subscription option for a monthly fee if you order food on a daily basis through the app. It saves you from paying the charges on every order.

Pay $9.99 per month, and you can enjoy the benefits of ordering food without worrying about the delivery fee as long as your order costs more than $12. Furthermore, you can enjoy exclusive discounts and giveaways by the partner companies through this plan. You save money on paying the delivery fee if your order is under $12, even during the peak hour.

This monthly plan can be costly for those who order food occasionally. So, first, decide how much you use Postmates and then buy Postmates Unlimited.

Postmates vs. Uber Eats

When you compare the prices between Postmates and Uber Eats, it can help in deciding which app is best to order food from. Like Postmates, Uber Eats also has a service fee customers need to pay.

The service fee at Uber Eats is based on the subtotal and adds up to 15% of the total. The delivery fee is highly dependent on how far or near you are living from the restaurant. Based on review pages, Uber Eats costs range between $0.99 to $7.99. If you order small orders, you have to pay a lot, so it is better to add more items worth the delivery cost.

Postmates vs. Grubhub

In comparison to Postmates, Grubhub is cheaper. Many people choose to order food from Grubhub because of their low-cost delivery fee. If you are looking for a cheap delivery app option, Grubhub is for you; however, if you want fast and premium quality service, Postmates is the better option to choose.

Grubhub charges between $0.99 – $9.99 for delivery. The prices can vary based on distance, drivers in the area, and hours. If you order during busy hours, you might have to pay more than usual because of the unavailability of drivers.

It’s the same as Postmates with a lower price range.

Work for Postmates

If you are looking for extra cash or a part-time job, working for Postmates is a good option to consider. Now that you are aware of what is Postmates, you can easily sign up as a delivery person to earn money.

Postmates has a huge workforce and gives payments on time. Being a leading delivery app, it has a good reputation among part-timers. You can also choose to work for Postmates as a full-time driver. Whether you choose to work for Postmates as a side job or full-time, you get paid accordingly.

If you have read the above-mentioned details, you will know that Postmates is not just a food delivery service; instead, it delivers anything in-demand to the customers. As a driver, you must pick up those items and reach the customer on time.

How to become a driver for Postmates?

If you are making $25 from your current job, then keeping Postmates as a side hustle is a good option. Not only will you earn enough to afford your lifestyle, but you will also save up for emergency funds.

Signing up for Postmates is quite easy. Postmates has set certain requirements, and if you fall under them, you are ready to work for them:


Postmates have three main requirements for the driver:

  1. You should be 18 years old or older.
  2. You must have a legal driver’s license and an insured vehicle.
  3. You must be approved by Postmates to become a driver.

A background check is necessary to work for Postmates. It is for the customer and company’s safety. The company keeps a record of each driver in case something bad happens. To avoid any losses from their side, they always do a detailed check on the driver.

Once you have fulfilled all the requirements, you are ready to work for Postmates.


You can apply for the job through the website. Use your email address to sign up as a driver. After that, the website will direct you to an information page about the benefits of working with Postmates.

Make sure when you fill out personal details that your legal name is right for background checks. Upload your profile picture; it should be clear with solid background; this picture will be used on your driver profile for customers to identify you.

Prepaid card

Postmates gives the drivers a prepaid card once they are hired. The drivers have to activate this card through their online account.

The purpose of prepaid cards is to pick up orders that customers are yet to pay, but you need to deliver on time. The online account should have your banking information so that you get a direct deposit once you complete the order.

Postmates Fleet app

Postmates management will ask you to provide your phone number and provide a link to download the private Postmates Fleet app. You can download this app through the App Store or Play Store.

This app is used to receive orders; it is different from the regular app that customers use to order items,

What does Postmates pay per delivery?

If you start delivering for Postmates, your pay will be based on the number of hours you work. More hours on the road mean higher earnings.

Many wonder about Postmates’ per delivery pay. On average, Postmates pays around $4.43 per delivery. The average hourly pay for Postmates delivery is approximately $7.50. However, delivering during peak hours can boost your earnings to up to $12 per hour. This pay structure is quite similar across various delivery apps.

Earnings depend heavily on your location. In some cities, drivers can earn up to $18 per hour, while the starting rate is around $3.67 per hour. Additionally, customer tips can significantly increase your income, making Postmates a potentially lucrative option.

Many people choose Postmates as a side gig, while others deliver full-time. Your earnings will ultimately depend on how many hours you work.

Pros and cons of working at Postmates

Before deciding whether you want to work at Postmates or not, you should be aware of the pros and cons. This can help you figure out whether you are suitable for the job or not.

The best way to know which job is best for you is to balance its pros and cons, so you don’t overwork yourself or end up earning less.


Here are the pros of working at Postmates:

Flexible work hours

This job is especially suitable for those who are office workers or college students because of flexible work hours. Since the app pays on an hourly basis, you can choose whenever to work and not to work.

No fixed vehicle

When you work at Postmates, delivery can be made with any vehicle you have. You don’t buy a car or some other special vehicle to do the deliveries. A bike is cheap to purchase and easy to drive around the city, so you can deliver food on it.

High pay during rush hour

Rush hour is also known as Blitz pricing or surge pricing. Postmates has rush hour when most drivers work because the delivery fee is double the actual price. If you work the most around rush hour, then you will earn more pay.

Distance fee

The delivery can increase for the customer if they live far away from the pick-up restaurant. So, you don’t suffer any loss if the location between the two is far.

The customers have to pay the service fee, food charges, and more delivery fees if their house is far from the restaurant—no need to pay extra cash for gas.

Instant transaction

The best thing about Postmates is that you can get paid in an instant, which means you don’t have to wait for a whole month or week to get the salary. Once you are done with your work for the day, you can request the transaction.


Here are the cons of working at Postmates:

Based on gigs

One of the biggest disadvantages of working for Postmates is you never become a full-time driver. The app pays based on an hourly basis or gig, so you only get paid until you wish to work. Postmates is not suitable for those looking to work somewhere permanently.

Vehicle maintenance cost

When you drive around and make deliveries every day, your vehicle is bound to break down or need some maintenance at times; this cost comes from your own pocket. Some vehicles require a lot of maintenance, so you might end up paying more and saving up less.

Not suitable for small cities

 According to drivers, Postmates in small cities don’t pay much, so you end up spending more on gas and maintenance without saving up much. If you live in large cities, you earn more. You can either move to the larger city and work for Postmates or find other options to make money.

Insurance and taxes

Since Postmates is based on the gig economy, you are responsible for paying taxes and buying insurance. It is important to buy insurance because you work every day, and any incident can occur on the road. Furthermore, you have to pay taxes at all costs. The company doesn’t cover any of that.

Final words

We hope this article helped you answer the question, “What is Postmates?” and why it’s so popular in America.

Whether you’re searching for a delivery app to get your food or seeking a side hustle, consider Postmates. Many drivers choose Postmates for good reasons. If you’re looking to make extra money, applying for a job with Postmates could be a smart move.

Keep in mind, though, that this job should be a temporary way to save money. We don’t recommend relying solely on Postmates for all your expenses.