One of the best side hustles or gig jobs in New York City is food delivery. The city is full of restaurants and hungry New Yorkers who can’t or don’t want to leave their homes for food. If you deliver during peak hours, you can make plenty of money particularly if you rake in the tips.
Even if you don’t have a car, scooter, or bicycle, you can deliver food. If you want to be a food delivery walker, NYC is the place to be. Many restaurants are clustered together, and you can easily navigate around their delivery radius on foot. The city also has an excellent public transportation network that you can take to get to deliveries, particularly if you have an unlimited MetroCard.
Quick tip: you can get cash back every time you fill up your gas tank by using the Upside app. It's free and pays out straight to your bank.
If you want to deliver food on foot in the city, here are some of the companies that you can work for.
Uber, one of the biggest names in the gig economy sphere, expanded from taxis into food delivery.
Uber Eats is one of the most popular delivery services in New York City. You don’t even need a car to deliver for them. When you sign up on the website, you have the option to select your mode of transportation from a car, bike, scooter, or foot. Just select “delivery by bicycle or foot,” which is available in New York City and select other locations, when you are signing up.
You will be delivering on foot, so you won’t need to provide a driver’s license or car insurance. However, Uber Eats needs a few other documents, and a bank account number from you before you can start delivering. You need to give them a government-issued ID and a Social Security number.
Uber Eats performs a background check before you can start delivering for them. There are a few things that could disqualify you from being a food delivery walker in NYC. First, you can’t be under 18 years old. Second, if you’ve committed a violent crime, felony, or sexual offence, or have pending charges for those crimes, you will also be disqualified.
Uber Eats conducts its background checks through a third-party company called Checkr.
DoorDash is another option for delivering food on foot in NYC. When you sign up for deliveries on their company’s website, select “bicycle” or “walking” as your mode of transportation. Although DoorDash doesn’t allow deliveries on foot everywhere, New York City is one of the few cities where they do.
The requirements to deliver for DoorDash are similar to those for other applications. You must be over 18 years old. You must provide a Social Security number. You must also agree to a background check before you sign up and recurring background checks as long as you are delivering for the company. The company checks for criminal activity on your record, but you can dispute any charges that you think are inaccurate or unfair once the check is completed.
Once you sign up, you will need to have a smartphone that is compatible with the DoorDash app (they have iOS and Android versions). This will allow you to communicate with customers and receive deliveries. Once you start delivering, you may find that it is easier to get around the city on foot than with any mode of transportation prone to getting stuck in traffic. Just be sure to communicate with customers that their delivery may arrive a little later than the in-app time, which often calculates as if you have a bike.
GrubHub is another delivery company that allows NYC-based workers to make deliveries on foot. Just select “walking” as your mode of transportation when you sign up on their website.
GrubHub’s requirements are slightly different from other companies because they require their delivery workers to be at least 19 years of age. For delivery workers who are walking or riding a bike, they only require a government-issued ID and Social Security number. The background check looks for similar things as the other companies, such as criminal convictions. You are not using a car to make deliveries, so you don’t need to worry about examinations of your driving record.
Once you’ve been accepted to work at GrubHub, you need to have a smartphone that’s been recently updated and is compatible with the app.
Delivering on Foot in NYC
The benefits of living in one of the most walkable cities in the United States extend to your career opportunities. New York City is one of the only places in the United States where gig apps such as UberEats, GrubHub, and DoorDash allow you to make deliveries on foot. Just select walking or deliveries on foot as your delivery method when you first sign up, lace up your best walking shoes, and you’re good to go!
Save on gas & groceries: the Upside app gives you cash back when you fill up your tank, buy groceries, or eat out.
You can even deliver for multiple apps to increase your earning potential. With time, you can create a lucrative routine as a food delivery walker.
This article may contain affiliate links. If you click on one of these links and signup for a service or complete a purchase, we may receive a commission at no additional expense to you.