Mopeds are an excellent mode of transportation for commuters, getting around town, or just running those little errands that you hat sitting in traffic for. They’re also a no-brainer when it comes to food delivery and finding a quick and painless transportation option.
The problem is, they’re not always allowed, depending on the company that you, as an independent contractor, decide to work with—your location factor in as well. The simple answer is that there isn’t a definitive yes or no answer.
It’s also very puzzling because mopeds, used responsibly, are a very effective mode of delivery. GrubHub is the lone business that doesn’t seem to care one way or the other, so long as you’re getting the job done, GrubHub is happy. That doesn’t hold true for the rest of them.
Suppose you own a moped and you’re looking to work as an independent contractor with GrubHub, DoorDash, UberEats, Postmates, or Instacart (which is a semi-sort of food delivery business). In that case, it’s a good idea to look over our delivery moped guide for 2021, so you know what you can and cannot do with a moped in the food delivery business.
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Which Food Delivery Services Allow Mopeds?
As an independent contractor, you can deliver food for any of the companies listed above. However, there are certain stipulations for each, except for GrubHub.
We would be remiss if we didn’t clarify that a moped and a scooter are not the same things. Scooters are typically a little higher on the performance ladder than mopeds. Mopeds generally will be two-wheeled, motorized vehicles that don’t exceed 30mph at top speed.
DoorDash’s nominal requirements apply for mopeds as well.
- Must be at least 18 years of age
- Have a clean driving record
- Valid driver’s license
- Registration proving you’re the owner and operator of the vehicle
- Valid and up to date insurance
- Clean driving record
Doordash welcomes all vehicles. However, mopeds are only allowed in particular areas. Very specific, according to DoorDash, is a major metropolitan area, such as New York City, Los Angeles, San Fransisco, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, etc.
DoorDash does not allow moped use anywhere outside of a major city. Even if you live in a sizeable city, it’s probably not going to fly if it isn’t instantly recognizable to the ordinary, random bystander.
DoorDash isn’t exactly clear on their reasoning behind this, as mopeds are advantageous in just about any downtown area within smaller cities. They’re even incredibly useful in rural areas.
The only drawback to mopeds—which we can conclude—is that you may get a call for one location and another that’s ten miles away in most rural areas. However, you’re allowed to decline if you wish. So it isn’t a major detriment.
DoorDash’s official stance on the matter is simply “depending on your local market.”
UberEats is a lot less restrictive on the use of mopeds than DoorDash. However, their stipulations on moped drivers are just as puzzling. UberEats’ official requirements for all independent contractors that deliver food from them are similar to DoorDash:
- Be a minimum of 19 years old
- Valid Driver’s License
- The vehicle must be registered
- Valid insurance
- Mopeds or scooters must be less than 50cc and not older than 20 years
These are the requirements if you want to deliver for UberEats with a moped. Strangely, the same conditions aren’t necessary for a car, which has no age restriction.
UberEats hasn’t made it an upfront and in-your-face policy that mopeds are limited to specific “markets,” however, that does seem to be the case. Fortunately, they don’t seem as restrictive as DoorDash by mandating that it has to be a major city.
Going with GrubHub should be a no-brainer if you own a moped and want to deliver as an independent contractor. GrubHub doesn’t care what you drive, whether it’s a car, motorcycle, moped, bicycle, scooter, horseback, or if you sprout wings and fly.
As far as GrubHub is concerned, make your deliveries on time, keep the customer happy, and reflect well on GrubHub. Your business and your methods belong to you alone.
It’s a bit refreshing, as GrubHub seems pretty determined to allow their independent contractors to deliver food however they want, without unreasonable restrictions.
Postmates is very similar to DoorDash, establishing geographical requirements based on major metropolitan areas with very few exceptions. You can find a list of where scooters are allowed for food deliveries with Postmates here.
Like DoorDash, Postmates isn’t exactly open about why they won’t allow the usage of scooters in certain areas. Keep in mind, when most of these delivery companies refer to scooters, mopeds fall under that category, despite a fundamental difference in their performance.
Of course, Postmates does a better job than DoorDash of listing exactly where you can use mopeds. If you disagree with the policy, it’s always encouraged to give Postmates a call. State your case, and you may get an exception for your circumstance.
Best Mopeds/Scooters For Food Delivery
If you’re into delivering food and you’re also into retro, the Yamaha Vino is right up your alley. This 50cc moped has all the aesthetic hallmarks of a mid-1900s classic, with all the modern updates you can expect in 2021.
The Yamaha Vino retails between $2,000 and $2,500 and gets roughly 127 miles per gallon. That puts the Vino in the top category for fuel economy. You will be able to cover a whole lot of ground between fill-ups. That’s a feature that is essential for a delivery driver.
Its storage capacity is limited to a small space beneath the seat and a very tiny platform just behind the driver. In other words, you’ll need some good tie-down methods to secure your food for delivery.
The Honda Ruckus looks like one of those scooters that might be able to break 100mph in less than 3 seconds. However, it’s all in the aesthetics as this scooter comes equipped with a 49cc motor.
The best part about the Ruckus is that it is designed for a rough and tumble life, built like a four-wheeler and ready to hit the road—no matter if the road is a back alley, mud road, or paved highway.
It has an excellent storage design with a compartment that slides down below the seat. It’s all completely open, so you’ll need some good tie-downs.
Another vintage aesthetic but this time, it comes from Peugeot rather than Yamaha. The typical model comes in hot rod red and carries the same vintage look as the Vino. Its top speed is 30mph, so that it won’t exceed any limitations from the above delivery services.
It’s a two-seater, so you’ll be able to use the second seat—directly behind the driver—to strap down your deliveries. The seat pops up for a little bit of alternative storage, but it’s probably not enough room to hold much.
If you have a huge delivery, that could be a problem on just about any moped. If you’re good with securely roping things down, however, it’s probably not going to matter much as far as which moped you go with.
The Kymco Agility 50 eschews the classic look in favor of something a little more streamlined and sporty. Despite how it looks, it’s limited to a top speed of 30mph on an air-cooled four-stroke engine.
Despite its hyper-stylized look, it gets excellent fuel economy at 120 miles per gallon. You’ll be able to get in plenty of deliveries between each pit stop at a gas station. It’s a fully-automatic scooter, so no worries about messing around with clutch and gas while carrying important food deliveries.
The best part about it, especially as a vehicle utilized for food deliveries, is it has a lot of extra storage. The space below the seat is open enough to hold two or possibly three bags worth of fast food.
It also has the rack behind it, which you can use to tie down anything extra for when you occasionally get those giant orders. Out of the four moped delivery options you have here, the Kymco Agility 50 should top your list.
All Things Considered
Now that you have a full breakdown of what is and isn’t allowed—when it comes to mopeds and food delivery—you’re informed well enough to decide on who you want to work for as an independent contractor.
Unfortunately, it kind of limits the options unless you want to work for GrubHub or live in a major city. Outside of that, GrubHub is your best bet if you want to deliver on a moped.