If you are hoping to set your scooter up for deliveries, you’re in the right place! I love the idea of using this efficient, nimble, and fun ride to make some money, as well. Scooters are cheap in comparison to the operating costs of a car, so it is a natural fit. Let’s dive into setting your scooter up to successfully make money with deliveries.
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1. Figure Out What You’ll Be Delivering and for Who
Before you get too excited, you might want to investigate what you can and cannot use your scooter for. Each delivery service has its own rules. Some allow scooters, some do in limited markets, and some do not want scooters as part of their fleet at all. Check out this information on delivering with a scooter to find a few services worth checking out to get approved with before you start adding to or modifying your scooter. Restaurant food with Grubhub, UberEats, or DoorDash? Groceries with Instacart? Postmates? You have a ton of options, but you’ll need to equip your scooter based on the deliveries you plan to make.
2. Get a Phone Mount
Now that you have your approvals in hand, and you’ve played around with the apps, you’re ready to scoot! There is no way to recall all of the addresses that will be thrown at you even if you know the area like the back of your hand.
This is where the phone mount comes in handy. Having a mount will let you have your turn-by-turn navigation, and it will let you quickly do whatever the delivery services require of you. For example, through the app, you’ll have to indicate when are the restaurant waiting for food and when you leave. They then communicate the status to the customer. Good communication is one thing that can help with your tip opportunities, so make using the app easy!
Here is the phone mount from Amazon that I recommend.
3. Assess Your Scooter Rack Situation
Some scooters come with racks while others do not. Mine came with what they called a rear rack, but it was basically just a handle that helped me with a centerstand. I wasn’t carrying pizzas on the factory option.
If you do not have a rear rack, deliveries are basically going to be impossible. Racks are not universal since scooter shapes vary widely, but here is a link to an Amazon search for rear racks to help you narrow down your search if you’re in the market. If you have an option for a smaller or larger, go larger! It will add stability for whatever any carriers you may want for your delivery.
You can also consider a front rack. You aren’t supposed to put a lot of weight on the front of your scooter. I find that ironic since I feel like front racks are larger than the rear options. While I would not want to load up with heavy items, in a pinch you might be happy to have an extra spot to strap things down. Of course, you can add this down the line once you’ve made a few dollars delivering for Ubereats on your moped first! Totally optional.
Here are my favorite cargo options to help you get inspired for options that help you with deliveries but also your day-to-day scooter needs.
4. Consider Insulated Carriers
If you’re delivering, you’re hoping to make some money. Your customer satisfaction ratings and corresponding tips will be influenced by several factors, but keeping cold foods cold and hot foods hot is an expectation if you are delivering restaurant food or groceries. Keep your customers happy!
If you are trying to get going without spending any money, I have used insulated grocery bags for this that I have bought from my local grocery store. They are not as forgiving for what you can fit in them, but they work! I am a huge fan of using what you have. The only issue is that you can’t tilt items to fit into their narrow zipper openings, so it can be a bit of a time suck to sit in the parking lot to fit it all in without making the customer’s food get cold and collecting in 1 side of the food container. Like I said, I just used a random bag I had purchased from a local grocery store like this zippered, insulated bag on Amazon. I folded the top over, and used a net like this one to strap it to the rear rack.
I have also just used my normal roll bag. I have stuffed 2 medium pizzas in it just fine, and I’m sure I could have fit 4! I have yet to try a large pizza box, though. Hmmm… Here is the roll bag I have. The large roll bag is really quite large, and I threw the waterproof cover it came with over it to help trap in heat. It worked fine!
Of course, there are insulted carriers designed for delivery. If you are unable or unwilling to buy these before you get started, this is the first place I’d spend some money to reinvest in your delivery service hustle. Seriously, I don’t want cold wings showing up at my door, and you know you don’t either!
If you are buying something to help here, make sure your solution has the following features to get your money’s worth:
- Rigid bottom – The bag will certainly be larger than the rear rack.
- Insulated – I’m serious about those cold wings.
- Closeable zip – Zipper, lid, whatever.
- A nice perk would be a divider in case your customer has hot and cold items to contend with
Here is my top recommendation for an insulated delivery container that has the features important for a good delivery experience.
5. Think Through Transporting Drinks
I have carried a cup of Starbucks blonde latte in my little drink cubby on my Buddy Kick, and she’s needed a bath from that experience more times than I can count.
There are backpacks that have drink holders. I like the idea of a backpack because you can just stow it in your under-seat storage box as a grab-n-go option for more general food storage and the help in transporting drinks. Here is an insulated backpack with drink holders.
I feel like the better solution would be a drink holder than you can strap to the front rack. Front racks tend to have a bigger base, and any weight you have on it needs to be on the lighter sides. If you’ve done this, please let me know how it worked for you!! I’m on Instagram.
6. Have a Way to Charge Your Phone
If you plan to hit the delivery circuit for a few hours in the evening, the apps can really drain your battery since they stay active the entire time.
Some scooters have charging ports, but understand the limits of your specific scooter even if it has one. My Buddy Kick’s manual says that I should not have my phone connected to the charger port when I start it. I feel like if I were depending on that charger port, I’d forget that rule in a hurry at the restaurant and zap my phone. Keep your charger in the under-seat storage box as a backup, but this would make me nervous.
Another option is some form of an external battery. There are batteries that fit over your phone like a case but thicker. All 1 unit and no cords. Simple. I just carry an external Anker charger that I connect to the phone and throw it in the ‘glove compartment’ of my scooter. Here is the external battery that I carry with 10,000mAh.
If you have new gear, you will not want to figure out how to strap things in as you’re supposed to be heading out the door for a restaurant pickup. Pick up food for yourself or your family to work out all your kinks in the set up.
Play around with the bag. When you’re about to head out for a ride, randomly heat up a container of spaghetti, ride around for 20 minutes, and see if it is still plenty warm. Ok, water would be fine unless you want to eat spaghetti in 20 minutes.
Of course, all of this assumes that you are comfortable operating your scooter. Are you? Can you graceful handle your center stand? I still struggle with my center stand, so I’m not judging. I throw this out there because if you’re nervous, unfamiliar with your scooter, and you have an audience, this could lead to some embarrassment for you. Things can still happen, but if you’re prepared to roll with the punches with a comfort level with your scooter and gear, you’re ahead of the game!
I don’t think weight is a big factor here, but when you add weight to your scooter that is not lower or towards the center of your scooter (like in the under-seat storage box), your scooter will drive differently. Be careful, and practice!
8. Safety Considerations
A huge factor to customer satisfaction with deliveries is the speed. There are plenty of stories of Door Dash drivers hanging out for 20 minutes waiting on the restaurant to hand over the dishes. It is frustrating, and it is hard not to try to make up for the lost time by dashing even faster and throwing caution into the wind.
DON’T DO THIS! Rumor has it that some of the delivery service companies have pulled back on approving scooters for their drivers because of the liability from scooter accidents. I haven’t seen hard numbers, but anecdotally a scooterist doing deliveries is more likely to crash than the standard joy-rider or commuter.
Oh. And wear your protective gear. At a minimum a helmet. I don’t want to nag, but for real. Here’s a guide on finding the right scooter helmet. I included a budget and super comfy helmet recommendation in the guide for both the full-face and open-face helmet. 4 simple options. No excuses in not protecting your money maker (your brain!).
I’m also a huge fan of reflective gear to help you be seen at night imparticular. If you bought a giant delivery bag, add some reflective striping or something. They are huge, so you can have some fun with it. Giant dragon, anyone?