I am always looking at more ways that I can use my scooter in general, and using it to produce some income sounds pretty good to me! That led me down the path to look into the delivery driving services such as DoorDash, UberEats and Postmates. There are some obvious benefits to using a scooter over a car like reduced overhead from maintenance expenses and easier parking options. It sounds like a no brainer opportunity. However, I was surprised by the restrictions the heavy weight companies in this space place on scooters.
You can use your scooter for deliveries, but there are some caveats. The size of your scooter’s engine and the location you want to serve dictates the restrictions of the companies. UberEats requires that your scooter be 50cc or less with a speed of no more than 30 miles per hour. Both DoorDash and PostMates only permit scooter deliveries to their large city markets such as New York City and Austin. Only GrubHub allows scooters without restrictions as long as you are meeting the customer’s needs, of course.
Keep reading for more details around these restrictions for each company to understand how they impact your desire to make some money with your two-wheeled fun machine!
Below are the requirements for scooter deliveries via UberEats:
- Be at least 19 years old
- Scooter must be under 50cc and newer than 20 years old
- Valid drivers license, registration and insurance
These requirements are interesting since to deliver with a car, you need one year of experience without an age restriction other than what your individual state mandates in order to have a license. Additionally, it seems odd to be restricted on the motor of your scooter since there aren’t any restrictions in the same manner as a car. Motorcycles aren’t permitted at all. The restrictions are based on their liability insurance they carry, so it is not likely to change in favor of a broader range of scooters.
There are people that have tried to disregard the restriction, but users have made some reports such as, “Another user is using the account,” that have alerted UberEats to do some investigation.
To conclude the UberEats conversation, it is important to note that they give an asterick on their restrictions that it varies by market. I add this because there have been recent rumblings that scooters may not always be allowed, but it isn’t clear if that is a by market restriction. Some have had success by connecting with the UberEats call center to get their guideline-compliant transportation added to their account.
DoorDash requires the following to be a courier for them:
- 18 years old
- Valid drivers license, registration and insurance
- Clean driving record
- All modes of transportation are fine – DEPENDING ON THE MARKET
That final one is the hang-up with DoorDash for scooterists. Essentially, they allow for scooters, as well as other modes if you’re in a larger city. Think New York City, San Francisco and downtown Nashville.
The driving requirements for GrubHub at the time of this article are listed below:
- Minimum of 19 years old except if you’re in Chicago or Las Vegas where you need to be 21+
- Have valid insurance and driver’s license for at least 2 years
At first, PostMates didn’t seem to have any vehicle restrictions, but with a little digging they do have the following restrictions as it relates to scooter deliveries:
- Valid license, insurance and registration
- Scooters are limited to certain markets
Markets Where Scooters Might Be an Option
The markets listed below seem to be possible for scooters to give it a try. I say that loosely because I can vouch that Houston is huge. I imagine it is really zip code dependent rather than based on the city limits. Between safety and therefore their corporate insurance responsibilities on top of keeping the customer’s delivery the right temperature, it can’t hurt to ask about the following markets in particular.
- Arizona: Phoenix and Tucson
- California: San Francisco, San Diego, San Rafael, Los Angeles
- Colorado: Denver
- Florida: Miami
- Georgia: Atlanta
- Hawaii: Honolulu
- Illinois: Chicago, Evanston
- Indiana: Indianapolis
- Louisiana: New Orleans
- Maryland: Baltimore, Washington DC
- Massachusetts: Boston
- Michigan: Detroit
- Minnesota: Minneapolis
- Missouri: St Louis, Kansas City
- New York: New York City, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens
- North Carolina: Charlotte
- Ohio: Columbus
- Oklahoma: Oklahoma City
- Oregon, Portland
- Pennsylvania: Philadelphia
- Texas: Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin
- Virginia: Virginia Beach
- Washington: Seattle, Bellevue
Is There Anything I Can Do to Get Around the Scooter Restrictions?
I would start with trying to chat with someone at the company. There are instances where people have called and gotten the right person that helped them get their scooter loaded in for deliveries.
I would not recommend driving an unauthorized vehicle. I’m generally a rule follower if I can see the benefit to myself or the greater good, and this is one of those times. Insurance. That’s a huge factor because they will not cover you if you are on an unauthorized vehicle. Yes, you have your own coverage, as well, but you want their support. It feels like there is a lot of conflicting information around how your personal coverage will chip in since you are using your scooter for commercial purposes. That’s a whole other topic, but ultimately, you will not want to be left hanging by blatantly disregarding their vehicle requirements in this way.
There are plenty of instances I’ve run across of people riding their scooters for deliveries. Some have gotten caught and others do not. They get alerted from customers, and there are some GPS tracking considerations that could alert to something odd depending on the mode, market and delivery company. It does not seem to lead to legal trouble if you are busted, but it has resulted in removal from the program. If you want to keep the money flowing, you’ll need to follow their rules.
Wrap It Up
This was a good news and bad news dive into making money with your scooter through the various delivery companies. Across the board, you need to carry insurance with a valid license and registration. With those in hand and assuming you’re the right age in the right market, yes! Get to delivering.