Drizly is an online delivery service that delivers beer, wine, and liquor delivered straight to their homes.
As you can imagine, it’s quite popular among customers. But, it’s also a hit with freelance workers and liquor retailers.
But unlike most app-based delivery companies, Drizly doesn’t hire contractors to complete deliveries. Instead, Drizly plays the middle man.
The Drizly platform simply connects customers with alcohol retailers. The platform allows customers to place orders and retailers to receive orders, but they don’t actually make the deliveries. Employees hired by the liquor store actual make the deliveries.
Good. If you’re looking to make a few extra bucks at night, this could be a good way to do it.
How much do Drizly drivers make, exactly?
Well, the answer to that question varies. As with most gig-based jobs, delivery driver salaries depend on a range of different factors.
Below, we’ll discuss how drivers are paid, how much they make, and how you can sign up to deliver for Drizly.
We’ll even offer some tips to help you boost your earnings once you’re on the job.
Have a look:
How Much Can You Make as a Drizly Driver?
Here’s the thing: This app is a little bit different than DoorDash and Postmates. If you’ve ever worked for those companies in the past, it’s important to know that Drizly works a bit differently.
You might imagine that there are some pretty tight laws around alcohol distribution. As a result, Drizly has to be careful about who they hire. It’s not as easy as just logging on, filling out an application, and taking orders like you would with UberEats.
Instead, you have to get hired by the actual liquor store, not Drizly themselves.
Essentially, this means two things:
- You only work for one store at a time: Unlike UberEats, Doordash, or Grubhub, you won’t spend your shift driving from store to store picking up orders. Instead, you’ll work exclusively for one store during your shift
- The liquor store owner determines your income: There are no set Drizly salaries. It’s entirely up to the store or the subcontractor who works with Drizly to determine driver rates.
This makes the job more akin to being a pizza delivery driver for a single chain.
According to our research, most drivers make between $12 and $13/hour. However, that figure includes tips, which means that some drivers make as little as minimum wage.
Ultimately, a Drizly driver’s pay depends on who they work for, where they work, and how busy their schedule is. What one driver makes in Boston might be less or more than drivers in Denver or Chicago.
Obviously, drivers who work during busy hours (nights, weekends, the Super Bowl, etc.) can expect to make more.
But, since this is a freelance gig, it’s hard to predict exactly what someone will make as a driver.
Before you jump right in and start working for the company, research the wages at your local store. Figure out whether or not it’s financially worth it to work with them.
Tips are Everything for Drizly Drivers
This is a freelance job. Remember, when you work as an independent contractor, you’re not guaranteed an hourly wage in the same way that other full-time (or even part-time) employees are.
For example, if a store promises you $12/hour, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your hourly wage is going to be $12. Instead, it could mean that your total income (including tips) will equal out to $12/hour at the end of the week.
To illustrate this idea, here’s a Glassdoor comment from one (slightly disgruntled) former Drizly employee:
In other words, if you work an 8-hour shift one day but only make $60, the employer may count excess wages from a better day toward your weekly pay.
So, the ultimate goal is to earn at least the base rate for every hour on the job. If your base pay is $12/hour and you make that consistently, you won’t have to worry about managers and subcontractors finagling your pay around so that they technically keep their promise.
How do you do this?
Well, by earning tips. Those are the payments that help you earn more than the bare minimum.
Fortunately, Drizly is pretty good at encouraging their customers to give tips. The payment feature of their app offers customers the opportunity to tip their driver. It’s set at 10% by default, but customers have the option to increase or decrease the amount as they see fit.
The good thing is that Drizly has a $20 minimum policy. Customers can’t place an order unless they buy at least $20 worth of alcohol.
Ultimately, this means that at a bare minimum, you’ll earn a $2 tip. And if the customer includes the $5 delivery fee as part of their bill, they’ll tip you at least $2.50.
Drizly also allows customers to change their tip at a later date by contacting the customer support team. If a customer feels that they gave you an insufficient tip at drop off, they can reach out to the company to give you some more cash later on.
How Do I Become a Drizly Driver?
Does driving around in your car delivering alcohol sound like a good way to make some extra cash?
Ready to get started?
There are two ways to become a driver:
1. Apply with a Drizly partner in your area
Drizly has a database of partner stores on their website. You can apply by finding a store in your neighborhood and calling the store directly.
Use the search feature on their homepage to find the store closest to you.
2. Apply through Drizly’s Driver Job Board
When you apply directly through Drizly, they’ll send your application to all the local partners in your area. It’s convenient because it saves you the trouble of having to call all of the retailers yourself.
If a retailer has Drizly jobs, they’ll reach out to you directly.
Every alcohol retailer has a different process for hiring contractors.
Whether you apply through Drizly or directly to the store, you’ll need to go through their specific hiring process.
Depending on the store, this may include any number of background checks, driving history scans, and interviews.
How to Make More Money as a Drizly Driver
As we pointed out above, it can be difficult to earn a lot of money as a freelance delivery driver, especially if you run into a slow day.
But, there are a few key tactics you can use to boost your earnings. Each of these tips will help you put a little more cash in your pocket.
Check them out:
Drive a Fuel-Efficient Vehicle
Nothing is more upsetting than seeing a freelance delivery driver pull up in an SUV.
It’s like...what are you doing? Do you realize how much gas you’re wasting?
To work as a delivery person and actually walk away with money in your wallet at the end of the night, you need to cut down on gas expenses. Otherwise, you’re going to spend all of your earnings on fuel.
We know this one is tough. Most people can’t afford to just go out and buy a new vehicle for their job. But a vehicle can really make or break your income when it comes to working as an on-demand driver.
So, drive a Camry, a Sonata, or some other small sedan if possible. Your paycheck will thank you.
And if you’re stuck with an F250, this might not be the best job for you.
Work in Your Neighborhood
Even if you have a fuel-efficient car, you’ll waste a lot of money on gas if you have to drive 5 miles to get to the liquor store. After all, 10 miles adds up if you do it every day.
The closer you work to home, the more money you’ll save on gasoline.
You know the streets of your neighborhood but use a mapping app anyway. Google Maps or Waze will help you avoid wasting gas by routing you around rush hour traffic hiccups.
Of course, if the liquor store in your neighborhood doesn’t get much business, it might make sense to drive to the next town over to work for another one.
But, make sure that the store is jam-packed with orders before you commit to driving out there several times each week.
Bring Your Bike
There’s no policy that says you can’t deliver on a bike. We imagine it’s up to the store owner to decide whether or not this is okay.
However, it’s likely that there are some orders that don’t require a car. For example, if someone a half-mile away from the store orders two bottles of wine, you might not want to drive there.
Instead, it’d probably be better to have a bicycle on hand. That way, you can just throw the bottles in a basket or backpack and pedal on over to their house.
Of course, there are definitely some orders that require a car (no one wants to deliver kegs on a bike). So you’ll want to drive. But, bringing your bike in the trunk or on a roof-rack could help you to save some cash.
Track Your Expenses
One of the benefits of freelancing is that you get to write off business expenses on your taxes. You can write off anything you spend money on in order to earn income as an independent contractor.
All of that fuel, maintenance, and even those car washes are deductible. This means that you don’t have to pay income taxes on the money you spend on those things.
But, you have to keep track of your receipts. That way, you can hand them to an accountant (or tally them up yourself) at the end of the year. And, you can show them to the IRS if they ever want to see them.
Remember, gas is expensive. Car maintenance is, too. By deducting these costs from your income, you’ll save a lot of money on your bottom line.
Work with Another Alcohol Delivery Company
Drizly is currently available in 101 cities across the United States and North America. While that’s a pretty big market, it doesn’t cover everyone.
At the same time, Drizly isn’t the only alcohol delivery service out there. Currently, they have a few big competitors: Saucey, Swill, and Minibar. Postmates also offers alcohol delivery, including beer, wine, and liquor in some markets.
It’s possible that Drizly may not be the most popular service in your area. You may find that one of their competitors has a hold on the stores in your neighborhood.
Before signing up, then, you might want to shop around to see which is the most popular service in your city.
This could help to keep you busy, earning tips, and avoiding slow days.
Drizly: An Alternative to Rideshares and Food Delivery
But those aren’t the only options out there.
Drizly’s one-partner model feels like it might prevent some people from making a lot of money. But there are actually several benefits.
First and foremost, it offers the security that a lot of gig-based jobs lack. By working exclusively with one store, Drizly contractors can get their schedules in advance. Despite the fact that you don’t always know how much you’ll earn, you will be able to plan your hours beforehand.
On top of that, you won’t have to worry about competing with other contractors for work. UberEats feels like a constant race to the best jobs. Drizly, on the other hand, minimizes competition by hiring only the number of workers they need.
In the end, this makes it a little easier to get constant work. Assuming that you’ll go the extra mile to earn tips, this steady schedule could help you to earn a decent income as a driver.