Online food delivery services have made it easier than ever for you to find a job or pick up a side gig in your free time.
Depending on what city you are from, there are quite a few delivery services out there.
Postmates and Caviar are two up and coming food delivery apps out there today.
Whether you are toying around with the idea of becoming a driver or are actively looking to sign up today, you are going to need to do your research before jumping in.
To save you time and the hassle of endlessly searching the web, we wanted to answer some of the most important questions you may have.
We will cover the basics of each platform, how much each pays, and some of the requirements to begin driving.
Let’s not waste anymore time and get right into the details of Postmates vs Caviar.
- What Is the Difference Between Caviar and Postmates?
- What Will I Be Delivering?
- What Are the Requirements to Become a Courier?
- How Is the Pay Calculated?
- Are There Bonuses and Incentives for Each Platform?
- How Will I Get Paid?
- Which Platform Is in My Hometown?
- What Is the Time Commitment?
- So What Is It Going to Be?
What Is the Difference Between Caviar and Postmates?
Before we fully get into it, let’s get something clear.
There are a few fundamental differences between Postmates and Caviar that we can address now and then later go into further detail.
Postmates is a food delivery service that will deliver anything, including food, alcohol, or groceries, and is open 24/7.
Caviar focuses primarily on the more popular and higher end restaurants in town, and is only open for limited hours.
What Will I Be Delivering?
Let’s start with Caviar, a premium food delivery service.
Caviar prides itself on delivering the best local food within your city.
And by the best food, we’re talking about the wait-in-line, make-reservations, hope-they-aren’t-packed type of local restaurants.
For lunch, customers can order a gourmet burrito from the Mexican joint that always seems to have a line out the door, then for dinner try the hot new ramen shop that opened up across town.
To maintain this high standard of service and quality of food, Caviar only partners with certain establishments.
You are not going to see nearly as many restaurants on the platform as Postmates because Caviar reaches out to each individual restaurant and forms a mutually beneficial relationship.
This is not the case for Postmates.
In comparison, Postmates is more than just popular, high quality restaurants.
Postmates will pretty much deliver anything right to your door.
Customers can order virtually anything (besides a few prohibited items) from any business in the city and Postmates has it covered.
As a Postmates driver, you will likely deliver takeout meals from restaurants, groceries, alcohol, or even non-food items like office supplies.
Unlike Caviar, Postmates does not establish a relationship with each establishment, but instead automatically adds stores and restaurants to its database.
By not building a relationship with the vendors beforehand, sometimes problems may arise.
For instance, since Postmates is essentially pulling information down from the internet to populate its listings, menu items and details may be inaccurate.
If so, this could lead to a poor user experience and an unhappy customer who will likely not be too thrilled to give you a fat tip.
Occasionally, this could also prove troublesome with some restaurants who don’t appreciate being added to the Postmates’ database without giving permission.
This can lead to canceled orders on the behalf of the frustrated restaurant or store.
All in all, this isn’t good for someone like you who is trying to keep their customers happy and earn a few extra tips.
What Are the Requirements to Become a Courier?
The requirements for becoming a Postmates or Caviar courier are mostly the same.
Both platforms are looking for responsible drivers who must check the box on the following:
- Must be at least 18 years old
- Own a car, truck, scooter, or motorcycle to complete deliveries with (Postmates allows you to walk in some cases)
- Have vehicle insurance
- Pass a background check
- Own a smartphone
The main outlier missing from the list above is the experience requirement that Caviar imposes on its drivers.
Caviar is all about giving customers access to the best food and high-end dining in town.
With that mission, expectations are set pretty high.
That is why Caviar requires its drivers to have the following:
- Two years of experience driving for a ridesharing platform
- Pass an exam
- Complete an in-person interview
Seems like a lot, but we guess that’s what you get for dealing with a more premium service.
How Is the Pay Calculated?
Once you get your order, or batch of orders, you will be presented with the payment screen on your app.
Each city has their own formula for how much you will be paid for each delivery.
Regardless of which city you are driving in, Postmates will pay you an amount for each of the following tasks.
- Per minute rate (includes wait time while at the pickup location)
- Per mile rate (between the pickup and drop-off point)
- Tips (you keep 100 percent)
There is also a minimum delivery amount that you will see if your delivery was below the threshold, typically around $3 to $4.
Caviar is a little more cryptic with their payment and does not break out each line item explicitly.
However, Caviar delivery costs are high – more than most delivery services.
This offers a great opportunity to leverage the platform to earn more.
Take a look at the payment details shown in the Caviar app to see what we’re talking about.
- Base pay: Time, mileage, size of delivery
- Bonus pay: Peak pay
- Tips: Caviar customers are encouraged to tip, but it’s not a requirements
As you can see, the base pay is a calculation that Caviar makes behind the scenes, while you — the driver — only sees the base pay line item.
The Caviar algorithm considers time spent, miles driven, and size of delivery, then spits out the base pay amount.
Luckily with Caviar, you are also able to see the payout before making a delivery.
You can decide which orders you want to take beforehand by having an idea of what you would be paid.
Are There Bonuses and Incentives for Each Platform?
Of course there are!
Both platforms have implemented their own bonus and incentive structure to compensate drivers who drive more often, especially during peak hours.
For Postmates it comes in the form of bonuses and guaranteed earnings.
What in the world are these you may ask?
Here is a quick rundown.
These are the rewards you receive for meeting the requirements of the bonus offer at hand.
These are more of the short term, day-to-day bonuses that pop up in the app.
- Per delivery: You can earn more for each delivery you complete during the specific timeframe.
- Example — Earn $3 extra for each delivery you make between 6:00–8:00 p.m.
- For sum of deliveries: You must complete a specific amount of deliveries during the listed timeframe to receive a bonus.
- Example — Earn $10 for completing four rides between 5:00–7:00 p.m.
If you complete all of the requirements for the offer, you will earn at least the amount stated in the offer.
These are geared more towards weekly goals.
- Simple guaranteed earning: When you complete a certain amount of deliveries during a specified period you will be rewarded with a minimum earning.
- Example — Complete 25 deliveries in the next three days and earn a guaranteed $300 (excluding tips)
- Tiered guarantee earning: These are almost the same as the last bonus mentioned, however, these are more timeframe-based.
- Example — Complete 10 deliveries during dinner hours (5:00–9:00 p.m.) on Friday and Saturday
Caviar’s bonus structure operates in a similar fashion.
You can earn two different types of bonuses, one for simply driving during the most popular hours (lunch and dinner time), and another tier for reaching a set delivery goal.
Peak Hour Pay
This is the bonus multiplier you will receive for driving during the busiest hours.
Peak hours can be found in the “Manage Schedule” section of your Caviar app.
- Example — Earn 20% more on every delivery between the hours of 5:00–9:00 p.m.
- Ongoing milestones: These are the bonus challenges that span a few days, a week, or a month.
- Example — Earn a $150 bonus for completing 250 assignments in December.
- One day milestones: These are the incentives and challenges that last for one day only.
- Example — Earn $15 bonus for every three orders you deliver between 9:30–11:30 a.m.
How Will I Get Paid?
Who doesn’t like a good old fashioned pay day?
Getting paid is why you signed up in the first place, right?
Both Postmates and Caviar offer two forms of payment that are almost the same, minus the logistical differences.
With Postmates you have two choices.
You can either get paid right now or you can get paid on a weekly basis.
If you decide to do an Instant Deposit, you will be charged $0.50 for each deposit.
You can cash out as often as you would like, just remember that you will charged a fee each time.
To qualify for this option you must have a linked debit card that has at least $5 in the account.
If you decide to wait and receive weekly direct deposits to your bank, you will not get charged any service fees.
Your weekly payment will arrive every Monday and is reflective of your weekly total up until Sunday night at 11:59 p.m.
The instant payout details are slightly different with Caviar.
Caviar partners with Square to provide its drivers with a payment option through the Cash App.
The Cash App is pretty much like an all-in-one bank rolled up into an app.
With the Cash App you can set up direct deposits from other sources and you have your own personalized debit card to make everyday purchases.
You can even pull money out of the ATM.
The benefits of using the Caviar instant pay through the Cash App is that it is the fastest way to get real time payments.
Every time you receive any payment from Caviar, it will reflect in the app.
No need to deal with waiting for payments to process or worrying about the hassle of going into your app and initiating a payment.
Everything happens in real time.
To top it off, no fees are attached.
The other payment option is the same as Postmates, and that’s the once a week payment that shows up every Monday morning.
Which Platform Is in My Hometown?
An obvious disqualifier for driving for one of these platforms is that it isn’t offered in your city.
So where does each platform operate?
Caviar offers its services in fewer places, with only 26 cities to be exact.
These are primarily located on the coasts, with a few stragglers in the middle, like Chicago, Knoxville, and Dallas.
The full list can be found on Caviar’s homepage.
We would say Postmates is on the other side of the spectrum.
Postmates has a total of 226 active markets, not including the cities that are launching seemingly every week.
That scale dwarfs Caviar delivery markets.
For more information on the markets Postmates delivers in, head here for more information.
What Is the Time Commitment?
Both services are ultra flexible with the hours you work.
And by ultra flexible, we mean you pick your own hours and work as much or as little as you want.
There are a few differences between the two.
First off, Postmates is open 24/7 in case you want to hop on and deliver at odd hours of the night.
The only requirement, for customers at least, is that the restaurants and stores they are ordering from are open at that time of day.
Also, Postmates does not allow drivers to schedule time.
This doesn’t really sound like a big deal, however, Caviar offers a scheduling option which sets itself apart from the typical “work whenever” model.
With Caviar you can work whenever you want, the same as Postmates.
The difference is that you are able to schedule your work ahead of time if you would like.
This will not only help you stay organized and hold yourself accountable to actually work, but it will also give you an edge on the driver competition.
Those who schedule ahead of time are given order priority over other drivers during busy delivery times.
As long as you clock in on time and are in the right zone, Caviar will let you be one of the first to choose the more appealing deliveries (higher paying, let’s be real) before drivers who did not schedule.
Unlike Postmates, Caviar is not open 24/7, but instead chooses to do business seven days a week during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
So What Is It Going to Be?
Knowing what you know now, which platform do you think better suits you?
Between the driver requirements, payment details, and time commitment, there are definitely some things to think about before making your final decision.
Just remember that when it comes to Postmates and Caviar, the main differences are the types of restaurants and stores you will be delivering for, as well as the hours you are able to work.
Best of luck and we hope to see you soon, preferably at our doorstep with some tasty grub!