Last Updated on 2023-09-10

How To DoorDash On A Motorcycle: Tips & Tricks

We worked with these active, experienced gig-workers to write this article and bring you first-hand knowledge.

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Davis Porter

Experienced writer/researcher in the gig industry working alongside our gig-workers

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Ryan Shaw

5 years of experience as a DoorDash Dasher

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Michael Vaness

6 years of experience working across DoorDash, Instacart, and Spark

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Matt Wheeler

5 years of experience working across GrubHub, DoorDash, Shipt, and Uber Eats


Thanks to their exceptional agility in busy urban environments, DoorDashers on motorcycles are welcomed into the platform’s fleet to boost delivery capacity. 

They particularly thrive in large cities, where DoorDash drivers might struggle to maneuver their cars through a maze of tight lines and crowded streets. The motorbikes are known to swiftly weave through heavy traffic and snag those hard-to-find parking spots, just in time to get their orders through to customers. 

This is extremely critical for an on-demand food ordering platform that seeks to optimize delivery times and maximize customer satisfaction.

But it's not all smooth riding. There are situations where motorcycles, and at times even bikes, might not be the best fit for deliveries.

This guide expounds on all those intricacies to help you make an informed decision on whether to become a motorcycle Dasher. You get to confirm all the highlights, limitations, perks, and requirements of DoorDash motorcycles. 

Can you DoorDash on a motorcycle?

Yes, DoorDash does support deliveries via motorcycles. 

But, it's not a blanket approval. The availability of the motorcycle option is influenced by several factors – including the region you're operating in, local regulations, and the nature of the orders you're handling. 

For example, while a motorcycle might be perfect for zipping through the congested streets of New York City, it wouldn't suit large orders or areas with rough terrains.

The application and Dashing processes are not that different from cars. You’ll be required to provide your social security number and valid driver’s license, after which a background check will be conducted to determine your eligibility. 

Upon joining the platform, you'll be receiving all the orders through the DoorDash app. The ones you accept will provide details of the designated restaurant, type of order, and your customer's location when you’re on your way to them.

What’s the difference between motorcycles, scooters, and mopeds on DoorDash? 

They're all two-wheeled motor vehicles powered by an engine. But, motorcycles are generally larger and more powerful than scooters and mopeds. 

Whereas their engine sizes can vary widely, motorcycles generally have a capacity of more than 150cc. They are meant for longer distances and faster speeds, with a more forward-leaning riding position compared to the upright stance on scooters. 

Mopeds, on the other hand, often come with automatic transmissions, smaller wheels, and engines up to 50cc. DoorDash refers to these as “scooters” in the app.

Scooters, as we define them, are driven standing up - they’re usually electric powered.

Where can you DoorDash on a motorcycle?

DoorDash doesn't offer motorcycle deliveries everywhere. The choice to use a motorcycle largely depends on your city's layout, traffic patterns, and local regulations. 

Currently, only Dashers in large cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, New York City, and San Francisco can DoorDash on a motorcycle. These areas are known for their unusually heavy traffic congestion during peak hours, which makes it difficult for DoorDash cars to get to customers in time.

Unfortunately, DoorDash doesn’t provide an official list of supported territories on their website. It’s only during application that you get to confirm if your city is one of them. You’ll notice motorcycles included among DoorDash’s delivery options for Dashers. 

Pros and cons of DoorDashing on a motorcycle

Why choose motorcycles for DoorDash deliveries?

  • Speed and Agility: While cars often get trapped in gridlocks, motorcycles can weave through traffic and potentially cut delivery times. Technically, a motorcycle can take approximately 16-46% less time to traverse the same distance through congested traffic than a car. That means in addition to maintaining hot and fresh deliveries, you get to tackle more orders per day – which then translates to a higher income potential. 
  • Fuel Efficiency: With their lightweight build and aerodynamics, motorcycles often outperform cars in terms of miles per gallon (MPG). For Dashers traveling long distances daily, this efficiency may provide substantial savings.
  • Easier Parking: If you've ever tried to find a parking spot in a bustling city during peak hours, you'll appreciate the convenience motorcycles offer. Their compact size means they can fit into spaces cars can't. In fact, in many urban areas, up to ten small motorcycles can be accommodated in a single car’s parking space. This alone may shave off precious minutes from your delivery times.
  • Lower Maintenance Costs: Motorcycles are generally kinder to your wallet when it comes to upkeep. From oil changes to tire replacements and insurance, the costs associated with keeping a motorcycle in top shape are typically lower than those for cars. For Dashers, this means more of their hard-earned cash stays with them, making their DoorDashing gigs more profitable.

What are the downsides of using motorcycles on DoorDash?

  • Limited Carrying Capacity: A standard DoorDash catering bag designed for motorcycles measures approximately 21.5 by 13.75 by 13.75 inches, offering less than 10% of an average car’s storage space. This can be a hurdle when managing larger orders or balancing multiple deliveries at once. Matt Wheeler, who has been Dashing for over two years, points out that “you'll be unable to take orders that include pizzas, or more than just a few drinks. On top of that, you also won't be able to take catering orders, which often have higher payouts due to the bigger order sizes.” 
  • Weather Dependency: Motorcycles are more exposed to weather elements than enclosed vehicles. Wet roads reduce tire grip, increasing the risk of skidding. Rain and fog may severely hamper visibility, while strong winds can affect the motorcycle's stability, especially at higher speeds. You’re thus forced to take on DoorDash deliveries only when the weather is fair. If you choose otherwise, the unfavorable conditions could compromise your safety.
  • Safety Concerns: Speaking of safety, the record for motorcycles is not that great. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data from 2021, motorcyclists face a 29-fold higher risk of fatal accidents than their counterparts in cars – with the corresponding rate of injury being four times greater. As such, you should always take extra precautions when DoorDashing on a motorcycle. Start by investing in protective gear and then maybe combine it with defensive riding techniques.
  • Limited Service Area: The many physical limitations, especially on carrying capacity, might restrict the type of orders that motorcycle Dashers can accept. This can, in turn, constrain the areas they serve. Some Dashers have even reportedly noted that switching to a car significantly broadens the range and volume of orders they receive. Take, for instance, this anecdotal account from a DoorDasher on Reddit, who alternates between a car and a motorcycle. They revealed that they get a lot more orders when using the car.

DoorDash motorcycle requirements

Before starting your DoorDash motorcycle role, there are some prerequisites you'll need to tick off:

  • Driver's License: You'll need a valid driver's license that endorses motorcycling. The types of endorsement vary across regions and motorcycle categories. Always check local regulations to ensure you're compliant.
  • Insurance: All motor vehicles registered on DoorDash must be accompanied by an auto insurance policy. This rule applies to motorcycles just as much as cars, and it's meant to shield you from any liabilities that may arise from road accidents. DoorDash itself does offer excess auto insurance coverage, but you can only claim the benefits after exhausting your primary personal coverage.
  • Minimum Age: To DoorDash on a motorcycle, you must be at least 18 years old. 
  • Background Check: Customers need to have confidence that their orders are in safe hands. DoorDash sees to it by conducting a background check on all its applicants, motorcycle riders included. Checkr, a third-party company, scrutinizes both criminal records and driving histories. Any red flags – like a history of reckless driving or criminal activities – might disqualify potential Dashers from the platform. If you otherwise manage to sail through, DoorDash will proceed to check your records every year or so, just to ascertain that you're still compliant. 

You can compare how these requirements stack up against the analogous DoorDash car requirements.  

What are the best motorcycles for DoorDash?

Choosing the right motorcycle for DoorDashing might favorably influence your efficiency, earnings, and overall experience. Whereas the platform doesn't endorse any specific models, there are certain attributes that make some bikes more suitable for the job than others:

  • Size and Agility: Motorcycles with a shorter wheelbase tend to be more maneuverable, allowing for tighter turns through traffic. Lighter bikes are also easier to handle, especially for newer riders or in stop-and-go traffic scenarios.
  • Fuel Efficiency: Larger engines might offer more power, but they often guzzle more fuel. Opt for motorcycles that strike a good balance between performance and fuel consumption. Some modern motorcycles are capable of attaining upwards of 50 miles per gallon (MPG), allowing you to keep more of your earnings. Ryan Shaw, a DoorDasher who’s worked on the platform for over three years, cautions that those fuel efficient motorcycle engines come with smaller fuel tanks than cars. So, you can expect to refuel more often, with the frequency being inversely proportional to the bike’s engine size. 
  • Storage Space: Prioritize motorcycles that either come with integrated storage spaces or can effortlessly support add-on storage solutions like saddlebags. You should also consider the technical specifications of the storage solutions – such as volume capacity, waterproofing, insulation, and ease of access. 

Using that criteria, we scoured the web for reviews and recommendations from motorcyclists – especially those in the delivery field. The following ultimately emerged as the most popular all-rounded performers in terms of agility, fuel efficiency, and storage space.

1. Honda CBR125R: Going by user remarks on motorcyclenews.com, the Honda CBR125R is a sporty 125cc bike is renowned for its agility in city traffic. It offers around 80 MPG, making it one of the most fuel-efficient options. The design itself allows for easy attachment of aftermarket storage solutions. 

2. Yamaha YZF-R125: Another popular sporty choice on motorcyclenews.com, this 125cc motorcycle is both agile and fuel-efficient – boasting around 78 MPG. Its sleek design doesn't compromise the ability to add storage solutions.

3. KTM 200 Duke: A naked bike with a sporty edge, the 200 Duke's 200cc engine offers a balance of performance and efficiency – with an average of 70 MPG, as reported on KTMForums. Its compact design is perfect for city rides, and there are ample aftermarket storage solutions available.

DoorDash motorcycle gear and accessories

Once you get the go-ahead to DoorDash on a motorcycle, don't just hop on your bike and zoom off. You'll need the right gear and accessories to ensure safety and a smooth delivery experience.

Here's what you should think about as part of your motorcycle setup:

Safety gear for DoorDash motorcycles

  • Helmets: Prioritize helmets with DOT (Department of Transportation) certifications. They've undergone stringent impact tests.
  • Gloves: Quality motorcycle gloves are made of abrasion-resistant materials like leather or reinforced synthetics. They should additionally offer knuckle protection and a snug wrist closure system. Touchscreen compatibility is another plus for easy phone navigation.
  • Protective Clothing: Invest in jackets and pants embedded with CE-rated armor, particularly at vital areas like the elbows, shoulders, and knees. Materials like Cordura or Kevlar are particularly resistant to abrasion.

Weather protection gear

  • Rain Gear: For those rainy days, you'll need gear with a waterproof rating of at least 5,000mm. A breathability rating of 5,000g/m²/day or more would also help wick away any accumulated moisture. Then for optimal water resistance, go for sealed seams and storm flaps. 
  • Insulation: In chillier conditions, thermal-lined gear – such as those with Thinsulate – would be appropriate for retaining body heat. You should especially pay attention to their tog rating – as the higher the tog, the warmer the gear.

Phone mount for DoorDash motorcycles

  • Attachment Mechanisms: Opt for mounts that combine clamp attachments with silicone bands for added stability. They'll keep your phone firmly in place even on bumpy rides.
  • Adjustability: A good mount should offer 360-degree rotation, allowing you to view your phone in portrait or landscape mode.
  • Material Durability: To enjoy optimal longevity and weather resistance, pick mounts that are built from high-strength composite materials or stainless steel.

DoorDash motorcycle bag

DoorDash offers a branded bag for sale, but you can also find your own convenient (and perhaps cheaper) bag. Consider these qualities when making a purchase.

  • Insulation Type: Closed-cell foam insulation is great for maintaining temperature. Plus, it's both lightweight and durable.
  • Temperature Retention Duration: A good insulated bag should retain the food's temperature for at least 2 hours. That's more than enough time to complete your DoorDash deliveries.  
  • Size: The bag should be large enough to comfortably fit standard food packages. Dimensions around 21.5 by 13.75 by 13.75 inches generally suffice for most motorcycle deliveries on DoorDash. 

You could also supplement your DoorDash motorcycle bag with the following auxiliary storage options:

  • Saddlebags: When shopping for saddlebags, UV-treated, water-resistant nylon or leather materials are top choices. Look for bags with quick-release buckles and a minimum capacity of 20 liters.
  • Rear Racks: Stainless steel and aluminum racks are known for their resistance to rust. A good rack should further support at least 10 kg and easily attach to your motorcycle's subframe or bolt points. Ryan especially recommends this for motorcycle Dashers, adding that you’ll probably also need some form of “tie-downs” to secure delivery items in place.  

For context, you can check out this motorcycle carrier setup by Matt, another experienced DoorDasher with several years under his belt. 

The bags even have compartments that can firmly hold both food and beverage orders.

Start DoorDashing on your motorcycle today

DoorDashing on a motorcycle is an exhilarating way to earn money. Sign up today to enjoy both the thrill of the ride and the satisfaction of fulfilling customer orders (subject to Dasher approval and local availability). 

For people who otherwise feel that they’re not cut out for motorcycles, there’s no pressure at all. You can always opt to DoorDash with a car. And no, you don’t have to own it – some Dashers even make it work with car rentals.

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