Our summary findings are:
1. Takeaways, including both major chains and small, independent businesses are always on the lookout for delivery drivers.
2. You won’t need any qualifications to work as a delivery driver, though you will need a full, clean driving licence.
3. You will need good knowledge of the local area and or a Sat Nav.
4. Employers will also expect you to be punctual, reliable and have excellent customer service skills.
5. Pay will vary according to your employer, but you shouldn’t expect much more than National Minimum Wage.
6. However, some employers may give you free or discounted food, while you will also be able to enjoy the chance to juggle a flexible part-time job with other commitments.
7. While it may not be intellectually challenging, delivering takeaways can be stressful, particularly if you have to deal with rude customers.
8. Keep an eye out for signs in takeaway shop windows or else get in touch with major employers such as Domino’s to find work.
Working as a Delivery Driver
While many parts of the service industry have suffered as a result of the economic downturn, takeaways continue to do brisk business as people choose to treat themselves at home rather than go out on the town. This means that opportunities for delivery drivers are plentiful.
As the job title suggests, the work involves delivering takeaway orders to the customer’s door, collecting the money and then returning to the store to process the payment and pick up the next order.
While you won’t need any academic qualifications, or even previous experience, if you want to work for an independent takeaway or even a small chain, you will need to provide your own transport (larger chains such as Domino’s Pizza often provide their drivers with scooters).
Also, employers will look for:
- Reliability: Takeaways need drivers they can depend on to get their orders delivered on time and keep their customers happy.
- Professionalism: As Pizza Hut notes, “as a driver, you’re the polite and friendly face that takes the restaurant to the customer”.
- Flexibility: Takeaway managers always need to cover the odd shift, often at the last-minute, so a willingness to be flexible will always be a big plus for them.
Pay and Benefits
No matter how much you get tipped, you’re never going to earn as much money as ‘Papa John’ himself for delivering pizzas.
In fact, while pay can vary considerably between individual takeaways and restaurant chains, you should expect to earn little more than the National Minimum Wage.
Some places may pay per order delivered (with rates as low as £1.20 per delivery advertised on Gumtree) while other places may be a fixed hourly wage and let you keep any tips you might receive.
Pay aside, there can be a number of benefits to working as a takeaway delivery driver. Depending on your employer, these can include:
- Free or discounted food for you, and maybe even your friends.
- The chance to fit an occasional shift around another job or around your studies.
- The ability to earn a little extra money without having to be chained to a desk.
However, delivering takeaway orders is far from a dream career. Apart from the relatively poor levels of pay – which may be fine for students, but unlikely to be enough to support a family with – the job can have its downsides, and at worst be highly stressful.
Possible problems may include:
- Having to deal with non-paying customers. Frustratingly, customers not having enough money to pay for their order is a common problem for delivery drivers.
- Similarly, you should expect to be dealing with the consequences of prank calls and false orders on a regular basis.
- Getting stressed over meeting targets and keeping both the takeaway owners and their customers happy.
- Having to use your own car or scooter or having to cover your own costs, including petrol. If you have an accident when you’re out driving, you may not be covered and it could end up costing you far more than you’ll earn in several months’ worth of delivery shifts.
Finding Delivery Work
One major upside of this line of work is that there are always jobs out there. In fact, the high turnover of drivers, as well as the fact that new takeaways open and close all the time, makes being a delivery boy and girl an attractive prospect if you’re keen to start earning money as soon as possible.
Many small, independent takeaways will recruit drivers informally, whether it’s through family connections or simply doing it themselves. If they are on the lookout for new staff, they may put up signs in their windows, so be sure to keep an eye on all your local takeaways.
Alternatively, big chains regularly recruit new drivers, so get in touch with them directly.
The likes of Pizza Hut, Dominos and Papa John’s will always need reliable drivers and you can either apply through their websites or else pop into your local store and hand the manager a copy of your CV.
Alternatively use our job search to see if there are any advertised jobs locally to you.
UK Jobs Guide has all the UK’s jobcentres for you online with location details and contact phone numbers, so you could call yours to see if they have any vacancies in this area.
If you like the though of doing a more regular driving job then see our section of driving job guides.
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