Skip to main content

Whether you’re dining out less due to the pandemic, to avoid the challenge of eating in a restaurant with small children, don’t want to leave the comfort of your own home or another reason entirely, having food delivered is a nice treat.

But the bill for having your favorite dishes delivered can add up quickly with the cost of the food you are ordering, the service fee charged by the restaurant, taxes, delivery fee (though some places waive delivery fees if your order is above a certain amount) and gratuity, or a tip, for the delivery driver. Ordering online is simple—determining how to tip for food delivery should be simple, too.

In most states, tipped employees are exempt from minimum wage requirements and make an average of $2.13 an hour without tips. While that number may vary by the restaurant or delivery service they work for, it’s safe to say tips account for a large portion of a delivery driver’s income. So how do you determine the amount to tip a delivery driver?

Use these steps to decide how much to tip for food delivery

The standard tip for food delivery is 10% of the bill, so if your total bill is $30, add $3 for your tip. Food delivery provider GrubHub suggests a $5 or 20% tip, whichever is more.

Here are some other factors to consider when tipping for delivery. Ask yourself:

  • Was the food order difficult? If there were multiple bags of food, containers that could easily spill or many beverages, consider tipping more to acknowledge that your order wasn’t the easiest to keep in one piece for delivery. This is especially true for group orders at the office.
  • Is the delivery address hard to get to? If you live outside the city limits, in a neighborhood that’s hard to find or are ordering delivery during a storm, adding a little extra to your tip goes a long way in showing your appreciation for their willingness to quite literally go the extra mile.

Keep in mind that many times the delivery driver can see the tip before accepting an order, especially when ordering through a third-party app. If drivers see an address that’s far from the restaurant AND a 40-cent tip, you may have a hard time getting your food delivered (and while it’s still warm). On the flip side, if they see a generous tip, they are likely to go above and beyond to ensure your food gets to you quickly and while it’s still hot.

Want more money etiquette tips? Check out more blog posts on the Verve website.