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    Here at The Rideshare Guy, we’re always looking for new services and apps to help you diversify your driving or delivery services. Senior RSG contributor Paula Gibbins profiles a new delivery service similar to Amazon Flex called Point Pickup. Her experience and takeaways below!

    As you probably know, there are a lot of delivery services out there from GrubHub to Postmates to DoorDash and more. One more to add to the list is Point Pickup.

    instacart

    Point Pickup is similar to Postmates or Instacart – with Point Pickup, you’re delivering groceries. How is Point Pickup different from Postmates, then, or Instacart, and should you sign up for Point Pickup? I recently tested out Point Pickup and wanted to share my experience.

    Point Pickup not available yet in your city? Be sure to sign up for these other delivery services here:

    Point Pickup

    Point Pickup is a Connecticut-based delivery system that allows for same-day delivery of items ordered by customers. Their site states, “We’ve built a platform to enable any type of delivery starting at the middle mile (i.e., deliveries to the location before the customer’s home) all the way to the last mile.”

    They boast low costs due to eliminating the middleman while not limiting themselves to servicing only one industry. Point Pickup serves big box and miscellaneous retail, grocery, liquor and specialty foods, automotive, pharmaceutical and laboratory, and many others.

    Technically, Point Pickup is available from Manhattan to New Haven, CT, Suffolk County Long Island, and also Boston West to Framingham, MA; however, it’s clearly available for drivers to sign up in any location. On their location map site, Point Pickup states, “We have expanded! If you have a request outside any of our shaded regions, please try us! Many times, Drivers will be available to complete your request.”

    Point Pickup is similar to Amazon Flex. With Amazon Flex, you have to wait for a driver job to actually be available, whereas Point Pickup is more aligned with Uber — as long as you pass the background check, you’re ready and available to do pickups.

    Another big difference between Amazon Flex and Point Pickup is that with Amazon Flex you have to follow a schedule, or a block of time you set aside for driving. For Point Pickup, you set a “working schedule” but you can deliver at any time.

    What are you delivering?

    The majority of delivery requests in my area are picking up from a Walmart and delivering to the customer who had ordered their items online. There are also a few requests that are actual packages to pickup and deliver, but I’m not certain of the nature or size of these packages.

    As part of the app, you can specify what you are willing to deliver:

    I’m able to handle all of the options and didn’t want to prevent myself from being able to receive any and all requests, so I keep them all selected.

    You’re also able to say if you have certain qualifications as a driver that might open you up to other requests:

    I don’t have any special qualifications like that, so I am limited in that respect. It isn’t clear from their app or website if you might be entitled to more compensation if you do a delivery that requires one of these specialities.

    Point Pickup acquisition

    Point Pickup made a splash in the news in August 2021 with the announcement that they acquired GrocerKey for $42 million, giving retailers an alternative to Instacart for grocery delivery. 

    GrocerKey is an e-commerce platform and Point Pickup will be using their technology to help retailers connect to Point Pickup with their existing e-commerce platforms.

    In a Progressive Grocer article written by Marian Zboraj, Jeremy Neren, GrocerKey co-founder and CEO states:

    “Early on, we were impressed not just by the scale and sophistication of Point Pickup’s technology and services, but also their focus on bringing the customer back to enterprise retailers. Being able to provide brands with complete control over their e-commerce services, from point of sale to delivering to customers’ homes, is a game-changer. I’m excited to join the Point Pickup team along with our GrocerKey family and am eager to move forward with the integration of our technologies and companies.”

    This partnership allows Point Pickup business customers to maintain their brands and have control over their customers’ experience. It also allows consumers to go onto the grocery store’s website and shop as opposed to going onto Instacart’s app and shopping through their grocery store that way. 

    Signing up for Point Pickup

    Fortunately, signing up as a Point Pickup driver is pretty easy. All you need to do is download the app from the app store. 

    • If you’re an iOS user, you can install the app here
    • Android users can download the app here
    • Once you install the app, head to the home screen and tap ‘Register as a Driver’ 
    • After that, follow the registration process until you get registered completely
    • Once you’ve done registering, it’ll take anywhere between a day to five days until you get activated as a driver on the platform
    • An email notification will confirm your activation, and you can get started as a driver on the platform

    The sign-up process is pretty simple for Point Pickup. When signing up, Point Pickup asks for identifying information such as your driver’s license number to prove you’ve got a valid license along with your Social Security Number (SSN) and your bank information so you can get paid.

    Along with the sign up process, you are sent an email showcasing the following driver requirements:

    Now that you’ve got the app and are signed up as a driver, it might take a few days for the background check to go through. In the meantime, it might be worthwhile to watch their driver videos located here:

    There are a total of four videos that will help walk you through what you do as a driver for picking up and dropping off, as well as give you different scenarios for what might go wrong and how to handle them.

    Setting a schedule and working area

    I love that you can set a schedule, so you’ll only receive requests that fit into that time frame. For example, I have a day job, so I cannot do delivery during that time, but would be available before and after it, and basically anytime on the weekends.

    You can also set up a driving zone. For Point Pickup, I’ve noticed this part of the app could use some improvements. For instance, I set my zone to be within 30 miles of my location under “Roaming Location”. But, for some reason, I got requests outside of that zone. My first pickup I had the opportunity to claim was 49 miles from my location according to Google Maps:

    For only $11.17 payout, it was not worth my time or effort to drive 49 miles from home and then have to do the same back again. That is just plain laughable.

    I’ve gotten a lot of similar available jobs, but have not taken them for that same reason. It was not worth my time or gas to drive that far out of my way. So, I tightened up my parameters for how far I’m willing to drive to do these. The app still sends me regular requests that are well out of that zone, so that has been a bit frustrating for me.

    How much does Point Pickup pay drivers?

    Point Pickup helps the nation’s leading sellers to control their customers’ experiences from purchase to delivery. The company has hired drivers for that purpose. 

    Here’s a quick look into the average salaries of Point Pickup drivers: 

    • Courier Driver: $9.00 per hour
    • Delivery Driver: $14.25 per hour
    • Driver (Independent Contractor): $20.00 per hour

    Point Pickup driver vs Instacart shopper

    Whether you’re a Point Pickup driver or an Instacart driver, your job is the same; you go shopping for other people. All you need to do is visit the app and check out the shopping list. 

    Your pay primarily depends on how often you deliver and the size of the order. 

    None of these companies will make you rich but can help you supplement your income. Basically, there is a meager difference between being a Point Pickup driver vs an Instacart driver.

    Both the companies give the flexibility of time and location, but there are a few drawbacks to each. 

    For instance, Point Pickup drivers complain about a lack of support from managers and less sense of belonging. 

    Instacart drivers, on the other hand, are dissatisfied with the app cliches and infrequent orders. 

    Tips, tricks, and strategies for Point Pickup drivers

    A few Point Pickup drivers often complain about not getting enough orders. Others accuse the app of displaying wrong orders. For instance, a few drivers report their orders disappearing as soon as they open the app. 

    Here are a few tips and tricks to get maximum orders if you’re in the same boat. 

    • Keep an eye on the orders throughout the day. 
    • Have a strong wifi connection; otherwise, you’ll surely miss out on your orders.
    • Set your working schedule to maximum hours.
    • If you’ve set your location to ‘Roaming’, make sure you change it to ‘Fixed.’
    • Make sure your app is updated. 
    • Set your working radius to the maximum distance possible.
    • Make sure you have entered the correct vehicle details.

    Taxes for Point Pickup drivers

    Not every Point Pickup driver has to pay taxes. However, if you earned more than $600 in 2020, you’ll receive the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form 1099-NEC in your mail. 

    You would then need to file for the tax. 

    The 1099-NEC form will also be available in electronic form in your account. You can download the copy by logging in to your account. 

    Here’s how to access the form electronically: 

    • Go to the official Point Pickup website.
    • On the top right corner of the homepage, you’ll see a ‘Log in’ button; click on it.
    • Once you’ve logged in, go to the top right corner and click the ‘Settings.’
    • Here, choose the tab ‘Documents’
    • As soon as the tab opens, you’ll find a copy of your 1099-NEC form. 
    • Download the PDF document, and you’re good to go. 

    Does Point Pickup have an app for drivers?

    Point Pickup app is one of the easiest ways to keep track of the orders and receive notifications as soon as customers place an order. 

    Perhaps you can’t stay glued to your PC 24/7 on the website. Therefore, the organization makes it easier for you. 

    Android users can open the play store and download the app right away. Apple users can download the app from the app store

    Once you install the app, you must enter your details to sign up as a driver. After completing the registration process, you’ll need to wait for a day to 5 days. 

    As soon as you get activated on the platform, you’ll be informed via email. 

    Can you refer other drivers to Point Pickup? 

    Definitely! You can suggest it to a friend or colleague who is interested in working as a driver with Point Pickup.

    Though it doesn’t help you earn a lot of money, you can make passive income to pay your bills. The good news is, if you’re already working as a driver at Point Pickup, you’ll be awarded. 

    Here’s the link if you need it to refer to Point Pickup to your friends or colleagues. 

    However, your referral must comply with specific conditions if you want to earn a reward. Here are the terms and conditions: 

    • The person you referred the app to must meet all the background checks and qualifications of the Point Pickup driver.
    • Secondly, the referred person should not already have an account with Point Pickup under a different name. 
    • Lastly, the person you referred must complete three orders. 

    You’ll be awarded a bonus when these conditions are met. 

    Does Point Pickup do a background check? 

    Yes, Point Pickup does a background check when you sign up as a driver. 

    As soon as you enter your details and sign up as a driver, you go through a background check by Checker, a reputable background check service. 

    During the process, you may be asked for additional information. Make sure you respond to all the queries. 

    This process can take up to 2-4 weeks. If the website identifies any prior candidate history, you’ll be directed to the Legal and Compliance team for further review. 

    In the meanwhile, you can monitor your progress by clicking here and entering your email, phone number, date of birth, and security number, and then finally clicking ‘Get Status.’

    Is it worthwhile to drive for Point Pickup?

    Overall, I think it’s worth having this app and being open to these deliveries for a little extra cash. As usual, it’s completely up to me if I want to accept a delivery or not. If I feel like one is too out of my way, I don’t have to take it. Or if I don’t feel like it will pay enough, I don’t have to take it.

    They give you the tools you need to succeed, such as training videos and emails with more information regarding their expectations of their drivers:

    All in all, it’s not all that different from any other delivery apps. One notable exception is that tipping is not encouraged. Quite the opposite: they specifically ask that drivers not ask for a tip. We’re allowed to accept them if offered a cash tip, but we’re not allowed to ask for them and there’s no way to tip within the app. And, as we know from experience, it’s a lot less likely to get a tip when there’s no option to do so within the app.

    I’ll definitely keep this app around and take a look for available jobs, and it’s not a bad idea to have Point Pickup in your rotation of delivery services. Point Pickup may not have a lot of opportunities in your market right now, but hopefully we continue to see them grow!

    Had you heard of Point Pickup before? Do you think you would sign up for them if they’re available in your city?

    instacart

    -Paula @ RSG

    Paula Gibbins

    Paula Gibbins

    Paula has been writing for the Rideshare Guy since the fall of 2018. The main focus of her articles has been breaking news, reviewing new apps, driver experiences and more. Prior to her time with the Rideshare Guy, Paula worked as a writer and editor for various publications including local newspapers, sporting goods catalogs, online merchandise and more. She currently has a full-time job editing for a top beauty company and enjoys reading, playing board games and participating in weekly trivia.