DoorDash Top Dasher Requirements: Is It Worth It?

DoorDash, a popular meal delivery app, is always trying to add and keep delivery people, called Dashers.  To keep Dashers motivated, DoorDash has a Top Dasher Program to reward its top Dashers by giving them special benefits and rewards.

In this article, we’ll talk about getting Top Dasher Status with DoorDash, the requirements to become a Top Dasher, benefits, how to monitor your Dasher status, and whether or not it may be worth it for you to consider joining.

What is a DoorDash Top Dasher?

Top Dasher is DoorDash’s recognition program to recognize and reward its top delivery drivers.

To qualify, you must meet and maintain certain metrics like average customer rating, average completion rate, total lifetime deliveries, and more.

If you qualify for Top Dasher, you’ll get access to many high-value orders, more times to dash, and other special perks that we’ll go into later in our section about program benefits.

You don’t sign up specifically for the Top Dasher program, if you meet certain criteria, you’ll automatically be enrolled and given access to all the program rewards.

For Dashers, the allure is to be able to get more deliveries and make more money.

For DoorDash, they want to motivate their Dashers to work more hours and make more deliveries throughout the month instead of switching to GrubHub, Uber Eats, or other competing delivery apps.

Many drivers sign up for two or more of these services to maximize their earnings, which as an independent contractor you can do.

How Can I Tell if I’m a Top Dasher?

If you qualify for Top Dasher, you’ll be notified via email and in the Dasher app. When you log in to the DoorDash app, there will be a pop-up saying that you are enrolled.

You can also check your status in the Dasher account settings.

How To Become a Top Dasher: Top Dasher Requirements

In order to become a top Dasher, you have to meet and maintain the Top Dasher requirements.

Here are the Top Dasher Requirements According to DoorDash:

  • Average customer rating of at least 4.7 (out of 5 stars)
  • Average order acceptance rate of at least 70%
  • Average order completion rate of at least 95%
  • At least 100 orders completed during the previous months
  • At least 200 total lifetime orders completed

Dashers will be added to the program on the second day of each month. If you met the requirements for the month of September, you would be added to the program on October 2 of the following month.

If you meet all Top Dasher criteria by the mid-month, you still need to maintain those stats through the last day of the month so you can be eligible the following month.

DoorDash has calculated that it should take an average of 40 minutes to pick up a food order and bring it to the diner. This means it should take about 67 hours to complete 100 food delivery orders as is required to be a Top Dasher.

Benefits of Being a Top Dasher

Here are the Top Dasher benefits as of June 2023. DoorDash notes it can modify its program at any time, and you can find information in support articles in the Dasher app or DoorDash website.

1. “Dash Now” Anytime

This benefit means you can start working anywhere at any time, regardless of whether or not it is busy (your delivery zone is highlighted in pink).

Typically, drivers cannot dash at any time. Regular drivers must set their hours depending on the location and wait for their area to get busy. Then, the zone will turn pink and you can select “Dash Now” to start working.

With the “Dash Now” benefit, you do not wait for your zone to turn pink. You can dash at any time, regardless of zone status.

Pink zones do not exist in all DoorDash delivery areas, so there scheduling your hours is crucial.

2. Earlier Scheduling Access

Top Dashers get first priority for scheduling shifts through Early Access Scheduling.

Shift scheduling is available on DoorDash every day at 12 a.m. midnight, but Top Dashers can view and schedule new shit blocks as early as 3 p.m.

This means you can pick the best times and best zones: high-paying orders during the dinner rush in trendy parts of towns saturated with restaurants and eateries.

You can select the starting zone where you want to start dashing, but you can drive to different areas and dash in those zones as well. There is a feature for you to “Dash Along the Way” so you can earn as you head toward a new delivery area.

Many of the best Dashers make use of both Early Access Scheduling and Dash Along the Way to maximize their drive time.

How Long Does Top Dasher Status Last?

Top Dasher status lasts for one month. You must meet and maintain program requirements by the first day of the following month in order to meet or maintain eligibility for the following month.

Every month you will need to qualify or re-qualify for the rewards program.

If you happen to lose your eligibility during the middle of the month (i.e., if you don’t maintain a high acceptance rate of at least 70%), you will still be able to keep any current Top Dasher rewards through the first day of the following month.

If you are a New Dasher—in a select new market being added to the Top Dasher Program—the program works a little bit differently.

New Dashers are automatically added in select markets based on varying criteria and will retain Top Dasher status for the 2 weeks thereafter or through the end of the month. The timelines and other criteria are subject to change.

Common Myths about Being a Top Dasher

Here are some common rumors, myths, and grumblings about the Top Dasher program.

“I can’t cancel orders.”

False. A Top Dasher can cancel orders, too. But you will need to maintain at least a 70% acceptance rate to maintain your status and keep your Top Dasher rewards. This means you could turn down 3 out of every 10 orders if you wanted to.

“I’ll get mostly good orders.”

False. You’ll get “good” orders (higher tab or higher tip orders) and “not so good” orders (lower payout, longer wait time, lower tip) as a Top Dasher, just like you would as a regular Dasher.

But you should wind up getting a higher volume of all orders in general, including good orders.

“I’ll wind up making less money.”

Potentially false. Reviews from Top Dashers vary, some claiming they earn more money with the program and others stating they earn $1-$2 less per delivery than they do as a regular Dasher.

One fan of Top Dasher states the program can help you get up to 50% more delivery opportunities. Another DoorDash driver states they make more money now with the Top Dasher Program than they did before as a multi-apper before – delivering for multiple different delivery apps.

However, some Dashers note that Top Dashers wind up making less per delivery based on the app’s setup. Top Dashers get “first dibs” on orders, but wind up with lower-paying orders than other Dashers.

A Dasher explains it, noting that lower-paying orders will typically get passed on by Top Dashers who have first right of refusal, and after an order gets passed enough times, DoorDash will up the base pay.

So, this Dasher claims, a non-Top Dasher will eventually take the order—and at a base payout higher than what Top Dashers are making for delivering similar orders.

“I have to be a Top Dasher to get Peak Pay.”

False. Peak Pay is offered to any driver based on DoorDash demand. During busy periods (i.e., lunch, dinner, Super Bowl), drivers can earn additional pay called Peak Pay.

Dashers can earn an extra amount per single delivery or batched delivery when Peak Pay is in effect. You will clearly see the incentives displayed when you log in to the app and with the total pay for any order you potentially accept.

Depending on your area and the level of demand, you could earn more per delivery during Peak Pay — as well as additional bonuses like an additional cash reward for making at least 3 deliveries during Peak Pay.

Is Being a Top Dasher Worth It?

It depends on who you ask. Some Dashers are very keen on the program, saying that being a Top Dasher has unlocked better, higher-paying drop-offs by giving them first dibs on orders coming through. Other drivers disagree.

The other Top Dasher benefits—priority scheduling and “Dash Now”—may not carry that much benefit. One Minneapolis-based Dasher states that there are always plenty of deliveries to pick up in Minneapolis or any other area of the country they’ve dashed in, and they’ve never needed to schedule a shift or use “Dash Now” to find work.

Additionally, being a Top Dasher means you have to accept at least some orders you don’t want to make. But when you’re not in the program, you can decline as many orders as you want and never be removed as a DoorDash driver. You could do this and concentrate your time and energy on the easiest and most lucrative deliveries possible.

The Top Dasher program is a nice feather in your cap, but you don’t get paid anymore per order and may wind up having to deliver a lot of undesirable orders too.

Should You Become a Top Dasher?

Being a Top Dasher may be worth it for some drivers, depending on the area where you live, the shifts you want to work, and the type of orders coming through. Top Dashers report a range of earnings and experiences.

As a side hustle though, DoorDash is a worthwhile gig with competitive pay and the flexibility of working when it’s convenient for them.

If you are considering DoorDash or just starting out as a DoorDash Driver, it’s worth giving the Top Dasher program a go. You can compare your earnings from one month to the next to see if the program is worth it for you.