How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

How I Make Over $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

The rise of the gig economy has transformed the way people work and earn money. In this era where entry-level positions are getting harder to get and job hunting is slowly becoming such a miserable experience, many turn to food delivery platforms like Uber Eats for their flexibility and accessibility.

My 1 Month Uber Eats Review of the Side Hustle

So I decided to challenge myself and embark on a one-month journey as an Uber Eats driver to see how much money I could make. I have seen multiple YouTube videos showcasing the daily life of an Uber Eats delivery experience. Well, they’re earning over $8,300 a month😅

Well, I believe I can share more to it with my content!

Over the course of the month, I meticulously documented my earnings, expenses, and experiences to shed light on the reality of delivery apps and their impact on one’s financial well-being.

30-Day to Make the Most with Uber Eats

Without further ado, here is my 30-day challenge!


As part of any challenge, there has to be a set of rules to push myself in order to get the full experience. So here were five rules I decided to live and follow over the course of this month:

  1. I must drive and deliver as much as humanly possible.
  2. Accept every delivery that pops up.
  3. Utilize as many of the features within reason.
  4. Explore different strategies in order to optimize my earnings.
  5. Make as much money as possible.

With all of that in mind, here is the week-by-week breakdown of what I went through this past month!

Week 1 – Learning Phase

Before diving into the experiment, I went through the process of signing up as an Uber Eats driver. The onboarding process was relatively straightforward since it was literally just installing the Uber Drivers app, and putting in some info. Once I was approved, I eagerly started delivering food throughout Los Angeles.

I started delivering on Thursday because I assume there are more deliveries occurring in the later half of the week. The first day went pretty well as I made about $90 delivering food throughout Encino, Burbank, Northridge, and North Hollywood.

However, when I tried to follow it up over the weekend by taking similar routes, I didn’t get as much activity as on Thursday and earned significantly less. It was then I learned that the app’s forecast and minute-by-minute surges meant nothing but educated guesses and nothing concrete.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
Photo by Pim de Boer on Unsplash

Throughout the weekend, I did discover that my initial range of deliveries was wider than anticipated because, in addition to delivering for Uber Eats, I could also deliver for Postmates since the company was acquired by Uber in 2020.

Despite a rocky and uneven start, I made 34 deliveries, learned that surge spots are useless, discovered a supermarket in LA: Erewhon Market– a place where they sell $20 smoothies and don’t place any price tags, and even unlocked Uber Eats Pro which is pretty much a fancy way of saying you now have access to customer service and a bunch of discounts to things you might find useful.

1st Week Highlights

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

Of course, I don’t expect to make any life-changing amount but I guess this is a good start!

  • Smallest Order: One venti from Starbucks
  • Largest Order: A box of pastries, a box of donuts, and four iced coffees
  • Most Frequented: Jack in the Box
  • Smallest Tip of the Week: $1
  • Largest Tip of the Week: $10.00

Week 2 – Pushing for More

For week two, I set out to earn at least one hundred dollars in a single day to see how much time, effort, and luck is required to hit that kind of goal. However, at the beginning of the week, I was suddenly given a $107 bonus for Prop 22.

Prop 22 is officially known as the “App-Based Drivers as Contractors and Labor Policies Initiative” in California, and this proposition requires companies like Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash to pay their contractors the following benefits:

  • 120 percent of the local minimum wage for each hour a driver spends driving (with passenger/delivery or en route), but not for time spent waiting.
  • $0.30/mile for expenses for each mile driven with a passenger or en route.
  • Health insurance stipend for drivers who average more than 15 hours per week driving.
  • Requiring the companies to pay medical costs and some lost income for drivers hurt while driving or waiting.
  • Prohibiting workplace discrimination and requiring that companies develop sexual harassment policies, conduct criminal background checks, and mandate safety training for drivers.

This meant that every two weeks, I would receive a supplemental bonus for the amount of hours I was actively delivering. After taking some time to really understand Prop 22, I eventually discovered that I need to optimize my active time by driving a lot in order to fully maximize my potential earnings.

So for week two, I tried delivering for Walmart through the Uber Eats reservation system and camped out at a plaza in Balboa where there was a Chipotle, Five Guys, Waba Grill, Jersey Mike’s, a Poki shop, and a boba shop in order to get as much active deliveries as possible.

However, my first attempt at this was brutal as the majority of the time I would either sit around or drive around for hours and receive very little action.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“The Golden Five to any delivery driver.”

Despite the lack of deliveries, I hit my goal on Thursday and earned $107.36, but of course, the day I achieved that goal was also the day that it was 107 degrees all across Northridge, Encino, and Burbank with a hint of humidity. On Friday, I hung out with some friends and when we all went home, I saw the opportunity to do some midnight deliveries around LAX and Inglewood.

The majority of the deliveries were from McDonald’s and ghost kitchens located in super shady areas underneath highways. During one of my deliveries to a ghost kitchen, I met a delivery driver named Walt while waiting for an order. Both our orders were taking so long to make that we eventually started exchanging stories of some of our worst and most absurd deliveries.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“What most ghost kitchens look like.”

When I asked him for one piece of advice as a new driver, he told me that I should always keep working hard and always value my time, because I am worth more than delivering a four-dollar meal at 3 AM in the morning. Enlightened by Walt’s piece of advice, I continued to deliver several more orders from McDonald’s. However, I eventually followed Walt’s advice and called it a night, because it was getting late and I realized that nobody tips with these midnight orders.

By the end of week two, I felt that I was finally starting to find my groove. Just by hitting my goal and talking to drivers like Walt, I felt encouraged to continue on with the challenge with gusto. Some of the biggest highlights I also wanted to mention were that I got my first cash tip, understood the importance of Wi-Fi when delivering, and even unlocked Uber Eats Gold which just awards you with priority customer support and tuition coverage at ASU online, which is such an oddly specific thing to cover.

2nd Week Highlights

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

Getting the hang of knowing how to properly make money!

  • Smallest Order: One large boba
  • Largest Order: Three large combo plates from Ono Hawaiian BBQ
  • Most Frequented: Starbucks
  • Smallest Tip of the Week: $1
  • Largest Tip of the Week: $14

Week 3 – Knowing How the System Works!

By the beginning of week 3, I realized that the best way to make the most of Uber Eats was by doing deliveries throughout the entire day. So I started off my mornings by doing Walmart deliveries and followed that up with any brunch/lunch deliveries right after.

I would then take a two-hour break to hit the gym and unwind during the afternoon slump, which is a period of time between lunch and dinner that is just dead. Towards the end of my workout, I go back online and await for the beginning of the dinner rush and once I get the first one, I am on the move and I keep grinding until I am done.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“Gotta take breaks when delivering food all day” | Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

On Tuesday, I got free donuts while I was waiting for an order to be completed at a donut shop. The people behind the counter were swamped with big orders and I could tell that it was a family-run business based on personal experience. So when I told them to take their time, they became super friendly to me and when I left with free donuts I was a little shaken by this random act of kindness.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

With a sudden boost of energy from free donuts, I continued this newfound routine, until I decided to deliver for a Walmart in Burbank.

Just for context, every time I deliver for Walmart I always either get groceries or a bunch of small wrapped-up packages to deliver. For the one in Burbank, they had me deliver literally everything but groceries and small packages.

From microwaves, printers, foldable chairs, and brooms, to a plasma TV, they packed my car to the brim and on top of it all, they literally mislabeled a third of the items. I didn’t even notice this until I got to the very first stop, where the lady wanted to double-check everything, but half her things were mislabeled with another person’s barcode sticker.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“I promise, nobody would deliver all of this if they knew what they had to deliver.”

When I called Uber Eats Support to get specifics on what each customer ordered, I learned that they are literally the:

Most incapable waste of space that ever existed.

They couldn’t access any of the details for the Walmart orders, so I literally had to double-check every delivery personally by calling and meeting with a third of customers just to make sure they were getting the right things. I even had to double back to the first customer just to drop off her mislabeled items.

The lady was super grateful to me for going the extra mile and eventually told me that this wasn’t the first time that the Burbank Walmart delivered the wrong items to her place. She even went as far and to describe that Walmart as:

“Kind of ghetto.”

The Walmart fiasco not only took up about fours to complete, but it also messed up my groove for the next couple of days, because I was tired, sweaty, frustrated, and just absolutely enraged. Despite this setback, I made up for it on Sunday when I hustled hard and made $166.53. Ironically enough, the only reason that I was able to achieve this was because of big orders from….. Walmart.

I was able to get a morning reservation from the Walmart by my house and that was a whopping $33 for delivering a bunch of small packages. Then a few hours later, I got a $40 delivery request from Walmart when I stopped by to buy something. The $40 delivery only had 3 stops and with one package for each stop and I was shook how easy it was. It was at that moment I learned that Walmart can either be your best friend or your worst enemy depending on the location.

3rd Week Highlights

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

Great to know that I found a way to work less and earn more!

  • Smallest Order: One large cold brew from Coffee Bean
  • Largest Order: A double delivery of Popeyes combo sets with 4 extra large drinks filled to the brim.
  • Most Frequented: Walmart
  • Smallest Tip of the week: $0.60
  • Largest tip of the week: $12.28

Week 4 – Growing Income with Uber Eats

Every week since I began this challenge, I have made personal bests of the most amount earned in a single day. Week 1 was $90, week 2 was $100, and week 3 was $160, so in week 4 I want to hit the ever-magical $200 in a single day.

When I was looking through some other people’s experiences of this challenge, I noticed that a lot of people had deliveries from Tender Greens. So I actually wanted to try and deliver food from Tender Greens to see if I can get on a roll.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“Literally every major city has one of these and it is always busy.”

However, every time I was on my way to Tender Greens I kept getting deliveries from other places that took me further away from Tender Greens. It happened so many times throughout this week that I came to the conclusion that the Uber Eats algorithm doesn’t want me to deliver Tender Greens.

Despite my attempts, some crazy shit happened on Tuesday. I was doing my usual route of deliveries until one delivery took me from Northridge to Tujunga. A few more orders later, I was deep in Glendale and delivered a $4 order that eventually came with a $46 tip! I literally had to pull over and double-check because this was by far the biggest tip I have ever received.

The crazy part was, that all I delivered was some combo plates from a seafood restaurant that was by their home. I eventually hit $160 again, but a few hours later, Prop 22 kicked in and gave me an additional $441, making my total earning $605.41!

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle

This big tip absolutely hyped me up to continue onwards and make as much money as possible this week and try to hit that $200 in a single day, however, for some reason the rest of the week was super difficult to do any sort of deliveries.

The morning Walmart deliveries suddenly disappeared and the amount of deliveries I did in my usual areas started popping up less. In fact, there were days when I would be online for about seven hours and would only be active for two of them. So safe to say, I failed at earning $200 in a single day, unless you count Prop 22 coming in and shocking the hell out of me.

Some other big highlights I also wanted to mention were that I delivered one can of Diet Coke from a liquor store, went on a Starbucks delivery rampage, unlocked Uber Eats Platinum, and ran into some kids in Burbank who were playing with lighter fluid, garbage, and matches in a residential alleyway. Isn’t Burbank just great?

4th Week Highlights

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
  • Smallest Order: One 16oz can of Diet Coke
  • Largest Order: A $135 order of food from California Pizza Kitchen
  • Most Frequented: Starbucks
  • Smallest Tip of the Week: $1.00
  • Largest tip of the Week: $46.24

Week 5 – Final Push

This was the last week of the month-long challenge and I was determined to hit the $200 mark in a single day without the help of Prop 22. I started off this week pretty strong and was able to get back into the groove with my go-to strategies and routes.

The Uber Eats algorithm blessed me this week by giving me $20–$25 Walmart delivery routes. However, they gave me a ridiculous order in one of them where I had to deliver 13 glass vases. The best part was that the guys at Walmart didn’t have any paper or wrapping to offer, so I literally had to use everything in my car to prevent these vases from shattering.

I am seriously starting to wonder if Walmart doesn’t see the problem or if they don’t care.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“Why would anybody order this many vases?!”

The rest of the week went by smoothly and consistently, but I haven’t been able to hit the $200 mark. That was until I heard of an incoming hurricane to Los Angeles, and while some people are freaking out about it, I knew that it was just going to be another rainy day. I read some Reddit forums that rainy days are a perfect opportunity to deliver because nobody wants to go out. So I decided to do as many deliveries as humanely possible to hit my personal goal.

When I started delivering on Saturday, I was receiving a lot of requests and was popping off on deliveries. Every time I completed a delivery, another one went off and I spent the day delivering food all over Northridge, Encino, North Hills, Sherman Oaks, and even Simi Valley. It was at this point, I knew that people wanted to treat themselves since Hurricane Hillary was on her way.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“What it felt driving through all the rain.” | Photo by Samuele Errico Piccarini on Unsplash

On Sunday, when Hurricane Hillary hit Los Angeles, I started off my day doing a $30 Walmart delivery, but the hurricane made these deliveries so much harder. Not because it was super windy or dangerous, but because so many of the people I had to deliver to were at apartments and houses that had locked gates with no instructions on how to get in.

Meaning I had to get out and walk around in the rain in order to find a way to deliver their packages. I had to do this for about 14 stops and I was eventually drenched from head-to-toe and was absolutely exhausted. I eventually went home to get changed, but the overall fatigue from this week and the storm suddenly hit me and I knocked out for the rest of the day. I should have prepared better for this, but living in Los Angeles has made me doubt how heavy rain can be.

Final Weekly Highlights

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
  • Smallest Order: One large Diet Coke from Jack in the Box (Why?)
  • Largest Order: 2 big bags of food from Katsu-ya
  • Most Frequented: Walmart
  • Smallest Tip of the Week: $1.00
  • Largest tip of the Week: $15.00

Is Uber Eats a Good Side hUstle?

There you have it. Throughout this past month delivering for Uber Eats, I have earned a total of $2,684.62 which on average is about $537 per week. After taking in costs like gas, the total earned amount is whittled down to $2,079.42 which on average is about $416 per week.

If not for Proposition 22, this amount would have been considerably lower, making Uber Eats more of a detrimental side hustle than a productive one. However, with the Proposition and using some sound strategies, Uber Eats can definitely be a viable option for those living in California.

How I Made $2,000/mth with Uber Eats as a Side Hustle
“Unofficial hand reveal.”

My one-month journey as an Uber Eats courier offered an intimate view into the pros and cons of gig work. The flexibility and potential for extra income are enticing, but the financial realities are more difficult than one would think.

I definitely have gained a newfound appreciation for app-based delivery drivers, because the things they go through can be downright annoying and challenging. Hopefully, this article also gave you some insight on what being an Uber Eats driver would look like and if you want to try it out yourselves, you are more than welcome to. Hopefully, by reading what I went through you can use that knowledge to make more than what I made!

If you liked what you read, be sure to clap the heck out of it and follow for more related content!

Overall Achievements

  • Total Trips Delivered: 328
  • Smallest Order: One 16oz can of diet Coke
  • Largest Order: An entire dinner course from California Pizza Kitchen.
  • Most Stressful Order: 12 Ventis and 6 pastries from Starbucks, all in paper bags.
  • Most Chill Order: Anything from Chipotle/Jersey Mike’s Sub
  • Weirdest Order: One Plain Burger from 5 Guys Delivered to a gated mansion in the mountains of Chatsworth
  • Most Absurd: Delivered a McDonald’s order at 1:30 AM to a hotel room at the Holiday Inn by LAX. However, the McDonald’s was literally right in front of the hotel, like it was literally 58 steps away from the entrance. (I actually counted, because I was that curious!)
  • Biggest Tip Received: $46.24
  • Smallest Tip Received: 60 cents
  • Most Frequented: Starbucks
  • Best Packaged: McDonalds
  • Worst Packaged: Starbucks- Because they package their drinks in paper bags, and oddly shaped portable cup holders, and use super weak tape to seal it.
  • Hours Online: 171 Hours and 28 Minutes
  • Hours Active: 96 Hours and 7 Minutes
  • Most Trips are done in a Single Day: 25
  • Least Trips done in a Single Day: 3
  • Total Earned: $2684.62
  • Total Spent on Gas: $605.20
  • Earnings before Taxes: $2079.42
  • Earnings after Taxes: $1663.53

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