Uber Eats Bike Vs Car Pay: Which Pays More In 2023?

Rideshare and delivery driving have become popular side hustles in recent years. Services like Uber Eats allow drivers to work flexible hours delivering food orders to customers. But should you drive for Uber Eats using a car or a bike?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Bike couriers tend to earn more per hour than drivers using cars for Uber Eats deliveries.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll compare Uber Eats pay for bikers vs car drivers, examining the pros and cons of each. We’ll look at factors like costs, hourly pay rates, distances traveled, and more to help you decide which option may be more lucrative in your city.

How Pay Works for Uber Eats Drivers

Uber Eats has become a popular choice for individuals looking to earn extra income or work flexible hours. Whether you choose to deliver using a car or a bike, understanding the pay structure is crucial to maximizing your earnings.

In this article, we will explore how pay works for Uber Eats drivers and compare the earning potential between cars and bikes.

Pay Structure for Cars

Uber Eats drivers using cars are typically paid based on a combination of factors. The main component of their pay is the delivery fee, which is determined by the distance traveled and the time spent on each delivery.

Additionally, drivers may receive a base fare for each trip, which is determined by the pickup and drop-off locations. In some cities, drivers may also earn surge pricing during busy times, which can significantly boost their earnings.

It’s important to note that Uber Eats drivers using cars may have higher expenses, such as fuel and maintenance costs, which should be taken into consideration when calculating their overall income.

Pay Structure for Bikes

Uber Eats also offers opportunities for delivery partners who prefer using bikes. The pay structure for bike deliveries is slightly different. Instead of a delivery fee, bike delivery partners are paid a per-mile rate for each completed trip.

This rate may vary depending on the city and the demand for bike deliveries. Bike delivery partners also have the potential to earn additional bonuses for completing a certain number of deliveries within a specified time frame.

While bike deliveries may have lower expenses compared to cars, it’s important to consider factors such as physical exertion and weather conditions when deciding which mode of transportation is best suited for you.

Supplementary Fees and Promotions

In addition to the base pay structure, Uber Eats offers supplementary fees and promotions that can further boost a driver’s earnings. These may include surge pricing during peak hours, additional incentives for completing a certain number of deliveries, and bonuses for referring new drivers.

It’s worth noting that these promotions may vary by city and are subject to change. To stay up to date with the latest promotions, drivers can visit the Uber Eats website or check their driver app regularly.

Ultimately, the earning potential for Uber Eats drivers will depend on various factors, including the mode of transportation used, the city they operate in, and their availability. It’s important for drivers to carefully consider these factors and weigh the pros and cons of each option before deciding which one is best for them.

Cost Comparison of Operating a Car vs Bike for Deliveries

Cost of owning and operating a car

When it comes to delivering food for Uber Eats, owning and operating a car can be convenient but also costly. There are several expenses to consider, including the purchase price of the car, insurance, fuel, maintenance, and parking fees.

Additionally, the wear and tear on the vehicle can lead to higher repair costs over time. The average cost of owning and operating a car for delivery purposes is estimated to be around $0.50 to $0.70 per mile, according to a study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

This means that the more miles you drive, the more it will cost you in the long run.

Cost of owning and operating an electric bike

On the other hand, owning and operating an electric bike for food delivery can be a more cost-effective option. Electric bikes are becoming increasingly popular among delivery drivers due to their lower maintenance costs and efficiency.

The initial investment for an electric bike may range from $1,000 to $3,000, depending on the brand and features. However, the operating costs are significantly lower compared to a car. Electric bikes require less maintenance, and their charging costs are minimal, especially when compared to the price of gasoline.

Additionally, some cities offer incentives and subsidies for electric bike owners, further reducing the overall costs.

Other equipment costs

Aside from the vehicle itself, there are other equipment costs to consider when delivering for Uber Eats. Both car and bike delivery drivers need a smartphone with a data plan to receive orders and navigate to the customer’s location.

Additionally, bike delivery drivers may need to invest in a good quality backpack or delivery bag to safely transport the food. These equipment costs are relatively similar for both car and bike delivery, and the prices can vary depending on personal preferences and needs.

Average Hourly Pay for Bikers vs Car Drivers

Reported hourly earnings for bikers

According to a recent survey conducted by Ride Share Report, bikers working for Uber Eats in 2023 reported an average hourly pay of $15. This figure takes into account the delivery fees, tips, and bonuses earned by bikers.

It is important to note that this is an average, and individual earnings may vary based on several factors.

Reported hourly earnings for car drivers

On the other hand, car drivers working for Uber Eats reported an average hourly pay of $20, as per the same survey by Ride Share Report. Car drivers generally earn more due to their ability to complete deliveries faster and cover longer distances.

However, it is worth mentioning that car drivers may have higher expenses, such as fuel and vehicle maintenance, which can impact their overall earnings.

Factors impacting pay rates

The pay rates for both bikers and car drivers on Uber Eats are influenced by several factors. One key factor is the number of deliveries completed per hour. Bikers may have a disadvantage in terms of speed and distance coverage compared to car drivers, which can impact their earning potential.

Additionally, factors such as location, time of day, and customer tipping behavior can also affect earnings.

It is important to keep in mind that these reported earnings are based on surveys and may not reflect the actual earnings of every Uber Eats biker or car driver. Individual experiences can vary based on personal factors, market conditions, and other variables.

Ultimately, the decision between biking and driving for Uber Eats should be based on personal preferences, circumstances, and considerations such as convenience, flexibility, and the cost of owning and maintaining a vehicle.

Other Pros and Cons of Using a Bike vs Car

Convenience and parking

When it comes to convenience, both bikes and cars have their advantages and disadvantages. Bikes are generally easier to park and maneuver in crowded urban areas. They can navigate through traffic jams and find parking spots more easily.

On the other hand, cars offer more storage space for delivering multiple orders at once and can cover longer distances without physical exhaustion.

Distance traveled

The distance traveled is an important factor to consider when deciding between using a bike or a car for Uber Eats deliveries. Bikes are ideal for short distances and densely populated areas. They allow for quicker navigation through busy streets and can often reach the destination faster.

However, for longer distances or deliveries in suburban or rural areas, cars have the advantage of speed and range.

Safety considerations

Safety is a crucial aspect for any delivery driver. Bikes offer better maneuverability and are less likely to be involved in accidents due to their smaller size and ability to navigate through tight spaces.

However, they can also be more vulnerable to accidents as they are less visible to other vehicles. Cars, on the other hand, provide a more secure and enclosed environment, protecting the driver from external elements and potential hazards.

Order capacity

When it comes to order capacity, cars have a clear advantage. With more space available, cars can handle larger orders and accommodate additional equipment such as food warmers or coolers. This allows for more efficient delivery and the ability to take on multiple orders at once.

Bikes, on the other hand, have limited space and are better suited for smaller orders or single-item deliveries.

Which Option is Best For You?

Deciding between delivering for Uber Eats on a bike or by car can be a tough decision. Factors such as your location, schedule, and personal preferences all play a role in determining which option is best for you.

In this article, we will provide recommendations based on different scenarios to help you make an informed decision.

Recommendations for dense urban areas

If you live in a densely populated urban area, delivering on a bike may be the better option for you. Bicycles can easily maneuver through traffic, allowing you to make deliveries more efficiently. Additionally, parking can be a challenge in busy cities, and having a bike eliminates the need to find parking spots.

This can save you time and frustration.

Furthermore, biking is a more eco-friendly option, which can appeal to environmentally conscious individuals. It also provides the opportunity for exercise, allowing you to stay active while earning money. However, it’s important to consider the weather conditions in your area.

If you live in a place with harsh winters or frequent rain, delivering on a bike may not be feasible for a significant portion of the year.

Recommendations for suburban neighborhoods

If you live in a suburban neighborhood with less traffic and ample parking, delivering by car may be a more convenient option. Cars provide more storage space, allowing you to take on larger orders and make fewer trips.

This can increase your earning potential, especially during busy times when customers are ordering large quantities of food.

However, keep in mind that delivering by car comes with additional expenses such as gas, insurance, and maintenance. It’s important to consider these costs when calculating your potential earnings. Additionally, if you prefer the convenience and comfort of driving, delivering by car may be a more enjoyable experience for you.

Part-time vs full-time considerations

If you are considering delivering for Uber Eats as a part-time gig, both biking and driving can be viable options. Part-time delivery allows you to have flexibility in your schedule, and you can choose the mode of transportation that suits you best.

However, if you are planning to make delivering your full-time job, it’s important to consider the sustainability of biking long distances on a daily basis. In this case, a car may be a more practical choice.

Ultimately, the decision between delivering for Uber Eats on a bike or by car depends on your individual circumstances and preferences. Consider the recommendations provided based on your location, schedule, and long-term plans.

By making an informed decision, you can maximize your earning potential and enjoy your delivery experience.


In most cities, bike couriers earn more per hour than Uber Eats drivers using cars. However, cars allow you to travel further distances and take on larger order volumes. Consider your city layout, parking constraints, safety, and goals when choosing between operating a car or bike for food deliveries through Uber Eats.

For part-time work in congested cities, bikes tend to provide the most lucrative option. Full-time drivers in sprawling metro areas may maximize earnings with a car instead. Analyze local pay rates and operating costs to decide what works best based on your individual circumstances.

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