How to save money working in delivery
The price of petrol and diesel has jumped, and food and bills are getting more expensive too. So what can couriers and delivery drivers do to save money and keep costs low?
At the time of writing on 28 March 2022, the average price of diesel was 178p a litre. Unleaded petrol was about 164p a litre, and super unleaded cost 175p a litre.
Usually, if you want to bring more money in you’d simply work more hours. But the price of fuel means you may not be better off doing so.
So what else can you do to save money and cut costs? Here we set out the kinds of costs delivery drivers have to deal with, and some ways to manage them.
- Shop around for the lowest pump prices in your area. Comparison websites like PetrolPrices.com can help. It claims it can save drivers over £200 a year on petrol and about £150 a year on diesel.
- Think about the fuel type you use – ‘premium’ or ‘super’ fuels tend to cost more, but it’s not clear whether they make much difference.
- If you don’t mind filling up more often, keep less fuel in the tank – less weight means better fuel economy.
- Supermarket pumps can be a good way to collect money off, cashback and discounts that you can put towards things like your weekly shop. For example Sainsbury’s runs its Nectar rewards scheme, and Tesco Clubcard also gives points on petrol.
- To use less fuel, the advice is to drive smoothly and go easy on the accelerator and brakes.
- Plan your routes to avoid traffic where you can.
- Drive fewer miles by grouping together similar postcodes. This way your drop-off route should save fuel.
- Keep your tyres at the correct pressure for fuel-efficiency.
- Air con and heating both use up fuel. Think about using both less if you can, while making sure riders are still comfortable.
- Go electric. Switching is a big decision, but electric vehicles can be cheaper to run over the long term. If this is something you’re thinking about, this blog from us might help: What help is there for drivers who want to go electric?
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Maintenance and repairs
- Shop around when replacing tyres – prices can vary quite a bit.
- Do you have a service plan for your car or van? Having one can save money overall – ask your vehicle dealer for information.
- Some repair shops are cheaper than main dealers, but check you can use one under your vehicle lease terms (if this applies) – you’ll still want good quality repairs.
- If you get hit with a fine you think is unfair, you can appeal it. Citizens Advice has info that can help.
- If you want to fight private parking tickets, MoneySavingExpert has some useful tips.
- Clearly you need insurance for your job, but it’s also important to get you back on track if you have an accident. Think about the kind of cover you need and whether it can flex with your work. It’s also worth thinking about whether you want to pay more for cover with extra benefits, which can help if you find yourself unable to earn.
When costs go up, as well as saving money you can also try to boost your earnings. Deliveroo has these tips for drivers and riders who want to boost their income:
- Work during ‘super-peak’ hours: Fridays and Saturdays between 6pm and 9pm.
- Use your delivery app’s heatmap to track down the busy areas with the most orders.
- Work with other riders on larger orders. This makes larger orders easier to deal with, but they can also offer bigger tips.
- Keep earning after closing time. By staying online a few extra minutes, you might pick up any last orders. If there aren’t any orders, you’ll go offline automatically.
- Holidays and bank holidays. With more people celebrating or socialising on these days, there can be good opportunities to earn. Though it’s up to you – you might prefer to have the time off and spend it with friends and family instead.
- Extra fees. Your app will tell you when there’s extra fees available in certain areas, to help you plan your work.
At INSHUR, we want to help you keep earning whatever happens. We offer flexible insurance for delivery drivers, and our customers are covered for both food and parcel delivery in one policy. Check our coverage options today at INSHUR.