Have you ever noticed the “Express” delivery option on DoorDash? For $1.99–$2.99 extra, Express promises a faster delivery.
Here’s how it works: When you pay for Express delivery, your order will be delivered first if it is part of a stacked delivery.
DoorDash stacks orders in double or even triple batches. With Express, you can make sure that your order is at the front of the line and gets delivered first.
That’s how Express is supposed to work in theory, but it’s not always how it works in practice.
Read on to learn how the Express fee really works!
What you need to know
- Express Delivery is an option on the checkout page that promises faster delivery times
- The Express fee varies but is typically around $1.99–$2.99
- When you pay for Express, your order will be delivered first if it is part of a ‘stacked’ delivery
- Delivery drivers and restaurants do NOT know that you paid for Express
- Your order can still be delivered late if the Dasher ignores the order of deliveries or prioritizes an order for another app (multi-apping)
What is the Express delivery option on DoorDash?
“Express” is a delivery speed option on DoorDash that promises faster delivery times, around 5–10 minutes faster vs the standard delivery speed.
Express typically costs $1.99–$2.99, depending on the restaurant, time of day, and city.
How Express Delivery works
When you order Express, your Dasher will deliver your order first if it is part of a stacked delivery.
After picking up every order in the stack, the DoorDash app will instruct your Dasher to deliver your order directly to you.
The Express option will not stop your order from being stacked with other orders, but yours will be delivered first if a driver picks up multiple orders.
How to select Express delivery
Express is a delivery speed option on the final checkout page for an order.
After you create your order, tap the Continue button to reach the checkout page. Look for the Express option near the top of the page, under the delivery map.
To find the Express option: Tap View cart > Tap Continue > Look for Express under Delivery time
If you only see Standard and Schedule Ahead, Express isn’t unavailable for delivery.
Express may only be available if DoorDash predicts that your order will be stacked with another order.
DashPass members don’t currently get free Express orders
Express delivery is not currently included with a DashPass membership. It is a separate fee.
Does the Express fee get paid directly to drivers?
The Express fee does not go directly to drivers. It may be factored into Dasher compensation somehow, but Dashers don’t see any record of the fee on their delivery payout statements.
Do drivers know that you paid for Express?
Dashers don’t know that you paid for Express delivery. There isn’t any special label or notification to let Dashers know that an order is Express.
As one Dasher said, “I’ve never seen anything pop up to say it’s an express delivery and never seen anything on the payout screen about express delivery pay.”
But that doesn’t mean you won’t get any benefit from Express. Your Dasher will be instructed to drop off your order first.
Do restaurants know that you paid for Express?
Restaurants don’t know that you paid for Express. No special label or note is attached to your order indicating that you paid for Express.
Your order won’t be moved to the front of the line or prioritized at the restaurant just because you paid for Express delivery.
Paid for Express, but your driver is doing other deliveries? Here’s what’s happening
You might think that when you pay for Express, your driver should head directly to you after picking up your order. But sometimes, you might see that your Dasher is heading somewhere else.
There are two explanations for the delay:
- Your order was ‘stacked’ with another order, and your Dasher is picking up the other order
- Your Dasher may be doing deliveries for another app, aka multi-apping
As independent contractors, Dashers are free to deliver for other apps while delivering for DoorDash.
Your driver might have picked up an order from another app before they picked up yours. They could be delivering the other order first, then yours second. Or they could be heading to do a pickup for another app after picking up your order.
Dashers don’t know when you chose the Express option, so there’s nothing to indicate to them that you paid extra for faster service.
If your Dasher doesn’t come directly to you when you pay for Express, you can try to contact DoorDash to get a refund for the fee.
Express on DoorDash vs Priority on Uber Eats
The Express option on DoorDash is similar to Priority Delivery on Uber Eats. On Uber Eats, Priority Delivery is a $1.99–$3.99 fee that is supposed to guarantee your order will be delivered first if it is part of a stacked order.
DoubleDash: Another trick to prevent your order from being stacked
The main issue that causes your food to arrive late and cold is when your order is bundled together with another order.
The Express option is one way to prevent your order from getting delivered after another, but another trick can also prevent it from getting stacked in the first place.
After you submit your order, you might get an option to DoubleDash. DoubleDash is a second order that you can add to your first order for a discounted delivery fee.
The Dasher who accepts your first order will be offered your DoubleDash order. If they accept it, your order won’t be stacked with any other orders.
The Dasher will pick up your first order, pick up your DoubleDash order second, then deliver it all directly to you.
The key is ordering something small for your DoubleDash—like a drink or candy—and ensuring that the second store is on the way to your drop-off location.
So if you play your DoubleDash cards right, your driver will come directly to you without driving miles out of the way for a stacked order.
One potential problem with this tactic is that your Dasher might reject your DoubleDash order. If they do, another Dasher will complete the second order, and your first order might get stacked with another one.
More reading for DoorDash users