As students go back to class, many are looking for ways to earn to offset the cost of books, tuition and fees, and on-campus expenses. Recently, we profiled Gen Z Dashers and how they uniquely leverage the flexibility of dashing to reach their personal and professional goals. Another category of Dashers who have significant similarities to Gen Z Dashers are student Dashers who have their own preferences and needs. Many student Dashers are young - 74% of student Dashers are 18 - 25 years old - but others are returning to school later in life to brush up their skills or change careers. No matter their age, DoorDash is helping students meet their educational goals - over 1 in 5 student Dashers said that the ability to deliver with an app-based platform positively influenced their decision to pursue further education.
Student Dashers cite the flexibility and independence of dashing as key to their decision to deliver with the platform. Nearly all student Dashers agree that dashing allows more flexibility compared with other jobs they’ve had (94%), makes them feel more in control of their circumstances (89%), and helps them get to know their community (90%). For students who have recently moved to a new area, this can help them feel at home quickly while earning to support themselves.
Dashing is also convenient for students, who are often juggling other priorities like their class schedule, extra-curriculars, and internships. More than 6 in 10 (61%) student Dashers combine dashing with other activities like picking up groceries, running errands, and commuting or traveling. The flexibility of dashing is crucial - 74% of student Dashers say that one of the important aspects of flexible working hours is that they can dash around their school schedule. Student dashers also value being able to set their own schedules based on their academic or professional calendars - 65% of student Dashers skip their typical dashing days due to upcoming deadlines.
“I started dashing in 2020 when my school was offering remote classes and I found it super easy to go out and dash whenever I had time,” says Pamela Bonilla, a Los Angeles-based Dasher who is a student at UC Riverside. “I still dash today because the flexibility is great - I can fit it into my class schedule and dash when I’m not in class or studying.”
Even when a student’s time pursuing higher education is coming to a close or over, dashing continues to help them pursue their dreams. Every Dasher uses the platform differently and for different goals - 31% of student Dashers plan to continue dashing until they graduate, while 44% of Dashers plan on continuing to dash to supplement their income as needed without an end date. Dashing provides supplemental income whenever student Dashers need it - nearly 7 in 10 (69%) student Dashers are dashing to make up for lost income or reduced hours at their full or part time job. Dashing also often plays a significant role in students' financial lives - 48% of student Dashers dash to pay monthly bills such as rent or car payments and 44% of student Dashers dash to pay for their educational expenses such as books or school supplies.
“Dashing provides important supplemental earnings for students who are still deciding on their personal and professional interests,” said Cheryl Young, Head of Policy Research at DoorDash. “Students are often changing their schedules or campus jobs to figure out what works for them, and dashing fits into any schedule and any time. We’re excited that students leverage the ability to dash to help support their educational, personal, or professional goals.”
Nearly all student Dashers (92%) are satisfied with their experience dashing. Student Dashers overwhelmingly choose delivery over rideshare which comes with additional responsibilities - nearly all (92%) student Dashers have never driven with rideshare and don’t plan to. Student Dashers are busy with school or work other jobs, which means they want to earn supplemental income in accessible ways when they have free time. Dashing offers a flexible way to earn in between classes or other personal responsibilities - we look forward to continuing to provide this important earning opportunity to students and every Dasher.