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How much can a food delivery rider realistically earn in Singapore?

One of the most significant perks of being a food delivery rider is the flexibility in working hours. Most food delivery companies allow riders to choose their working hours, allowing them to work according to their schedules. This can be especially useful for students or individuals with other commitments, as they can work around their schedules.

Another benefit of being a food delivery rider is the opportunity to explore different parts of Singapore. Riders have to travel to various locations to deliver food, which can be an excellent way to explore different parts of the city. They get to see new places and experience different cultures, which can be a valuable experience.

Food delivery riders also enjoy the freedom of being outdoors and on the move. They do not have to sit at a desk for long hours, and they get to exercise while on the job. This can be a great way to stay fit and healthy while earning an income.

However, recently I watched a great series on CNA about working as a food delivery rider and I was curious to know how much they were being paid. I found out that on average, a food delivery rider earns about $23 for a shift and around $43 for an 8 to 10-hour shift, five to six times a week.

While this may seem like a decent amount of money, if we do the math, it’s not enough to sustain a decent living. For instance, if you’re aiming for Singapore’s medium income of $4500, you’ll need to earn at least $45 for each shift. Unfortunately, the majority of food delivery riders don’t earn enough to meet this target, with only a minority of riders making good amounts of money.

To make matters worse, 23.6% of riders earn less than $1000 per month, while 33.9% earn between $1000 to $1999 per month. When we round up everything below $2000, we realize that more than half of the riders earn less than $2000, which is Singapore’s minimum wage.

This brings us to the issue of minimum wage, which is a problem faced by many industries worldwide. In Singapore, the minimum wage in 2023 is $1750, and this is to ensure that lower-wage food service workers can earn at least that amount. While it’s true that some people can survive on less than $500 a month, it’s not a sustainable wage if you have a family to raise or if you want a decent living.

Unfortunately, the bulk of food delivery riders earn less than $2000, which is not enough to provide for their basic needs. Arguably, they would be better off working at McDonald’s, where a full-time service crew earns $2150, plus free food.

There are many problems associated with doing a minimum-wage job. For instance, there’s no room for promotion, and there’s no training in other skills. Most of the time, career paths are limited, and promotions are the only way to increase income.

The food delivery industry has a minimum wage problem that needs to be addressed. While some riders make good money, the majority are struggling to make ends meet. If you or someone you know is in this situation, it’s important to start planning for the future and finding ways to improve your income. There are many problems associated with doing a minimum-wage job, but it’s not impossible to overcome them.

One of the most significant problems that food delivery riders face is safety concerns. Riders often have to navigate through heavy traffic and crowded areas, which can be dangerous, especially during peak hours. There have been reports of accidents and injuries involving food delivery riders, which highlights the need for increased safety measures to protect them.

Another problem that food delivery riders face is the long working hours. Many riders work long hours, often up to 12 hours a day, to earn a decent income. This can lead to physical and mental exhaustion, which can impact their health and well-being.

Food delivery riders also face the challenge of weather conditions. Singapore’s hot and humid climate can be challenging, especially for riders who have to travel long distances to deliver food. They have to work in the scorching heat, which can lead to dehydration, heat exhaustion, and other health problems.

Additionally, food delivery riders are often exposed to various risks, such as theft and robbery. They carry valuable items, including cash and food, which makes them targets for thieves and robbers. This poses a threat to their safety and security.

Food delivery riders are not entitled to employee benefits such as sick leave and annual leave. This means that if they fall sick or need to take a day off, they will not receive any income. This can be financially challenging for riders, especially if they have families to support.

In Summary


Food delivery riders typically earn around $15 per hour, or $5 to $7.50 per delivery. Depending on how much time you dedicate to this job, it can potentially earn you about $112.50 a week as a full-time gig (working 8 hours a day, Monday to Friday). However, note that riders are paid per delivery rather than hourly rates.

Food Delivery Hours

The number of deliveries you take on is up to you. Like ride-hailing drivers, there is no obligation to accept a delivery. As such, the hours of a food delivery rider are flexible, allowing you to set your own schedule and work at your own pace.

Out-of-pocket Expenses

The barriers to entry for this job are low, making it a feasible option for anyone with a mode of transportation. Some out-of-pocket expenses to consider include:

  • Car or motorcycle rental (if applicable), but most food delivery riders choose to walk or cycle
  • Commercial car or motorcycle insurance (if applicable), which is mandatory if you opt for a vehicle
  • Fuel (if applicable), similar to what ride-hailing drivers incur
  • Rider kit, which costs $60-$72 for GrabFood, $50 for Deliveroo, and $65-$105 for Foodpanda.

If you’re looking for a career that has similar perks to being a delivery rider but with better-earning potential, have you considered becoming a financial advisor? According to data from Glassdoor, the average base salary for an insurance agent in Singapore is around SGD 40,000 to SGD 60,000 per year. We think it’s an exciting opportunity and would love to tell you more about it.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! We’re happy to schedule a call or have a friendly chat with you. Our main goal is to provide you with a clear understanding of what starting a career in financial planning entails so that you can decide if it’s the right fit for you. We’re enthusiastic about chatting with you and helping you take the next steps in your career journey!

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