DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (2024)

By now, DoorDash has rolled out Priority Access and the Dasher app’s new interface to a majority of markets. Like many updates from the company, this change in the offer screen layout is no big improvement. In fact, it’s the opposite. They’ve taken away some features that were pretty beneficial to Dashers previously. Here, we’ll break down the changes and offer some tips on adapting to the Dasher app’s latest update.

New and Un-Improved

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (1)
DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (2)

Above is a side-by-side of the old UI versus the new layout. The old offer screen wasn’t anything special but its simplicity was a blessing compared to the new interface. Most of the time, DoorDash makes these cosmetic changes for no real reason but this update is tied to their latest Accept More Earn More initiative. This program, now deemed Priority Access, has infected many DoorDash zones and continues to keep spreading. If it hasn’t reached your market yet, consider yourself lucky. We’ll round back to this program later.

The most aggravating change with the latest makeover is the absence of an item count. In this neverending war against cherry-pickers, DoorDash has removed that aspect as well as the widget (Android) detailing the order prior to accepting it. On the plus side, clicking on the customer’s location on the offer screen allows you to bring up their address. So if you diligently keep a database of your customers like we recommend, this will help you decide to accept or decline.

Related: How to Avoid Bad Tippers on DoorDash

There is Still Hope

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (3)

While the new interface aims to make cherry-picking harder, some kind-hearted programmers at DoorDash have actually made it slightly easier to do so. From our observations over the past few months, large orders ($100 or more) and ones placed through the merchant actually use the old UI. So with these orders, things are just as they were where you have an item count as well as pre-acceptance info from the widget.

In theory, you can get by just fine if you decline all the offers that feature the new layout and just wait for a big one with the old offer screen. However, as mentioned before, this new Dasher app UI is tied to their Priority Access program to get drivers to accept more low-paying orders. Unfortunately, the algorithm now favors higher acceptance rate drivers heavily and we’ve seen order volume drop severely for cherry-pickers in many markets.

This new reality is unfortunate but the best thing you can do is sign up for as many apps as you can. One of the best ways to maintain steady and stable income with gig work is by multi-apping. Being able to cherry-pick from multiple avenues will keep your earnings high and the frustration from DoorDash low.

Related: Maximizing your Gig Income with Multi-Apping

DoorDash Priority Access for High Paying Orders

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (4)

Under this new program, DoorDash has adjusted the dispatch algorithm to give order priority to Dashers with higher Acceptance and Customer Ratings. The standard they have set is 50% AR and a customer rating of at least 4.5. If you qualify, their “promise” is that you will see more higher paying orders based on your zone’s metric. This value can vary but it seems most markets are set to $2/mile.

This latest gimmick from DoorDash might sound like a good thing but a $3 order for 1.5 miles is also considered a “High Paying” order. Just think of how many of these you decline everyday.

You get one Acceptance Rate reset when your market becomes a “Diamond Zone.” We’ll go over how to do it at the bottom of this post.

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (5)
DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (6)
DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (7)

During this period, your Dasher app has a couple notable cosmetic changes. The first is a “High Paying Order” banner. This will be shown on the offer screen if the order meets or exceeds your zone’s standard. This metric takes into account the tip as well even though it still remains hidden until drop-off.

The more enticing visual upgrade of this Accept More Earn More program is the addition of “Tip Will Be Higher” on large orders. This can act as a sort of reassurance for drivers when it comes to taking these bigger orders. While the tip will be higher, there is no guarantee that it will be a good one. You could potentially deliver a $200 order and the tip ends up being only $10.

First Hand Impressions of DoorDash’s Priority Access

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (8)

This new program came to my market at the beginning of December. I held off doing the reset for a week to see if there was a noticeable difference in order volume and, to my dismay, there was. December is one of the busiest months of the year so it was shocking how slow it was. I eventually caved and opted in for the reset.

During the two week introductory period of Priority Access, the number of offers I was receiving was definitely higher than before the AR reset. But it wasn’t some magic spell that suddenly made the Dasher app send you large, great tipping orders all day. On average, I was seeing maybe one to three a day, some of which from known bad tippers in my area.

DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (9)
DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (10)

It was exciting to see those “Tip Will Be Higher” orders but they were overshadowed by the sheer number of false “High Paying” offers. Based on my experience, Priority Access just wasn’t worth it to maintain.

This isn’t to say that it won’t be beneficial to you. Some drivers have to be Top Dashers to survive in their zones. When it comes to this new initiative from DoorDash, I can only say to each their own.

How to Reset Your Acceptance Rating on DoorDash

When this program hits your market, DoorDash allows you one Acceptance Rate reset so you don’t have to go through the pain of clawing your way back up. By opting in for it, you will be given two weeks of Priority Access. Throughout this fortnight, your AR is basically in limbo and you can accept or decline however you please. Your Acceptance Rating during this time will not affect your priority but you must maintain at least a 4.5 Customer Rating.

It’s also important to note that there is a deadline to do your AR reset by. If you miss it, you can contact DoorDash driver support and ask for one. It might take a few tries before success though.

How the DoorDash Acceptance Rate Reset Works:

  1. Open up the Dasher App and go to your Ratings tab.
  2. Go to your Acceptance Rate and click “Learn More” in the highlighted box that says “Get high paying orders.”
  3. Click the link and fill out the DoorDash form.
  4. Once submitted, you’ll receive a notification that your acceptance rate has been reset. This can take anywhere from 1 to 3 days.

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DoorDash Priority Access: Is It Worth It? (2024)
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