San Francisco Surveys On-Demand Delivery Couriers

Gig Economy

To learn more about the workers who deliver items such as food and groceries through startups, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) is launching a survey. The poll seeks to find out how many couriers enter the city each day, what time they make most of their deliveries and where a large share of the deliveries are made, according to reports.

“By learning about the challenges couriers experience when performing deliveries, the SFMTA will better understand the role on-demand delivery services play in San Francisco and their use of the overall transportation network,” the organization wrote in a blog post. “The insights gained from this survey may also help to inform the city’s future transportation planning decisions.”

Why? San Francisco has concerns over traffic: To that end, the city is one of the most congested in the world. At the same time, the organization is seeking to “understand the challenges couriers experience while performing deliveries.” To that end, the city is looking to find out what transportation methods couriers use to make deliveries and how far they have to travel as well as how often couriers decide to take on a new delivery.

Approximately 33.8 percent of the U.S. workforce has participated in the gig economy in some way. Among the most significant shifts in the gig economy now is the share of gig workers who had moved away from having a full-time job. In Q2 2018, PYMNTS found 47 percent of gig workers had a regular, 9-to-5 job, a drop from 55 percent in Q1 2018. This shift indicates that a growing share of workers see gig work as a viable career path over traditional work.

The key factor that drives workers to eschew traditional employment for full-time gig work is flexibility. A quarter of surveyed gig workers named this as their top motivation for joining the gig economy. This becomes even more important for younger workers, as 22 percent of full-time gig workers, aged 18 to 24, and 30 percent of those in the 25-to-34 age bracket cited flexibility as the main reason they participated in the gig economy.




The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.