I always thought it would be fun to be a bike messenger until I found out how much they make.
Turns out, they don’t make much money, but they do have to risk live and limb and live in a big (and probably expensive) city like New York.
Otherwise, car courier delivery is much faster.
When we move the Cyclist View’s office downtown, we had access to a host of restaurant options, one of those being Jimmy John’s.
Granted, we are close enough that the delivery folks could just walk over. But it is more likely that they will skateboard or bike. (I’m still not sure how they get my drinks here without spilling them.)
Some of Jimmy John’s delivery folks take the job because it is one of the few out there where you can combine your love of cycling with your need to pay rent. While everyone else is flipping burgers in college, you are sprinting from delivery to delivery.
For the extrovert, it is a great way to see new people and make their day by bringing them food.
While a lot of people like to idolize fixie bikes for this job, you are probably better off getting a bike with speeds. Granted, then you have greater concerns of theft.
I’ve seen a lot of our local guys riding vintage bikes. This makes it easier for them to leave the bike outside without worry about thieving hands (or scratches. You don’t want to scratch your expensive bike!!)
The other thing to keep in mind is that you will want an easy to use bike lock. Both keys and combination locks work, but keep in mind that you will be fiddling with this lock in the cold. So locks with big keys or big numbers seem to work best.t
I like to stay away from the locks that use a regular padlock as those padlocks tend to be more easily picked. I do like cable or chain locks since it gives you the ability to easily secure your bike to any available stationary object
And while cable locks may not be the most secure, you will never be away from your bike for long.
As a bicycle delivery dude, you are going to be often able to outpace cars. And you have the advantage of not having to find parking which is key for downtown deliveries or when delivering inside a college campus.
There are the downsides of surviving traffic. Most cars around here seem to hate cyclists, and with the current scourge of texting and driving, it is a risky job.
I like to wear a blinking light when riding, and hope our delivery guys do the same. No reason to get hit while trying to make someone’s day.
The pay isn’t great, but there are only a couple of jobs where you can get your workout and a paycheck. If nothing else, it is a job worth doing for the cool stories you will get out of it!
Plus, it’ll be an exclusive item on your resume when you go to apply for law school. Just how many Harvard applicants are going to have “bicycle delivery driver” on their resume?
In this competitive work environment, you’ve got to do anything you can to stand apart.