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Overworked and underpaid: what its really like to deliver for Amazon

Amazon proudly calls the drivers distributing their parcels ‘delivery heroes’, but is the trillion-dollar company treating them accordingly? Here, Bill Lightfoot*, explains what its really like to deliver for Amazon.

Posted on 13 October 2021

The work is horrendous because Amazon control everything you do.

I worked for two Delivery Service Providers, which act like sub-contractors for Amazon, and I had the same problems with both.

When I began delivering for Amazon I started on a Thursday and I was supposed to get £232 for two days but I received £76 because of the cost of van rental and everything else, even though I’d been told I wouldn’t be charged because I was starting midweek.

I was overcharged for van rental and fuel, charging for insurance even though I already had it.

There were times I was out on delivery, and I’d stop for a few minutes, and they’d ring up and ask why I was parked up.

The app gives you estimated timings between deliveries which is usually one to two minutes but sometimes there would be eight miles between deliveries. How can you drive eight miles in two minutes?

You also can’t bring parcels back, so if someone isn’t in you have to wait until the end of the day and then go around again and try to redeliver which uses up extra fuel. I was only paid 17p a mile for petrol, but it was costing 50p a mile to run the van.

Join the Amazon drivers' claim

For more information or to join the claim, check out Leigh Day's Amazon Drivers' claim page

The money I was earning wasn’t anywhere close to covering my rent and bills. In one week I worked 36 hours over four days and I should have earned £464 but they gave me £2.74. It doesn’t sound believable but it’s true."

Bill Lightfoot

I was very unhappy delivering for them. Effectively I was paying them to do their deliveries, rather than the other way around.

That’s why I got in touch with Leigh Day. I knew they had been involved with the Uber claims and I’m hopeful that they can help me in the same why they did Uber drivers.

You work to earn money, not to pay out more than you’re taking home. Something has to change.

News Article
LD Amazon Keyvisual

Drivers delivering for Amazon could be owed thousands of pounds each over employee rights claims

Thousands of drivers delivering for Amazon could be entitled to an average of £10,500 compensation for each year they have delivered for the company, according to law firm Leigh Day.