Amazon has announced that it’ll be ending its practice of using customer tips to pay its Flex drivers’ wages, according to a report by the Los Angeles Times and emails sent out to drivers.
The practice came under fire when it was revealed back in February that Amazon (along with other delivery services like Instacart and DoorDash) were using customer tips to pay delivery drivers their base pay, letting the corporations in question save money at the expense of compensating their workers.
Now, according to the LA Times, the initial minimum payment for each delivery will come entirely from Amazon. Amazon has reportedly been counting customer tips toward their Flex drivers’ hourly wages this worked out okay for top earners who rake in the most tips which would usually push their hourly wage past the minimum, but for others, the situation was less than ideal. For some drivers, it made the pursuit of tips a somewhat pointless practice.
Moving forward, Amazon will be ending this practice. Instead, it will offer its drivers “at least” $15-$19 per hour, in addition to any tips they may earn for themselves. Not only will this benefit drivers, but it could also benefit customers: extra money should lead to happier, more polite drivers, after all.
To reflect these changes, Amazon is making some small tweaks to the way earnings are presented to Flex drivers. Now, it’ll be much more clear how much of their revenue comes from their “base” pay, and how much comes from customer tips.