One of the most important things you'll need to understand as a driver is how the payment system works.
First and foremost - CitizenShipper does not mediate your transactions. We simply serve as the match-maker, connecting you with the client. Therefore, it's important that you agree on your payment expectations with the customer before pickup.
Many drivers simply request COD (Cash on Delivery), which sees the customer pay them upon successful delivery of the shipment. Some drivers negotiate a portion of the payment upfront, which helps them pay for gas en route.
We typically advise customers against paying upfront, as this increases the risk of scammers taking advantage of them and not delivering on their end of the bargain. This is typically the case when money upfront is requested in the form of non-retrievable transfers (Western Union or MoneyGram, for example).
If you do request cash upfront, we highly recommend that you offer the customer a payment method that is retrievable, ie allows chargebacks. Examples include credit card payments or Paypal, both of which the customer can dispute if things do not go according to plan. This helps give the customer added peace of mind. We also require that you let the customer know your payment requirements before they accept your bid and enter into a contract with you.
Cash or check is a common, easy way to get paid. However, offering the customer the option of paying by Paypal or credit card provides additional options, which makes the process simpler and easier for them. This can make the difference between you winning the job vs the customer selecting somebody else.
There are a number of simple options out there for accepting credit card payments. Square.com, for example, will send you a small credit card reader that attaches to your smartphone. This allows you to quickly and easily accept credit cards.
The service fee
CitizenShipper charges the customer a small fee, prior to them being able to accept you for the job. We do not take this fee out of your bid. What you bid, you get paid. Our fee works on a sliding scale, with a minimum fee (charged to the customer) of $49.99. This fee is added to your bid and paid by the customer as soon as they book you for a job.
For example, let's say you bid $500 on a shipment and win that shipment. The service fee would be $93.5, which the customer pays to CitizenShipper as soon as they click "Book driver". The customer would then owe you $500, as per your bid.