Female DoorDash drivers have shared instances of frightening delivery experiences they were subjected to while on the job, like TikToker Kassi Nicole Goodwin who was asked to pick up food from a Taco Bell location that didn’t exist, and received several irate phone calls from a man asking her to exit her vehicle.
While Goodwin was able to avoid a potentially life-threatening scenario, not all food delivery drivers are so fortunate, and there have been numerous instances where women have been attacked by customers during a delivery.
This potentially makes working as a female delivery driver—especially at night—a more dangerous undertaking. However, drivers who don’t work nights could potentially be missing out on larger tips, as DoorDash employees who complete order requests later in the day tend to earn more cash.
TikToker Tia Zakher (@tiazakher) has come up with a solution to help minimize the risks she has for delivering as a woman late at night—by dressing “as a man.”
male privilege 🙌🙌🙌♬ meaty get on your zoom – Real Queenzzielocthevoice
In the clip, Zakher backs up away from the camera to show off her outfit. She wears an oversized jacket, white sneakers, a pair of khakis, and a baseball cap with a hoodie combined with a surgical mask. In a text overlay for the clip she pens, “Pov ur scared to deliver orders at night alone but u make more money at night so u dress up as a man.”
Zakher writes that the outfit affords her a specific “male privilege” of protection while delivering for DoorDash at night. In recent years, there have been a number of assault cases against female rideshare and food delivery drivers. In April 2023, a Tampa, Florida DoorDash customer was charged with kidnapping and sexually battering a female delivery driver. AP has reported on attacks that delivery drivers have sustained in 2023 as well, stating that there’s an increased fear among gig workers that they will be harmed in the line of duty.
A 21-year-old woman posted to Reddit’s r/DoorDash sub about a man who attempted to rob her while she was dropping off food “in a good neighborhood” at night, and in 2021, a 51-year-old woman was shot and killed by muggers while delivering for DoorDash.
Numerous law firms have also published online resources delineating how food delivery drivers can seek legal compensation as a result of on-the-job violence they may have experienced while working for services like DoorDash, UberEats, Instacart, and similar applications.
One commenter who saw Zakher’s video suggested other ways to zhuzh up her outfit to pass herself off as a man more effectively.
“Baggier pants and strong mens perfume and ur good to go haha,” they suggested.
Several others said that if she rocked larger pants that would really seal the deal, with a user advising, “Just wear more baggy pants for extra accuracy.”
Someone else said they already implement this technique while visiting the supermarket during later hours in order to avoid being hassled by others.
“Me walking to getting groceries at night,” the viewer said.
Another TikToker was ashamed that women even felt the need to do this in order to protect their safety, questioning why this should even be the norm.
As they put it, “It’s so sad we have to go through this as women.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to DoorDash and Zakher via email for further comment.