Amazon delivery driver breaks down what he actually makes in a paycheck—and what’s missing from it

Tada Images/ShutterStock @amazonteamsters/TikTok (Licensed)

‘Wow, who knew’: Amazon delivery driver breaks down what he actually makes in a paycheck—and what’s missing from it

'It’s sad none of us can make enough to live no matter what we do.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on Dec 24, 2023   Updated on Dec 24, 2023, 7:47 am CST

Around the holiday season, delivery drivers become a fixture in the lives of many Americans. These workers drive from house to house delivering last-minute gifts, arriving at all hours of the day and night to better serve customers.

While this arrangement works well for shoppers, drivers have often noted the many issues with their job. With regards to Amazon specifically, drivers have complained about being expected to deliver too many items in one trip, made to follow a faulty directional system, and monitored using an AI-powered camera system—all for wages that some consider inadequate.

Now, another driver delivering Amazon packages has virally shared his issues with the company and his desire for workers to unionize.

In a video with over 390,000 views as of Sunday, delivery driver Hunter shares his story with the TikTok account @amazonteamsters. According to Hunter, numerous problems come with being an Amazon driver. First, he can’t technically call himself an Amazon driver—despite only delivering packages for the company.

Looking at his paycheck, Hunter says, “The first thing you might notice on this paycheck is Amazon’s name isn’t to be found anywhere on it.”

“The reason for this is Amazon subcontracts all of their drivers,” he explains. “Even though we deliver all of their packages, we drive their vans, and we wear their vests, they keep us far enough away that they can claim any liability on the subcontracted employer, but close enough to control all of our routes, our pay, and everything else about our day-to-day.”

The next issue Hunter has is with the job’s wages, especially given the hard labor involved in the role.

“You can see that my hourly rate is $18.75 an hour, which is not a livable wage,” he states. This hourly wage is slightly below what MIT says is a livable wage for the Atlanta area where Hunter is based.

“Compared to what UPS drivers make, I make about one-third of what they will make by the end of their newly agreed upon union contract,” he continues. “I’m surrounded by co-workers that have kids, that have dependents and are unable to meet their basic needs. Me, personally, it’s hard just to make rent month to month.”

“For the backbreaking work that we do every day, this is not enough,” Hunter says. “Our routes can be incredibly heavy on and off during the holiday season, all year long. We’ve actively been organizing across these arbitrary lines that Amazon has put in place to make sure drivers and warehouse workers alike get what they have earned.”

In the comments section, users lamented the low wages and hard work that come with the role.

@amazonteamsters Amazon claims their delivery drivers aren’t employees. The truth? Amazon controls our pay, routes, schedules, and more. Watch Hunter from @AU Georgia walk through an Amazon driver's paycheck. #Amazon #AmazonStrike #MakeAmazonDeliver #1u #Teamsters #Unions #UnionStrong #SolidarityForever #AmazonDrivers #AmazonWorkers #MakeAmazonPay #fyp ♬ Memory Reboot – iBertoli

“So that’s 2400 monthly no way,” observed a commenter. “Rent is 2000 for a 1 bedroom what are u supposed To do with 400 dollars left monthly.”

“Ya didn’t mention how our routes are double to triple what UPS and Fed Ex drops and under 40 hrs,” said another.

Other commenters simply voiced their support for Hunter’s unionization call and the rights of Amazon workers to unionize in general.

“UPS Teamster retired…I hope u win a contract. It really makes a difference!” exclaimed a commenter. “In solidarity!”

“Union is the only way,” added a second. “I have 35 years in my union and it was the best decision I’ve made. Do it!”

The Daily Dot reached out to Amazon via email and Amazon Teamsters via Facebook direct message.

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*First Published: Dec 24, 2023, 8:00 am CST