Search:
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 35

Thread: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

  1. #1
    NJS Certified
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    463

    Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    Hey everyone, I'm under the impression there are a few bike couriers on here/people in the know, that might be able to help me with this. I have a lot of questions, if you could answer what you know about that would be great.

    Firstly I have wanted to be a bike courier for a few years now, before I even knew what a fixie was! Now I have finished school for good :-D and am looking for a job over the summer and into the future. Bike courier seems ideal but there is a few things I need clarified:

    Is there a courier shortage in Melbourne, or an overabundance? I don't want to muscle in if its already an overcrowded area, or is it fairly easy to get a job?

    What is the pay like? Im still living at home, not fully dependant by any means, Im just looking for a bit of extra cash for all the crap I keep buying. So I guess I want to know how would it compare to say a job in retail? I guess that is my other option.

    How does the pay work? Is it entirely commission or is it a small hourly rate plus commission? And also leading into christmas/early 2008 is it generally a quiet time for delivering or fairly busy?

    This may be fairly contentious, but how essential is a messenger bag? Personally Im not a fan and I generally prefer a backpack, but I guess if its a necessity I could learn to love. Im also in the market for a decent bag for carrying all my Uni stuff next year, so that could tie in nicely.

    Do you need some sort of license or permit? Ive seen a video where potential couriers need to be road tested, this is no problem I just want to know if I need a permit to get a job.

    Most importantly, how would I go about getting a job? This Ive never really been able to find out. Does everyone work for the same company (like Auspost or something similar) or does everyone work for different companies? If so, how would I go about getting hired by anyone?


    I know this is a lot of questions, there will probably be more to come, but if someone could point me in the right direction or help me out it would be much appreciated :wink:

    By the way, if anyone wants to know who I am, I was at Meanstreetz on the pink and green raleigh. I finished a couple of minutes after the pack of guys with the radios. It was great fun. thanks!

  2. #2
    NJS Certified
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    487

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    Is there a courier shortage in Melbourne, or an overabundance? I don't want to muscle in if its already an overcrowded area, or is it fairly easy to get a job?
    turn over is reasonably high in most cities, but you will always have a core of long timers. apply and wait. just keep at them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    What is the pay like? Im still living at home, not fully dependant by any means, Im just looking for a bit of extra cash for all the crap I keep buying. So I guess I want to know how would it compare to say a job in retail? I guess that is my other option.
    How does the pay work? Is it entirely commission or is it a small hourly rate plus commission?
    most places do commission only. it's supposed to be an hourly minimum plus commission to top up, but it doesn't usually work out that way. some companies do use hourly only like toll, and the hourly for them is about $19-20
    your weekly average should work out to be $650+ after tax if you are any good. if you suck, you'll starve.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    And also leading into christmas/early 2008 is it generally a quiet time for delivering or fairly busy?
    run up to christmas is busy, the first 2 months of the new year, forget it. no work, too many riders.
    if you aren't settled into a company in the next two weeks, you'll be shit outta luck until end of February. unless you happen to know someone who's leaving, and snatch their slot.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    This may be fairly contentious, but how essential is a messenger bag? Personally Im not a fan and I generally prefer a backpack, but I guess if its a necessity I could learn to love. Im also in the market for a decent bag for carrying all my Uni stuff next year, so that could tie in nicely.
    messenger bags are really only useful for messengers. the ability to really quickly get into the bag 50-60 times a day makes a big difference, but if you like a backpack, use it. messenger bags are not much use for everyday commuting or studying.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    Do you need some sort of license or permit? Ive seen a video where potential couriers need to be road tested, this is no problem I just want to know if I need a permit to get a job.
    that's canada. no license for australia. just know where you're going, and don't die.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross
    Most importantly, how would I go about getting a job? This Ive never really been able to find out. Does everyone work for the same company (like Auspost or something similar) or does everyone work for different companies? If so, how would I go about getting hired by anyone?
    find a list of messenger companies, call them. then do it again every week until someone says yes.
    don't just let them say they'll you back, cause they won't.
    best bet is to get to know the messengers and find out who's leaving to go do whatever....



    right, that's the basics. it's not like the youtube videos, you have to do it all day everyday, and you need to be able to just keep going whether you want to or not, or you're going to starve.
    actually, you may starve to start with anyway.
    make sure you know all the alleys and shortcuts, all the major buildings, which directions the street numbers run in, and where the major landmarks are.
    get a UBD, carry it.
    and if you still want to give it try, just jump in and go.
    You did WHAT?!? You deserve the cast on your arm then jackass.

  3. #3
    NJS Certified
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    463

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    thanks, thats great advice, but I still don't know any courier companies ops: Only thing Ive really seen is 'hellocourier' on the fyxomatosis site. Should I give them a call. Also what is a UBD? Ive got no clue, but I have got a fair idea of Melbourne CBD, and I certainly don't mind riding all day every day.



    EDIT: Ive found a good list of companies in Melbourne, Ill make some calls tommorrow. One final question for today, what do most people ride? My minimal observations guess that 1 in 3 couriers ride SS 1 in 3 fixed and 1 in 3 a bike with gears. The bikes I have at my disposal are two fixies (no brakes, but Im willing to get one) and an old roadie, although I haven't ridden anything but fixed for the last few months.

  4. #4
    NJS Certified
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    487

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    i know the purists will say that brakeless fixie is the way to go, but for work i ALWAYS run a brake.
    too much can go wrong during a 40 hour week for me to run brakeless.
    fixie is fine if you are competent.
    geared if you haven't ridden as much as you should have.
    ss is the compromise.
    and you'll get hammered.
    you are going to feel like pounded shit on a stick by the end of the week, or you aren't working hard enough and you'll starve.
    it'll take a while to get into the swing.
    best thing is to get to AXA and ask the guys.
    if you aren't a complete wanker, you'll be fine.

    UBD is a street reference. like a malloys or refedex
    You did WHAT?!? You deserve the cast on your arm then jackass.

  5. #5
    NJS Certified
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    236

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    UBD = Melways :wink:
    It is far better to be annoyed each and every time you enter your own loungeroom than risk having your fireplace stolen.

  6. #6
    NJS Certified spud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,436

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    UBD make a mini-version of their street directory for Melbourne so it fits in your bag. Otherwise, what Lupine said.

    My company (Kings) has four brakeless fixed riders, 2 singlespeeders and a couple of guys with gears. Ride what you like, really.

    You'd really need to get your foot in the door this next week or so before all the work goes away....

  7. #7
    NJS Certified powdah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    638

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    ... and grow some facial hair and smell bad.
    How the fuck did that get in my tyre?!

  8. #8
    Electron Workshop nickj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Melbourne.
    Posts
    1,522

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    Oooh! Cutting, powdah!

    I had a 'bike courier moment' a few years ago, and I went into some courier office in Melbourne and filled out the paperwork. There was one really perplexing question in the form, which I thought was hilarious. It said 'Why do you want to be a courier'.

    I thought long and hard... And then I just wrote 'Because I like bikes'.

    Anyway, so needless to say I didn't get the job.

    But really, why the hell else would you like to be a courier? For the pension plan? Street cred? There can only be two reasons: You're bike obsessed, or your stone cold broke. Both of which probably aren't the answers they were looking for in their ridiculous form.

    nick

  9. #9
    NJS Certified spud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,436

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    I think most bicycle messengers are stone cold broke, so that might be it

  10. #10
    Hipster
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    88

    Re: Becoming a bike courier? (Melbourne)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lupine128
    i know the purists will say that brakeless fixie is the way to go, but for work i ALWAYS run a brake.
    too much can go wrong during a 40 hour week for me to run brakeless.
    fixie is fine if you are competent.
    geared if you haven't ridden as much as you should have.
    ss is the compromise.
    Ride whatever you want, you get paid to ride fast, hard and quick efficiently, not to look good. If you can do that too good luck to you 8-)

Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80