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I ordered a COVID-19 test through DoorDash -- here's what this new service is like

March 25, 2021
7 min read
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Vaccinations will play one of the biggest roles in travel's recovery. However, quick and effective COVID-19 testing will continue to be vital as the world at large begins to reopen again. So what if getting a test is as easy as ordering a burger?

DoorDash, the company best known for its on-demand food delivery, is now looking to play a major part in COVID-testing accessibility. You can now order a COVID-19 PCR home test kit in one of DoorDash's 12 markets across the U.S., with more cities rolling out in the coming months.

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Even better, if you have a qualifying Chase credit card that includes a DashPass membership (Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, or a variant of the Freedom family of cards), you'll also get a lower service fee and free delivery. Premium Sapphire Reserve cardholders should also be able to use their 2021 $60 DoorDash credit toward the cost of a test.

With all that said, here's what you need to know about ordering a kit through DoorDash -- and my personal experience having one delivered directly to my hotel.

The home test kit options

Through DoorDash, customers have a choice between two home test kits that are similar, although not the same, in price.

DoorDash partnered with two companies: Everlywell and Vault Health. The Everlywell COVID-19 Test Home Collection Kit costs $109, while the Vault Health COVID-19 Saliva Test Kit costs $119.

Both tests may be covered by insurance so check with your specific provider.

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(Photo courtesy of DoorDash)

Everlywell test

  • Test type: Gentle lower nasal swab
  • Supervision required: No
  • Time for results: 24–48 hours after the sample arrives at the lab via overnight delivery

Vault test

  • Test type: Remotely supervised video saliva sample collection with a Vault medical practitioner
  • Supervision required: Yes
  • Time for results: 24–48 hours after the sample arrives at the lab via overnight delivery

The major difference between the tests is how it's administered: nasal swab (Everlywell) or saliva (Vault).

This may come down to a personal preference and how you feel about having someone monitor you while conducting your test (Vault). However, note that Vault’s tests may also be accepted for travel, allowing you to bypass quarantine in some cases.

When purchasing a test, you should use a card that earns bonuses on dining as DoorDash falls under this category.

Related: At-home PCR showdown: TPG compares 4 popular COVID-19 tests

What it's like ordering

As of this writing, home test kits on DoorDash are available in the metropolitan markets of Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Minneapolis and Phoenix.

Since I'm currently in one of the launch cities, I decided to order the Everlywell PCR nasal swab test to my hotel in Denver.

(Photo courtesy of DoorDash)

Related: Traveling soon? Here’s where you can quickly get a COVID-19 PCR test for travel

DoorDash does not clearly identify the COVID-19 test option when you open the app.

To find the home tests, you have to click through to "DashMart," a specifically curated section within the app that offers grocery and household items.

(Photo courtesy of DoorDash)

Alternatively, you can click on the search bar and type some variation of "COVID." In either case, you'll then be provided with information about both testing options as well as the ability to add each to your cart.

From there, the process is similar to ordering anything through DoorDash. You can decide whether you want to pick up or get delivery, choose your payment and how much you want to tip.

Related: Here are 18 food delivery promos to help you save money on your next meal

So how long did the delivery take?

From the time the order was submitted to the moment it was in my hands, the process took a total of 47 minutes. That's pretty speedy to get a COVID-19 test kit delivered.

Putting the the test

(Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

I unwrapped the small, rectangular Everlywell box and immediately noticed just how many items were part of the test kit.

However, everything was clearly labeled and the process ultimately was straightforward.

(Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

The box provided clear instructions. First, you had to register your kit online and watch the four-minute-long video that provided a walkthrough of the procedures.

(Photo courtesy of Everlywell)

Thankfully, of note, the nasal swab didn't have to be inserted far into the nostril (no tickling the brain needed here).

(Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

After placing the swab into the vial, I packaged everything up as directed and dropped off the package at UPS for overnight delivery.

(Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

One important note is that Everlywell urges you to ship the nasal swab to the lab on the same day you conduct the test.

The final step now is to await my results which should take 24 to 48 hours. You can opt into text alerts or wait for Everlywell to email you.

Related: Americans can now visit 90+ countries and territories — here’s the complete list

Bottom line

While it has been getting easier to obtain a COVID-19 PCR test in some locations over the past few months, turnaround times can still vary. And having another convenient option is certainly not a bad thing.

DoorDash is now offering the ability to have a COVID-19 home test kit quickly delivered (in my case, well under an hour).

And with select Chase cards that you may already have providing DoorDash perks, it's a great way to have your cake and eat it too. Or, in this case, to have your cake...and a nasal swab.

Featured image by Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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