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Delivery Apps aren't always the best option

Updated: May 2, 2023

Delivery apps like Uber Eats, Postmates, and Grubhub have made it incredibly convenient for customers to enjoy their favorite restaurant dishes from the comfort of their own homes. However, many people are unaware that these apps are charging restaurants exorbitant fees between 15-30% per order, leading to a significant reduction in profits and, in some cases, forcing restaurants to close their doors.

Here's how it works: imagine waking up with a craving for that unforgettable brick oven pizza you had last month at Grimaldi's in Brooklyn. You can easily download a delivery app, like the ones mentioned above, and place an order for the pizza. The app will handle everything, from contacting the restaurant to delivering the pizza right to your doorstep within 45 minutes. Customers are charged a delivery fee, usually ranging from $1.99-$9.99 per order.

However, while customers enjoy their meals, restaurants are getting hit with hefty fees for every order placed via these apps, typically ranging from 15-30% per order. This means that a $20 pizza ordered through an app could cost the restaurant $6 in fees, reducing their profit from $20 to just $14. Moreover, with fewer customers physically visiting the restaurant, staff members are no longer being tipped, and restaurants are facing declining profits that could ultimately lead to employee layoffs and even closures.

In the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, delivery apps have become a crucial lifeline for many restaurants struggling to stay afloat. With dine-in options no longer available, restaurant owners are turning to delivery apps as a means of survival. In response, these apps have stepped up by eliminating fees and providing financial relief, such as Uber Eats waiving delivery fees on orders from local restaurants and Grubhub providing a $100 million-dollar relief. These changes reflect a desire to serve communities that are struggling to find alternative food options during the pandemic.

To keep up with demand, companies are scrambling to hire delivery drivers and staff members, including major players such as Amazon, Domino's Pizza, and Walmart. As a result, the industry is seeing an increase in wages and new job opportunities for those who have been affected by the pandemic.

In a personal anecdote, I recently ordered McDonald's via Uber Eats as a way to feel a sense of normalcy during these challenging times. The process was straightforward, efficient, and convenient, with my delivery arriving within the promised time frame. While delivery fees and other charges added to the total cost, the ease of the process made it worth it.

Overall, delivery apps have played a crucial role in the food industry during the pandemic, helping restaurants to survive and providing consumers with an alternative means of accessing food.

As the world continues to grapple with the effects of the pandemic, delivery apps have become a crucial link between restaurants and their customers. However, the question remains: will this unprecedented shift in the way we dine out alter our dining habits permanently? While we cannot predict the future, one thing is certain: delivery apps have gone from being a mere convenience to an essential service.

As someone who was initially against using delivery apps, I have come to rely on them for everything from restaurant deliveries to essential groceries. Nevertheless, the exorbitant fees charged to restaurants have forced many to shut down, and I believe a more sustainable solution is needed. Perhaps if delivery companies were to reduce their fees to 10% or less, both restaurants and delivery apps could thrive and meet the growing demand for delivery services.

Restaurants have always been more than just a place to eat; they serve as a social hub for friends, family, and business. As a New Yorker, I relish the experience of dining out and savoring the unique culture and atmosphere of each restaurant. However, if fees remain prohibitively high, I fear that many restaurants will be forced to close their doors for good. Only time will tell how this situation will play out, but one thing is certain: the future of dining out has been forever changed by the pandemic.

Tips for Ordering Takeout or Delivery During the COVID-19 Pandemic:

Amidst these challenging times, supporting local neighborhood restaurants is crucial for their survival. Unlike large chain restaurants that can weather the storm, small, family-owned eateries may never recover from the financial impact of the pandemic. By choosing to order from your favorite local spots, you are not only savoring delicious food but also preserving the charm and character of your community. Let's come together to show our support and keep our neighborhood restaurants thriving.

Citation: Delivery app fees

Wang, J. (2020, February 20). 5 Best Apps to Get Food Delivered Right to Your Door. Retrieved from

Bandoim, L. (2020, March 21). How Food Delivery Apps Are Responding to The Coronavirus. Retrieved from

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