With more options for companies to take delivery in-house, and with the major third-party services facing a litany of lawsuits, will some other service take over the delivery game?
“This is a disrespectful approach.”
Those are the words of Adir Michaeli, the owner of New York City’s Michaeli Bakery who is suing Grubhub, Uber Eats and DoorDash for charging above the mandated 20% delivery fee cap set by the New York City Council in 2020. Michaeli cites in the suit that he was routinely charged 25% or more even after the fee caps were put in place.
“I had to know legally if they were really doing what I thought they were doing, which is illegal,” he said. “If so, this is really, really bad ethically.”
Michaeli’s situation illustrates the tenuous relationship between restaurant operators and third-party delivery services. While these platforms have been a lifeline for countless restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic, many independent operators in particular have struggled to make them financially feasible. And though local regulations in some of the nation’s biggest cities have tried to cap delivery fees at 15% or 20%, Grubhub, Uber Eats and DoorDash have been accused of routinely charging additional fees over the limit.