Uber Eats now lets us pick up our own food—wait, what?

Illustration for article titled Uber Eats now lets us pick up our own food—wait, what?
Photo: aspenrock (iStock)

If you’re searching for an example of just how far some people will go to avoid talking on the phone, look no further: Uber Eats has announced that its Pickup feature—which allows you to retrieve your own Uber Eats order directly from the restaurant’s physical location—is now available nationwide. We’ll say that again slowly: You can use a delivery app… to order food from a restaurant… that you pick up yourself.

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According to Uber Eats’ website, a Pickup order is “when you place an order through the Eats app and you go to the restaurant to collect it.” There is an upshot—no delivery fees. USA Today reports the company piloted Pickup service in a few test cities before launching it nationwide at participating restaurants this month. DoorDash, Postmates, and Grubhub already offer similar pick-up options.

There are some people for whom ordering through an app rather than calling a restaurant could be much easier, including customers who are deaf or have speech difficulties. But we’d imagine the majority of customers excited about the Pickup feature are simply averse to talking to people on the phone. (As a reporter, this aversion is a luxury I can’t afford.) When I opened the Uber Eats app and clicked Pickup, there was the selling point: “No delivery fees. No phone calls.” The restaurant, however, still pays Uber Eats a commission. 

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.

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DISCUSSION

Reminds me of the cook-your-own-steak restaurant fad in the 90's. I can do that at home without the mark up and screaming kids at the next table.