When all this is over, whenever all this is over, we want to be able to keep the things we love in our lives. This includes our favorite eateries, the places where we get comfort meals or great cocktails or exciting new flavors. Ordering takeout seems like the obvious answer, but there's just one problem: The way most of us do it winds up gouging the restaurant we're trying to support.
This week, Reuters reported on a class action lawsuit filed against delivery apps GrubHub, DoorDash, Postmates, and Uber Eats. This isn't just any complaint — it's an antitrust allegation. Three restaurants in New York City allege that the delivery apps violated these laws by requiring dine-in prices and delivery prices to stay the same. At the same time, the apps charge "exorbitant" fees, between 10 percent and 40 percent of an order, which decimate a restaurant's often already miniscule profit margins.
Eater reports that these pay-to-play requirements force restaurants to drive up their prices, putting off consumers and creating a vicious circle effect. Food delivery apps have been called out in the past for problematic and exploitive practices, including listing restaurants without their consent (which might explain your cold takeout) and pocketing your delivery guy's tip. The best solution? Sure, it might be awkward, but call up the restaurant directly and place your order with a human being. It ensures that your money goes straight to the business you like — and that no one is skimming off the top.