My Misadventure with a Food Delivery Service

food delivery service

I used a food delivery service for the first time a couple of months ago when I started working from home back in the middle of March.

I didn’t feel like cooking so I decided I’d call on the food delivery service I been using occasionally since March.

Yes, I suppose I was late to jump on the delivery bandwagon. But before the world went crazy in a pandemic, I never minded picking up my own dinner.

But once COVID-19 popped up and I began working from home, I decided I’d do everything possible to stay home. That included picking one of these services to bring food when I wasn’t feeling up to cooking.

So that was me on Sunday night.

It started off normally enough.

I ordered dinner from one of my regular restaurants. I hit the “Checkout” button, assuming the system already had me logged in since it always does.

But it asked me to log in. I did. Then it asked me to verify who I was by entering a 6-digit number it texted me. I did.

It recognized me, indicated the price for my delivery and asked if I wanted to use my credit card on file. I did.

It told me my dinner would arrive within about 40 minutes or so.

But about 25 minutes later, I received a phone call from the delivery driver. She told me there was a problem. The delivery address was the same as the restaurant address.

Well, how could that happen? The system knows where I live, after all. It certainly remembered my credit card so it could bill me in a split second!

She told me she couldn’t accept my delivery address over the phone. She said I needed to log back in and change the delivery address. The app wouldn’t let her deliver to my home until I changed the address. But when I went back to the computer and opened the order, I found I couldn’t make changes.

She told me she’d call the service, have them call me, so I could give them my address and they could, in turn, relay it back to her.

About a minute later, they called. I explained the issue and the woman told me I needed to contact the driver and give her the address.

“Ma’am, why do you think you’re calling me?” I asked. “She said she was having you call me so I could give you my address and you could give it to her.

That option, apparently, was out of the question. She said my only option was to go to the restaurant and pick up my own food.

I asked, naturally enough, if she could cancel the order and refund the price. She said she could cancel it, but could not issue a refund. I’d have to call a different department for that.

I decided I’d go pick up my own dinner.

Yeah, I know: First-world problem. But I did call their customer service line while I was driving there. I explained the situation.

The person at the other end of the phone listened dutifully. Then she said my comments had been recorded and the company would use the information to improve the app experience for others.

Wait a second, I said. That’s all well and good…but we need to talk about a refund here.

I told her she could refund the delivery fee and the driver fee, since I became the driver who’s delivering my own food.

But more than that, I had to ask the two burning questions, knowing she wouldn’t have an answer.

The first question was this: Why isn’t their system smart enough to know that if someone orders delivery, that the delivery address can’t be the same address as the restaurant where it’s being made. I would think that’d be basic common sense. Their system obviously lacks common sense.

While I waited through a couple of seconds of silence, I asked the second question: Why would their system possibly dispatch a driver to go to a restaurant to pick up food they couldn’t take anywhere?

Isn’t that a waste of everyone’s time?!?

I heard more silence. Clearly, I blew her mind with my logic.

She processed the refund but didn’t seem all that sympathetic, nor did she offer any further discount, which would have been the least she could have done.

Since I started this blog back in 2004, the subtitle was always, “Regular doses of common sense.” This little episode reminds me that common sense isn’t nearly as common as it should be.

From now on, I might just go pick up my own dinner.

It’s inconvenient, but a lot less stressful that way.

1 Comment

  1. Last week I went to a seafood place on Cape Cod and was standing in line 6 feet apart, there were about a dozen people in front of me. I noticed a phone number for call-in order so I called while I was in line. I had only moved a couple of spaces so I got out of line picked up my order and left.
    They were all staring at me when I drove off and I am still wondering why no one else who was in line followed my example and call in their order.

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 29 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.