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Things you only know if you’re a food delivery driver

...according to Ussama Tahraq

Written by
Time Out Hong Kong
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Thanks to the creation of online food delivery apps, all you need is just to pick up your phone and with a few taps, you'll have your three meals for the day sorted. We talk to Ussama Tahraq to find out what life is like as a Foodpanda delivery driver. By Mabel Lui

The application process is easy as pie
“If you want to join Foodpanda as a rider, you just need a motorbike driving license. It's a very easy process. Sign up through the website, and you will get a message to come in for an onboarding session. So come to the Foodpanda office with your documents and in one or two hours you’ll become a Foodpanda rider. We can do our work with our phone. We have an app called Road Runner. We receive our orders on it, so we just have to accept the order, go to the vendor, pick up the food and go straight to the customer. You feel like your own boss.”

Vendors are more generous than you’d expect
“As a Foodpanda rider, we get to know so many delicious food places. Most of the vendors will give us a discount. We just have to wear our Foodpanda shirt, go inside the restaurant and they will give us a 15, 20 or 25 percent discount. One vendor, when he gets delayed preparing the food, gives us… lemon tea or something like that. Which normally costs $20 or $25!”

Riders love their motorbikes
“When we have free time we always talk about the new motorbikes, because every rider has a different model, and everyone wants to modify their bikes. We spend as much as we can on them. One rider spent almost $30,000 on his! He bought it new for $37,000 and spent another $30,000 on it. It’s very attractive – he punched some stickers on it, made it more comfortable and changed the shocks.”

The delivery process isn’t always straightforward
“Once, I arrived at the customer's home, but the building door was closed and the customer was on the seventh or eighth floor. The customer said, ‘I can't come down,’ because I think he had fractured his leg or something like that. So I said, ‘Okay, throw your key down.’ And so he throws his key down, I open the door and I walk up to deliver it. He became very happy after that. When he talked to me on the phone, he had said, ‘I am really very hungry and I can’t come down.’ That type of experience doesn't happen often.”

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