News / Eating

Mealpass is a money-saving Classpass for your weekday lunch

Tres Carnes
Photograph: Jessica Lin Tres Carnes

The weekday lunch space has become a bit of an arms race in the tech world, with delivery services like Caviar and UberEats queuing up to win over the stomachs of New York's busy worker bees. Now, the latest player in the game, Mealpass, debuts this week in NYC—it beta launched in Miami and Boston—with a menu of weekday lunch options from 130 different restaurants and counting, all for a flat monthly fee of $99. 

The brainchild of Mary Biggins, founder of the workout class money-saver Classpass, and Katie Ghelli, formerly of appointment booker ZocDoc, the service requires participating vendors to designate one item on the menu each day for the service. Menus are posted online at 7pm the night prior, and customers must choose one option from the network by 9:30am that day. At lunchtime, meals must be picked up from the restaurant (there's no delivery) based on a 15-minute window designed by the user, but they'll be able to skip the line and grab their readymade lunch without paying any additional cost.

According to the website, if the service is used every weekday of the month, the cost of lunch comes out to just five bucks a day. The current lineup of vendors includes fast-casual favorites such as Just Salad, Inday and Tres Carnes, as well as sit-down spots like La Pecora Bianca, Kat & Theo and Dos Caminos. At launch, the service will be offered at restaurants between 10th and 30th Streets and Third and Seventh Avenues. Sign up to get your invitation to the service.

MealpassPhotograph: Courtesy of Mealpass



nirezeitler tastemaker

I am BEYOND excited for this - the restaurant lineup looks great! Though I can see it being a daily fight to get your order in before the item you want sells out...but hopefully they'll learn quickly how to offer enough to pacify consumers while also minimizing wastage. It's also genius to do pickup-only to keep costs low. I don't know how it works in the other cities, but maybe delivery will become available especially for those who tend to get chained to their desks/lose track of the day and would otherwise miss the window of time they'd scheduled their pickup (like an option to change your order to "delivery" as long as you notify 2hrs in advance + a small fee/tip of course)...or a perhaps they'll offer a higher monthly rate for daily deliveries with a strict delivery radius (cuz let's face it, NYers love to get food delivered - even if it's just from across the street/2 blocks away). Despite the bumps that are bound to happen in the first few weeks/month or so (as they always do), I'm still really looking forward to this!