Get us in your inbox

Photograph: Shutterstock

New Yorkers are now ordering delivery less than they did before

Emma Orlow
Written by
Emma Orlow

Almost exactly one month ago, all NYC restaurants had been mandated to temporarily close unless they pivoted to only offering delivery and takeout. But the new policy hasn't resulted in increasing deliveries or takeout orders, according to a press release via Grubhub, which notes that, overall, delivery orders have plummeted. 

The company has attributed losses to its first quarter earnings, in part, to the decrease in orders placed by big corporations that would usually be turning to the delivery platform to cater lunches and other meals. Of course, it also can't be ignored that many restaurants have decided to close altogether, contributing to the decrease in earnings by services such as Grubhub. 

While individual restaurants may be upholding the appropriate hygienic standards, restaurants cannot guarantee that third party delivery platforms will practice safe food delivery at the same level that they’ve taken on. 

Some restaurants have opted to close versus trying to meld their menus to a takeout-friendly format—one might guess it's particularly hard for fine dining restaurants trying to keep their cuisine at elevated levels while maintaining prices amenable to the affordable to-go options New Yorkers tend to prefer (though some Michelin-rated restaurants have launched delivery).

Perhaps a bigger issue is that many restaurateurs have complained that the predatory transaction fees that platforms such as Grubhub takes, is too steep to remain profitable during this time. There have also been demands across the country to put caps on these fees.

But on the whole, for the customers, there is a lot of confusion surrounding whether or not it is safe to order delivery (here are some tips), and whether, they potentially would be putting themselves or workers at risk while trying to continue to support small businesses. In turn, many are cooking at home more than ever right now

Though the monotony of cooking (and cleaning up!) everyday for oneself while juggling family, work (or trying to find new work) and the general anxieties that come with this particularly uncertain time has many looking to delivery options as a respite, counterintuitively, the volume of orders remains down. 

Most popular on Time Out

- The Metropolitan Opera is streaming more free performances every night this week
- New York’s top salons share advice on how to cut your hair at home
- Noise complaints are way up now that New Yorkers are working from home
- The five best Houseparty games to play with friends
- The best live theater to stream online

Popular on Time Out

    Latest news