We never use the food delivery apps and always go pick up ourselves. I feel safer getting takeout than walking into grocery stores or Costco. I try to call as much as possible, but sometimes get frustrated by being on hold too long or when the person taking the order doesn’t repeat the order to make sure it’s right. I know it’s convenient to just order online, but those prices are often a few bucks higher than the regular menu if you just called in. Also, restaurants need to make sure the prices are accurate on their websites.
Heck, I’m having trouble finding the real website for some restaurants, thanks to Grubhub setting up the alternative sites. Same with figuring out a direct number for some restaurants.
“A very messy system was created because restaurant people are not starting these tech companies — tech people are,” Alamgir says. “Restaurateurs are not tech people; they want to be hospitable and create amazing food and then we told them, ‘You’ve got to be amazing with tech as well or you’re dead. Your business is dead.’”
I have been ordering pickup online from Panini Kabob in Century City through the restaurant’s own website. Not sure what platform they are using, but I find the restaurant’s own online system a breeze to use and I appreciate the functionality where, for instance, you can check a box to have certain ingredients omitted from your salad. Very Burger King, Have It Your Way, and I love it. I noticed as well that the prices going through the restaurant’s own platform are cheaper than going through a third-party service.
Prior to the pandemic, I hated Panini Kabob’s food. Either they have improved the food or after a year of lockdown and returning to my office, I am just thrilled to be able to pop in somewhere close and get a hot meal, but I have been enjoying my Panini Kabob meals. I don’t think I would go there outside of being at the office, but it’s a solid lunch option for those who work in Century City.
They seem to be doing good business because when I went today around 2:30 p.m. to pick-up, there were at least 25 bags stacked on a table waiting for pickup. And between yesterday and today they reopened for both outdoor and indoor dining. It was somewhat jarring, but in a good way, to see people sitting at tables, laughing and drinking wine.
They take cash? Nice… #anonymousbutloyalcustomer
Probably another reason restaurants see 3rd party apps as a necessary evil. The customer has an established account with a legit credit card.