Hankering for some ribs from Rodney Scott's BBQ but just can't get away from your desk? How about a burrito from Chipotle? Both are now being delivered by Postmates, a delivery service that launched here this week, joining UberEats, GrubHub and Order On The Way (a merger of local operations TakeOut Town and QuickFoxes) in the battle for your business.
Unlike UberEats and the rest, Postmates is not necessarily partnering with the the restaurants that appear on its site. While Chipotle is a national partner, locally owned Renzo is not. Renzo owner Nayda Freire says they were caught by surprise with a Postmates order. "So far it hasn't been an issue," she says, but adds that she's concerned: "(It's) kind of sketchy."
Eater outlined a number of complaints from restaurants in other markets contending with Postmates deliveries, mainly those worried about how the food delivered will reflect on them, since they have no say in how its quality is maintained. Seattle's The Stranger reported that the restaurant industry hates Postmates because couriers typically aren't authorized to leave tips.
Postmates calls itself an "on-demand delivery and pickup platform. ... Just enter your address, find something you like, and add it to your cart."
Similar to Uber's claim that it is simply a platform that connects drivers and riders, Postmates says it connects couriers and customers who want delivery service. A restaurant is simply one such place many people want to have items delivered from.
Postmates also delivers much more than restaurant fare. It will bring you cold medicine from Walgreens, a car battery from AutoZone, copy paper from Office Depot, pet food from PetSmart and a coffee from Kudu.
As it rolls out in the Charleston market, Postmates has been aggressively looking to add drivers to its fleet through Craigslist ads that advertise "make up to $20/hour on your own schedule w/Postmates."