Meal deliverers Deliveroo and Uber Eats are not transparent about extra costs and make the range of restaurants much larger than it actually is. In turn, home delivery cannot live up to the guarantee that a meal is never more expensive than at the restaurant itself. The Consumers’ Association concluded this after an investigation on Wednesday.
Companies are legally obliged to clearly state in advance how much service costs a customer must pay when making a purchase. With Uber Eats and Deliveroo, however, these only become visible just before the checkout, and that is not allowed according to the Consumers’ Association. “It should be immediately clear how much you have lost,” says the Consumers’ Association.
“We believe that we are transparent and honest about the costs we charge, including delivery and service costs,” a Deliveroo spokesperson told NU.nl.
“These are made clear to the customer before they place an order on the ‘basket’ page. We also clearly explain in our app, in our frequently asked questions and in our general terms and conditions how these costs are calculated.”
Apps sometimes show restaurants at the same address
In addition, Uber Eats, and to a lesser extent Deliveroo, would show too large a range of restaurants. For example, the app shows all restaurants within 30 kilometers, making it seem as if you can choose from more than 160 Indian restaurants in the center of Amsterdam. In reality there are fourteen, eight of which are in three adjacent buildings and are owned by the same owner. So in the end there are only eight Indian restaurants.
“We are going to study the conclusions of the Consumers’ Association,” says Uber Eats. “Because there should be no surprises for users who order a meal, we always show the service costs clearly and before an order is settled. The number of restaurants shown obviously depends on the search filter that the user sets, so we do not recognize ourselves in the image that misleading numbers are shown here.”
Deliveroo also sometimes shows properties at the same address, according to the research.
Findings have been shared with consumer watchdog ACM
Home delivery is transparent about the costs, but does not always live up to its price guarantee. The company claims that a meal via the app is never more expensive than when you get it directly from the restaurant. In almost half of the cases this turned out to be incorrect.
Thuisbezorgd calls that conclusion incorrect. “The price guarantee of Thuisbezorgd.nl applies to the delivery price of a restaurant, and therefore not to the pick-up price. A meal in a restaurant and a meal delivered at home are not comparable products,” says a spokesperson. The company emphasizes that a customer can be compensated if a restaurant does not comply with the guarantee.
The Consumers’ Association has shared the findings with the Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets.