Circuit Breaker: The Struggles Of A Food Delivery Rider

Image Source: Jerry Toh via Facebook

“Pls have some patience. Delivery guys are human too. They are not superman. “

The circuit breaker has unsurprisingly caused a spike in demand for food delivery services, with The Straits Times reporting a 20 to 30 per cent increase in demand. It’s no wonder that food delivery riders are now feeling the crunch. While the increase in demand does, in theory, mean that riders are seeing no shortage of assignments, it also means that they face increased waiting times and a slower rate of delivery. The waiting game caused a loss of business for riders, on top of other struggles they face on the road. UCARS shared one of the food delivery rider’s experiences on the struggle.

Food delivery rider Jerry Toh shared about his experience during the circuit breaker in his Facebook post dated May 9.

In the post, he laments that he often gets shouted at or spoken to rudely by restaurant staff especially during peak hours, even getting told to cancel his orders when he asks if they’re ready. He also noticed a difference in treatment whereby restaurant staff would respond to riders rudely while greeting their walk-in customers politely.

However, he adds that he understands that it’s likely because they’re understaffed and facing the same pressure to cope with the increased demand. He also shares that riders are only able to receive more orders during peak hours, while the rest of the day is spent waiting for orders.

The delivery rider says that there are times when restaurants are not ready for operation yet, but still start to take in online orders. He questions why they would do this since both the riders and customers would have to wait needlessly.

“Here’s the thing. No rider in the right state of mind would want to delay your orders. Get this clear.”

On that tangent, he explains that delivery riders are often the ones who take the blame when orders are delayed. He clarifies that no rider would ever deliberately delay assignments since they’re either rushing to meet their daily targets or to meet the requirements for incentives.

“It’s just the minorities out there that spoil our day/ mood.”

Despite this, he acknowledges that he does still meet kind souls out there who tells him not to worry about rushing the delivery or to be safe driving on the roads. Riders often encourage each other to wait patiently for orders being prepared as well.

He ends the post by asking the public to be more understanding and have patience when ordering food for delivery. And if possible, to tip them a dollar or two to show some appreciation.

All in all, these are unprecedented times, and we are all just trying to survive and make a living. Especially during this Ramadan period, we ought to be more understanding towards delivery riders who might be fasting and yet receive dinner orders around the time they are due to break their fast. After all, we need to look out for one another during this period of uncertainty.

A little kindness does, in fact, go a long way. #SGStrong

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