You expect to pay a tip and delivery fee when ordering food for delivery – especially when you've got a nighttime craving. That's just the cost of convenience. But it might be costing more than you think by ordering from your favorite restaurants via delivery app.
You may be paying hefty – and in some cases – hidden fees for using these services. Estimates on how much more you pay vary depending on where you live, which app you use and the restaurant you choose.
Typically, you'll be charged a percentage of the restaurant's food costs, but there's more. Restaurants, especially some large chain restaurants, may hike the price of meals ordered through delivery apps.
Extra fees might be added for ordering during peak hours, when driver availability is limited, or for getting something small like a sandwich. And don't forget to include sales tax. When you add it all up, the markup on using food delivery apps could be taking a big bite out of your budget!
Ways to save
You don't have to dig deeper into your pockets to eat well. Here are a few ideas to consider.
Opt for takeout. You can still enjoy ordering meals from your favorite restaurant, but you save money by picking it up yourself.
Try your hand at home-cooked meals. You can save a bundle when you plan meals and buy groceries with coupons or take advantage of in-store specials. If you need dinner in a hurry, pick up a prepared meal from your local grocer.
Whether you've never boiled water or you're interested in mastering a particular type of cuisine – you can learn how to make it online. The internet is brimming with websites offering recipes and how-to videos by cooking enthusiasts and renowned chefs.
Order out less often. If you can't imagine going cold turkey, then try limiting how and when you use delivery apps to order food. Perhaps you want to splurge for a special occasion or bring food in when you're feeling under the weather.
As you start taking more control of your expenses, keep the momentum going. Use the money you're saving to open or grow your savings account at Honda Federal Credit Union.