- Uber Eats launched a dine-in/pick-up contactless order feature on Friday, according to an email sent to Restaurant Dive. The pickup feature is available nationwide while the dine-in element is currently in eight markets and will be expanded into cities as dining rooms recover.
- Customers can scan a QR code provided at a restaurant or find the restaurant via the Uber Eats app, order and pay through the app and food will be brought to them at a table if they are dining in, or for takeout or delivery at a later time. Restaurants will pay no marketplace fees on orders placed through this service through the end of 2020.
- As dining rooms reopen, QR codes are becoming more widely used to reduce contact between customers and staff. DoorDash added a QR code and signage for partner restaurants earlier this year for walk-in customers wishing to order takeout while casual dining chains like BJ’s Restaurants and Ruth’s Hospitality have been using them for dine-in.
The expansion of Uber Eats' contactless features, which began with contactless delivery or a “leave at my door” option in March, is part of the company’s efforts to promote safety during the pandemic. The contactless order feature was piloted in eight U.S. markets — Indianapolis, Boston, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Vermont, Atlanta and New York City — as well as international markets in Mexico and the United Kingdom. Following positive feedback, the company decided to expand the feature nationally.
"We all have a role to play in keeping each other safe and healthy, and our Contactless Order Feature for both pick-up and dine-in provides another tool for customers and restaurant staff to do just that," Daniel Danker, head of product at Uber Eats, said in an emailed statement.
Uber Eats has also been helping restaurant partners inform the public about safety measures in place. It has sent posters in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to over 160,000 restaurant partners in the U.S. to highlight health and safety tips for couriers, customers and staff. It also launched a safety feedback loop option for couriers and restaurants where they can provide feedback on measures such as no social distancing, lack of hand sanitization and no masks, and share that information for improvement and accountability.
Uber Eats is piloting a feature in Atlanta, Chicago, Phoenix and Seattle where restaurants can share safety practices they are adhering to, such as a dedicated waiting area, hygiene supplies and monitoring staff health, which can then be shared with customers through the app.
"...we are constantly developing new ways to promote a safe experience using technology and feedback," Danker said.
In the last few months, the company has greatly expanded its features for restaurant partners, including an online ordering feature allowing restaurants to process pickup or delivery requests directly from their website, as well as an app for managers that allows them to track sales, volumes and other metrics in real time to make sure deliveries are running smoothly. The company also created a map feature for customers so they could see where nearby restaurants were providing pickup.