Which food delivery apps actually deliver?

We tested 6 services in Atlanta. Here’s what we got.
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Busy Bee deliveryUber Instant
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Est. March 2016
Grade: A+
Service: Meals arrived in under five minutes, as fast as we could walk to the curb. Drivers stock up on premade orders for record delivery times.
Cost: No tipping and a flat delivery fee of $2.84
Sample order: $13.49; Busy Bee; Fried chicken with turnip greens, mac and cheese. About what you’d pay in store without tip.
Restaurants: Very limited, about five restaurants per day. Recently we saw Tavernpointe, Raging Burrito, and Masti.

 

Spice to Table deliveryUberEats
Hours: Every day, 8 a.m. to midnight
Est. September 2015
Grade: A
Service:
Accurate, up-to-the-minute updates on the driver’s ETA, plus GPS tracking, car information, and a smart user interface.
Cost: No menu markups, no tipping, and a flat $4 delivery fee
Sample order: $24.52; Spice to Table; Kerala fried chicken, mango lassi. About what you’d pay in store with tip.
Restaurants: Quality restaurants with almost no fast food options. Best bets: Goldbergs, Ah-Ma’s Taiwanese Kitchen.

Edgewood Pizza delivery

Caviar
Hours: Every day, 8 a.m.-11:30 p.m.
Est. March 2015
Grade: B
Service:
 Largely seamless, thanks to GPS tracking. Delivery can take up to an hour or more, so preorder whenever possible.
Cost: $13 minimum order; delivery fees based on distance (avg. $2–$7).
Sample order: $20.59; Edgewood Pizza; 12-inch pie with toppings. About what you’d pay in store with tip.
Restaurants: Choices are middle-brow (Tin Drum, Zocalo). Best bets: Bell Street Burritos, Gu’s Dumplings.

Hi-Five Diner delivery

Postmates
Hours: 24/7
Est. May 2015
Grade: C
Service:
You have to wait for a driver to accept your order. No in-app updates on processing, ETA, or car info until the driver is en route.
Cost: Delivery fees start at $5, plus a 9 percent service charge.
Sample order: $32.93; Hi-Five Diner; Cobb salad with a bowl of soup. About $10 more than what you’d pay in store with tip.
Restaurants: Limited. Best bets: Arden’s Garden, Delia’s Chicken Sausage Stand, Fellini’s, Hi-Five Diner.

Five Guys delivery

DoorDash
Hours: Sun.-Thurs., 9 a.m.-10:30 p.m. (until 2 a.m. on Fri., Sat.)
Est. October 2015
Grade: C-
Service:
App offers neither on-screen GPS nor a car description, which resulted in unexpected deliveries and confusion on the street.
Cost: The most expensive, due in large part to big menu markups.
Sample order: $26.48; Five Guys; double cheeseburger with fries. Cost included a $6 delivery fee, plus a 15 percent tip. 
Restaurants: Mix of fast food and quality restaurants, including Antico, Bocado, Le Fat, 4th & Swift, and Miller Union.

Little Tart delivery

Favor
Hours: Every day, 8 a.m.-11 p.m.
Est. April 2015
Grade: C-
Service:
Primitive app functionality. Can require text exchanges to clarify orders. (“What dressing do you want?”) No delivery ETAs.
Cost: $5 delivery fee, plus a 5 percent processing fee; no menu markups.
Sample order: $30.41; Little Tart; BLT sandwich, salad, pecan tart. About $7 more than the cost in-store with tip.
Restaurants: Any restaurant—from Publix deli to Star Provisions—within certain ITP boundaries. See app for details.

Photographs by Caroline C. Kilgore and Aspen Evans

This article originally appeared in our June 2016 issue.

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