Food Apps creating a new way of consumption for millennials

Courtesy of Flickr.

Milagros Viquez/Assistant Entertainment Director

Isabela Vanga/Contributing Writer

Although there are hundreds of restaurants located within a few square miles from any given residential area in Miami, millennials (those born between the early 1980s and 1996) are increasingly resorting to takeout via delivery apps, like UberEats and Postmates, among others.  One out of five millennials orders takeout five times a week according to a recent article by USAToday, spending 44 percent of their food budget on eating out. This according to the Food Institute’s analysis of the United States Department of Agriculture’s food expenditure data from 2014. That’s about four percent lower than the Baby Boomer generation.

People are no longer just limiting their delivery experience on pizza. With the help of technology, millennials have access to a larger array of restaurants.  Near the Modesto Maidique Campus, new restaurant choices have cropped up, such as Charley’s, Sushi 2 Mee, Killer Melts and PDQ, all popular choices for students. Although these delivery apps take a huge cut from the restaurant bills, which is about 30 percent, the variety of restaurants on these apps continue to grow as they expand to new markets worldwide.

The app Postmates provides more services with the option of delivering clothing, beauty products, office supplies and even flowers, revolutionizing lives by creating a faster and more efficient way of consuming products. Apart from the apps’ appeal to millennials of convenience over food savings, it is also an attractive option for college-aged job seekers, according to one such student, Gisela Rosende, a freshman majoring in communications and a delivery person for Postmates.

“I’d have to say that the best part of this job is definitely the flexibility,”  said Rosende.

Rosende explains that when working for Postmates, one creates their own schedule. Technology makes accepting and declining jobs easier.  In the app, the driver swipes on when they can make the delivery, and they swipe off when they are unavailable.  

“I would recommend this job for college students because you can work around your own schedule and one time I got a two dollar tip. Another time I got a fifteen dollar tip. It all depends, but it makes pretty good money,” said Rosende. “I had an order that wanted me to go on a Target run and I got baseball bats and ping pong balls for a kid’s birthday party.”

Postmates allows users to make special requests, and sometimes the request can be a little odd, explains Rosende. One time, someone asked her to bring the food into the house and go upstairs and into his kitchen to drop off the food. The customer was nowhere to be found. She walked herself out.

“The downfalls of working for this company are the lines are long sometimes when ordering the food and many times the navigation on the app is bad, but I do enjoy driving around listening to music. Also it’s easy, to say the least,” said Alex Seely, a junior majoring in information technology who works as a driver for UberEATS.

Postmates most recently executed 500,000 deliveries in 10 weeks. That is 50,000 per week or an average of 7,143 per day. College students make up a large percentage of these orders. Aubrey Haggard is a freshman at FIU, majoring in chemistry who orders Postmates on a weekly basis.

“I like food a lot, and it’s convenient for me to order since I don’t have a car while living here on campus. My favorite thing to order is the chicken caesar wrap from Pollo Tropical,” Haggard said. “The only bad experience I’ve had with Postmates is that the driver couldn’t find me, so I had to walk all around campus late at night in hopes of trying to find my delivery guy.”

It’s a growing trend especially with the onset of mobile technology. A recent DMI Research consumer study of 2,500 diners found that at least 63 percent millennials have at least one quick-service app on their phones and 35 percent use their mobile app every time they visit a restaurant.  When it comes to food, the evidence proves that delivery service apps are creating a new way of consumption.

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