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Foodora: a bike courier

The Couriers’ Guide to Working for Foodora

Last updated: January 8, 2020
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The modern food lover doesn’t just want an order of fantastic sushi — they want it delivered to their door. The rise of on-demand food delivery apps has brought fine dining to people’s couches. But for these apps to work, they need a workforce of couriers who can deliver that food promptly and safely.

Foodora is an on-demand, local food delivery service that got its start in Europe and is now making a push into the Canadian market. (The app is not currently available in the United States.) In this article, we’ll give a brief rundown of the app and what sets it apart from competitors. We’ll also look at what it’s like to work for Foodora, and how to apply to be a courier. Finally, we’ll get to some frequently asked questions.

By the end of the article, you should have a good sense of how Foodora works, and have the information you need to get started as a courier.

What Is Foodora?

Foodora is a food delivery app that got its start in Germany in 2014. In 2015, the company was acquired by Delivery Hero, then quickly expanded — acquiring smaller food delivery apps in Canada, Australia, and Austria. All those apps now operate under the Foodora brand.

The app is currently available in 260 cities across 15 countries around the world, from Finland to Australia to Canada. (You can view their online map to see if they offer their services near you.) It boasts partnerships with over 36,000 restaurants.

The app works much like other food ordering apps you might be familiar with. They offer online ordering from local restaurants and let you pay for that food securely with a major credit card. Once the food is prepared, Foodora acts as a logistics service, dispatching a courier to go and pick up the food. Finally, you’re able to track your delivery as it makes its way to your door with the courier.

The Foodora app works on iOS and Android, and you can find it for free in the Apple Store or Google Play Store.

Working for Foodora

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While Foodora is all over the world, for the purposes of this article, we’re going to focus on what it’s like to work for the company in Canada. The company entered the Canadian market in 2015 but has expanded rapidly. It’s currently available in Toronto, Vancouver, Quebec City, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, and Montreal.

The job of a Foodora courier is simple: You pick up food from local restaurants and bring it to hungry diners.

How does that happen? You have access to a special rider app, which buzzes you about tasks that are available and lets you claim them if you’re working at the time. If you accept an order, it’s your responsibility to get to the restaurants, pick up the food, deliver it to your destination, and hand it off. Couriers are paid per order, plus are entitled to any tips they receive for going the extra mile.

Foodora welcomes bike couriers, or people with cars or scooters. The company labels all its couriers independent contractors, meaning their earnings aren’t taxed up front. This also means the company can’t enforce when or how often their couriers work. This allows couriers flexibility when it comes to picking their schedule but also means that food couriers don’t receive benefits.

Foodora Worker Controversy

There’s currently a controversy brewing over contract labor, specifically about the classification of delivery people and whether they are employees or not. Foodora workers in Toronto have talked about unionizing in an effort to earn benefits from the company.

Being classified as employees has pros and cons. Employees are eligible for benefits, while independent contractors traditionally are not. On the other hand, employees can be asked to work set schedules, whereas independent contractors can work schedules as they see fit, and cannot be forced to work certain shifts. If people are looking for a side gig to earn some extra money, becoming an employee can make it more difficult to maintain flexibility.

How to Apply to Foodora

To apply to work for the food delivery service, head to www.foodora.ca. Once there, you’ll see the option to join the rider team at the top of the page.

It looks like this:

Screen Shot 2019 09 18 at 12.00.29 PM

From there, you’ll be taken to a page where you can get some basic information about working for Foodora, along with the opportunity to let them know what city you’re in, and what type of vehicle you want to use. If you want to proceed, select your choices from the menu and continue on.

Screen Shot 2019 09 18 at 12.00.41 PM

Once you select your city and ride type, a form pops up on the right hand side of the screen to let you quickly apply to work for the company. The initial application process is something you can do in just a few seconds.

The form looks like this:

Screen Shot 2019 09 18 at 12.02.12 PM

It’s quick and easy. You provide your name, phone number, email, and ride type. After that, all you need to do is confirm you’re over 19 years old and can legally work in Canada. They also insist that if you’ll be driving a car, you need an unrestricted license.

Once you’ve confirmed those answers, and provided that basic information, your application is in.

If you drive, the company has no minimum requirements for the make, model, or year of the car you own, as you won’t be driving anyone else.

Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve gone over Foodora, what it’s like to work for the company, and how to apply. Let’s get to some frequently asked questions about working for the service.

1. Do couriers have to pay their own taxes?

Yes, as independent contractors, Foodora couriers are responsible for paying taxes on their earnings. Some people like to set up quarterly taxes so they aren’t hit with a massive tax bill at the end of the year, but it’s up to the rider.

This website has a helpful guide for Canadian freelancers looking to set up their own taxes.

2. How does Foodora compare to competitors?

This company is committed to one thing, food delivery, as opposed to companies that do delivery on top of other things, like Uber does with Uber Eats. Like other food delivery companies, Foodora pays a standard rate for each delivery, plus gives riders the full tips. Reading online reviews, it appears that Foodora’s rates are pretty comparable to other companies in the space.

One way this service stands apart is in how easy it is to apply to the company. Other services require couriers to pass background checks, or meet certain requirements for vehicle type. Foodora just asks if you’re eligible to work in the country and ensures that you have an unrestricted license — if both those are true, you can get hired.

3. What do I do if there’s a problem with an order?

If an issue arises, you can always contact support directly through the rider app. If you want to ask questions about the application process or have a question about payment or another issue, you can email [email protected]

4. Why are so many Foodora riders on bikes instead of in cars?

Foodora is popular with bike couriers because jobs with the service tend to be concentrated in cities, and bikes work well in cities. They are easier to park near restaurants and can beat traffic during rush hour. That said, the company welcomes cars and scooter riders as well.

Deliver Good Food With Foodora

Foodora allows people to quickly start earning money by delivering good food in their city. With an easy sign-up process and no requirements for vehicle type, the app allows people looking for a side gig the opportunity to get going — and get going fast.

After reading this article, you should have a good sense not only of what Foodora is, but what it’s like to work there, and how to apply to start. If you’re looking for a side hustle and live in one of the cities they’re in, it’s worth a look.

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