A restaurant revolution has put Uber Eats in the firing line, with some business owners complaining they’re losing money through the service.Uber Eats has become immensely popular with Australians due to its speed, simplicity and convenience for customers.But some of the small business owners who churn out the food that gets delivered say the success of the service has come at a cost.
Mohammed, 23, runs the modest Yellow Door cafe in Melbourne.He alleged the contract with Uber Eats was unfair, claiming the service took too much a share of the sales per delivery at 35 percent.He knew the share was that high when he signed the contract, but other terms in the contract have also affected his business.
The paperwork states that Uber is a “technology services provider” only, and does not provide any “delivery or logistics services”.
If the driver delivers the food and it’s cold or late, Uber can compel the eatery to refund it – and the resulting one-star reviews from unhappy customers target the restaurants as well.”I guarantee I’ve lost business with Uber Eats from the reviews that are posted right now,” Mohammed said.
Caitlin, who runs Petty Cash Cafe in Sydney, told A Current Affair she had severed ties with Uber Eats, comparing it to a “feudal system”.”I really think that every $1000 that Uber paid me probably cost me $1200,” she said.She criticised drivers who carried out multiple deliveries in one trip, meaning food could arrive cold or late.
Josh, from Burgers by Josh in Sydney has also ditched the service – in his case due to the online reviews. “Our Google reviews dropped a lot because they thought the delivery was our fault,” he said.However, other restaurants continue to embrace the service.
Shane, who runs Biggie Smalls in Melbourne, acknowledged the challenges of working with the service, but said his business was embracing it.He’s even opening stores that exclusively cater to Uber Eats orders.”Uber is the new frontier,” he said.
The ACCC has said it is concerned that third-party delivery services can place unreasonable conditions on small business.It will be reviewing Uber’s contracts for any potential breaches of the Australian consumer law.Uber Eats said in a statement that “no one” had a greater interest in a thriving Australian restaurant sector than themselves.”Complying with Australian law is important to us,” the statement read.”We are, and will continue to actively cooperate with the ACCC.”