DoorDash Driver - © DoorDash

Delivery Services Blackmailing Customers Into Tipping

If the stuff we posted about restaurants making egregious demands of customers wasn’t bad enough, Food Delivery Services are now blackmailing patrons into tipping. The reverse of what tips are supposed to mean: a reward for good service…

DoorDash Delivery to Woman - © DoorDashNeither customers nor Dashers are smiling (like the models in this old photo) much
anymore. It’s apparently DoorDash VS. the customers and Dashers now…

In a complete reversal of the tipping concept. DoorDash is now threatening customers with crippled service if they DON’T add a tip in the app. Someone in the Door Dash Brain Trust has totally disconnected from reality.

What’s happening

Seems there’s a trend away from customers tipping delivery drivers. Tipping, we’re told, became a stronger habit during the COVID Era, when some folks relied on delivery to get fed. But now that the crisis has calmed, tipping is in decline.

And the first Delivery Service to plunge a fork into customers’ wallets is DoorDash.

The tipping ‘cue’, which is the final screen to pop up in the app before you hit ‘Confirm’, now cautions: “Orders with no tip might take longer to get delivered – are you sure you want to continue?” That is just another way of saying, ” We’re making you an offer you can’t – or at least shouldn’t – refuse.” Shades of the Godfather!

Door Dash tries to mitigate any blame or resentment customers might harbour because of the stunt by adding: “While the vast majority of customers do leave a tip, offers that don’t include a tip can be seen as less desirable — this impacts our entire community, leading to longer wait times for customers, orders sitting longer at merchants, and less value for Dashers.”

But all that does is make customers feel more coerced – and less respected.

Why is DD taking this desperate step?

It’s no secret that Door Dash is at the bottom of the Food Delivery Service ladder. It’s announced several major office closures and Dasher layoffs already this year. And economic pressures continue to mount as more and more jurisdictions raise their minimum wages, directly affecting DD’s bottom line.

There have been scandals in the past when drivers for various Delivery Services claimed the companies were keeping electronically-registered tips for themselves.

Could this be at least one shadowy goal of the move to blackmail customers into tipping in the app?

Dashers speak up

“I think DoorDash should pay their drivers more and meet their customers, their clientele in the middle,” David Slyder, who has been a DoorDash driver for nearly three years, told Good Morning America. “We use our own vehicles. We put [in] our own gas.”

Service Fees or Tips?

Industry observers say there is some confusion among consumers about what’s a service fee (charged by and kept by the company), and what’s a tip (a bonus given to the server/driver).

The biggest issue seems to be that many consumers consider coerced tips to be service fees. And they resent them. Some folks, vehemently.

My take

Call me old fashioned – and I admit it. But all through my life, tips have been meant to be voluntary and discretionary. A token of one’s thanks to, and respect for a server. Until now.

I resent any establishment that even suggests how much I should tip. And I won’t do business with restos and other service providers who try to add a ‘mandatory’ tip to my bill.

I have no respect whatsoever for outfits like DoorDash who come demanding ‘protection money’ from me, like a bunch of mobsters.

If DoorDash thinks this kind of thing is going to save them from fiscal disaster, they’ve got another think coming.

~ Maggie J.