In April last year I wrote about how Deliveroo boasted of their green efforts. Supporting restaurants in offering more environmentally friendly packaging and making cutlery an optional extra. Showing impressive sleight of hand, the company began rewarding their scooter and car “riders”. These fossil fuel users earned at least 25p more for every delivery compared to cyclists.

The Deliveroo gods justified this tyranny with flawed logic. Suggesting a car or scooters maintenance and fuel costs outweighed a bike maintenance and food costs.

Clearly feeling these efforts hadn’t put their “riders” using bikes, they’re taking a new approach.

All of Deliveroos “riders” are self employed contractors. This gives us the freedom to work when we want, where we want. This is managed by a booking system. On Monday, slots are released for the following week. As an incentive to work hard “riders” are given access to the slots at different times. Based on your statistics you can access the booking system at 11am 3pm or 5pm. Previously “riders” we scored on 3 metrics:

  • Attendance: Percentage of sessions you’ve attended.
  • Late Cancellation: Percentage of bookings you’ve cancelled with less than 24-hours notice.
  • Super-Peak Participation: Number of sessions you’ve worked during the busiest times (19:00-21:00 Fri, Sat, Sun).

But as of today they’ve added a new metric:

  • Vehicle Priority: Using a more efficient vehicle gives you earlier booking access.

One would assume efficient meant energy efficient or something equally nice. However in an email to “riders” Deliveroo stated

Your self-service booking statistics now include a small priority for motorised vehicles.

So it appears the Deliveroo definition of efficient means motorised.

Obviously as Deliveroo increase zone sizes to serve more customers, delivery distances will increase. Scooters and cars are better at long distance deliveries, but is 5km really a long distance. The speed and endurance of scooters and cars is surely offset by the fact many restaurants lack dedicated parking.

I’m am totally willing to cycle 20km in an hour. I’m not particularly bothered wether that 20km consists of 10 2km journeys or 4 5km journeys. Unfortunately the minimum delivery fee in Cardiff is currently £3.78 in Cardiff) and the fee for a long distance very rarely exceeds £6. So it makes financial sense to accept short distances and reject long distance.

It seems the issues with serving a wider area are not caused by lazy cyclists but with a fee system hat doesn’t reward travel.

Until next time, your “rider” probably hasn’t ridden so don’t worry about tipping them, and hire me?