How To Support Restaurants By Cutting Delivery Fees

Rita Ting-Hopper
4 min readNov 6, 2020

Make a Difference with Festi: Support the Food Industry by Cutting out Third-Party Ordering Fees

If Uber Eats, Grubhub, or Doordash is your go-to
online ordering platforms, you’re paying more than you should. And you may not be helping restaurants.

As the holidays approach and colder weather minimize outdoor seating options, restaurants brace for thin months ahead. Online ordering for carryout or delivery is a covid-safer way to support the food industry. However, there’s a right and wrong way to help out restaurants during covid.

How much is everyone paying?

Festi realized that third-party apps were charging hefty fees. Festi was born to bring people together through exclusive experiences and opportunities-without huge fees. Festi seamlessly connects chefs and restaurants with patrons — eliminating high costs for the vendor and cutting out extra fees for the customer. We think food order apps should offer good value for the customer and fair compensation for everyone in the food industry.

What’s been going on?

“How much are Grubhb, DoorDash, and Uber Eats really costing you?” Richard Kerr, concludes with his own research sample of 4 restaurants that all 3 platforms were on average 22% more expensive than ordering directly from the restaurant for table service or take out. In fact, these third-party apps embed this convenience surcharge in both higher menu prices and delivery charges, estimated range from 9% and increasing to as high as 51%!

Most restaurants operate with slim margins. One out of six restaurants has closed in the US during the pandemic. That’s 100,000 establishments. The shut-down has hit minority-owned businesses even harder, especially small neighborhood eateries. “The cost of techno-optimized restaurants could be the disappearance of beloved neighborhood eateries,” says Sarah Emerson a writer for OneZero, a medium publication about people and technology. Steve Smith, the spokesperson for a grassroots worker advocacy group, says delivery apps do more to hurt small restaurants than help them.

Adam Fryer, the owner of an eatery in Washington, DC, realized that all the embedded fees had made things worse as he explained in a NACS article. Fryer said, “Within about a week we saw, based on our revenue, our total profit actually decreasing.”

Is there a better way?

Three home meals a day. Seven days a week. Since March 2020. It’s enough to take anyone over the edge. Ordering out a few meals each week is good for your sanity and can mean survival for your local chef.

We came up with an alternative: Use Festi as a platform for chefs to offer prix fixe family meals for pre-order, with delivery to a convenient neighborhood pick-up spot. Think food discovery app, not food delivery app.

You can feel good about using Festi because more of your payment goes directly to the provider. There are no subscription costs or hidden fees. Festi exists to bring people together through exclusive experiences that strengthen the community. We think food order apps should offer good value for the customer and fair compensation for everyone in the food industry.

For the chef vendor, Festi’s end-to-end platform handles everything from payment, notifications, and delivery details with just a few clicks. Chefs post meals, selecting convenient pick-up spots in your neighborhood. The number of available meals is limited by the chef, who can easily increase/close orders at any time with just a few clicks. Payment collection is a snap with the secure payment platform. The messaging option makes it easy for vendors or customers to easily communicate. For added security, pick-up locations are only disclosed when payment is confirmed. Currently, most of the pickup locations are in the DMV area (mostly in Northern Virginia).

See you at pickup.

Check your Festi settings now to follow new chefs and ensure you’re receiving the most up-to-date notifications for chef-offered meals, sides, and desserts. Feel good about supporting your favorite restaurant or chef and know you’re getting an exclusive Festi deal.

What if you want to post something?

Festi invites everyone to the table. For the chef, restaurant, food truck, or aspiring home cooks, Post anything in minutes. Learn how to post something on Festi. If you’re a food provider, make sure you take a look at what we’ve learned in 2020 about what customers want in 2021.

Our Mission

Festi exists to bring people together through exclusive experiences that strengthen the community. From food to fitness, and from arts and music, anyone can share their passion. Order food, offer a meal, book a class or experience, and collect payment. It’s an exclusive marketplace for your community and friends. We want to help you grow and support what you love, whether it’s your local business, hobbyist, entrepreneur, instructor, or artist.



Rita Ting-Hopper

Ex-litigator turned Entrepreneur. Tamed tiger mom. Wanna-be-snow boarder. Founder of Festi