When you hear the word “caviar,” you probably think about one or two things: those pricey fish egg appetizers that people eat at fancy dinner parties, or the pricey food delivery app that delivers food from some of your favorite restaurants.
Either way, caviar apps and the Caviar app are all about premium fare. For our purposes, we’ll be focusing on the Caviar delivery service.
But unlike the other apps, Caviar features a more curated selection of restaurants and no fast-food joints.
So, how much does Caviar food delivery really cost, and is it worth it?
In this guide, we’ll dig deeper into the fees and hidden costs of using this restaurant delivery service so you make an informed choice.
But first, let’s take a look at Caviar and how it works.
Table Of Contents
A Quick Overview of Caviar
Caviar delivery is a food delivery service that allows users to order food from a variety of local restaurants.
In August 2019, DoorDash CEO Tony Xu announced that the company was acquiring Caviar from Square (for $410 million, according to published reports).
The platform has continued to expand its markets and merchant selection.
As of Janyary 2021, the delivery service is available in 20 areas, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Dallas, Chicago, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Portland, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C.
How the Caviar App Works
To use Caviar, simply download the app on your Apple or Android device or head to trycaviar.com to use the desktop version on your computer.
You’ll be prompted to enter your address, which will allow you to browse local restaurants and filter your search based on preferences such as price, dietary preference, or cuisine.
Once you click on a restaurant, you can browse and select your menu items and add them to your cart.
You can also choose to get your food order ASAP or schedule it for a future time or date within a seven-day window.
When you’re done making all your choices, it’s time to pay.
It’s worth noting that after the coronavirus pandemic, Caviar began offering no-contact delivery to adhere to social distancing guidelines.
Couriers simply leave your order at your door, and text or call you when it has been dropped off.
What to Expect When Ordering With Caviar
The Caviar app features a smooth, modern design. It’s aesthetically pleasing to use with an easy-to-understand interface.
It doesn’t take long to set up an account. You can also use your DoorDash login information with Caviar.
While Caviar and DoorDash can use the same login, the accounts will remain separate. Information such as addresses, payment data, and order history will stay independent.
If you’re new to Caviar, you’ll need to verify your email account when logging in for the first time.
To begin using the application, simply enter your address into the application, and options for premium restaurants will appear.
One of the best things about this feature is that the Caviar team is devoted to finding you the best food available in your city.
Caviar Quality and Nutrition
Caviar food delivery is known for quality photographed images of the dishes they promote.
Browsing Caviar is a great way to get an idea of the types of food available for order.
From great burgers from your favorite restaurants and delicious pizza from Tutta Bella to your favorite menu items from food trucks, you’ll get the best options from restaurants that prepare it best.
Once your results appear, you can filter those results by dietary preferences, type of cuisine, or cost. For example, you can select cuisines, such as Indian, Greek, Japanese, American, Mexican, Italian, and Chinese. You can also sort restaurant results using filters like “Healthyish.”
Suppose you’re wondering how Caviar provides nutritious options. In that case, you’ll be pleased to learn that they have nutritionists in-house adding their expertise to collections like Vegan, Vegetarian, Healthy Enough, and others.
Remember, you’re welcome to reach out to the Caviar team for assistance with finding healthy food options that meet your dietary needs.
The Ordering Experience
After selecting a restaurant, you can see their menu. Add your favorite selections to the cart, and choose your delivery order time.
You can select delivery right away or set up a time in the future within seven days. With Caviar, you also can leave instructions for contactless delivery during checkout.
Once you’ve finished putting together your meal and setting up a delivery time, you’ll pay for your order using the secure features of the application.
With your order complete, you can use GPS to track the progress of your order. Caviar also has a pick-up option, which allows you to save on delivery fees.
Curation and Customer Service
Caviar food delivery chooses specific restaurants for a straightforward app experience compared to other services.
Users can forget the burden of never-ending lists of restaurants because of the curation that comes with the Caviar app.
Caviar also offers assistance to customers in need of help. Contacting Diner Support is easy. You can contact customer service by phone or have an in-app chat with a Caviar representative.
When inside the app, tap “Orders” at the bottom of the app. Next, select the order you would like help with, then select “Help” in the upper right-hand corner.
Finally, choose the issue you’re having trouble with or select “Something else” to chat with an agent.
Different Types of Caviar Fees
As with most food delivery apps, ordering from Caviar is quite straightforward.
Caviar has fees such as food upcharges, taxes, delivery fees, service fees, tips, and minimum order required like other food delivery services.
Before placing your order, the app will inform you of the costs. But once you get to the payment portion, it’s time to take a closer look.
1. Food Upcharges
If you know a particular restaurant well and are familiar with the prices, you might be wondering why the menu item prices are a little higher on Caviar.
Well, that’s because you’re being charged for the convenience of getting the food delivered to you.
According to Caviar, menu prices are set by the restaurants. For example, a burrito that costs $12 at your favorite cafe might be $13 on the Caviar app.
While not every restaurant uses this tactic, some do as a way to offset their staffing fees and bag fees, as well as any other related costs.
It’s worth noting that unlike the other fees in this list, restaurant fees are the only ones you will not clearly see in your cart before checkout.
2. Delivery Fee
Like other services like Uber Eats and DoorDash, Caviar charges a delivery fee. These fees range between $1.99 to $8.99 and vary based on your location.
Sometimes, you can get free delivery if you are a new user or if Caviar features popular restaurants in your area.
The delivery fee shows before you checkout. If your order is for pick-up, you won’t have to pay this fee. Delivery fees are an expected part of the order when ordering food using a service like Caviar.
Now that Caviar is a part of DoorDash, delivery is faster now that they have access to DoorDash’s courier fleet.
3. Service Fee
Similar to the delivery fee, Caviar’s service fee fluctuates based on the region where it’s operating.
A percentage-based fee is applied to each Caviar delivery order.
This fee is not a gratuity for the driver, nor does it go to the restaurant.
The service fee helps Caviar offset the costs of paying couriers, providing customer support, processing payments, and other logistics.
You’ll see the service fee before you check out for delivery.
There are no service fees for pick-up orders.
This part of the expense is not from Caviar. Depending on your location, it’s the basic tax you would pay in the United States.
If you pay tax on the food you purchase locally, this is the rate you will pay in tax for your Caviar order.
The tax amount also depends on the sub-total of your order, just as it would if you purchased food in your area.
If you decide to give a tip in the Caviar app, 100% of the proceeds go to your delivery driver.
Although tipping is optional, the amount you designate to the driver compensates them for their effort in delivering your food order to you.
This courier tip is available as a field on the checkout page.
6. Minimum Orders
The minimum order is the amount you’re required to spend to place an order.
If demand is increasing during peak meal times, this amount can increase in some locations. This information is available at the top of the website or application.
Caviar states that if you wait anywhere from ten to thirty minutes, the regular minimum order amount will return to the standard rate.
While using the app, you may also discover that an additional fee is added to your order cost when the total is less than the minimum order.
Read More: How much does Caviar cost?
It’s worth mentioning that Caviar also offers DashPass in some areas, a subscription service that offers free delivery fees and low service fees.
With DashPass, you’ll not only receive reduced service fees but also a $0 delivery fee when you order over $12 from any DashPass-eligible restaurant.
To use DashPass, simply look for the checkmark for eligible establishments. The subscription costs $9.99 per month and comes with a no strings attached cancellation.
You can also order from hundreds of restaurants in your area using either the Caviar or DoorDash platforms using pickup without fees. DashPass has a free trial period to sample the service.
One Way to Save Money on Caviar Fees
Although not available in all areas, you can save money if you’re in one of the select cities where Caviar offers pick-up.
To do this, select “Pickup” from the restaurant selection page to view which restaurants in your area have this as an option.
Since there are no order minimum subtotal or pick-up fees, you can end up saving a good chunk of change using this method.
You can also use a Caviar promo code to save on your first order.
The amount of the credit depends on the city, but oftentimes they will save you $10 off your first order of $50 or more.
Frequently Asked Questions
You now know more about the Caviar food delivery platform, but you still might have a few questions.
Here are answers to some of the most common questions related to the Caviar app.
Where can you find Caviar promo codes?
Most Caviar promo codes are provided to new customers when they sign up, but you can sometimes get a code online or as a referral from a friend who already uses the app.
Does Caviar have a referral program?
Caviar’s website says that couriers (the company’s term for drivers) can earn up to $25 per hour.
But users on Glassdoor have reported it’s closer to 16 an hour.
Caviar Food Delivery: Sure, It’s Convenient, But It’ll Cost You
Back in the day, a caviar app meant an appetizer of salty roe.
But today, more people think of the Caviar app, as in the on-demand platform that lets you order food from some of your favorite restaurants.
While on-demand food delivery is incredibly convenient, there are a number of fees you need to know about.
Between menu surcharges, delivery fees and service fees, plus taxes and tip, that $12 hamburger you were craving can quickly double in price.
So, the next time you feel like getting some food delivered to your door, consider if the cost of convenience is truly worth it.