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Uber Eats vs DoorDash: What’s the Difference?

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It’s a problem that many of us face: the dreaded end of a long week, with nothing exciting in the fridge and no motivation to cook!

So, what do we do?  Odds are you’ll turn to your phone and browse through Uber Eats, DoorDash, or another of the various food delivery services to get yourself a nice evening meal!

Delivery apps have become almost ubiquitous in modern society, and Uber Eats and DoorDash are both household names at this point, and the odds are that you use at least one of the two.

 In this article, we’ve brought together the key points you need to understand in order to work out which delivery service is best for you.

Whether you’re still confused about how Uber Eats works or a delivery app master, we’re sure to have something interesting below.  Let’s dive in!

CategoryUber EatsDoorDashWhen to Use
Pricing and FeesHigher front-end and back-end fees.Lower front-end and back-end fees.Use DoorDash for more affordable options, especially in peak times or for larger orders.
Menu Options and VarietyFocuses on larger restaurants. Offers exclusives like Little Caesar’s.More options for smaller restaurants and non-restaurant suppliers.Uber Eats for larger restaurant chains, DoorDash for a wider variety including supermarkets.
Ease of Use and App InterfaceAccessible within the Uber app, fewer customizable filters.Clean web experience with more filter options.Uber Eats for integrated Uber services, DoorDash for a more tailored browsing experience.
Driver Reliability and Delivery SpeedGenerally more reliable with better reviews.Lower reliability and slower delivery, based on reviews.Choose Uber Eats for faster and more reliable delivery.
Safety and Quality Control MeasuresStandard guidelines and background checks for drivers.More detailed guidelines, emphasis on food transport protocols.Both offer sufficient measures; DoorDash might edge out in theoretical safety protocols.
Customer Service and SupportComprehensive online support, less direct contact availability.Multiple contact methods, but reported poor service quality.Uber Eats for a structured online support system, DoorDash for more direct contact methods.
Promotions, Referral Programs, and Special OffersOffers promotions, less clear referral program.Offers credit for referrals, up to 10 people.Use DoorDash for referral benefits, choose based on current promotions for either service.
Paid Memberships and Loyalty ProgramsUber One: delivery and transport benefits, no minimum order amounts.DashPass: $0 delivery on minimum orders, additional food options.Uber Eats for combined delivery and transport benefits, DoorDash for dedicated food delivery perks.
Overall RecommendationHigher consistency and quality, better for larger stores.Lower costs, wider range of small businesses.Uber Eats for quality and larger selections, DoorDash for cost-effectiveness and small businesses.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Pricing and Fees

It’s likely that the cost of placing an order will be a major determinant when it comes to deciding which service is best for you.

You’ll also have noticed that on occasion, one service is cheaper than the other! But how do you know exactly which one is more likely to be affordable?

All food delivery services charge fees for their services. Typically, they will charge some fees to the restaurant (back-end fees) and some to you as the customer (front-end fees).  

This means that if you buy a $20 meal, you might end up paying $25 in total: $5 from the front-end fee that you pay as the customer, and $20 that is split between the restaurant and the delivery provider.

As of 2017, front-end fees were $3.17 for DoorDash and $5.01 for Uber Eats.  So, on the surface, Doordash is cheaper than Uber Eats.

Doordash also charges lower back-end fees than Uber Eats, meaning that restaurants can afford to offer cheaper dishes through their services.

Both services can have their costs vary depending on a variety of factors.

Naturally, delivery distance and duration are large factors.  You might also notice that deliveries can cost more at certain times of day; both services use demand pricing, which means peak times can carry higher fees.

Larger orders can also affect delivery fees, as this will often contribute to a longer trip time.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Menu Options and Variety

You’ll likely have also noticed that the two major platforms offer access to different restaurants and eateries.

Both Uber Eats and DoorDash have a wide variety of food options available, as is fitting for platforms of their caliber.  

As discussed above, you might find that DoorDash tends to be more available for smaller restaurants while Uber Eats focuses on larger ones.

However, they both cater to a large range of providers overall and should give you enough variety no matter which you choose.

One thing to watch out for is any exclusive partnerships either company has with particular food restaurants or chains.

One example would be the partnership Uber Eats used to have with McDonald’s, although this has now lost exclusivity as McDonald’s has also partnered with DoorDash.

Uber Eats also offers Little Caesar’s as a delivery partner. DoorDash tends to offer more partnerships with non-restaurant suppliers, like supermarkets.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Ease of Use and App Interface

Both Uber Eats and DoorDash have purpose-built apps to help you order your meals.

However, one of the bonuses of Uber Eats is that you can access the ordering service from within the standard Uber app, which is great for those with this already installed.

You can also order through the respective websites.

DoorDash offers a clean experience on their web end; simply enter your address to get the list of restaurants that deliver to you through the service and apply a variety of filters such as rating, delivery time, and cost.

Uber Eats provides much fewer customizable filters in their app, and it can be hard to dig through their offers to find the one you want!

However, both apps provide a clean and usable UI and plenty of information about the restaurants you are ordering from.  They are also fairly intuitive to use, with no hidden buttons.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Driver Reliability and Delivery Speed

While both services were comparable initially, DoorDash has sadly taken a tumble compared to Uber Eats.  

Looking at some reviews for the service, DoorDash only averages a measly 1.4/5 rating, while Uber Eats manages a more passable 2.8.

Many complaints around DoorDash involve food being cold on arrival or late pickup from the store/delivery to the customer.  

As a result, you may be better to steer clear of DoorDash if getting your food hot and quickly is of paramount importance to you.

Uber Eats, by contrast, has some reviews present that state the delivery was prompt and without issue.  

It’s worth noting that many of these are marked as “invited”, meaning that they may be sponsored by the company trying to skew its rating (though there are many others that complain of similar problems to DoorDash).  

However, overall the ratings are significantly different, and you seem more likely to have a reliable experience with Uber Eats than with DoorDash.

It’s also worth noting that depending on your area, you may have difficulty finding a driver nearby with either app!

It’s a good idea to read local reviews and see what other people in your area have to say about delivery times and reliability.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Safety and Quality Control Measures

Both Uber Eats and DoorDash are naturally subjected to the various laws that apply to delivery services in the US and in your state.

On top of this, however, they both provide guidelines to their drivers on transport protocols, as well as some selection criteria for drivers.

From a comparison of both of their delivery policies, we’ve worked out the following:

  • Both recommend the use of a heatproof bag to keep food warm, but DoorDash is more emphatic
  • DoorDash has further depth in its delivery guidelines (e.g. general statements on how to stow food for delivery)
  • Both DoorDash and Uber Eats require their delivery staff to pass a background check, as well as any other people that the delivery staff choose to involve.

As a result, despite the fact that DoorDash has worse reviews overall, their guidelines seem a lot more rigorously laid out – something that may help you in the long run regardless of initial service quality.

Both services provide sufficient safety and quality control measures to ensure that (for the most part) you will receive your order in a safe and controlled manner!  

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Customer Service and Support

Customer service is also an important aspect to consider when choosing a preferred delivery provider.  While both platforms offer customer service avenues, which one is best?

Uber Eats provides a comprehensive list of menu options on their website for customers to look through, which should catch almost all situations where issues might arise and give you a purpose-built form to submit your complaint.  

However, they are less clear about any phone number/email address on their website – which means you may find it difficult to get in touch with a “real person”.

DoorDash, on the other hand, instantly proffers various contact methods, while also providing a similar navigable system to Uber Eats. This means that it has a superior model in theory!

However, the customer support from DoorDash has been frequently reviewed as poor on external review sites, with comments ranging from abruptly ended conversations to not receiving justified refunds.  

As a result, you may want to take their apparent willingness to help with a grain of salt.

DoorDash is fairly restrictive with their refund policy; your issue must be deemed of severe enough quality, you must report it within 24 hours, and can’t get a refund if you order alcohol or gift cards through the service.

Uber Eats, on the other hand, is slightly more permissive. A 48-hour window applies, and you can submit a request a bit more easily using the app – simply press on the help button, select the order, and enter the reason you want a refund! Getting a refund still isn’t guaranteed, however.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Promotions, Referral Programs, and Special Offers

Both apps provide a range of discounts to customers to help them get their meals more cheaply.  

But what’s the best option?  And which service offers the most ways to save on food orders?

Ultimately, different deals will be better for different people and at different times, so it’s difficult to give a blanket statement on whether or not you should go with one provider or the other.

DoorDash also provides you the chance to earn some credit by referring a friend to the service.  

When they create a new account and make their first purchase using your code or link, you’ll receive some app credit in return.  

You can refer up to 10 people before you can no longer benefit from the program, so use the credit you get wisely!

Uber Eats also appears to offer a similar service via personal promotion codes; however, these Uber Eats Promo Codes are much less well documented and it’s unclear where it is available and what terms and conditions it is subject to.

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Paid Memberships and Loyalty Programs

Both DoorDash and Uber Eats offer paid memberships/loyalty programs that you can join to receive additional benefits.

Ube rEats provides Uber One, a program that combines its Eats services with its regular Uber services.  You receive:

  • Unlimited $0 delivery fees
  • Up to 10% off some deliveries and pickups, and 5% off groceries
  • Exclusive access to Uber Eats promotions
  • Other benefits with Uber transport.

This all comes at a cost of $9.99/month.  Uber states that the average subscriber saves up to $27/month compared with typical expected fees, but this will of course vary depending on your use of the service.

DoorDash, on the other hand, provides DashPass. This offers:

  • $0 delivery fees and reduced service fees provided you meet a minimum order balance
  • Rebates on pickup orders
  • A wider range of food providers
  • Access to exclusive DoorDash promotions

DashPass costs the same as Uber One, at $9.99/month.

Which program is better for you likely depends on what you’re looking for. DoorDash focuses much more heavily on food delivery with its program than Uber, but does require that you meet minimum order amounts to achieve some of the benefits.

Uber, on the other hand, also allows you to receive transport discounts and does not have those pesky minimum order amounts!

Uber Eats vs DoorDash: Final Thoughts

Overall, it’s clear that DoorDash and Uber Eats provide different experiences but ultimately may suit you depending on your preferences.

If you are looking for a service with low costs, a wider range of small businesses, and don’t mind the occasional poor delivery or customer service experience, DoorDash might be right for you.

If you don’t mind paying extra for a higher degree of consistency and quality and are happy with ordering mostly from larger stores, then Uber Eats might be best!

In our opinion, both services are good choices, and hopping between them for a while isn’t a bad idea to get a sense of what you really need from a food delivery service.  Good luck – and happy eating!

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