After provincial cap, popular food delivery app quietly adds 'B.C. fee' to bills
VANCOUVER -- If you're looking to save a bit of money on takeout, you may want to skip certain delivery apps.
The popular app SkipTheDishes has quietly added a 99-cent fee for customers in B.C., as a way to make up for the province's decision to cap the app's commission at 15 per cent during the pandemic.
It's calling this charge a "B.C. fee."
The fee cap was introduced in December to help struggling restaurants following complaints that delivery companies had been charging them up to 30 per cent.
Ofra Sixto, who owns Ofra’s Kitchen on Denman Street, says she recently stopped working with DoorDash because they took too much money.
“At times it was 50 per cent of my order,” she says. “They added fees, they added tablet fees, I don’t even know what kind of fees. And I looked at the bill I get from them and it’s even less than 50 per cent I get in my bank account. And I said no, that’s criminal.”
Sixto is equally unimpressed with the new “B.C. fee.”
“It’s infuriating,” she says. “They make it sound like a government fee, which to me, is even worse than they did before.”
Ian Tostenson, president and CEO of the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association says the move strikes the wrong note.
“Whether it’s 99 cents or $99, it’s just the way it was handled,” he says. “It’s tone deaf. I think it’s almost disrespectful to the same people that they’re relying on building their business.”
Premier John Horgan even weighed in, saying, in a Tweet:
“When people are trying to stay home and stay safe while eating local, charging another fee on top of delivery is ridiculous.”
But SkipTheDishes says the charge will remain until the fee cap is lifted.
In an email to CTV News, a spokesperson for the company said the fee is to "ensure that there is no impact to the service and support" given to stakeholders while the cap is in effect.
The company claims the fee will also ensure continued service across B.C.
"Unlike our competitors, this is the first service fee Skip has ever implemented on our network for food orders, and it is a temporary one," the company said.