As soon as the coronavirus crisis hit, major third-party delivery apps announced they would reduce the slice of each order that they take in order to help restaurants weather the crisis. Several of those initiatives were later revealed to be misleading or not as helpful to restaurants as they initially sounded, and in fact there are now lawsuits and government actions being taken to help reduce the commissions paid by restaurants.

To help clear up the confusion, we’ve put together this guide to the promotions each of the big 4 delivery apps are running, based on the latest available public information.

If you have any additional info or tips you’d like to share with other restaurateurs, please shoot us an email at and we’ll update the post accordingly.


Eligibility Offer Status Watch out for
New signups Zero commission for 30 days Active Expires after 30 days
Existing restaurants Zero commission for pickups Active through end of May Applies to pickup orders only
Existing restaurants with 5 or fewer locations 50% Commission Reduction Active through end of May DoorDash has committed up to $100 million to this, unclear what happens when those funds are exhausted.

DoorDash has arguably the most generous promotions going on, with waived commissions for 30 days for new signups and half-off commissions for all independent restaurants (those with under 5 locations).

One question that remains to be answered is how long the 50% off commissions will last, whether it will turn off after the $100 million is used up or whether it will be extended, given that the crisis does not look like it will be over by the end of May.


Eligibility Offer Status Watch out for
All restaurants Commissions deferred Officially ended March 29th Fees are deferred not waived. Grubhub said up to $100 million in commissions in total would be deferred. Restaurant has to stay on platform for 1 year.
Restaurants participating in “$10 off $30” promotion Refund of $250 per restaurant Unknown Grubhub committed $30 million to this initiative

Grubhub has gotten a lot of backlash to the initial commission deferral program it launched. Many restaurants were unaware that the commissions were deferred, not waived, and would have to be paid back starting in April. It’s also unclear whether the program is still operating since it was originally slated to end on March 29th. There are also several other items in the fine print, like a requirement that the restaurant stay on Grubhub’s platform for at least 1 year.

The $10 off $30 promotion was another source of confusion and dissatisfaction. Originally the program required the restaurant to foot the bill for the $10 discount, while still charging the restaurant commission on the full undiscounted amount of the order. Following the backlash, Grubhub offered to give restaurants $250 in credits to apply to this promotion, though presumably that means restaurants will still be on the hook for the $10 discount after the 25th order.


Eligibility Offer Status Watch out for
All restaurants Diner delivery fee waived Active Fees are waived for diner, but commission is not waived for restaurant
New restaurants Activation fee waived Unknown Unconfirmed

While UberEATS has publicly marketed “no delivery fee”, that is targeted towards the end diner. There are currently no public reductions in commissions for restaurants. There have been unconfirmed mentions of waived activation fees for new restaurants.


Eligibility Offer Status Watch out for
Restaurants in certain metros (SF, LA, Sacramento, Detroit) Zero commission Unknown Not much public info

Postmates hasn’t promoted any offers for restaurant partners besides a mention in a blog post that commissions are waved for restaurants in certain metro areas.


By and large, the different delivery apps charge commissions in the same ballpark of 20%-30%, though these are negotiable. The stronger your negotiating power the lower a rate you can get. It’s commonly believed that larger chains pay much less than independent restaurants, maybe less than half, though these have not been publicly confirmed.

Besides the high commissions, the other problem is that when a diner orders from you using a delivery app, they’re no longer your customer, they’re the app’s customer. The next time they order, they’ll go back to the app, meaning that you’re now competing with all the other restaurants on the platform to get that diner back.

Using direct ordering solutions like what we’ve built at the Texthood, you can keep your direct relationship with your diner while keeping more of the value of each order, and that helps you stay in control of your business and grow your brand.