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Food Delivery Companies Offering "No Contact" Service Amid Coronavirus

Ordering in is on the rise... but so are concerns about COVID-19. Enter: Human-free interactions.

Prominent food delivery services Postmates and Instacart are now offering a "no contact" feature for customers ordering groceries and takeout to their homes. These are making it possible to get your food without having to interact with another human being—seemingly, in direct response to growing coronavirus concerns.

The option to have your Postmates order dropped off at your door is now included in the most recent version of the app.  Not to be outdone, Instacart announced its own no-contact delivery option for groceries and other household goods after noticing a sharp spike in customer requests for "Leave at My Door"-style orders that the company had been testing out.

According to Digital Trends:

"Companies have been responding to coronavirus fears through measures such as encouraging or mandating work from home, limiting travel, and requiring self-quarantine by employees who do travel to the most-affected countries. Health experts have been saying stricter measures need to put in place to control the virus's spread, including through social distancing — which no-contact delivery falls under.

In a post announcing the new feature that avoided direct reference to the virus, or COVID-19 to give it its official name, Postmates said: 'We know there are always people who, for health and other reasons, might prefer a non-contact delivery experience and we believe this will provide customers with that option.'

Instacart has also started offering the no-contact option for deliveries of fresh groceries and household essentials. In a message on its website, the company said the new 'Leave At My Door' option had been in testing with select customers for the past few months. But in recent days it said it had seen 'a significant surge' in consumer adoption of the feature, presumably linked to concerns over COVID-19 (though, like Postmates, it makes no mention of the virus)."

With the coronavirus now reaching pandemic levels, health concerns over dining out have also certainly peaked. (Common sense still dictates the best wat to stay healthy, but there are simple tips that can help prevent catching any germs when going to a restaurant.)

As a result, many restaurants and food service industries (like fresh lobster suppliers) are feeling the negative effects. Delivery may seem like the smartest way to go, at this point!

Eat This, Not That! is constantly monitoring the latest food news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed (and answer your most urgent questions). Here are the precautions you should be taking at the grocery store, the foods you should have on hand, the meal delivery services and restaurant chains offering takeout you need to know about, and ways you can help support those in need. We will continue to update these as new information develops. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date.
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