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Food delivery services help connect local drivers, restaurants with customers amid pandemic

Posted at 6:01 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 18:01:24-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Food delivery services are not only helping local businesses rebound, they're also helping delivery drivers make ends meet.

One Tallahassee driver is turning a career in food service to a passion for customer service.

"I can't imagine not having a job through all of this," said Elizabeth Bates.

Bates is used to working at a local school cafeteria but the pandemic brought that to a screeching halt.

"I've been in the food industry for a long time," Bates said.

Late this spring, she decided to take her cafeteria experience on the road.

"This is a way to continue that to make customers happy," said Bates.

It's also a way to keep food on her table while many isolating at home turned to the popular apps like Bite Squad and Waitr to make ends meet.

Waitr's average daily orders for April 2020 were 44,700. That's a 19 percent increase over the first quarter in 2020.

Through a similar service, Bite Squad helps Chicken Salad Chick get their food to customers despite the pandemic.

"I'm thankful to the restaurants for being accepting of us coming in," Bates said.

That's a mission Bite Squad's CEO is part of, saying, "We want to be a valuable resource and partner to help our local communities find creative solutions to support restaurants and consumers in this time of need."

It's a solution Bates says she's grateful for. She's making about as much with deliveries as she did at her former job.

"It's good," said Bates. "I punch in and I punch out."

Bates wears gloves and a mask while making deliveries to keep herself, the other workers and customers safe.

To view restaurants in our area offering delivery services, click here.