How to place an Uber Eats group order and let everyone pick out their own order for a single delivery

Group ordering food on phone
Uber Eats group orders can save you from sharing your phone.

  • Uber Eats’ group order feature lets different users add items to a single order, and have it delivered to a single location.
  • Every person who wants to add items to a Group Order needs to have an Uber Eats account.
  • You can place a group order through the Uber Eats mobile app or the desktop website. 
  • Visit Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

Whether it’s getting food from your favorite local restaurant or getting groceries from the store, mobile applications like Uber Eats have been in high demand recently. And for the times you’re not eating alone, splitting the check can be relatively easy with Uber Eats’ group ordering tool. 

The feature lets you send a link to everyone in your party, allowing them to add their order using their own devices. The order can then be paid for by one person, and sent to a single address.

It’s great if you don’t want to pass your phone around to everyone in the room. Just note that everyone involved will need to have their own Uber Eats account.

Here’s how to place a group order on the Uber Eats mobile app and online. 

How to place an Uber Eats group order on the mobile app

1. Open the Uber Eats app.

2. Select a restaurant using the app’s Home dashboard or the search tool. 

3. Once you’ve decided on a restaurant, click the group order button in the top-right hand corner.

A silhouette of a person represents the group order icon.

4. Determine your delivery address and order spending limit. Then tap “Share group order.” 

A spending limit will prevent you from being charged beyond a specific amount.

5. A window will appear with mobile sharing options. Share the group order link via text, social media, or email with each member of your group. 

6. After all orders have been submitted, tap “View cart.” 

7. Next, select “Go to checkout.”

Uber Eats Group Order 4
Go to checkout on your Uber Eats order, but only after everyone has finished adding their items.

8. Uber Eats will then ask you to confirm everyone has submitted their order. Choose “Continue” when you’re ready. 

Uber Eats Group Order 5
Ensure everyone has added their items to the cart before locking in your Uber Eats order.

9. After verifying the items and price, hit “Next.”

Uber Eats Group Order 6
Check your payment method before placing your Uber Eats group order.

10. You’ll be asked to select a tip amount, and how you want to pay. Once you’re ready, tap “Place order.” 

How to place an Uber Eats group order through the website

1. Go to Uber Eats on your favorite browser and log in. 

2. Select a restaurant using the app’s Home dashboard or the search tool. 

Uber Eats Group Order 7
The search bars on the app and website are in different places.

3. Choose the restaurant you want to order from. 

4. In the restaurant’s banner image, click the “Start group order” icon. 

Uber Eats Group Order 8
This icon is located above the restaurant description on the far-right.

5. Use the “Edit” buttons to adjust your spending limit or delivery address. 

6. Click “Create order.” 

7. A box will appear with a link. Share it via text, social media, or email with each member of your group. Share the link to allow others to add to the Group Order. 

8. After all orders have been submitted, you can begin checkout and place your order. Just remember that once you head to checkout, you can’t edit the group order without starting from scratch.

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

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Uber drops 2% after the UK Supreme Court rules that its drivers are employees, not contractors

Uber London - Black cab taxi protest
A black-cab driver waves a Union Jack flag whilst standing on a taxi on London Bridge, during a protest against TfL and Uber.

  • Uber fell as much as 2% on Friday after the UK Supreme Court ruled that its drivers are employees rather than contractors.
  • The ruling entitles Uber drivers to basic worker rights such as holiday pay and a minimum wage.
  • Uber has been fighting this legal battle in the UK since 2016, when two ex-Uber drivers filed a lawsuit against the company.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Uber fell as much as 2% on Friday after the UK Supreme Court ruled that drivers of the ride hailing app are employees, not independent contractors.

The ruling was a blow to Uber, which has been fighting the lawsuit since 2016, when two ex-Uber drivers filed the lawsuit against the company.

The decision from the UK’s highest court entitles Uber drivers to basic worker right like holiday pay and a minimum wage. The UK represents Uber’s largest European market, with more than 40,000 drivers. 

The dispute will now go to a tribunal, which will determine how much the 25 drivers who led the case against Uber will be awarded. 

The ruling could have wide ramifications for workers and companies within the gig economy across Europe. Uber recently won a similar battle in California last year with the Prop 22 ballot initiative.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives believes the UK ruling “revives a nightmare for Uber,” according to a Friday note. 

“This case could set a precedent for other workers and companies in the gig economy throughout the UK and Europe which would be a body blow to the overall ecosystem,” Ives said. 

Uber could be more prepared to handle the UK ruling after it implemented different strategies during the Prop 22 fight in California, like allowing drivers to choose which riders to accept and set their own rates, Ives said. 

The negative development isn’t shaking Ives bullish Outperform rating on Uber. Ives reiterated his $76 price target on the stock, representing potential upside of 29%.

Uber has “cleared many challenges and hurdles over the past 18 months and now is in a position of strength heading into a ‘reopening dynamic’ over the next 6 to 9 months,” Ives said, adding that the UK ruling is a “contained risk.”

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A year into the pandemic, Uber and Lyft drivers say gig companies are still failing them. They blame Prop 22.

GettyImages 1218814557 NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 14: A driver pauses as city employees fill-up cars with take-away meals to be delivered to the elderly and those that can not leave their housing due to the coronavirus at a community center in Brooklyn on April 14, 2020 in New York City, United States. The National Guard joined other New York City city agencies in loading up taxi's, Uber's, Lyft's and other 'for hire' vehicles which have joined the effort in delivering meals across the city. New York has been the hardest hit city in the nation from the COVID-19 outbreak. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Rideshare and food delivery drivers working for companies like DoorDash, Uber, and Instacart have complained the companies aren’t providing PPE or pay for the time it takes them to properly clean their vehicles.

  • Uber and Lyft rideshare and food delivery drivers plan to protest Wednesday at Uber’s headquarters.
  • They say the companies won’t provide PPE or pay them for the time it takes to clean their vehicles.
  • San Francisco supervisor Matt Haney plans to propose a law that would require companies to do both.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Rideshare and food delivery drivers are planning to protest Wednesday outside Uber’s headquarters in San Francisco, California, over what they say is gig companies’ continued failure to protect them nearly a year into the COVID-19 pandemic.

Drivers for Lyft, Instacart, Uber, and Uber subsidiary Postmates said in a press release announcing the protest that the companies aren’t providing adequate PPE and have refused to pay them for the time it takes to clean their vehicles.

They said that Proposition 22 – an industry-backed law passed in California in November that classified rideshare and food delivery drivers as contractors, excluding them from certain labor protections and restricting the ability of local governments to regulate gig companies – is largely to blame.

“Eleven months into this pandemic and workers are still asking for the most basic life saving protections for themselves, their families and their communities,” Cherri Murphy, a Lyft driver and organizer with Gig Workers Rising, a co-organizer of the protest, said in a statement. 

“It’s really stressful – I’m always being timed when I’m driving for these companies and if I don’t get places quickly, I can be punished. It’s like the companies don’t care about making sure I have enough time to wash my hands, clean my car, and wipe down surfaces,” Lucas Chamberlain, Instacart driver and member of We Drive Progress, another group behind the protest, said in a statement.

Under Prop 22, drivers aren’t paid for the time they spend waiting for Uber or Lyft to find them a ride or delivery order or sanitizing their vehicles in between jobs. Some gig economy researchers have estimated that loophole could allow companies to pay drivers for just 67% of the hours they actually work. 

“Since the COVID-19 crisis began, Lyft has provided tens of thousands of face masks, cleaning supplies and in-car partitions to drivers at no cost to them, and continue to provide access to these supplies today. Our most active drivers also received a free safety kit, consisting of a reusable cloth face covering, sanitizer and disinfectant,” a Lyft spokesperson told Insider, adding that Lyft doesn’t profit off PPE.

Uber told Insider that it has allocated $50 million toward safety supplies for drivers and said it has provided 30 million masks and other cleaning supplies to drivers worldwide.

But while California law requires most companies to provide PPE and sick pay to their employees and to pay into the state’s unemployment insurance program, Prop 22 classified drivers as contractors, allowing gig companies to save far larger amounts by not having to cover those costs. Uber and Lyft drivers last year claimed they’re owed $630 million in back pay as a result of the misclassification. One study found that between 2014 and 2019, the two companies should have paid $413 million into California’s unemployment insurance fund.

Uber spokesperson Kayla Whaling told Insider the company “has tried to do everything we can to support [independent contractors] while they support our communities, including distributing PPE free of charge, providing financial assistance for those who were diagnosed with COVID-19, helping connect them to new work opportunities on Uber or elsewhere, and consolidating information to help them apply for PPP loans or federal unemployment assistance.”

Still, Uber hasn’t always delivered on those promises, and when it has, it’s often only done so following backlash from drivers, regulators, courts, or the media.

Insider reported last April that, despite Uber’s claims it would pay drivers who tested positive for COVID-19, the company had denied legitimate claims and even locked out drivers who requested sick pay.

In July, a federal judge in New York ruled that Uber and Lyft had delayed the state’s ability to pay drivers unemployment benefits because they had played “games” with its requests for earnings data.

Wednesday’s protest – which Gig Workers Rising and We Drive Progress said will include a socially distanced rally – comes as some lawmakers in California are already pushing for more accountability for gig companies who rely on rideshare and delivery drivers.

San Francisco supervisor Matt Haney said he plans to introduce legislation that would require companies like Uber and Lyft to provide PPE and pay drivers for time they spend cleaning their vehicles.

“In the midst of this devastating pandemic, workers have gone above and beyond to protect themselves and our communities by purchasing protective equipment and cleaning supplies and spending their personal time sanitizing their cars to save lives. It is outrageous that while delivery app corporations continue to rake in profits, workers are forced to shoulder these burdens while struggling to make ends meet,” Haney said in a statement.

Do you work at Uber, Lyft, or another food delivery or rideshare app company? We’d love to hear how your company is navigating challenges brought on by the pandemic. Contact this reporter using a non-work device via encrypted messaging app Signal (+1 503-319-3213), email (, or Twitter (@TylerSonnemaker ). We can keep sources anonymous. PR pitches by email only, please.

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One of Uber’s earliest investors says the billions it spent on self-driving were a ‘waste of money’

Uber ATG Self driving   Photo by
Uber launched its own self-driving team in 2015.

  • Early Uber investor Bill Gurley said the company “burned” billions of dollars on self-driving tech. 
  • That money would have been better spend on food delivery, he told journalist Eric Newcomer. 
  • Uber’s sold off its self-driving unit in late 2020 as it grappled with a revenue downturn.  
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Uber’s food-delivery business has been a massive boon for the company as the pandemic sent ride-hailing revenues down the tubes and takeout orders through the roof.

One early investor in the company, Benchmark’s Bill Gurley, says the company should have committed more investment to food delivery that it instead spent trying to build self-driving vehicles. 

In an interview with journalist Eric Newcomer in his newsletter Friday, Gurley lamented that Uber dumped so much capital into its self-driving unit, called the Advanced Technologies Group (ATG). Gurley’s firm, Benchmark Capital, first invested in Uber in 2011, according to Pitchbook data. Gurley sat on Uber’s board until 2017. 

“We probably burned $2.5 billion on autonomous that was a waste of money,” Gurley said, adding that in retrospect that sum would have been better spent on growing Uber Eats. 

However, he said, there still would have been major risks to investing heavily in delivery. 

“These ideas where you use capital as a weapon to build liquidity and then emerge out of it later is a really hard and dangerous game, and you need the capital markets to support it,” Gurley said. “And if we hadn’t gone from a frothy market five years ago to a super frothy market now, maybe you don’t make that gap.”

Uber has historically struggled to turn a profit – it reported an adjusted net loss of $8.5 billion in 2019, for example – leading it to double down on core businesses and trim some capital-intensive side projects as the pandemic slashed revenues. In December, the company announced plans to sell its ATG unit to the competing autonomous-vehicle firm Aurora, and its flying taxi program to Joby Aviation.

Read more: Uber ATG has been hobbled by a deadly crash, infighting, and balky tech – and investors are losing patience with the self-driving division

The appeal of self-driving vehicles for a ride-hailing service is clear: if Uber could develop robotaxis capable of reliably ferrying passengers around without intervention, it would theoretically save heaps on payroll and other costs associated with employing human drivers. But that’s much easier said than done. 

Since its founding in 2015, Uber ATG struggled to make significant headway toward building an autonomous taxi, falling behind competitors like Alphabet’s Waymo and GM’s Cruise. The firm was plagued by infighting, allegations that its lead engineer stole trade secrets from Google (he was later convicted and pardoned by President Donald Trump), and a fatal crash in 2018 that’s considered to be the first deadly incident involving a self-driving car. 

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Uber jumps 7% after it agrees to buy alcohol-delivery service Drizly for $1.1 billion

GettyImages 521358370
  • Uber rose 7% on Tuesday after the company said it agreed to buy alcohol-service Drizly for $1 billion.
  • The “Amazon for liquor” will become a wholly owned subsidiary under Uber once the deal goes through.
  • Drizly’s marketplace will eventually be integrated with the Uber Eats app, the companies said.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Uber rose 7% on Tuesday after the company announced a $1.1 billion deal to buy alcohol-delivery service, Drizly. 

Upon completion of the deal, Drizly will become a wholly owned subsidiary of ride-hailing app Uber. In due course, its marketplace will be combined with the Uber Eats app, while it continues to keep its own standalone app, the companies announced.

The cash-and-stock deal is expected to close in the first half of 2021.

Drizly, sometimes referred to as the “Amazon for liquor,” was founded in 2012 when the founders realized alcohol delivery was legal. According to the company, its journey began with a simple text from one friend to another:”Why can’t you get alcohol delivered?” It caters to 1,400 cities in the US and has become a leading online marketplace for alcohol in North America.

Read More: Bank of America lays out how Biden’s economic agenda could shake up the stock market’s biggest winners – and shares 3 trades to take advantage of this shift

“Wherever you want to go and whatever you need to get, our goal at Uber is to make people’s lives a little bit easier,” Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement. “That’s why we’ve been branching into new categories like groceries, prescriptions and, now, alcohol.”

Uber said it expects over 90% of the consideration to be paid to shareholders in Drizly to consist of shares of Uber common stock, while the balance will be paid in cash. 

Uber’s stock was trading around $56.30 at the market open on Tuesday.

Read More: Buy these 4 stocks poised benefit from a spike in silver prices, says RBC Capital Markets – including 2 set to soar 73%

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The 10 stories that defined tech in 2020 – and reveal what to expect in 2021 and beyond

2020 is almost over (finally). 

But before we close the book on this difficult and eventful year, it’s worth reviewing some of the big developments in tech that defined 2020 and will shape the months and years to come.

Readers of the Insider Tech newsletter have followed all the industry’s twists and turns in this weekly report (subscribe here to get Insider Tech in your inbox every Wednesday). Highlighted below, in this special edition of this newsletter, are some of the top stories reported by Business Insider’s crew of intrepid journalists this past year.

Note: Insider Tech will be back to its regular schedule on Wednesday, January 6. Happy New Year!

Meet the SPAC King: Chamath Palihapitiya’s ego and a scattershot strategy gutted his venture-capital firm. Now the investor has a new playbook that could put him back on top. By Melia Russell

In May, Melia reported that Chamath Palihapitiya’s Social Capital had found a new investment vehicle maybe better suited to his ambitions: a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. The rest of the year saw a SPAC boom – with Social Capital and Palihapitiya as major players. 

chamath palihapitiya profile controversial silicon valley 4x3

Jeff Bezos is back in the trenches at Amazon. Insiders describe working with a more deeply involved CEO. By Eugene Kim

After having spent the past few years almost exclusively focused on long-term initiatives, the Amazon CEO is responding to a plethora of disruptions caused by COVID-19, including supply-chain lockdowns and shipment delays. as well as new competition from Shopify.

Former Pinterest employees describe a traumatic workplace where managers humiliate employees until they cry, Black people feel alienated, and the toxic culture ‘eats away at your soul’ By Julie Bort and Taylor Nicole Rogers

Eleven former Pinterest employees told Business Insider that despite the company’s upbeat product, it was a toxic and difficult place to work, especially for Black employees. Julie and Taylor’s reporting oo Pinterest’s workplace culture caused CEO Ben Silbermann to admit to employees: “I’m embarrassed.”

The 199 days that doomed Quibi: How $1.75 billion couldn’t save the most hyped app of the year from a pandemic and apathetic users By Rob Price, Meghan Morris, and Becky Peterson

Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman merged Hollywood and Silicon Valley connections, but it wasn’t enough to save Quibi. They missed warning signs and took costly missteps in the leadup to and after its debut, and the short-form video app died after only six months.

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Inside Larry Page and Sergey Brin’s quiet agreement with Sundar Pichai that has forced Google’s CEO to distinguish his leadership style By Hugh Langley

When Larry Page and Sergey Brin stepped away from Alphabet last year, they struck a deal with CEO Sundar Pichai: you can call us, but we won’t call you. It’s propelled Pichai into a tough job: Google has been in a midlife crisis for some time. Now it’s faced with an antitrust lawsuit and renewed criticism, and Pichai is at the center of the mess.

Is Silicon Valley finally dead? By Meghan Morris and Berber Jin 

Silicon Valley’s mix of startup-friendly features made it the world’s tech capital. As tech CEOs and VCs move away, the region faces difficult questions.

Rent the Runway CEO Jennifer Hyman, one of the most successful female founders, is fighting to save her company By Becky Peterson

Becky spoke with more than two dozen of Hyman’s colleagues and former coworkers – and spent hours talking to Hyman – to see firsthand what it looks like when a talented entrepreneur confronts an unprecedented challenge.

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How a video-game wunderkind raised $446 million for a robot revolution that mesmerized SoftBank but went off the rails: The inside story of Zume Pizza By Meghan Hernbroth

Alex Garden founded Zume Pizza with a bold vision of harnessing a robot army and upending an industry. But the revolution didn’t go according to plan.

Tony Hsieh sold Zappos for $1.2 billion in his 30s. He was dead by 46. Inside his final Park City months, where he hoped to deliver more happiness as he spiraled. By Meghan Morris and Connor Perrett

Meghan and Connor’s thoughtful exploration into Tony Hsieh’s tragic final months show an eccentric entrepreneur who gave generously, isolated himself from longtime friends, and developed a fascination with fire and nitrous oxide.

tony hsieh final months 4x3

Aggressive and misleading sales tactics by Yelp employees knowingly prey on small businesses during the pandemic, insiders say By Rob Price

Yelp insiders detailed the company’s hyper-aggressive approach to sales and its high-pressure corporate culture. Some said they knowingly sold to small business owners who they didn’t think understood what they were buying and regularly heard complaints from business owners about unexpected bills.

Google paid a star self-driving engineer $120 million. Then he quit, joined a rival, and headed to prison. By Alex Davies

Together, Anthony Levandowski and Chris Urmson launched the self-driving car industry. Their rivalry threatened to tear it apart. Alex dives even deeper into the rivalry in his book, “Driven: The Race to Create the Autonomous Car,” which hits shelves January 5.

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Thanks for reading, and if you like this newsletter, tell your friends and colleagues they can sign up here to receive it.

See you in 2021!

– Alexei

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Uber fined $59 million by California regulators for repeatedly refusing to turn over data about sexual assaults

uber logo
An Uber logo is shown on a rideshare vehicle during a statewide day of action to demand that ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft follow California law and grant drivers “basic employee rights”, in Los Angeles, California, U.S., August 20, 2020.

  • Uber must pay a $59.1 million fine in California for repeatedly refusing to turn over data related to its 2019 sexual assault report to the California Public Utilities Commission, an administrative judge ruled Monday.
  • In the ruling, the judge ordered Uber to pay the fine and turn over the data within 30 days or CPUC — which oversees rideshare companies — can revoke Uber’s license to operate in the state.
  • Uber said it refused CPUC’s requests to protect the privacy of survivors, but the judge rejected that argument by noting Uber still wouldn’t hand over the data when given the chance to do so anonymously.
  • The ruling resurfaced Uber’s years-long challenge addressing sexual assault involving its customers and drivers, as well as its history of hardball tactics with regulators.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Uber has been ordered to pay a $59.1 million fine to the California Public Utilities Commission for repeatedly refusing to comply with its requests for data about the company’s 2019 sexual assault report.

On Monday, an administrative law judge ruled that Uber must pay the fine within 30 days and turn over the data or CPUC can revoke Uber’s license to operate within California.

Uber “refused, without any legitimate legal or factual grounds, to comply” with multiple previous administrative rulings ordering it to turn over the data, Monday’s ruling said.

Last December, following intense public pressure, Uber issued a report that said it had received 3,045 reports of sexual assault in the US in 2018 – an average of more than eight per day.

Days later, CPUC – the agency responsible for regulating ridesharing services like Uber – demanded more information from Uber, including the names and contact information for all authors of the safety report, witnesses to the alleged assaults (including victims), and the person at Uber each incident was reported to.

“The CPUC has been insistent in its demands that we release the full names and contact information of sexual assault survivors without their consent. We opposed this shocking violation of privacy, alongside many victims’ rights advocates,” an Uber spokesperson told Business Insider.

Uber had also argued that the data would end up in the hands of “untrained individuals” and that regulators hadn’t asked other rideshare companies for similar information.

In a January ruling, however, an administrative judge addressed Uber’s privacy concerns by allowing the company to submit the information to CPUC under seal to shield it from public view.

Still, Uber refused to comply, and according to Monday’s ruling, “inserted a series of specious legal roadblocks to
frustrate the Commission’s ability to gather information that would allow the Commission to determine if Uber’s TNC operations are being conducted safely.”

An Uber spokesperson blamed the CPUC for delays and adjustments to its data request that resulted in the fine, telling Business Insider: “These punitive and confusing actions will do nothing to improve public safety and will only create a chilling effect as other companies consider releasing their own reports. Transparency should be encouraged, not punished.”

But Monday’s order said that Uber “failed to respect the authority” of the January ruling, instead choosing to “roll the dice” on legal challenges that largely raised the same issues judges had already rejected.

The ruling reflects Uber’s long history of playing hardball with state and local regulators, including by refusing to share data, deceiving authorities, relying on illegal lobbying tactics, and threatening to close up shop when lawmakers try to pass tougher regulations – including regulations aimed at improving rider safety.

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Uber and DoorDash are hiking food delivery and rideshare prices for Californians to pay for new driver benefits

DoorDash Biker
DoorDash Biker

  • Uber and DoorDash are raising prices on customers in California in order to pay for new driver benefits guaranteed under Proposition 22.
  • Uber will introduce a flat fee between $0.30 and $2, while DoorDash will slightly increase its service fees. 
  • Drivers will still receive substantially fewer benefits under Prop 22 — a law written and bankrolled by Uber, DoorDash, and other gig companies — than they would have been under the state’s gig work law, AB-5.
  • As a result, the companies’ labor costs won’t increase as much, meaning they likely won’t increase prices as much for consumers, at least initially.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Uber and DoorDash are raising prices for customers in California in order to pay for new benefits guaranteed to rideshare drivers and food delivery couriers under a new statewide law that’s set to go into effect this week.

Uber said Monday it’s introducing a flat fee per purchase that will vary based on customers’ location and the service – between $0.30 to $1.50 for rides and between $0.99 and $2 for Uber Eats deliveries.

DoorDash, rather than a flat fee, will roll out slightly higher service fees starting Wednesday, and may adjust certain promotions, such as DashPass, that could also lead to higher prices, a spokesperson told Business Insider.

The surcharges are intended to help cover the costs of minimum earnings, per-mile expenses, healthcare stipends, accident insurance, and other benefits that rideshare and food delivery companies will soon be required to pay workers.

Those perks became enshrined in California law after voters in November passed Proposition 22 – a controversial law that Uber, DoorDash, Lyft, Instacart, GrubHub, and Postmates authored and spent more than $200 million trying to pass.

The law exempts companies from having to provide rideshare and food delivery drivers with basic employment benefits guaranteed to other Californians under the state’s gig work law, AB-5, and denies certain labor protections to those workers.

Read more: California voters approved Proposition 22, keeping ride-share and food delivery drivers as contractors – here’s what that means for companies like Uber, Lyft, Instacart, DoorDash and their workers

That’s a major victory for rideshare and food delivery companies, which were facing substantially higher labor costs under AB-5 – Uber and Lyft gained a combined $13 billion in market value following Prop 22’s passage. Under Prop 22, those companies are required to provide a smaller array of benefits and often at a lower cost than what they would have had to under existing laws. 

For example, drivers will soon be guaranteed 120% of the minimum hourly wage, but they are only paid for “engaged” hours when they have an active ride or delivery, not the hours they spend returning from long trips or waiting for Uber or DoorDash to match them with a job. According to one study, that could result in drivers not being paid for up to a third of their day.

Drivers will also be compensated $0.30 per-mile for vehicle expenses during engaged time, just half of the $0.58 that the IRS estimates it costs to operate a vehicle per mile. Healthcare subsidies are similarly tied to engaged time and lack significant benefits that come with typical employer-based healthcare.

After AB-5 went into effect this year, Uber, Lyft, and other companies refused to reclassify drivers as employees as required by the law, meaning they never provided the benefits it guaranteed.

As a result, while the partial benefits guaranteed by Prop 22 will cost companies less than those guaranteed under AB-5, they are nonetheless new costs the companies hadn’t previously incorporated into their pricing – thus, the new surcharges from Uber and DoorDash.

Uber has yet to turn a profit in its more than 10-year history, and while DoorDash turned a surprise $23 million profit during the second quarter of 2020, the company said that it expected costs to increase and that it “may not be able to maintain or increase profitability in the future,” which may help explain why the companies are passing off part of these new costs to customers.

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