Technology

Grubhub is offering free delivery in Chicago and New York this winter

Its Grubhub+ subscription program will be free through mid-March, and partner restaurants will be added to the service at no charge.
Grubhub free delivery
Photograph: Shutterstock

Delivery provider Grubhub is offering diners in Chicago and New York unlimited free delivery for the winter.

Starting Tuesday, anyone in those cities can sign up for the Grubhub+ subscription program for free through mid-March. Also as part of the initiative, all Grubhub partner restaurants will be automatically added to Grubhub+ at no charge. 

The monthly membership program waives delivery fees at participating restaurants and normally costs diners $9.99 a month. It features 200,000 restaurants that opt in to the service and are distinguished by a GH+ symbol in Grubhub’s app. The company does not disclose how many subscribers Grubhub+ has.

The deal could benefit restaurants that will be leaning more heavily on delivery while dining rooms in Chicago and New York are closed to help stem the spread of COVID-19. Restaurants that are added to Grubhub+ can opt out at any time, and the company is considering allowing them to remain on the platform for free beyond the 90-day window, a Grubhub spokesperson said. 

For Grubhub, it’s an aggressive move to drive trial of Grubhub+, a service the company has said it has big plans for in 2021. It’s also a shot at its competitors, all of which offer similar programs.

DoorDash, for one, has seen success with its version, DashPass. DashPass has 5 million members, or more than a quarter of DoorDash’s 18 million global users, the company reported last month. Last week, it halted a plan to charge Washington, D.C., restaurants their contractual rate for DashPass orders to help offset the city’s 15% cap on delivery fees.

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