Mar 22nd, 2023, 01:35 PM

Paris' New Dining Culture: One Click Away

By Clayton Wilson
A Getir delivery scooter parked in Paris. Image credit: Clayton Wilson
COVID restrictions are now almost non-existent, but one popular service from the pandemic era has stuck around: food delivery apps.

Let’s be honest: one of the best parts about going out for a night on the town is the midnight snack that awaits you when you get home. Maybe you stumble onto a crepe stand, pop into a McDonald’s or perhaps you take advantage of a delivery app that will bring the feast straight to your door. Whatever you prefer, there is no denying the convenience of such delivery apps in the city, especially as a drunk college student at four in the morning...or not. 

Food delivery platforms swept through France during the COVID-19 pandemic. In France's capital, the pandemic played a helping hand in introducing third party delivery platforms into Parisians everyday lives. Now that the pandemic is becoming a thing of the past, Paris, and its inhabitants have continued to cling to these platforms. While third party delivery platforms were on the rise in Paris in 2019 right before the pandemic hit, COVID-19 provided a cause for their rapid success while simultaneously helping to support local restaurants and proprietors during lockdown. 

Third party platforms such as UberEATS, Deliveroo and Getir provided Paris with a delivery-oriented response to the pandemic. Prior to the start of the pandemic in 2019, third party platforms began to establish a presence in France generating a revenue of 1.2 billion euros. Since 2019, there has been a steady increase in revenue in France's food delivery market that proves delivery service platforms are in France to stay. 

Image credit: Unsplash / Viktor Forgacs 

Post pandemic lockdowns, Paris dining culture did not take long to bounce back to nearly full capacity. While Paris’ dining culture appeared to be nearing normal, food delivery platforms continued to thrive. While these services continue to compete with Paris eateries and the deeply rooted French dining culture, there is one demographic that in the city that continues to welcome food delivery platforms with unwavering open arms; hungry and tired students.  

Many AUP students use food delivery services, such as UberEATS, Deliveroo, and Getir, on a regular basis. As students attending a school with no option for a meal plan, students are required to find alternative meal and dining options. Students that were interviewed about their usage of food delivery services cited multiple reasons for using these platforms ranging from accessibility to safety. The most prominent delivery services in Paris provide accessibility to meal delivery, click and collect, and grocery delivery services.  

For AUP students, these services provide accessible access to groceries or meals that complement their schedules. Mallory Yost, an AUP senior, claims that she does most of her grocery shopping through the platform Getir, which regularly provides discounts and deals. Yost also uses UberEATS occasionally, saying that it is “helpful when you either don’t have groceries, got home late or are too tired to cook.”  

One of the main attractions to third party delivery services is its accessibility in a city like Paris, but some students are also noticing some flaws in the platforms and within their use of them. Arianna Williams, a first-year student at AUP, uses UberEATS particularly for its click-and-collect feature. Williams reportedly used the platform 1-2 times a week during their first semester but notes that she now uses it 2-3 times a week. While Williams is largely positive about their experience with the platform, they acknowledge that if they were to become more dependent on it, it would become a negative due to cost. 

Image credit: Unsplash / Paolo Feser 

Food delivery platforms, most notably UberEATS, are often bashed for their excessive service and delivery fees that can bump up the price of the delivery to almost 100% of the original price, but some students are willing to pay extra either due to rising food prices in grocery stores or as a small way to treat themselves to something nice. 

One AUP senior recalls how in earlier semesters she ordered food through UberEATS around 4 times a week but had to make a change because it wasn’t a sustainable way of living and eating within her student budget. Anna Caley says she still uses a delivery platform, Getir, to bring her groceries and notes how the platform has the same accessibility as UberEATS while also allowing her to eat healthier and spend less money. 

Third party delivery platforms can be a great addition to the digital toolkit of a college student in a new, or even familiar, city. Though the rising prices of food in grocery stores and markets make it hard on students and their budgets, the apps still provide 24/7 accessibility to food and supplies to the convenience of students and their schedules.