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With the inevitable economic downturn coming on from social distancing practices amid a global pandemic, we are beginning to not just see more people working from home, but fewer parties are being booked, people are going out less, and restaurants are 100 percent reliant on delivery and pick-ups.

We hope you are supporting your local restaurants at this time. And, if you are, we want you to know that tipping your delivery cyclist is the responsible and important thing to do. 

BCGP board member Jorge Brito back in his bike messenger days.

Like all contractors, these fellow bicyclists and drivers make their money on individual jobs. Many rely on tips to get by.

“As always, couriers are out making deliveries so people can stay safe in their homes,” says Randon Martin, a courier in Philadelphia. “We come in contact with all different kinds of spaces and people throughout our workday, which is part of what makes this job so special but also puts us more at risk.” 

While bicycle deliveries take many forms and are conducted via many different companies and services, both local (like Sparrow, Time Cycle, and restaurants with their own delivery people) and international (like Caviar and GrubHub), virtually everyone leaving your next meal at your front door is your neighbor and likely just as stressed out as you are about the pandemic. 

Tip them well. At least 20 percent if you can.

Working in and out of multiple environments and buildings “is just one of many things that makes our job dangerous,” continues Martin. “A little appreciation goes a long way.”

Randy LoBasso

Author

Randy LoBasso is the policy manager at the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia.

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