A couple of things have happened since we last updated you on the world of lightening-fast food delivery: for one thing, you can now get Fuku’s chicken sandwich in under 15 minutes via Caviar Fastbite. But the thing I can’t get out of my head: McDonald’s is now using the service, and — after tax, delivery fee, and tip — a simple Big Mac and fries will cost you over $13.50.
This raises the question: who the hell is paying $13 for a Big Mac and fries? And if people are actually doing this (which they seem to be, given that the item was temporarily unavailable the other day), is this the ultimate symbol of just how easy it is to get New Yorkers to throw their money into a festering feces pit?
Maybe you’re thinking: Is $13 really that much to pay for lunch? Possibly not. After all, $13 is the price of a sandwich at Meat Hook Sandwich Shop without fries and delivery.
But, reality check: when I was in Florida the other day, a Big Mac and fries cost $6.64, including tax. The combo meal, with a drink, cost 10 cents less. So New Yorkers are basically paying double the price of a combo meal and not even getting the drink.
Okay, the name of the delivery service is Caviar, so you expect to pay out the nose. Fifteen-minute delivery is a minor miracle. But I thought the whole point of Caviar was that it delivers fancy food — I can somehow justify paying $18 to eat ramen out of a plastic bowl if it’s Ivan Ramen. But the Golden Arches? For $13, that shit better be hand-delivered by Ronald himself.
Then again, McDonald’s is now serving “artisan” chicken sandwiches. And the Caviar description of a Big Mac sure does make commodity beef sound gourmet. Maybe that sauce really is special.
Part of the reason for the $13 price tag is that, in October, Caviar started adding a suggested tip on top of its $2.99 delivery fee. A spokesperson didn’t answer questions about whether part of the delivery fee goes to the courier, so the matter of just how much to tip is a bit baffling. (Our calculations are based on 20 percent of the pretax, pre-delivery-free total.)
I have to admit, my complaints about this are colored by the fact that I think a Big Mac tastes like a cardboard box slathered in salad dressing. If Caviar was delivering $14 7-Layer Burritos within 15 minutes, I might just have to “make a run for the border.” Or make someone else run for the border for me…