ComfortDelGro is muscling into the booming food delivery business, utilising up to 10,000 cabs to make deliveries for food and beverage outlets.
ComfortDelGro starts food delivery service The new delivery service aims to help cabbies earn extra income during the virus crisis PHOTO: ST FILE

Taxi giant ComfortDelGro is muscling into the booming food delivery business with ComfortDelivery, a new service which capitalises on the company's fleet of around 10,000 cabs to make deliveries for food and beverage outlets.

Until now, the taxi operator has relied on third parties to make food deliveries.

ComfortDelGro said on 29 April 2020 that its delivery service is available daily from 9:00am to 10:00pm, and "was set up specifically to assist ComfortDelGro Taxi cabbies during the COVID-19 pandemic".

The service has been on trial with restaurants such as The Peranakan and The Straits Clan's Kin since last Thursday to iron out teething issues.

Deliveries will be charged a distance-based rate starting at $6.50. Outlets who book cabbies for two drop-offs in one booking pay a discounted rate starting at $8.50. Unlike with other food delivery services, "all fees go directly to the cabbies' pockets", ComfortDelGro said.

"There will be no fee imposed on either the cabbies or the F&B outlets during the circuit breaker period, which ends on June 1, 2020," it noted, but The Straits Times understands that there may be a small "platform fee" after 1 June 2020.

F&B businesses with more than one outlet will need to set up separate accounts for each pick-up location. About 20 orders of up to three different destinations per order can be made at any one time.

Cabbies will bid for the delivery jobs via the ComfortDelivery Driver App. Upon collection, the outlet just needs to pay the cabby through PayNow or by cash. It can also track the location of the taxi and the time in which the cabby delivers the order through the platform.

ComfortDelGro Taxi Chief Executive Ang Wei Neng said, "ComfortDelivery provides an affordable delivery service for all F&B owners, starting from $6.50 per trip. "As a company, we are not taking any fee from either the F&B outlet or the cabby during the circuit breaker period. What the merchant pays is what the cabby receives." This way, he said, its drivers can "earn some extra income during these very challenging times".