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Delivery drivers feeling pain at the pump, paying out of pocket for gas

Posted at 7:02 PM, May 11, 2022

No one is happy when they step up to the pump and delivery drivers are having a tough time. Most of them have to absorb the impact of the gas prices with their own money.

For companies like Café Runner the drivers get paid hourly, per delivery, and tips but even that is not enough to offset gas prices.

Ellie Arellano, a catering and delivery driver for Cafe Runner, who has worked for the company for 11 years says she's seen a 25% difference in her take-home pay because of rising gas prices.

"There’s not much you can do to make up for it, you just have to suffer through it and endure, it really eats into my income absolutely," said Arellano.

With a business that cannot function without cars, delivery drivers are at the mercy of gas prices. Uber eats, door dash or even restaurants that do their own deliveries are all feeling this impact.

Recently different delivery restaurants have been vocal about driver staffing shortages, which is a blow to the industry Caffe Runner has seemed to dodge.

"Working directly for a restaurant, it's tough because that restaurant has to have enough volume to stay busy all day during their shift," explained Brian Breon, Café Runner's owner.

Something that Breon says is not likely, which is why those businesses outsource to companies like his.

All delivery companies rely on gas, and it's hard to find a way to offset that cost, it falls on either the business, the restaurant, or the employee.

For Café Runner, if they can find a way, it’s a cost they’re willing to absorb for the sake of their employees.

"It cost us more to run the business this way and we’ll never get rich like this but at the end of the day we sleep good and you can't put a price on sleeping well at night," said Breon.

KSBY also spoke with Fattey's pizza who tell us they're having a hard time even finding drivers willing to pay for the gas, resulting in a staff shortage for them. Each business offsets their costs differently and for them, they say they had to raise prices slightly in order to pay their drivers more.