British Columbia’s restaurants are starting to allow dining-in for the first time in months, but before this, many were staying afloat by moving to online ordering, including joining the popular food-delivery service, SkipTheDishes.
“Skip has seen an 89% increase in restaurants joining the network to connect with customers in their area during these difficult times,” said a spokesperson for the company in a release on Thursday. CHEK has reached out to the company to find out how many restaurants 89 per cent equates to.
To allow restaurants to diversify their online menus, SkipTheDishes extended its network capabilities to give businesses the ability to add new items including alcoholic beverages in some provinces, produce packages, at-home meal kits, household items and more.
“This has opened a new stream of revenue for many restaurants who have been forced to shut their front of house,” said the company.
SkipTheDishes has seen a significant increase in calls for service since the start of the pandemic.
More than 7,500 cocktail and meal kits have been ordered since March, allowing Canadians to make their own meals with delivered, pre-measured ingredients.
To help maintain physical distance, many Canadians skipped the grocery line by ordering more than 5,300 produce boxes from their local restaurants.
And, as more families and parents juggle working from home and homeschooling, family-size meal orders have increased by 10 per cent since March.
Out of the five provinces permitted to buy alcohol on the Skip app, British Columbia tops the list for highest booze orders, followed by Alberta.
At the start of the pandemic, Skip adjusted its rules to help bend the curve of COVID-19. It suspended all cash orders, created a contactless delivery system and provided stickers to restaurants to help seal takeout bags for drivers and customers.
The ordering company says it continues to adjust its site and protocols to help “navigate the next phase of COVID-19 together”.
Since March 16, Skip has provided $15 million to its restaurant partners in commission rebates and order-driving initiatives to help stay afloat while they shut their doors.