We’ve all been there: You’re ordering food for a night in from your favorite restaurant. The splurge is worth it, and you don’t have to get all dressed up if you’re not leaving the house. But then, when you place your order, it hits you — the food delivery fee. In some cases, it’s a couple bucks. In others, a quite a bit higher (we’ve seen up to $20 delivery fees). And then you start second-guessing your decision. Perhaps you’ll put on shoes to pick up that order, after all.
Can I Get Free Food Delivery From Restaurants?
Sometimes. And we’re about to show you some ways to do that. But first, a little history — you may remember the spring of 2020. That’s when restaurants, desperate for business in a time when people were hesitant to buy or touch anything that hadn’t been disinfected first, used free delivery as a motivator to get people to order. These days, restaurants are having another problem with demand — too much demand and a worker shortage. And some chains are reevaluating the sustainability of plying customers with freebies. So, free delivery is a bit harder to come by. In fact, many restaurants are offering free delivery only for those who are part of their membership programs (and thus paying monthly fees).
Is the Delivery Fee the Same Thing as a Tip?
No. Always tip on food delivery. The delivery fee, in most cases, helps a restaurant cover fees and costs incurred in delivering food. It does not go to the driver. Most food delivery apps from restaurants and food delivery services (Grubhub Uber Eats, etc.) let you easily add a tip to show your driver your appreciation.
Restaurants and Apps With Free Food Delivery
Note: We endeavor to keep this guide up to date, but offers change. When possible, we’ll note the expiration dates on the offers we feature, so you know if a free food delivery offer is still valid. We suggest joining the loyalty programs of any restaurant you frequently order from. We’ve noticed that many restaurants are making special offers (including free delivery) available ONLY to their members.
These days, it’s also important to know that most chains partner with delivery apps (like Uber, Doordash and Postmates). And those apps offer their own free delivery specials. So even if a restaurant isn’t offering free food delivery, check your apps!
Amazon Free Food Delivery
New for 2022! Amazon Prime members get yet ANOTHER benefit: A free year of Grubhub+ membership, which means $0 delivery. Instead of paying the usual $9.99 per month for Grubhub+, Prime members can enroll here to sign up.
Applebee’s Free Delivery
For one day only (Oct. 31 aka Halloween), Applebee’s will offer free boneless wings AND free delivery to those who order online and place an order of at least $30. Use promo code SPOOKY22 at checkout to get this deal. Learn more.
Boston Market Free Delivery
Most Boston Market orders qualify for free delivery, if you meet an order minimum (which varies by area). We added an order for around $30 via the Boston Market website and got free delivery. Meanwhile, our $7 order was charged a delivery fee.
Cheesecake Factory Free Delivery
The Cheesecake Factory participates in DoorDash’s free delivery, first order program. Just get the DoorDash app, place your first order (at the Cheesecake Factory) and pay nothing for delivery.
DoorDash Free Delivery
New DoorDash user? Good news — DoorDash offers free delivery on your first order from hundreds of participating restaurants. Just look for the $0 delivery fee as you’re browsing. Many times, a minimum order will be required.
After you get your free delivery, you can still save on DoorDash — and get 1% cash back on all orders through RetailMeNot (expires July 31).
Drizly Free Delivery
Get some wine or beer to go with that food delivery. Alcohol delivery service Drizly is advertising a promo code on its social media pages (DRZLY) that gets you $0 delivery. You bet we snagged this deal:
Plus, click through from RetailMeNot to snag cash back on your purchase.
Grubhub Free Delivery
Grubhub offers free delivery at select restaurants for new customers. Check your app. Or find free delivery promo codes here.
If you frequently use Grubhub, consider signing up for Grubhub+. It’s a subscription service that gets you free delivery on orders of $12 or more. GH+ costs $9.99 a month (but you can get a free trial). If you’re a Bank of America customer, you can get a year of Grubhub+ for FREE (valid for BofA credit, debit and small business card holders).
You get free delivery by subscribing to the CookieMagic program ($9.99 per month). And, if you go to a physical location, you’ll get one free cookie per day. Learn more.
Jersey Mike’s Free Delivery
Order via the app and use this promo code to nix the delivery on orders over $15 (limited time).
McAlister’s reached out to us to share this great free delivery special: Every Saturday and Sunday from Aug. 20 to Oct. 30, orders placed through the McAlister’s app or website will receive $0 delivery fee and no convenience fees. You must place your order directly via McAlister’s — this offer doesn’t apply to third-party delivery.
Noodles & Company Free Delivery
You can get free food delivery if you earn 350 points via the Noodles & Company rewards program.
P.F. Chang’s Free Delivery
Join the Platinum rewards program ($6.99 per month) to get free delivery with no order minimum when you order through the P.F. Chang’s site or app.
Pollo Campero Free Delivery
We confirmed on our order — delivery is free (may vary by location and order total).
Red Lobster Free Delivery
For Halloween Red Lobster is offering free delivery orders placed through its website Oct. 28-31.
Tiff’s Treats Free Delivery
We couldn’t resist including this local favorite. Join Tiff’s Treats Elites for $50 a year and unlock unlimited free delivery on orders over $15.
Tropical Smoothie Cafe
For a limited time, get free delivery on orders over $25 at Tropical Smoothie Cafe. To get this deal, you most order via the chain’s website or app. Not all addresses are valid for delivery, and your minimum order must be at least $25 before taxes. Learn more.
Uber Eats Free Delivery
Hit up the “Deals” tab in your Uber Eats app to scope out free food delivery offers near you, like the one we spotted recently from Cracker Barrel. Most of these will have spending requirements attached, but hey, leftovers right?
The Uber Eats Deals tab has plenty of other treasures, too, like free menu items, which can save you as much as free delivery. Or, sign up for Uber One. It’s a subscription program ($9.99 per month or an annual fee of $99.99) that gets you unlimited $0 food delivery when you place an order of at least $15.
More Options: How to Get Free Food Delivery
Not interested in anything above? Restaurants often offer free delivery during special events and holidays during which they know people will be ordering in. Check out deals for The Big Game and 4/20 in particular.
The post Restaurant Chains With Free Food Delivery (2022) appeared first on The Real Deal by RetailMeNot.