Local Grubhub Driver Scams 15 Delivery Orders From Restaurants + Patrons

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As the coronavirus spreads throughout the U.S., significantly impacting our local areas in North Jersey and New York City, many residents are banding together to volunteer, spread hope, and help out community members and small business owners during this time of self-isolation. While we like to keep things positive over here at Hoboken Girl, there are also the small few that choose to go the alternate route and sadly, take advantage of others.

Some locals have been reporting cases of Grubhub drivers scamming both restaurants and patrons. According to a post in the local Facebook Group “Quarantined in Hoboken + Losing My Sh*t: Anecdotes of the Day,” some drivers have been marking deliveries as complete without even picking up the orders. The drivers have been pocketing the tip money and then never deliver the food. Here’s the story:

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The Scam

“I see all these posts encouraging supporting our local restaurants, so I tried you guys, I really did,” the original post reads. “But wait until you hear my horrendous experience tonight.”

The post then goes into how the writer tried to order from several local Hoboken restaurants, but by the time they were ready to place the order, the usual spots were closed.

“Leo’s doesn’t have their own delivery guys and relies on outsourced delivery services,” the post continues. “Here’s the timeline of what happened with a certain delivery service tonight.”

Read More: Staying In? Here Are Restaurants Offering Delivery in Hoboken + Jersey City

The post then details, in a chronological timeline, what happened regarding their order from Leo’s, with Grubhub.

  1. Ordered Leo’s via Grubhub at 5:45PM.
  2. 5:50 I get a text from Grubhub — expect your order between 6:25PM – 6:35PM. I play a dice game with my kid.
  3. Check my phone at 6:31PM, I had a missed call from Leo’s – voicemail says ‘Hey, Grubhub never sent a delivery driver but they say it’s been delivered. I have your order here in the kitchen though, so they definitely never even picked it up.’
  4. I call Grubhub and get customer service. When I finally get through, they say they’ll send another delivery guy.
  5. 6:55PM I get a text from Grubhub, ‘Your order has been canceled.’ Now, it’s been over an hour and we’re getting hungry. Leo’s has been keeping it warm but nobody from Grubhub ever showed up and we should drive over to pick it up. We can’t though, that’s why we ordered delivery.
  6. We call Grubhub, who hangs up on us when we ask why our order is cancelled and request to speak to a manager. I start making dinner {pasta and red sauce, all I have left and a poor substitute for Leo’s}.
  7. Finally, a manager at Grubhub calls around 7:10PM, saying how sorry they are. Sorry doesn’t fill our hungry bellies but they also gave me a $25 credit to give them another chance. I’m so done with ordering delivery at this point though, it’s going to be a long time before I try again. Talking about losing my $hit!!!”

As you may have guessed, people aren’t having it. In fact, several Hobokenites went off in the Facebook Group comments.

“People who SCAM people in these times deserve a special kind of HELL,” one user wrote.

Another said, “It is awful that people are taking advantage in this chaos. I am going to think twice before I use any ordering app again.”

See More: 7 Happy Local News Stories to Bring You Some Serious Joy

More than One Scam

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While this one incident is sour enough, Grace Sciancalepore, owner of Leo’s, confirmed it wasn’t an isolated incident and has happened numerous times — and had nothing to do with the restaurant.

“This is what happened last night with a specific driver with about 15 orders,” Sciancalepore wrote in the group. The trajectory went:

  1. Order was placed.
  2. We confirm and start making food.
  3. Driver who confirmed to pick up says he has delivered the food. IT’S A SCAM. So he has taken your delivery fee and tip. And makes us look like a bunch of idiots. Spent over an hour calling people and walking food to some customers. So if you really want to help local businesses, I would suggest you call the restaurant directly and walk over to pick it up. Thx for sharing.”

It appears that Leo’s was not the only restaurant targeted and that it was more than one driver pulling a stunt like this. According to Wurst Bar in Jersey City, Grubhub’s system was “attacked.”

“It was crazy. Drivers were signing up for orders, marking the food delivered, taking the money, but weren’t stepping foot into the restaurant or taking the food! It happened 10 times during our busiest rush,” a rep from Wurst Bar says in a message, a screenshot of which is posted to a reddit thread about the scam.

“We wasted so much food that was never picked up, it was heartbreaking,” the message continues. “Total chaos too and it killed our business tonight because we were forced to shut down Grubhub, which provides us most of our business these days. They did this to multiple markets all at the same time and Grubhub has like zero customer service so it took us 30 minutes for us to get anyone on the phone.”

While it’s terrible to have to report something like this, it’s important to keep yourself informed, Hoboken and Jersey City. To protect yourself, your money, and your order, try to directly contact the restaurant you’re ordering from whenever possible.

And for those of us who need a little reminder that most people, in fact, are kind and generous, check out these 12 uplifting news stories that will make you remember that people really are good. If that’s not enough, meet some of our hometown heroes working hard amidst the COVID-19 outbreak — Maxim Casas is an ER nurse at Christ Hospital, Sean Healey is a patient care tech at Holy Medical Center, and Josie Cemelli is a 96-year-old sewing pro making masks to donate to hospitals.

Got a news tip? Let us know — email us at hello@hobokengirl.com! We appreciate it.

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Written by:

Stephanie Osmanski writes honest things about health, the planet, and being a woman. Her words have appeared on Business Insider, Parade, Eat This Not That, Dogster, Scary Mommy, Green Matters, Parents, Seventeen, Life & Style, InTouch Weekly, and more. Her articles have been syndicated on World Economic Forum, MSN, MSN UK, and MSN Canada. In her free time, Stephanie and her registered therapy dog, Koda, volunteer at local hospitals, nursing homes, and other healthcare facilities.


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