The UAE-based super-app Careem issued a statement clarifying its stance on reimbursing customers for delayed delivery after the idea announced on Monday received widespread backlash over rider safety.
“…If we’re late, it’s Careem that will pay, never the Captains. Captains can’t even see the estimated delivery time and have no incentive to drive faster or unsafely,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday following a day of negative feedback online.
On Monday, Careem Food, the food delivery initiative under the parent company Careem, announced a limited-time run of crediting customers AED 1 ($0.27) for every minute an order is late. The earlier statement said that an order is late if the delivery time exceeds one minute beyond the estimated delivery time.
As news of the program made its round on social media, many questioned whether it would compel riders, which they call Captains, to make faster deliveries on already precarious road conditions.
“You’re promoting reckless driving by the drivers at the price of what? Please stop incentivizing the customer or driver for on-time food delivery… maybe incentivize drivers for good driving behaviour by tracking their bikes,” one Twitter user said.
“Just scrap it. It’s a failed idea. People hate it. Not sure how you’d ever think this would make you look good,” another said.
In similar responses to these replies, Careem responded on Twitter saying: “…we assure you that nothing will change for Captains if an order is late, they can’t even see estimated delivery times for orders so they aren’t incentivized to deliver faster. Careem will cover the costs for any late deliveries, never the Captains.”