Vendors on Foodpanda protest ‘hidden costs’

The ‘hidden costs’ is causing vendors to earn only 40% of revenue after a cancelled order


FOOD delivery service Foodpanda has been accused of collecting hidden fees from its vendors, which recently resulted in boycott.

Syakhir Jaafar, a vendor in Puncak Alam, told The Malaysian Reserve that the problem began when Foodpanda increased the performance fee and implemented a wastage policy, which resulted in vendors earning just 40% of revenues after a cancelled order. Prior to that, vendors got 100% of sales.

Vendors questioned the company’s lack of transparency, which they claim is pressuring them to purchase promotional packages over the phone.

“Because older folks are unaware of technicalities, they just replied ‘okay’ without seeing the complete picture,” Syakhir said.

“Their orders are often handled by third-party agents, who are unaware of what is occurring. They would not tolerate it if they were aware of the consequences.”

He also questioned the ‘fees and adjustments’ section in the vendor’s payment invoice.

“It is only detailed in a separate Excel file, which means that many of us are unaware of the amount withdrawn. It’s as though they’re concealing something.”

Other Foodpanda vendors have formed Facebook groups such as “Foodpanda Vendor Malaysia,” in which they exchange information about the company’s rules and express their dissatisfaction with their treatment.

However, many of the groups have been removed or are dormant, while those that remain are strictly moderated.

“There are many groups for vendors to express their frustrations. Some individuals even get negative income to the point that they owe money to Foodpanda.”

Vendors called for a boycott of Foodpanda on Nov 1 and 2 in response to the company’s unethical treatment on them.

It is a follow-up from the previous boycott on Oct 25 for the same reason.

Many of them are small and micro business owners who are struggling to make ends meet.

Many of them must depend on delivery services such as Foodpanda to stay afloat during the more severe periods of the Movement Control Order, since consumers are unable to dine-in during this time.

They are, however, obliged to pay high prices for promotions for which they obtain no advantages, as well as cancellation fees.

The Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs has developed a specific complaint line for food delivery services.

This is hoped to assist in resolving challenges confronting these vendors, the majority of whom are small-scale enterprises, and to give a platform for these vendors to express their concerns.

Foodpanda has been contacted for comments but has yet to give any responses.