Motorcycle couriers requesting insurance
Many motorcycle couriers who work on a freelance basis are demanding that the companies they work for integrate them into the social security system.
“When we work daily [on a freelance basis], firms do not have us insured. We want employers to be more conscious about this matter,” a courier named Nisamettin Aslan was quoted as saying by daily Milliyet on July 19.
Not only insurance coverage, but also traffic and on-time delivery pressures are on the list of problems faced by motorcycle couriers.
“Sometimes when there is traffic, we can exceed delivery times and so we ask customers to be more understanding,” Aslan told the newspaper.
Especially with the rise of e-commerce in recent years, Turkey has seen a significant increase in the numbers of motorcycle couriers.
Recently, Yemeksepeti, an online food ordering company, shot an advertisement with Edis and Büşra Develi, famous Turkish pop artists, which depicted them as motorcycle couriers.
The advertisement brought attention to motorcycle couriers, prompting Milliyet newspaper to conduct interviews with some of them.
The pressure of delivery times
Motorcycle couriers that the newspaper interviewed said that they sometimes cannot meet delivery deadlines due to traffic, asking customers to be patient and understanding.
“After exceeding the delivery time significantly, some customers do not want to pay the fee. This is something we struggle with a lot,” said Ahmet Kepek, a motorcycle courier working for a pizza company.
Kepek also said that customers expect fast delivery even during rainy days.
A courier worker named Mustafa Yılmaz said the target of customers’ anger when the relevant restaurant runs late in preparing the food, is unfortunately courier workers.
“Estimated delivery times on online food ordering websites are problematic,” he said.
Yılmaz also complained about taxi drivers’ negative attitude towards motorcycle couriers.
“High buildings with many floors that don’t have elevators is also a problem. Sometimes customers place their orders and turn off their phones so we cannot reach them when we arrive,” said another motorcycle courier, who did not want to disclose his name.
The monthly pay of a motorcycle courier varies from 2,500 Turkish Liras ($442) to 5,000 liras ($884), depending on the number of hours they work, they said. And the tips they receive change greatly according to the neighborhoods they take deliveries to.
There are a couple of associations for couriers in Turkey, but there does not exist a single association that brings food delivery couriers under one roof.
There are also complaints on the customer side about the service received.
These complaints include couriers’ claims that they could not find the customer at home although the customer says they were home, delivery of the wrong parcel, negative attitudes of the couriers when they do not receive tips, the food being delivered cold, courier workers accidentally charging customers twice on their credit cards and deliveries with missing items.
Cargo, Courier and Logistics Operators Association (KARİD) Chairman Aslan Kut said that the total distance couriers cover per day is around 5 million kilometers.
He also stated couriers make deliveries to 7.5 million addresses on average per day.
“With the development of the [courier] industry, the courier firms have begun to strengthen their human resources and strengthen their technological infrastructure,” Kut said.