C ristina González did a lot of waiting in 2018. Back then, the 29-year-old was a courier for the Spanish food delivery platform Glovo in her Basque home town, Vitoria-Gasteiz. She talks about feeling as if she was on standby the whole time: “You’re effectively having to be working constantly.”
While Glovo serves restaurants, customers can also order from supermarkets. This, Gonzalez says, was “a complete shitshow: supermarket orders are really easy to screw up”. If the supermarket did not have an item in stock and González completed the order, she might get a poor rating from the customer because of the missing item. If she turned down the order, González worried that it might affect her score on the platform. “It was very, very stressful.”
Gonzalez is still a courier but is making €10 (£8.70) an hour after tax and social security contributions, more than double her previous wage. She says customers of Eraman, the delivery cooperative she now rides for, are more understanding about minor issues, the jobs are more varied;she despatches as well as delivering, there is better communication, and she feels like she has more control.