Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) For the CourierCook
What is the typical profile of a CourierCook? The short answer is - almost anyone with some cooking skill can be a CourierCook! The most important quality of a CourierCook is to really enjoy cooking and community building. Our cooks are already making meals for their family and neighbors in need, and active locally in schools and community organizations. CourierCooks range from stay-at-home moms who want to help provide for their families, grandmothers who have special dishes they want to share, trained chefs wanting to use their skill to support their community, to retired professionals looking for a creative and useful outlet to do something they love.
How do I become a CourierCook and how long does it take? There are several easy steps to becoming a CourierCook, all of which won't take long! First, whether you are a referral from another CourierCook or discovered us through one of our marketing posts, we ask that you fill out our short CourierCook Registration form. Assuming there is a match, we will schedule a brief phone interview to confirm fit, followed by a FaceTime or Skype-based virtual kitchen tour. Finally, we will conduct a standard online background check to ensure there is no criminal history or other unruly behavior in your past (unlikely as this may sound) that we wouldn't want in our network of cooks. All of this can typically be accomplished in 1-2 weeks. Once completed, we'll be reaching out to you shortly thereafter to coordinate your first meal delivery!
How many meal requests am I likely to receive? As you can imagine, the number of meal requests varies by a number of factors, some of which are self-managed. For instance, how many days you are available to cook, how wide an area you are open to delivering to, and the types of meals you are skilled at cooking being matched with requests. CourierCook.com is constantly doing its part to promote its service, and the capabilities of our network of cooks, through various forms of marketing, advertising and search engine optimization.
How are meal prices set? As another plus, you set the price for your meals based on difficulty of a recipe, ingredient costs and portion size requested (i.e. to feed 4 or 6 people). Then the Meal Gifter agrees to that price, along with a standard service fee applied by CourierCook.com. We will provide some pricing guidelines for you when you become part of our network, and you can always ask what seems appropriate.
How do I get paid? To keep things simple, all of our transactions run through PayPal. So you will need to establish a PayPal account linked to your credit card if you don't have one already. Upon completion of a meal delivery, the agreed upon payment will be transferred to you the next business day.
How do I get connected to a Meal Gifter? After you register as a CourierCook, we will contact you via email to establish next steps and to coordinate meal requests. Generally you will not need to communicate directly with a Meal Gifter, as we will pass along meal preferences and any personal note to be included for the Meal Recipient. Similarly, we will handle the payment process with the Meal Gifter when an order is confirmed, and you will be paid by CourierCook.com once a meal is delivered.
Do I get to choose my own schedule for when I can cook and deliver? Yes absolutely! From the beginning, you choose the days that you are likely to be available to cook and deliver a meal. You can always say "no" to a service opportunity when we email you. There is plenty of schedule flexibility, which we think is a big plus! We want people to LOVE doing this and that means cooking when it works for them. We try to set expectations that most meals will be delivered between 1:00-4:00pm local time, when the Meal Recipient is at home. (One qualification - much as you accept a meal request days in advance, you will need to cook and cool the meal within 24 hours of delivery.)
How many days notice will I have to cook and deliver a meal? Most meal requests from Meal Gifters are received by Thursday night for the following week. We aim to have all meal requests matched to cooks with proposed pricing by Friday at noon ET. You should know by end of day Friday or early Saturday if the Meal Gifter has accepted your proposed meal, after which we will help you coordinate the delivery time with the Meal Recipient. In certain instances we may need to "expedite" an order for 1-2 day turnaround in the same week, for an additional fee.
Do I get to choose where I will deliver? Definitely - we think this is another advantage! You can keep deliveries close or go as far as you'd like to take on more business. With your initial profile you will include the names of towns you are willing to deliver to, and CourierCook.com will only forward the opportunities in that area for consideration. If your preferences change, to add or remove towns simply email us at email@example.com.
How are the meals delivered? We expect meals to be delivered chilled, never frozen, in microwave and oven-safe packaging along with simple heating instructions (e.g. Remove lid and cook in oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees). You also will be asked to handwrite any personal message from the Meal Gifter on CourierCook.com designed letterhead, which we will provide for printing.
How should I package my meals? You can cook your meals at home however you would normally, Prior to delivery, please transfer the meal and any included side dishes into one or more microwave and oven-safe food storage containers. What type of container you use may depend on the meal. For instance, Glad OvenWare containers or aluminum trays are often fine. You should specifically avoid using glass storage containers, since you won't get them back.
How can I help CourierCook? Respond, respond, respond! Being responsive is critical to any service business -- for CourierCook, our ability to quickly match Meal Gifters with a suitable cook is key. Please respond as quickly as possible when we reach out to check on your interest and availability to cook a meal. We also welcome any and all feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Will I be reviewed as a Cook and Courier? Yes, and this should be a positive for you! Someone who makes great meals with great ratings tends to get more meal opportunities! The Meal Gifter or Recipient will be asked to write a review and this will be communicated to others who request a meal of the right type in your area. Eventually we plan to include these reviews online to help the matching process.