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9 Convenient Ways to Order a Tasty Office Lunch

By Nicole Levy | June 20, 2016 3:20pm | Updated on June 20, 2016 3:47pm
 Three meals you can order for lunchtime pick-up through MealPass
Three meals you can order for lunchtime pick-up through MealPass
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The war between the purveyors of less-than-sad desk lunches in Manhattan carries on.

MealPass, a subscription service that offers members lunch every weekday from its lineup of downtown Manhattan restaurants for a flat monthly fee of $119, has extended its field of participating eateries up to 60th Street and launched a mobile app, it announced Monday.

MealPass subscription holders can browse the dishes offered by local restaurants the night before or morning of, placing their order by 9:30 a.m., and picking up their pre-paid meal during the 15-minute window of their choosing.

The service targets office workers looking for varied, cheap lunch options; those who use it every day will be paying about $6 a meal. (When it first launched in March, MealPass charged a monthly fee of $99, amounting to $5 a meal.)

Of course, MealPass isn't the only company that wants to feed New Yorkers working in Manhattan offices.

Here's a rundown of all your alternatives and what they offer:


Uber launched its standalone food delivery app in New York City in March. With the ridesharing company's service, you can order food from more than 100 restaurants — including IndiKitch, Veselka and S'MAC — between 8 a.m. and midnight seven days a week for delivery anywhere in Manhattan below 100th Street.

Uber says the average order takes 35 minutes from start to finish. You can track its trip to you with the app, and delivery price is included when you make your purchase.


Backed by Momofuku chef David Chang, this service "combines New York’s best chefs and culinary talent with high-quality ingredients and rotating daily menus," according to its website. Rather than offering delivery from brick and mortar restaurants, Maple presents six $11 to $13 entrée options prepared in-house every day. Executive chef Soa Davis, an alumnus of Le Bernardin, manages the day-to-day menu, but other notable chefs like David Chang and Christina Tosi also contribute menus now and then. Maple delivers to customers in Manhattan anywhere below 14th St. and below 42nd St. if the address is between 8th and Park Avenues.

You can place your order through the website or the mobile app.


This service, which is offered in several major U.S. cities, picks up and delivers food from premium restaurants in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens, going beyond the normal delivery range for those restaurants. Caviar recently introduced a minimum on all orders, which may increase during periods of high demand. Delivery fees fall between $2 to $7 and an 18 percent service fee is tacked on to each order.

Caviar gives you the option of ordering in advance or selecting immediate delivery. You can also track your courier's progress via GPS.

Served by Stadium

If you need to feed a group of co-workers with very different tastes, Served by Stadium is your best bet. You can lump together in one order selected menu items from several different participating restaurants, for delivery to any Manhattan address south of 59th Street. Lunch orders must be placed before 11 a.m. the day of, but you can order up to five days in advance, and there's no delivery fee.

Team leaders can pay for everything on a company card, split the check among employees, or cover a certain amount of each member's costs.


Created by Served by Stadium founder Shaunak Amin, Arcade suits the indecisive diner. It offers one dish a day from one restaurant, such as Breads Bakery or Han Dynasty. You can sign up by texting "ARCADE" to 917-746-7261. Arcade will text you the day's lunch at 10 a.m. If you reply "yes" by 11 a.m., your lunch will arrive by 1 p.m.


For a $2.99 delivery fee, Postmates delivers in Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan from spots like Dos Toros Taqueria and The Meatball Shop. The site estimates delivery time, and it's the official third-party delivery service Chipotle. It also has a partnership with McDonald's, and can deliver Big Macs from 88 locations in New York City.


New York City's most widely recognized food delivery service, Seamless has the longest list of participating restaurants: 7,000 throughout the five boroughs. You can browse your choices by cuisine and borough, and each restaurant provides an estimated wait time. Many set a minimum but charge no delivery fee, so you can tip upon your meal's arrival as you see fit. A bonus feature: Seamless saves your order history, so it's easy to re-order your favorite dishes.


Delivery.com — which has expanded beyond prepared food into groceries, alcohol and laundry — lets users browse by cuisine and neighborhood, covering all five boroughs. As is the case with Seamless, many participating restaurants require a minimum order of a certain amount, but charge no delivery fee. Every order wins you delivery points for "free swag."