13+ Things Your Pizza Guy Won’t Tell You

Love pizza? Get smarter about service with our list of things pizza delivery people wish you knew before dialing in your order.

By Maureen Mackey
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    1. It's a pizza, not a lifetime commitment.

    My other line is ringing, so choose the toppings before you call.

    2. We know when kids are prank-calling us.

    They can’t mask their voices very well. The smart ones block the phone number. The dumb ones don’t.

    3. Accidents happen.

    If I drop your pizza on the way, sometimes I’ll shake the box to get the cheese to slide back on right.

    4. Patience, please!

    It takes about 20 minutes to go from raw dough to fully baked pizza. And then I have to drive to your house.

    5. Why won't we deliver to some neighborhoods?

    In some neighborhoods, a kid getting out of a car with a pizza in his hands is like screaming, “Rob me! I have cash!”

    6. I'm a human being.

    When you see me drenched and shivering in the rain, it’s not nice to close the door in my face while you search for some quarters in the sofa cushions.

    7. Use your manners.

    When you open the door, please hang up your cell phone or put it down. It’s basic etiquette.

    8. Before you open the door,

    I’d prefer that you have a shirt on (and definitely some pants).

    9. Tips should be 10 to 15 percent of your order.

    If you order a lot of pizza—say, hundreds of dollars’ worth, for a party or something—but give me a $1 tip, well, I’m going to have a problem with that.

    10. The more gated the community, the more guarded the wallet.

    The best tips actually come from middle- and lower-class people who know what we go through.

    11. I remember every customer who doesn't tip.

    I won’t do anything to jeopardize my job, but shaking the soda on the next delivery would not be out of the question.

    12. I can't wait forever.

    I’ll knock on your door three times and call you on the phone twice. If you don’t answer, don’t call later to complain that you didn’t get your food.

    13. Some people want more than just pizza.

    A guy once ordered pizza from me just so he’d have some help moving his sofa up a flight of stairs. I agreed to help him. He gave me a few extra bucks. I took it.

    14. Telling me your address is just the first step.

    Making sure the number is on your house or mailbox is kind of important too.

    15. I can't afford to be choosy.

    We have some fantastic customers and some who are just terrible. But I’ll deliver to them all—this is what I do.

    16. I'm just a kid.

    Many delivery drivers are teenage boys, and most parents don’t like their teenage boys driving around at night in downpours or blizzards. Yet these same people have no qualms about having other teenage kids deliver their pizza in these conditions.

    17. There are always special customers.

    Like the little old lady who wants to pay her bill with a $5 check. I’ll take it because none of us want to be mean to a grandmother. But if she hasn’t ordered from us before, I won’t take it.

    18. Keep it short and sweet.

    We act like we really want to have a conversation with you at your door, but we don’t, unless we know you. Basically, we just want to get the delivery over with. I will try to be as nice to you as possible, but if you complain that I’m late, or if you have a problem with your order, I won’t be so nice.

    19.The majority of our employees work 12-14 hours a day.

    At the end of the day, we just want to go home. So please don’t call for a delivery at closing time and then complain that we can’t accommodate you.

    20. At our shop, we use our own cars to deliver pizza.

    Last week one of our guys smashed his car into a pole on an icy road. Now he’s using a rental car.

    21. I'm one of the easiest people to get along with.

    But if you’re rude to me, I have no problem going toe-to-toe with you.

    22. I can't wait much longer than a few minutes.

    Don’t jump in the shower right after you order pizza and then not the answer the door.

    23. If you live across the street, please don’t call for a delivery.

    Get off your rear end and pick up the pizza yourself.

    24. I'm over pizza.

    After I leave this job, I’m sure I won’t be able to eat pizza for at least a year.

    25. Time is money.

    The majority of customers who stand there chatting about the weather are just trying to make up for not giving us tips.

    26. You ordered the pizza.

    You know how much it costs. Please have your money (and tip) ready when you answer the door.

    27. I don't have the authority to give you a discount.

    Really, I don't. I'm just the delivery guy. 


    Sources: Anonymous pizza delivery people in New York, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.

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    Your Comments

    • rohl

      How stupid are people? I thought it was common sense to not piss off the people who have access to your food. Tip your servers or eat at your own risk. DUH!

    • stargate

      these stupid slideshow articles are the bane of the internet. an artificial method of getting webpage “hits”.. What a joke! You can’t even go on to the next screen with an arrow key

    • Pizza Manager

      The Majority of Pizza place workers, only work around 5 hour shifts

    • Pizza Manager

      No one hires teenage Boys to deliver pizzas insurance won’t allow it

    • Pizza Manager

      it takes about 7 minutes to go from raw dough to fully baked pizza….. don’t base your facts on frozen pizzas.

    • hyder

      The pizza shop may either write on their menu about the service charge or made no comment on the charge… let it be on the customer who will be paying the bill.

    • the pizza guy

      tip 10-15%?!?!?! drivers do as much if not more work than waiters and waitresses (we do dishes, clean the store, stock everything, take phone orders, ring people up, etc), and have an enormous financial and physical risk innate to the job (driving our own cars, with our own gas, on streets with every idiot with a car, in any weather, carrying cash). If you’re a 10 minute drive away, then I have to drive 20 minutes round trip JUST for your ONE order – and we only ever go out on 2 at a time, max. In twenty minutes, a waiter or waitress could handle all the face time needed at up to 5 tables and get a standard 15-18% on each one. And usually, we get almost none of the ‘delivery fee,’ if there is one (at Domino’s, we got 65 cents out of $2.50,) and none of the fee we don’t get goes to our gas, insurance, car payments, etc. Please, for God’s sake, be a human being and just tip $5. You’re splurging on yourself, just take it all the way and pay for the whole experience. On any order $30 or less, tip $5, anything over, tip AT LEAST 15%, hopefully more like 18%.

    • Rich Allen

      I drove for Domino’s back when it was 30 minutes or free. Yes, even before they changed their policy to 30 minutes or $3 off, and eventually eliminated the guarantee altogether.
      I’ve always taken pride in my work, and as a general rule, whether it’s doctors, computer technicians, personnel managers, or delivery drivers, 80% of people do not belong in their chosen career field.
      After a while of delivering pizzas, I told management that I wanted to train all of our new drivers, and they agreed. Instead of them just riding with me, walking to the door and observing my interaction with the customers, and then going on the road by themselves after a couple of deliveries (typical lame “training”), I trained them for about 2 full hours. Every minute that we weren’t interacting with a customer I was explaining things to them. How to treat and impress the customers, how to make better tips (Make sure that you bring napkins, peppers and cheese. Smile, greet them with a sincere “How are you this evening?”. Have fun with the customers and treat them as true friends. If they have a nice yard, or anything else that they obviously take pride in, sincerely compliment them on it. But if it’s a valuable possession, don’t make them think that you’re casing their place.) I would teach the priorities when we get back to the store (ie. deliver pizzas waiting on the heat rack, answer phones, box pizzas coming out of the oven, help on the make line, restock the make line, wash dishes, clean, fold boxes etc. By teaching these things, we all worked as a team, and it made the workload lighter on everyone.)
      I’d share information about the locations we delivered, hotels, gated communities etc. I would show shortcuts on the map, the quickest routes to various neighborhoods etc. Because I increased customer service, our tips increased, the stores sales increased, the customers were happier, and so were we. At the end of 2 hours, I’d split the tips I had made during our time together, and ask “so, do you think that you’re ready to go on the road?” I always got an enthusiastic and grateful “YES!, Thank you!” When the rush died down, and they were ready to clock out and go home, I’d ask them, “so, how much money did you make tonight” and they always responded with enthusiasm. It was obvious that they made more on their first night by going the extra mile, and making the customer feel genuinely appreciated, than they had ever expected.
      Those who earn tips are usually paid below minimum wage by their employer, whom to remain competitive can’t pay $15+ per hour. What would your reaction be if the price on every menu item at your favorite restaurant were suddenly increased 20%? I like the system of earning tips. I get less expensive meals, and I am able to reward or punish my server based on their performance. Unless service is really bad, I tip no less than 15%. I usually tip 20% if my tea glass hasn’t sat empty. I tip 30% or more if I have gone the entire meal without wanting for anything, not been “bothered” by interruptions by the server (The best servers serve, top off tea, ask if anyone would like desert, and occasionally loiters nearby so service can be requested, but don’t interrupt the meal to ask “is everything alright”?) When service is this good, I get the servers name, and find the manager to tell them that they have provided some of the best service that I’ve ever had.
      I once went to an all you can eat shrimp night. The server was terrible. Took 20 minutes to introduce herself, disappeared for extended periods of time, brought our food to us cold, never bothered to ask if I wanted more shrimp (when it was obvious that my plate had been cleaned. I finally caught her and requested seconds), and brought our check 15 minutes after we had finished eating. I left 2 pennies on the table. (This sends a clearer message than stiffing them the tip.) I went to the waitress in the next section who had been running her butt off serving her customers perfectly, and handed her the $9 (20%) tip that our waitress should have earned. I told her “I’ve been watching you for the last 2 hours and have been amazed at how you’ve served your customers. Here’s the money that our waitress should have earned.” We returned a couple of weeks later, made sure to sit in the other waitresses section, and were provided absolute perfect service, earning her a $10 tip.
      Just pretend that menu prices are what they would have to be if wait staff were paid $15 per hour, tip your servers and drivers according to the service they provide, and if they are really good, take 2 minutes to let a manager know how impressed you are! :)

    • Justin

      It seems that most of you have never worked in the food industry. The reason why we tip is becuase all these people are paid much lower. It is very expensive to operate in the food industry and none would make it paying employees a good wage and paying for the food, gas ext.

    • Dodge Ram 10

      Don’t get PO at me because you got the address wrong, at least once a month some pizza guy doesn’t read the street signs and tries to get me to accept delivery for something I didn’t order, also when I do order, put a smile on your face and don’t dress like a homeless person…