Postmates: "Uber of Stuff" Delivery Service Launches in Miami This Friday

We Miami folk are so caught up in the hustle of life in the 305 it's easy to become a bit scatterbrained. You finally get home from work and realize you forgot to buy toothpaste. Not only that, but you also forgot the tequila for those pick-me-up, let's-bottom-out margaritas you daydreamed of all day, and your favorite Thai joint won't deliver dinner. Starting this weekend, you won't have to venture back out into the heat and traffic to grab household items, grub, or anything your spend-happy heart desires, with the launch of Postmates.

Likened to the Uber method that connects riders to drivers, app service Postmates connects customers to couriers. It's already available in San Francisco, Seattle, New York, Chicago, and L.A., and now it's Miami's time to get a boost in the delivery game, says communications manager Heather Luntz. The initial zone covers South Beach, downtown, midtown, Brickell, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Wynwood, and the Design District, with plans to expand.

"Miami is a major metropolitan area where people have an appetite for quality, variety, and convenience -- yet the delivery options are extremely limited," Luntz says. "We're excited to launch our first city in the Southeast, as we've already seen local demand for the service. Postmates currently operates in 13 other markets."

See also: Meet the Cab Drivers Who Want Uber and Lyft in Miami

According to Luntz, app users will be able to order lunch, coffee, groceries, and more through Postmates, which arranges pick-ups from merchants that don't offer delivery service themselves. Postmates users can browse an inventory of restaurants and stores in Miami, add items, watch their rated "Postmate" (either a driver or bike messenger) moving on the map, and track their order status in real time. The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

Deliveries start at $5, and users pay for everything within the app, including tip. Belatedly realize you're out of condoms? No problem. Need a pregnancy test without the shame-face from the Walgreens staff? There's an app for that. However, Luntz says the most common item requests are pretty mundane and heavy on food. As long as restaurants can prepare to-go orders, Postmates can pick them up.

"The majority of orders are for takeout," she says. "We are constantly adding inventory to the Postmates app, but for any restaurant that lacks a menu, customers can enter a custom order with special instructions. In addition to food, we handle a lot of grocery orders, drugstore pick-ups, retail items (anything from clothing to electronics), and even alcohol."

Starting at $5, the delivery fee is based on distance from pick-up to drop-off, as well as demand on the platform, Luntz says. However, all delivery fees will be free in Miami through September 28. Additionally, the first 500 customers to download the app in Miami and enter code MIAFRIEND will also receive $50 in delivery fee credit valid until October 15.

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Shelly Davidov