Hungry Sac State students can save money and time with MealMe

The app that simplifies food delivery with price comparisons

President+and+co-founder+of+MealMe+Matthew+Bouchner+works+on+a+computer+at+his+family%E2%80%99s+home+on+Friday%2C+Feb.+19%2C+2021.+Designed+alongside+co-founder+Will+Said+as+a+streamlined+food+photography+app+last+March%2C+MealMe+found+its+niche+as+a+price+comparison+tool+between+food+delivery+services+such+as+Postmates%2C+GrubHub+and+Doordash.+%28Taken+via+Zoom%29%0A

Patrick Posuniak

President and co-founder of MealMe Matthew Bouchner works on a computer at his family’s home on Friday, Feb. 19, 2021. Designed alongside co-founder Will Said as a streamlined food photography app last March, MealMe found its niche as a price comparison tool between food delivery services such as Postmates, GrubHub and Doordash. (Taken via Zoom)

Skyler Lacey

Since the beginning of the pandemic, there has been a significant increase in the usage of food delivery apps such as DoorDash, Uber Eats and Grubhub. What many aren’t yet aware of is the up-and-coming food delivery app MealMe, which launched in March 2020.

Co-founders Matthew Bouchner and Will Said started MealMe with the intention of creating an app where users could post photos of food with the click of a button.

“MealMe started out as an Instagram for food idea,” Bouchner said. “Where you could post your food pictures and from every food picture, you could click on it and order it to your house or book a reservation at the restaurant.”

This idea was met with success, but not exactly what the pair were looking for.

“People were only posting food pictures to see what food delivery services corresponded to what restaurants,” Bouchner said. “For example, they posted a picture at Starbucks, just to see if Uber Eats or Doordash delivered from that Starbucks.”

It wasn’t until MealMe began showing different food delivery services and their delivery fees in order from cheapest to most expensive underneath users’ posts toward the end of 2019 that the two thought they were on to something. Bouchner said he marketed this feature on Reddit and it ended up going viral.

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A screenshot of the opening page of MealMe. The app provides you with the cheapest and fastest food delivery options first. (Skyler Lacey)

MealMe is now designed to compare the prices and delivery times of each food delivery service in a user’s area and determine which would be the quickest and most affordable option. The app serves as a liaison between the user and food delivery service without added service fees.

MealMe compares prices from Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates, EatStreet, DoorDash, ChowNow, BeyondMenu, Delivery.com and Bite Squad. Bouchner said MealMe plans to integrate more delivery apps soon.

“Everyone compares three different apps to get the best deal, but we do that for you,” Bouchner said. 

The appeal of the app isn’t limited to just saving money, but it also allows for users to check out in the app, track their food and contact the restaurant or person delivering their food within the app, making it the only app users need for their food delivery needs.

After their initial launch, MealMe wanted to reach out to campuses around the U.S. where there was an emphasis on food delivery, Bouchner said.

“We wanted to reach out to schools that we knew had foodie students and we noticed a lot of students at Sac State use food delivery,” Bouchner said. “We just want to spread the word about MealMe so people know they have cheaper options.”

It’s really convenient for students who live on campus”

— Neysa Minguia

MealMe has worked by reaching out to different college organizations, including The State Hornet, to spread the word. With the app’s focus on Sacramento State students, it seems it will find success mostly with students who live on campus and are looking to save money.

“Last semester I spent around $500 on food delivery after running out of meal points,” said Daniela Castillo, a Sac State photography major living on campus. “It could have been used for things I needed for my classes. Since switching my meal plan, I’ll have to investigate what the app is about.”

When told about MealMe, Sac State students seemed to be excited at the prospect of not only saving money, but the convenience food delivery brings to students who live on campus.

“It’s really convenient for students who live on campus,” said Neysa Minguia, a Sac State social work major.

Angel Barrera, a Sac State business finance major, mentioned that it would be great for students who don’t have cars while living on campus. Both Minguia and Barerra live on campus and found themselves using food delivery frequently.

Bouchner said MealMe is not only looking for new users, they’re also looking for employees and interns. As of right now, MealMe has taken on eight interns in college and is looking for more people to fill their team. According to their website, they currently have positions for full-time employees and interns alike in roles such as customer service, software engineering and marketing operations.

“Working at MealMe has been great!” marketing intern Naureen Kurji said via email. “Everyone on the team is incredibly talented and I enjoy our weekly virtual meetings where everyone gets to collaborate and learn more about one another. Everyday, I learn new things related to my position. This is my first time working at a start-up, and it’s been wonderful.”

Anyone interested in working for MealMe can apply on their website.

MealMe is already available for Sac State students to download and use through the Apple App Store and has a special discount for everyone with no code required. The code is valid for $0 delivery for users on their first order, and then half off delivery for their second order.