So when UberEats launched, you know I was all over that! Working as a freelancer in fitness means I’m always running around town and quite frankly it’s just amazing when lunch is less of a hassle (cos you know, I’m not perfect and I don’t always get my meal prep nailed). So when I heard about the latest lunchtime app I had to find out all about it. Let me introduce you to MealPal… and everything you need to know about it and how it works in a comprehensive MealPal London review…
Get Your MealPal App Discount
Guys! I have a discount for you… new customers can get £10 off the first month of MealPal! CLICK HERE for all the info and to get your discount.
1. Your Location in London is Key
When the MealPal app first launched it was only really relevant if you were based in the City of London, Soho and Canary Wharf …basically if you are based outside of London, then this isn’t for you right now! Maybe it should be called MealPal London?! Since the launch though, they have grown from 150+ restaurant partners to now having close to 600 restaurant partners on the MealPal platform in London.
2. It’s like a lunch club membership
MealPal is basically the classpass of lunch. And I know that may stir up some desirable and undesirable feelings in us as individuals. You buy a package (i.e 12 or 20 meals) and you have a month to eat them all up. The cheapest each meal is is around £4.85 and it’s worth noting that you can only reserve one meal per day.
3. Does MealPal suit your schedule?
On the topic of reserving meals. I learnt this the hard way. It used to be that the “kitchen” opens at 5pm the evening before lunch and you have till 930am on the morning of to place an order. However, they have since updated this so you are able to order all the way through to 1:30pm on the day of the meal. This is only a Monday – Friday thing too so will suit office workers a lot better than maybe those who work in retail / shift work
How MealPal Works:
4. You need to plan in advance
I’m loving how one point brings me so perfectly to the next. Working in retail (I did this for 3+ years recently) means that you don’t work regular hours and you typically don’t know when your lunch break will be and if you do, you probably won’t know in time to use the app to order in advance and you can’t guarantee that you’ll be relieved for your break on time… But the update on ordering times probably eliminates this issue!
Reccommended Places To Eat Using MealPal
[June 2019] Just gonna take a little intermission here to share a recent find with you! I popped along to the newly opened SHOT location in Bow Lane to try out their breakfast menu which I loved! I can highly recommend the classic avocado on sourdough toast with salmon, the sweet potato pancakes with pb and the almond milk porridge. So, extrapolating from my data (haha) I’m gonna assume that the lunch menu is juuuust as tasty… it smelt great while it was cooking anyway!
Did you know SHOT is an acronym of Simple, Healthy, Organic and Tasty?!
5. You get a 15 minute collection window
Because when you order your lunch, you choose a 15 minute slot for collection. One day when I was on the train to collect my meal I realised that the confirmation email said that the restaurant would throw out your meal if it wasn’t collected in the allocated time slot. Well, you can imagine the sinking feeling I felt but I was lucky when I turned up 15 minutes late that they still had my food albeit a little cold (my own fault). But you know, meetings run over and shizz soooo you’d be a little sad if your food was thrown out, huh?!
6. You probably can’t eat in
Keep in mind that this is a collection only app. When you arrive to collect your food, it’s usually been bagged up ready for you to go on your merry way so if you’re a huge fan of lunch al-desko then you win! It’s certainly not always been the best weather for eating lunch outside and the one time I did ask a restaurant about eating in, they didn’t exactly welcome me with open arms!
7. Don’t use it? You lose it!
I had 20 meals to use between 1st and 28th March (…you can also get a package of 12 meals). When you count, there were only 20 days available to use the app so to get my money’s worth I would have to eat lunch via it every. single. day. So no lunching with colleagues. No lunch meetings. Not working from home / another location. And for me, who isn’t in town every single weekday will be left with 6/7 meals unused…
8. Is it value for money?
I ate a lot of burritos from Chilangos which cost about £6 without the app so that’s a saving of about £1. One day I had a meal from Protein Haus which they sell for £5 so I saved what, 20p?! …and the thing is you have no flexibility in what you can order. Each location offers one meal per day and it can’t be customised. Personally with the Protein Haus meal I would rather pay 20p more and be able to choose what I wanna eat.
9. Are you really hungry?
The meals that are offered are not that substantial. One day I had a bowl of pesto pasta. No protein in that meal. One day a margarita pizza. Filling, but uninspiring. One day I had a halloumi burger which was more bread than anything. The slice of halloumi was laughable. And the chips were put in a container that made them sweat. I don’t like sweaty chips. So typically, if you wanna get a decent meal, you’d actually still have to spend more for regular priced sides and drinks.
10. My Favourite MealPal Meal
My favourite meal of all the ones I tried was from The Good Schnit off Bow Lane in the City. But I’ve eaten there before so I knew they wouldn’t disappoint me! Their customer service is also some of the best you’ll get in London Town! …the queue in the height of the lunchtime rush hour speaks for itself so ordering via the MealPal app on this occasion could be ya saving grace!
Well, I definitely don’t think this is a raving review of the MealPal app but it is honest and constructive, and that’s what I’m here to do, right?! It’s now been a couple years since they launched in London and some improvements have definitely been made. If they continue to build relationships with their vendors in town I’m sure they will have a strong model that we just won’t be able to get enough of… but my feedback, and any other customer feedback they get will need to be taken onboard!
I also gave MealPal an open opportunity to comment on the original post (edited March 2019) and here is what I received…
(Lauren Corregano, MealPal App) – “Thanks for sharing your experience of using MealPal and for giving us the opportunity to reply to some of the points you raised. With regards to the collection windows, we work with our partner restaurants to ensure that users’ lunches are served up within their chosen slot to avoid too much waiting time and let them jump the queue! If users realise they’re unable to make their lunch slot after reserving, the order can be cancelled via the app before orders are sent to restaurants at 9.30am and our team are on hand to help with any queries. We’ve found that lots of our users are able to save considerable amounts by using the app – as much as £620 a year. We work with our restaurant partners to make sure that the meals being offered are varied, well-packaged and of a high quality – we’re happy to share any feedback you might have with specific partners if you would like us to do so.”
MEALPAL LONDON DISCOUNT
I reached out to creators of the MealPal app to find out about the updates which I have featured in the post now (as of March 2019) and they kindly offered me a discount to share with you… new customers can get £10 off the first month of MealPal! CLICK HERE for all the info and to get your discount. It is an affiliate link, so I will also receive a small payment if you choose to purchase via my link; it’s much appreciated.
Have you already tried MealPal?! Where’s your favourite place to lunch when you’ve not had time to pack it?!