Depending on where you live, a delicious meal can be yours just by opening your Web browser. There are a number of Web services that let you log in, choose a restaurant in your area and order delivery with a couple of clicks. Here's a look at the top five.
We asked readers when you want to order food from restaurants in your area. With most, you don't even have to speak to someone: all you have to do is open your browser, pick the restaurant you want, and a few minutes later your food arrives. You responded, and now we're back to look closer at the ones you nominated.
Grubhub serves 13 cities with more on the way, and hundreds of restaurants in major metropolitan areas around the country. The service has iOS and Android apps to make ordering dinner easy if you're still at the office and want to pick up, or if you're on the train home and want to order dinner on the way. If Grubhub's ease of use and list of restaurants aren't enough, its person-to-person customer service online and on-phone may be enough to sway you.
Seamless (formerly SeamlessWeb) features over 7,000 restaurants in close to 30 cities in the United States, as well as London. Seamless is another service that largely supports major metropolitan areas, and partnering restaurants in those areas that don't deliver on their own, or want access to a broader group of customers. Seamless features mobile apps for iOS, Android and Blackberry, and keeps track of your favorite meals for quick reference later.
If you're a TA and you're grading papers or a student working on a research paper late into the night, you may get hungry but you don't have time to break and go off campus for a meal. Campusfood will bring local eats to you while you study, and let you earn points, badges and rewards while you do it. The service supports more than 300 campuses around the country. Just give Campusfood your state and the campus you live on or near, and they'll walk you through the rest.
Foodler is another service that connects you with local restaurants and lets you order from their menus and have the food delivered to you. Foodler's specialty is small local eateries that probably don't deliver on their own, like small cafes and bistros. Foodler also promises to save you money over other services by not charging delivery fees and by offering discounted prices over their competitors. They also offer an incentive program that lets you collect points, redeemable for free meals.
Eat24Hours supports more than 400 cities in major metropolitan areas and smaller suburban communities alike. Search by type of cuisine or by address to see who's delivering in your area and what's available to eat. The service also offers live chat and customer support for order status and issues with your meal. Eat24Hours.com also offers mobile apps for iOS and Android, with a Blackberry app on the way.
Honorable mentions go out to , another large delivery service operating across most of North America that combines 24-hour food delivery from local restaurants with an incentive program that lets you trade points for discounts or Delivery.com swag. Also highly recommended is , an online delivery service that sports more than 13,000 restaurants in 13 countries, including Canada, Brazil, the UK, Italy and Spain.
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