It’s 2 a.m., you’re laying in bed after a long night of drinking, and all you want is a Crunchwrap Supreme or a chalupa from Taco Bell. There’s just one problem: you’re drunk as a sailor, and there’s no way you’re going to stumble from your apartment to 310 E. College Ave and get them.
Luckily, four students realized this, and have come up with a solution. Meet Drunk Deliveries, a new student-run company that, you guessed it, delivers you Taco Bell when you’re inebriated.
The idea for the company came from senior Mridul Bhandari last semester, but she didn’t immediately have the time or man power to get the business going.
However, when a class project came up that required students to make money, Bhandari shared the idea with three of her classmates — Blair Hutto, Zack Meyer, and Dolly Grullon — and Drunk Deliveries was born.
“Drunk Deliveries was our idea for getting Taco Bell to people who are incapable of getting Taco Bell themselves,” Bhandari said. “It’s primarily meant for drunk people on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, but you don’t have to be drunk to call in. You could just be lazy.”
Hutto said that drunkenness and laziness aren’t the only two reasons you could call and ask for Taco Bell. A student could also be “studying in the library,” or really doing anything that would keep them from getting downtown to buy everyone’s favorite Mexican food filled with a meat-like substance.
The process of placing an order is pretty simple. You text your name, address, and order to a number set up by the Drunk Deliveries team, who will then pick up your food, stash it away in an insulated bag — think of what restaurants use when they deliver pizza — and deliver your order, usually in about 20-30 minutes.
Of course, the business needs to make money, so a 20 percent delivery fee is added on top of whatever your order costs. Like all delivery services, tips are welcomed.
The business is still really young, having only started last weekend, but according to Hutto, through advertising and word of mouth, it grew surprisingly fast.
“We started on Thursday, and Thursday was a little bit slower because we were still building the brand and spreading the word about it,” Hutto said. “By the time Friday came around it was the beginning of State Patty’s so we had a lot of customers and through word of mouth we were able to spread the word outside of Taco Bell and around campus.”
“By Saturday we had some repeat customers and some new ones, so it started out pretty strong,” Hutto continued.
As for deciding what restaurant the group would use for their business, it was actually a lot easier than you’d think.
“It’s the drunk food place,” Bhandari said. “We could’ve done McDonald’s as well, but McDonald’s is so out of the way for a lot of people that a lot of people don’t consider it. For some reason with Taco Bell, the bar rush with Taco Bell is always crazy so we already knew that we had a market.”
The group has considered expanding to McDonald’s, even including deliveries of McDonald’s breakfast for the hungover crowd or a dinner time delivery service that features places like Chipotle, but the group has decided to wait until after it’s done with its group project to discuss expansion.
But what about if you don’t live downtown? One of the complaints that some people have with delivery restaurants is that if you live out of their delivery radius, you can’t get their food.
Lucky for people who live relatively far from campus, that’s not a problem. The group uses cars to deliver to places that aren’t in walking distance, and they will deliver to basically anyone within reason.
“We reserve the right to deny delivery based on delivery radius,” Bhandari said. “If we know that we’re not gonna be able to get there or if it’s way too out of the way for us, we’re just gonna say no.”
Delivering delicious drunk food isn’t the group’s only business venture. Along with Drunk Deliveries, the quartet are selling Penn State-themed elastic wrist bands with school slogans like “One Team” and “FrankLIONs,” which they offer to customers when their food is delivered.
“We all thought of slogans that we could put on the bracelets that would build morale in the community and support coach James Franklin and the football team,” Hutto said. “That’s kind of the point behind the bracelets, we wanna help foster a sense of community.”
According to Hutto, the group encourages that the bracelets are also used for things like admission to events for various organizations, as they could also be kept as a party favor for the people who attend.
But the group’s primary venture is Drunk Deliveries. Balancing it with school and their personal lives hasn’t been an issue yet, and the group has a plan for having people on call every night that it operates.
The group doesn’t want to expand and operate from Sunday through Wednesday, but Bhandari and Hutto said they have considered working all week for things like syllabus week.
If you’re interested in getting your hands on a late-night burrito or that new XXL nacho thing, the fine folks at Drunk Delivery can be reached at (626)-667-4385. The group also set up an event on Facebook, which you can access here.