‘Ubering' your stuff from place to place

Apps let you call a ride-sharing service instead of a moving company or courier

ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – Uber and Lyft are two of the most well-known ride-sharing services, exploding in popularity over the last several years. But what if, instead of moving yourself, you need to move your stuff?

As the saying goes, there’s now an app for that-- and Silas Burgher knows it well.

“I do a lot of driving,” Burgher recently told News 6. "This is just one of my three part-timejobs."

Apart from his regular job as a courier, Silas makes extra money driving for Uber, Lyft and Roadie. Roadie is a new app that matches people who need items delivered  with people who happen to be heading in the same direction.

“Roadie is meant to be what they call on-your-way delivery,” Burger says. “If you are on your way someplace, you look on the app to see if there might be gigs available.”

Today’s gig has Silas picking up a surprise gift of cookies at a mall in Altamonte Springs and driving them about 20 minutes to a home in Orlando. The cookies were a surprise for relatives from a Roadie customer.

“I’ve been doing this for over a year, and I have 850 gigs that I’ve delivered,” Burger says. “I’ve done a lot of work with Roadie. It’s like two-thirds of my weekly paycheck.”

Roadie is just one of a number of what are being called “disruption services” emerging in social media’s so-called peer economy. A disruption service does exactly what it sounds like: It throws a wrench in something traditional and typically ends up pushing an industry in a whole different direction.

Uber and Lyft are two of the biggest “disrupters” when it comes to bucking the trend of using a traditional taxi or airport shuttle service. Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, Plated and Home Chef are all fighting for dominance in home-delivery meal services. Although you might not have heard of Roadie, the two-year-old company is one of a number of companies looking to carve out a share in the peer-to-peer delivery market.

Grabr goes international: The company matches travelers in different countries courier goods around the world.

Seattle-based Dolly bills itself as an on-demand heavy-lifting moving and delivery service, taking aim straight at traditional moving companies (though they haven’t expanded as of yet to Central Florida).

As for Roadie:, the company will move small items, as well as larger ones (up to a point), across town or across the country.

They’ll move pets, too.

Burgher told News 6 that he recently did a same-day delivery of a desktop computer from Kissimmee to Tampa for less than $30. The shipper was excited by the Roadie service; he said paying for boxes, packing materials and the use of a regular shipping service would have cost him almost $100 and take 3 to 4 days.

As for the strangest thing Burgher said he’s delivered?

“My very first delivery was a small box of envelopes,” he told News 6 while making his cookie run. “I thought it was unusual and wondered why it wasn’t hand-delivered by the company.”

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