Every day in Mumbai hot lunches are hand-delivered to employees in workplaces across the city. These home-cooked meals are packed in tins called tiffins or dabbas. They are picked up from the customer’s home, whisked off by bicycle to a sorting facility, loaded onto carts, wheeled to the train station, loaded onto a train car, unloaded, resorted, routed, and delivered by bicycle to recipients at work. Despite more than 250,000 lunch deliveries every day, mistakes are rare.
Players represent dabbawallas working to deliver tiffins. They earn rupees by contributing to successful delivery of tiffins. The more tiffins delivered on a single route, the higher the payout for each player participating in the deliveries.