NUTRITION

The 7 Best Grocery Delivery Services of 2020

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Due to COVID-19, grocery delivery is more vital than ever, as it helps promote social distancing — also called physical distancing — by cutting down on trips to the grocery store.

Still, even without a pandemic, grocery delivery can be a convenient option when you have a busy lifestyle, lack easy access to grocery stores in your vicinity, or are home sick.

Several grocery delivery services are now available, offering a wide variety of options, price points, and delivery times. Some also cater to unique or specific dietary needs.

The factors used to rank these grocery delivery services include delivery time, pricing, geographic availability, and the variety of food offered, such as whether they include fresh produce and frozen or refrigerated foods.

The best grocery delivery services offer same-day delivery, are available nationwide, cater to all dietary needs and preferences, offer fresh produce and frozen or refrigerated foods, have an optional cost-saving membership option, and are reasonably priced.

Here are the top 14 grocery delivery services of 2020.

1. Walmart
Walmart logo
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: app, website
  • Fees: $9.99 delivery fee per order
  • Membership: optional, unlimited free delivery for $12.95 per month or $98 per year
  • Location: nationwide

Walmart’s delivery service, although it’s not yet available at all Walmart stores, is widely available — even in rural areas.

If you have any issues with your order, you can contact Walmart customer service through the app or email, or directly at the store you ordered from.

Walmart offers a wide variety of products to suit all dietary needs, and because they don’t outsource their delivery service, the prices are the same as they are in the store.

If you plan to use Walmart delivery at least once per month, paying for an annual membership is the most cost-effective option.

Start shopping at Walmart here.

2. Instacart
Instacart logo
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: app, website
  • Fees: delivery starts at $3.99 per order, plus a 5% service fee
  • Membership: optional, but $35 per year to unlock free delivery on orders over $35 and reduced service fees
  • Location: nationwide

Instacart is a grocery delivery service that partners with grocery store chains to provide delivery from a variety of stores. As such, they offer a wide variety of products to suit all dietary needs.

Some grocery store chains like Kroger partner with Instacart to provide grocery delivery services directly through their own website or app.

Instacart personal shoppers may text you while picking your order to make substitutions if needed, and you can contact Instacart support through their app or email.

One potential downside of Instacart is that certain items may have higher prices on the Instacart platform than they do in stores, in addition to delivery and service fees.

To get the best value from Instacart if you use it regularly, join the Instacart Express membership program and make sure all of your orders meet the $35 minimum for free delivery.

Start shopping at Instacart here.

3. Shipt
Shipt logo
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: online, app
  • Fees: free delivery over $35, small service fee applies, membership required
  • Membership: required, $99 per year or $14 per month
  • Location: select metro areas, mostly across the Eastern United States

Like Instacart, Shipt is a grocery delivery service that partners with grocery chains to offer delivery from a variety of stores. Because of this, it caters to all dietary needs and preferences.

It’s unique in that it requires a membership. The most cost-effective membership option is the annual one, which works out to about $8 per month. Individual items may still be marked up to a higher price for this service.

Additionally, Target grocery delivery is offered exclusively through Shipt.

Start shopping at Shipt here.

4. Target
Target logo
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: app, website
  • Fees: $9.99 per order
  • Membership: optional Shipt membership
  • Location: nationwide

While Target has a small in-house delivery program available in a few large cities, the majority of its grocery delivery is handled by Shipt, a grocery delivery service similar to Instacart.

Through Target, you’re able to get delivery with Shipt without purchasing a membership for a $9.99 fee.

However, becoming a Shipt member and making sure that all of your orders meet the $35 threshold for free shipping is the most cost-effective ways to use the service. If you’re not set on delivery, the Target app and website offers convenient drive-up service.

Start shopping at Target here.

5. Kroger
Kroger
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: app, website
  • Fees: $9.95 per order
  • Membership: n/a
  • Location: nationwide

Kroger partners with Instacart for their grocery delivery service, but you can place your order directly through the Kroger app or website — ensuring that you pay the same price as you would in the store or for grocery pickup.

Kroger also has a ship-to-home option in which certain non-perishable foods and household products can be ordered online and shipped to your home, with free shipping over $35.

There doesn’t appear to be a membership option for Kroger delivery orders placed directly through Kroger’s website or app.

Start shopping at Kroger here.

6. Amazon Fresh
Amazon Fresh logo
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: browser, Amazon app
  • Shipping fees: free on orders over $35–$50 (depending on region)
  • Membership: requires Amazon Prime membership ($119 per year or $12.99 per month)
  • Location: available only in select large cities

Amazon Fresh is a service offered by Amazon, but to participate in the program, you must be an Amazon Prime member. It offers a variety of foods to suit all dietary needs, including natural and organic selections from Whole Foods Market, which is Amazon-owned.

Amazon Fresh also provides household goods and pet supplies, and you have access to Amazon customer service agents through live chat, email, or phone support.

It also offers a variety of delivery options, including:

  • Attended delivery. You are present to receive your order.
  • Doorstep delivery. The groceries are left on your doorstep.
  • Pickup. You go to a predetermined Amazon pickup location to retrieve your order.

To get your money’s worth from the Amazon Fresh program, you should place orders that meet the free shipping threshold for your area. Unfortunately, this service is only available in certain large cities at the moment.

Start shopping at Amazon Fresh here.

7. Whole Foods
Whole Foods
  • Delivery time: same-day available
  • Offers fresh produce: yes
  • Offers frozen and refrigerated foods: yes
  • Ways to use: app, Amazon website
  • Fees: $0 if your order meets the free shipping minimum ($35–$50, depending on your location)
  • Membership: Amazon Prime membership required ($119 per year or $12.99 per month)
  • Location: select large cities

Whole Foods Market offers a wide variety of organic and natural products and caters to many dietary needs and preferences, including vegan, gluten-free, and paleo.

Because they are owned by Amazon, Whole Foods delivery works just like the Amazon Fresh program.

To get the best value, make sure your orders meet the minimum threshold for free shipping, which is $35 to $50, depending on location. Items selected for delivery may still be marked up compared with in-store prices.

Start shopping at Whole Foods here.

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