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Are Grocery Delivery Services Worth the Cost?

4 minute read

By Christopher Brown

The age-old question of whether or not grocery delivery services are worth the cost has taken on a new level of importance in a world that’s only getting more demanding on our time. With the rise of companies like Instacart, Amazon Fresh, and Shipt, many of us are reevaluating the way we shop for food, and opting to give up the grocery store for good.

We’ve all been there – after a long day, the last thing we want to do is tough it out with the masses at the supermarket. That’s when the allure of grocery delivery really kicks in. But, is it really worth the cost? Today, we’ll explore the benefits and drawbacks of these services, and help you determine whether or not they’re the right fit for your lifestyle.

Shutterstock: giggsy25

Convenience at Your Doorstep

One of the primary benefits of grocery delivery services is, without a doubt, the convenience factor.1 Imagine this: you’re cozied up on your couch, browsing your favorite online grocery app, and adding items to your virtual cart. Within hours – or even minutes – your groceries are delivered right to your doorstep!

No more driving to the store, searching for parking, or waiting in long checkout lines. With a few taps on your phone, you can have all the ingredients you need for tonight’s dinner without ever leaving your home. For those with busy lives, physical limitations, or a lack of transportation, the convenience of grocery delivery can be a lifesaver.

Saving Time and Reducing Stress

We all know that time is a precious commodity, and grocery delivery services help you make the most of it. Research has shown that the average person visits the grocery store at least 1.6 times per week.2

With delivery services, you can reclaim that time to focus on other important tasks or simply relax with your loved ones. Grocery stores aren’t exactly calming either. Shopping can be stressful for some, especially during peak hours or holidays. By using a delivery service, you can avoid that stress and maintain your peace of mind.

A World of Options at Your Fingertips

One of the most exciting aspects of grocery delivery services is the variety of options they offer. With traditional grocery shopping, you’re limited to the products available at your local store.

However, with delivery services, you can access a vast array of items from different retailers, specialty stores, and even local farmers’ markets. This means you can easily find unique and hard-to-find products, as well as support local businesses and producers – all without leaving your home!

Comparing Major Grocery Delivery Services and Their Costs

To help you make a more informed decision, let’s take a look at some of the major grocery delivery services and their associated costs. Keep in mind that fees and availability may vary based on your location and specific circumstances.


Instacart partners with various grocery retailers to offer same-day delivery in many areas. Delivery fees start at $3.99 for orders over $35, with additional fees for smaller orders or faster delivery options.3 There is also a service fee and an optional tip for the delivery driver.

Amazon Fresh

Amazon Fresh is a grocery delivery service available to Amazon Prime members in select locations. It charges a $9.95 delivery fee on orders under $50, a $6.95 delivery fee for orders between $50 and $100, and a $3.95 delivery fee for orders between $100 and $150.4


Shipt is a membership-based grocery delivery service partnering with various retailers. Membership costs $99 per year or $14 per month and includes free delivery on orders over $35.5

The Cost Factor: Is It Worth It?

Now, let’s talk about the elephant in the room: the cost.6 Grocery delivery services do come with fees, which can include delivery charges, membership fees, and service fees, as well as optional tips for the delivery drivers. These fees can add up, making the total cost of your groceries higher than if you shopped in-store.

It’s essential to weigh these extra costs against the convenience, time-saving, and stress-reducing benefits that these services offer. For some, the added expense may be worth it, while others may find that they prefer to save money by shopping in person.

Environmental Impact and Sustainability

As we become more conscious of our impact on the environment, it’s important to consider the sustainability of grocery delivery services. On one hand, having groceries delivered can reduce the number of individual car trips to the store, thus lowering emissions.

Some services use environmentally-friendly packaging and prioritize sourcing from local suppliers to reduce their carbon footprint. On the other hand, the increased use of packaging materials and the potential for food waste due to perishable items can negatively impact the environment.

Evaluating Your Personal Needs and Preferences

When determining whether grocery delivery services are worth the cost, it’s essential to take your personal needs and preferences into account. Factors such as your budget, lifestyle, location, and accessibility to local grocery stores will all play a role in your decision-making process. Take the time to evaluate your specific situation and weigh the pros and cons before deciding whether or not to use a grocery delivery service.

Goodbye Supermarket

Grocery delivery services can be a game-changer, offering unparalleled convenience, time-saving benefits, and access to a wide variety of products. However, the added costs and potential environmental impact must be taken into consideration when deciding if these services are the right choice for you.

Ultimately, it’s essential to evaluate your personal needs and preferences, and make an informed decision based on your unique circumstances. If you’re still on the fence, consider giving grocery delivery a try and see how it fits into your lifestyle. You might just find that the convenience and time-saving benefits outweigh the costs.

Christopher Brown