Do Grocery Pickup Services Actually Save You Money?

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How often have you been in the midst of a busy week and went into the kitchen for a quick bite, only to find that there are no quick bites left.  You’ve got ingredients, but even those are getting slim.  What can you make with a bag of flour and a bottle of thousand island dressing…?

You think over the next couple of days to figure out when you can get to the store.  Getting enough food to last a week is a time investment you can’t afford right now.

Related: 15 Reasons You Have No Time to Relax and Have Fun

Do Grocery Pickup Services Actually Save You Money?

This post was written by our staff writer, Jamie Jeffers.

Have you heard about grocery pickup or delivery services?  It’s a convenient way to get groceries without wandering through the store for an hour.  But do grocery pickup services actually save you money?  

Life isn’t one size fits all, so it’s probably not right for everyone.  But let’s look at some different situations to see if a grocery pickup service can save you money.

grocery pickup services actually save you moneyConvenience!

If you don’t have the time to shop, but you can put together a list of things you need online while you’re waiting in line somewhere, this might be the right service for you.  At most stores, you’ll pull into a designated parking spot and call a number.  They bring your groceries to your car and  have you pay in the parking lot.  You never have to leave your car.

Some stores even have an option to bring the food right to your home!

Because of that, this service is perfect for many people including (but not limited to):

  • Busy people
  • Pregnant Moms (I would have kissed the feet of the man who brought this to our store during any of my 5 pregnancies!)
  • Injured or ill people (Just don’t breathe on the workers!)
  • Introverts
  • Parents tired of their toddler getting lost or their kids throwing extra things in the cart.

Pros

Here are some of the ways you can save money by using a grocery pickup service.

1) You’ll avoid pricey fast food.  

Yeah, I can pick up $5 hot and ready pizzas…but in the same amount of time I can order several frozen pizzas to have in the freezer whenever I need them (at half the price).  

2) No impulse shopping.  

Come on, you know you can’t resist that box of donuts that beckons you as you walk past.  Hey, this might help your diet, too!

3) You can still use your digital coupons.  

In fact, if you’re going to the website to do some shopping anyway, you’re more likely to remember to load them to your card.

And here’s a hint…the website might say they discourage the use of paper coupons, but no one has ever batted an eye when I hand them coupons.  And I don’t think it takes any longer to use them (unless you’ve got a huge pile).

4) Because you can add to the list until midnight, you have the chance to go back and add those items you had forgotten.  

That means fewer runs back to the store for one more thing.

And, f you like to menu plan (and if you’re a saver, you should definitely be menu planning!), creating this list will be even more simple.  You’ll just change tabs from your recipe to your shopping list and it’ll be done in a flash.

Cons

1) Most stores charge a modest fee for this convenience.  

It isn’t much if you’re buying a lot of groceries, but it would make your gallon of milk a little too expensive.

2) If you like to shop the clearance shelves or search for extra bargains as you roam the aisles, you’ll miss out on that.

There’s no way to shop clearance on most online grocery sites.

3) Are you just a little Type A?  There’s a place to leave notes to tell them you want your bananas slightly green or that you want the heaviest chicken they can find.  

But in the end, you’re still at the mercy of someone else doing your shopping.  This service probably isn’t for micromanagers.

4) If you need to read labels for someone with an allergy, intolerance, or even for a diet, online shopping won’t work for you.

5) This store most likely has higher prices than the discount store up the road

There may not be that much of an up-charge for picking up your online order at THAT store, but it’s because the prices there are a little on the high side in the first place. If you’re concerned about the dollars on each individual product, then the online order option probably isn’t for you.

What’s your shopping personality?

As you can see, the grocery pickup services aren’t for everyone.  If you’re the type that gives up easily and grabs fast food, this could save you a bundle.  Just choose a day each week to schedule your next grocery run and it’s as easy as letting someone else load the food for you.

If you’re going to throw away produce because someone else chose misshapen fruit, this service won’t save you as much.

But if you’re in a season of life that makes grocery shopping a burden, then this service is well worth it, no matter what your shopping personality is!

Have you ever used any of the grocery pickup services?  What was your experience with it?

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2 comments to Do Grocery Pickup Services Actually Save You Money?

  • While I don’t use a grocery pick-up fee… I do go one step further and use a grocery delivery fee. Between Google Express (for dry goods and bulk purchases from Costco) and Shipt (most other shopping including produce, etc from a local chain), a majority of my shopping is conducted online.

    It is a little bit more expensive and I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone, but I really enjoy the service. As a full time working mom, my evening and weekend time is precious. I want to spend time with our son on activities… not on battling weekend crowds in big box stores. Plus, I hate shopping, so this service really does make me life more enjoyable!

    And even with someone picking out my food, I have yet to have a bad experience with one of the Shipt shoppers. They have been helpful, checking in with me for alternates when an item isn’t stocked and picking good produce 🙂

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