I am one of those rare people who actually enjoys grocery shopping. Therefore, I had never tried a grocery delivery service. Recently, though, a number of my friends sung the praises of a company called Instacart, so I had to investigate.
Unlike other services, like Peapod, that deliver groceries from its own warehouse, Instacart is a personal grocery shopping service that staffs shoppers who personally pick out your groceries at your favorite local stores. These personal shoppers have all previously undergone background checks, and have passed in-person and video training. The shoppers are dispatched to local grocery stores of your choosing and personally pick out your groceries based upon your order that is placed on Instacart’s website or mobile app.
All you do is sign up for an account online and enter your zip code. A selection of local grocery stores then appear that you can choose from. And, you are not just limited to ordering from one store, You can order from as many as you’d like! Prefer your produce to come from Whole Foods and your frozen items to come from Jewel? No problem! Personal shoppers will go to each store for you and pick out exactly what you want.
Like your avocado’s ripe, your bananas perfectly yellow, and your almonds raw, unsalted, and from the bulk bins? Just make a note and your personal shopper will expertly pick them out. And, if something is currently out of stock or the options do not look good, your personal shopper will call and let you know. When the organic gala apples I ordered did not look good in person, my shopper called to let me know and asked if I wanted something different. How great is that?!?
Deliveries are made within a one-hour window of your choosing, and you will be notified via text message when your groceries are on their way. You can even track your shopper’s whereabouts on the Instacart website!
Items can be selected in a number of ways. Either search for your favorite groceries by name or type, or select your favorite store. Items are then separated into categories, such as produce, meats & seafood, deli, bakery, and beverages. You can even search by pre-made lists or recipes.
I ordered from three different grocery stores. Once my selections were made, I was able to select a one-hour delivery window for each of the three stores I ordered from that best suited my schedule. I chose the same window for each store so that I could receive my groceries around the same time. A different shopper went to each store, and, therefore, I had three different deliveries. I received a notice via text message when my groceries were on their way and the time at which I could expect them to be delivered.
When the groceries arrived, each shopper was incredibly friendly and professional. Gratuity is optional, and can either be included in your online order when you checkout, given to the driver in person, or made online after the order is delivered so that you can have a chance to review the delivery. I chose to tip each driver in person when the order was delivered.
Each of the three orders were delivered within my chosen one-hour window, were exactly correct, and all of the items, even the fruit and vegetables, were perfectly chosen.
In addition to Chicago, Instacart is currently serving Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Denver, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., areas. They are expanding quickly, so if you are not served right now, you may be very soon.
I was so pleased with my experience that I want to offer all of you a coupon to Instacart! If you use the coupon code “Chritiques” at check out, you will receive $10 off your order, and free delivery for orders over $35!
Instacart is perfect for busy professionals, for new parents, or for anyone that simply dislikes grocery shopping. I will definitely be using it on those rainy or cold winter days. Have you tried Instacart? Let me know what you think!
I was offered a complimentary Instacart service in order to facilitate this Chritique. As with all Chritiques, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Chritiques.