I hate grocery shopping. There, I said it. Between dealing with the crowds and lugging groceries home from the store, I find little to like about the experience. My dislike for grocery shopping only got worse when I moved to New York and ditched my car with my parents. Who wants to either lug around bags and bags of groceries on the train or go shopping every day to get one bag at a time? I want to do neither of those things, which is exactly why I don't. Instead, I put all my time, money, and energy into doing my grocery shopping on Amazon Prime Now.
Amazon Prime Now is an extension of Amazon Prime, which costs $99 per year, but you get a whole host of things included in that price. My favorite feature of Amazon Prime is actually Prime Now, because it allows me to do my grocery shopping from home and have everything brought to my door. It works very similarly to how Instacart does except that it's membership-based, and since so many people already have Amazon Prime, it's a smart way to get your groceries quickly and easily at no additional cost. Here's the lowdown on it.
- You don't have to leave home: Or wherever you are when you order. You can use the Amazon Prime Now app or shop online, which means you can do it from work, from your friend's house, from the car. I ordered groceries from the app while my dad was driving me back to my apartment from my parents' house in Ohio one time so that my groceries would meet me there when I arrived.
- There's a variety of stores: Like Instacart, Amazon Prime Now offers a variety of stores to shop from based on where you live, in addition to shopping from the Amazon warehouse. In my last neighborhood, I had two additional markets to choose from, as well as a wine shop.
- There's a huge amount of food in stock: It's rare for me to struggle to find what I'm looking for when grocery shopping on Prime Now. The stock is massive, which is no surprise for a place like Amazon. I can also quickly order kitchen tools if I need them too.
- The app saves all your info: What's amazing when I log into the app is that it shows me my most frequently purchased items so I can quickly buy them again. Yes, I absolutely do want to purchase bacon every single time I shop, thanks for asking, Amazon.
- Delivery is free: Free is one of my favorite words. There's a minimum spend amount to cross into free delivery, but for me it's only $20, which is pretty easy to do.
- It's included with Amazon Prime: I recently told a handful of friends about Prime Now and they had no idea it was included with your Prime membership, but it is! It comes as no extra cost on top of what you pay for Prime.
- Delivery is quick and frequent: I can almost always get my groceries delivered within three hours of ordering if I want to. And even better, in my area, Amazon delivers from 6 a.m. to midnight, so even if I need ice cream and it's 8 p.m. and I'm lazy, I can get it delivered by midnight and not have to go anywhere.
- You always have to spend the minimum: For me, the minimum is $20, which is fine if I'm ordering groceries, however, if I need two small things that only total $10, I either have to find more things to buy or just run to the store myself. Amazon doesn't give you the option to pay a delivery fee for a purchase under the threshold.
- The stock is inconsistent: Not that it's a big deal, but the stock changes every time I order something, so I can't always get what I want. There might be oranges in stock one minute and completely gone the next, you just never know.
- I don't actually know where the food comes from: When ordering directly from Amazon and not one of the local markets, I'm not actually told where specifically my food is coming from. My best guess is that it's an Amazon warehouse of sorts with no specific affiliation, which is fine by me because I've never had problems, but some people like to know where there food comes from.
- There aren't a lot of specialty items: Some things that are difficult to find on Prime Now are specialty-diet items, like gluten-free or low-calorie foods like you'd see at a place like Whole Foods. While Prime Now is great for staples, if you want anything super specific, you might be better off at an actual grocery store — unless one of the markets on Prime Now has what you need, which is a definite possibility!
- You can't mix and match your list across the stores: Yes, there is a minimum purchase price for delivery, but it is separate for each store on Prime Now. By that I mean that you can't order a total of $20 from Amazon and a market. You'd have to spend $20 in each store for them to deliver. I generally stick to just one store and get everything there.
- Produce is tricky: Some of my delivery people are a bit rough on my grocery bags and my produce arrives damaged. This is something you have to be willing to accept when ordering delivery because not everyone will be as gentle with you things as you are yourself.
- You get bags galore: This could be a plus or a minus, but for people who don't like waste, you probably won't like how Amazon bags the groceries. Sometimes I order three things from three departments and it'll arrive in three bags. Luckily I usually reuse the bags for something, but it tends to be a bit wasteful.