Stuck at Home Guide: Online Grocery Shopping

If you want to order groceries online, know that supermarket policies for delivery and pickup vary – wildly! Here are current policies for some major chains; pay on their website by credit or debit card. We chose to use a gallon of whole milk to use for price comparisons. 


  • Type your zipcode to see if delivery in your area is available; if so, click delivery.
  • Search by category (meat and seafood etc.), price, most popular, deals or brand, or type the item you want. 
  • Pick your delivery time. Delivery fees range from $3.95-$5.95, based on a 4-hour or 2-hour delivery window.
  • Members of Unlimited Delivery Club get free delivery for orders of $30 or more (join at $99/year or $14.99/month). 
  • Safeway Club Card members get discounts on many items (join free). In-house brands like Signature Farms and Signature Select also offer cheaper prices.
  • For free pickup, expect an email saying your order is ready. Curbside pickup is in the parking area.  
  • Gallon of whole milk (128 oz.): $4.18
  • Tip: To view more items in a horizontal row, click the arrow (puzzlingly) located in the middle of the item furthest to your right 


  • Membership is required, starting at $60/year.
  • Type your zipcode – product availability by area varies for same-day or 2-day delivery, normally. But lately, same-day means 5 or more days, and 2-day means 14 or more days, Costco warns. Expect an email with your delivery date. To cancel, click customer service. For faster delivery, use Instacart for Costco.
  • Search by category, like organic, canned and packaged, gourmet foods.
  • Free delivery for orders of $75 or more ($3/item if less).
  • In-house brand Kirkland Signature offers cheaper prices.
  • Whole milk (144 oz.) is $18.49 (18 cartons 8 oz. each, organic)
  • Tip: Calling results in “try your call later” or 50-minute wait times.

Trader Joe’s

  • No delivery or pickup.

Whole Foods Market

  • Membership in Amazon Prime is required (join at $119/year or $12.99/month).
  • Type your zipcode here to see if delivery in your area is available from Whole Foods or Amazon Fresh. Fresh offers brands not sold by Whole Foods, like Tyson, Nabisco etc., in addition to many grocery items.
  • If this is your first online order from Whole Foods, you need to sign up to request an invitation. If it comes, you can order. The wait time is unknown: Amazon says it invites new customers each week, and has scrapped the invitation in “many” cities. See here. 
  • Free 2-hour delivery for orders of over $35 ($4.99 if less). Lately, 2-hour may mean next-day.
  • Search by category, popular near you, deals or past purchases. “Hot bar” food isn’t available.
  • Whole Foods is known for high-quality organic and natural foods, but in-house brand 365 Everyday Value offers cheaper prices, and includes soups, stews, prepared foods and salads. 
  • Curbside pickup (or in-store if no dedicated parking lot).
  • Gallon of whole milk is $5.49 ($3.79 for 365).


  • This independent service offers delivery from over 350 retailers in 50 states, from Costco, Publix, Food Lion to Safeway, from an army of shoppers.
  • Free same-day delivery for orders $35 or more if you join Instacart Express ($99/year or $9.99/month, plus a 1.9% service fee). Non-members pay $3.99 plus a 5% service fee.
  • Some prices may be higher than in-store prices. 
  • Lately, same-day may mean next-day. To speed up delivery, pick “Fast and Flexible” to get the first available shopper.
  • Drivers are not allowed to bring groceries inside customers’ homes. 
  • Tip: To view more items in a horizontal row, click on the item furthest to your right, then click the arrow that appears.
Articles, Coronavirus, food, Online Shopping, Stuck-at-Home Guide

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