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Instacart

Is Having Groceries Delivered Worth The Cost?

If you live in a big city, chances are there's a way to have your groceries delivered to your doorstep. But is the added cost worth it?

By Ben Lawson | November 25, 2015

Grocery shopping can be a drag, especially before Thanksgiving. So wouldn't it be easier if there was someone to do it for you? 

Well, luckily, if you live in a major city area there might be some services that can shop for you. What a time to be alive.

There are startups like Instacart and major companies like Google and Amazon that have their own services. But just how cost effective are they?

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Well, if you aren’t a Prime member, Amazon charges a $299 annual fee. That’s about $25 a month, so it's a bit costly to avoid going to the store using this service. (Video via Amazon

Google’s service is much cheaper at $10 a month or $95 if you pay for a whole year. But it's restricted to certain stores and its selection is a bit more limited. It does have partnerships with retailers like Toys R Us and Barnes & Noble, so it could make Christmas shopping a bit simpler, too.

Then there's Instacart. Think Uber but with food. The company employs a staff of personal shoppers and each order has a $3.99 delivery fee. You can pay the base fee and get your order in two hours or pay $5.99 and get it in one hour.

Although, Instacart does mark up some individual items. Some could be the same as the in store price, but a Wall Street Journal reporter saw some items marked up more than $1. 

None of these services are available everywhere yet. So you will have to check online to see if one of them covers your area. 

And if you can't wait, many local stores have services that offer a middle ground between being cheap and lazy. Hy-Vee, for example, offers online ordering with curbside pickup for just a few bucks. (Video via Hy-Vee)

Wal-Mart is also testing out a curbside pickup program without the extra cost. Here’s hoping they roll that out everywhere sometime soon. 

Of course, the cheapest way to get your groceries will always be to go to the store yourself. Although, sometimes the convenience could be worth it. 

This video includes images from Getty Images.

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