Grocery shopping at Whole Foods Market can make even the most zen person freak out. You can never find a spot in the parking lot; the store itself is always packed after work, and the ransacked aisles and lines that stretch for miles are enough to make you want to scream. That’s why many of us took a deep, cleansing breath when we discovered we could have Whole Foods groceries delivered via AmazonFresh. But it’s not the most intuitive service on the web. Here’s the lowdown on how much it costs, what products are available, and if it’s really worth it.
First off, this isn’t quite like Instacart where you can “add to cart” anything that’s available in stores. With AmazonFresh, there’s a limited selection of 365 (Whole Foods’ affordable, in-house brand) items offered, and that doesn’t include fresh poultry, meat, seafood, artisanal cheese, fruit, flowers, and alcohol. You can choose from a healthy selection of frozen food, deli meats, baking goods, beverages, packaged produce, dairy, baked goods, snack foods, and even household items.
Also, not everyone can get on the convenience. Currently, it’s only available in Seattle, Northern California, Southern California, New York, and Philadelphia.
To take part, you have to be a member of AmazonFresh, meaning you shell out $15 a month (after the first free month) for the subscription. To receive free delivery, you have to spend at least $50, otherwise Amazon tacks on a $10 delivery fee.
The product prices are all reasonable, ranging from as little as 59 cents for a fruit strip to as much as 20 bucks for a really nice bottle of olive oil. If you live in a city and don’t have a car, order bigger, bulkier, heavier items, like canned goods, bottles of oil and vinegar, and nuts.
A potential downside of ordering Whole Foods on AmazonFresh is it’s not really ideal for spontaneous grocery shopping. After you place your order, you can select a delivery window for the following day as either a doorstep drop-off or in-person hand-off. Attended deliveries are available in two-hour windows from 7am to 8pm. Doorstep deliveries can be from 5am to 8am, 8am to 12pm, 2pm to 6pm, or 6pm to 8pm.
prime now versus amazonfresh
Amazon offers another way to get groceries delivered via Prime Now, exclusive to its Prime members in Atlanta, Austin, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and Virginia Beach. Of course, that’s for now. Amazon has plans to expand to more cities through 2018.
With Prime Now, your grocery options are expanded to fresh and organic produce, bakery, dairy, meat, seafood, floral, and everyday staples from Whole Foods Market. If you are in the Sacramento or San Diego area, you can even stock up on bottles of wine since some alcohol is available for delivery.
Delivery options are way better too. To qualify for a free delivery under two hours, the Prime Now order needs to be at least $35, with a delivery window of 8am to 10pm. You can even opt for a quick one-hour delivery for carts that are $35 or more for $8.
Ultimately, Prime Now is better for Prime account holders who need something ASAP and can’t get to the store, whereas AmazonFresh makes sense if you don’t have a Prime membership, live in a city, don’t have a car, and need a way to get heavier items to your apartment without throwing out your back lugging your haul.
What has your experience been with AmazonFresh/Whole Foods? Let us know @BritandCo!
(Image via Smith Collection / Gado / Getty Images and Amazon)