A few days ago, I decided to try the Amazon Fresh delivery service.
I am glad that I did.
I’ve been a member of Amazon Prime (affiliate link) for quite some time now, and I really enjoy using Prime. While Prime has so much to offer, I keep the service for the television shows and movies–and the free shipping and faster product delivery.
My thinking was that Amazon is so good at delivery, the company’s grocery delivery service must be outstanding too. Plus, Amazon bought and now owns Whole Foods so it seemed that the delivered items would be local, fresh, and of good quality.
That seems like a winning combination to me.
It’s worth noting that Amazon Fresh offers next-day and even same-day deliveries, and deliveries over $50 are free.
Signing Up for Fresh Was Easy
I already had the Amazon Prime application installed on my Android-based smartphone. So, I opened the app and navigated to the Amazon Fresh part of the app. I clicked a button that allowed me to sign up for Amazon Fresh with a free trial.
Amazon Fresh is only available to members of the Prime service–and Fresh is only available in select cities.
Prime costs $12.99 per month, and there’s an additional $14.99 monthly fee for Fresh. Therefore, after my trial ends, the two services together will cost me $27.98 per month.
Amazon already had my sign-up information from Prime (i.e., name, contact, and billing info). Therefore, the sign-up process was super fast; I just clicked the option to join Fresh. Of course, if you don’t already have Prime, there would be more steps in the sign-up process for you.
Ordering Groceries on Fresh
Using the Amazon mobile app, I browsed several Fresh food categories. The app is very user friendly, and it was fun browsing and searching for items to add to my Fresh cart.
I encountered a bit of a problem though.
After making my selections, I went to my Fresh shopping cart to checkout. However, when I tried to proceed to checkout, the button did not work. I refreshed the page and tried multiple times, with no luck. I did a Google search and found that other people have encountered that problem too.
I decided to try it from my computer.
I accessed Fresh with my laptop, and I was happy to see that the food I selected was still in my shopping cart. I was relieved, because I did not want to have to search for and select my desired items all over again.
I went to the shopping cart, and this time the proceed-to-checkout button worked.
Here is what I ordered:
- Cheez-It Crackers
- Ore-Ida Crispy Crowns (30 oz.)
- 365 Basil Pesto
- La Brea Take & Bake French Baguette (Twin Pack)
- 365 Sharp Cheddar Bar
- One bunch of Bananas
- 1lb of Perdue Lean Ground Turkey (ordered 2)
- Kettle Potato Chips with Sea Salt
- Lindt 70% Cocoa Bar
- 1 lb of 85% Lean Ground Beef
- One Large Organic Avocado
- Ore-Ida Tater Tots (32 oz.)
- 12 oz. Bag of AmazonFresh Columbia Ground Coffee
- 362 Florida Orange Juice
The subtotal for the groceries that I ordered was $53.91, and the tax was $0.30.
I should point out that Amazon automatically added an optional $5.00 tip, so my total came to $59.21.
Groceries Delivered to my Doorstep
During the checkout process, I was given the option of choosing my desired day and time of delivery. There wasn’t an available time slot for same-day delivery, but I chose to have the groceries delivered the next day (Valentine’s Day) in the afternoon.
I received a timely delivery; in fact, I believe my groceries were delivered early.
Someone from Amazon Fresh delivered the items directly to my doorstep, and I live in a high-rise building with a doorman.
The groceries were delivered in 4 bags: two insulated totes, and two brown paper bags. Everything was neatly packed in the bags.
I liked that frozen and cold items were in the insulated bags that included packets of dry ice and even three frozen water bottles (which I did not order).
My Thoughts on Amazon Fresh
I live in New York City. More specifically, I live in Harlem, a community in upper Manhattan. There is a Whole Foods store only 10 blocks from my home. I presume the groceries that I ordered came from that location. I can walk to that Whole Foods, and I have shopped there many times.
In addition, there are two grocery stores on my block–and several bodegas in my neighborhood.
So, why would I think about using Amazon Fresh?
I found the whole experience to be great. I don’t like shopping in grocery stores that much, especially when there are long lines. Since I get around by walking or the subway, I may put off going to the store when it is raining, snowing, or very cold.
It is very convenient to leisurely shop for groceries within the comfort of my home, set a delivery time that is convenient to me, and then have the groceries delivered to my doorstep.
However, there are a couple of questions that I have to consider:
1. Does the convenience of ordering groceries via a device and having the items delivered to my doorstep justify the Amazon Fresh add-on fee (and tip)?
I was definitely pleased with my first Amazon Fresh delivery. However, I am not sure how long I will use the Fresh service due to the added monthly cost.
I plan to keep my Prime membership, but the extra $14.99 per month may be a bit too much for me–especially if, as discussed below, I can get most of the items I want delivered via Amazon Prime Now without that added monthly expense.
2. Why should I pay the “add-on” monthly fee for Fresh when the Amazon Prime Now service (which provides free food delivery) does not charge a monthly fee to Prime members?
Amazon has two grocery delivery services: Amazon Fresh and Amazon Prime Now. You have to check to see which of these services, if any, is available where you live. It turns out that both services are offered where I live.
Let me delve into how the services differ, below.
Differences Between Fresh and Prime Now
As I understand it, there is no monthly fee for Amazon Prime Now, and the service offers two-hour deliveries. A two-hour delivery is free for orders over $35, and it costs $4.99 for orders under $35.
With Fresh your groceries are delivered in temperature-controlled bags directly to your doorstep within your scheduled window of time. As I understand it, Prime Now does not deliver to your doorstep and the food is delivered in regular paper bags.
With Fresh, you can choose an “Attended Delivery” where your groceries are delivered within a one-hour window, or you can select a “Doorstep Delivery” where your items are delivered to your doorstep. With either option, shipping is free for orders over $35!
Prime Now has a selection of thousands of grocery items (and you can order household items and food from restaurants), Fresh has a significantly wider selection of groceries.
These are the differences between the two grocery delivery services–at least as I currently understand them.
Next, Trying Amazon Prime Now
Now that I have received one delivery from Amazon Fresh and experienced how the process works, I plan to try Prime Now. I’m looking forward to experiencing what is like to shop for groceries using Prime Now.
In fact, there were a couple items that I forgot to order when I placed my order with Fresh. I am going to order those and other items on Prime Now, and I plan to write a follow-up blog post about the experience.