Amazon Fresh

My household decided to check out the free trial of Amazon’s new grocery delivery service: Amazon Fresh. To me, the idea was very appealing: no more wasted time in traffic or in the grocery store.

Here’s how it works: You order your groceries online and schedule a window of time when you’d like them to be delivered. They arrive in insulated cooler bags, some with ice packs and some with dry ice to keep the contents cool. You throw away the ice packs and let the dry ice evaporate (careful, don’t touch!), and the next time the delivery person comes back (who, in our case, was with the USPS) you give the cooler bags back to them to return to Amazon.

The Pros:

  • Convenience. I hate traffic, and I hate errands, and I want get through both as quickly as possible. Amazon Fresh delivers to your front door, which is even more convenient than if you lived across the street from the grocery store.
  • Produce is actually pretty high quality. Whoever is picking out the apples and tomatoes does a great job!

The Cons:

  • The cost is pretty high. On top of having to first be an Amazon Prime subscriber (which we already are and which costs $99 a year–well worth it for the free shipping for most of our shipments), for Fresh you pay an additional $200 for a year-long subscription. So if you’re already a Prime member, you will essentially be paying an additional $16 a month just for the service of Fresh. This doesn’t include the groceries themselves nor delivery fees for orders less than $50.
  • Some of the items themselves cost more than what we could pay for them in the grocery store.
  • They don’t carry some of the specific products we use regularly, so we’d have to go to a regular store anyway, but that might not be a problem for some.

Our ultimate decision after our free trial period was to cancel before getting roped in to a year-long subscription. For us the cost was just too high for the amount of convenience it offered. But I can see how someone with a bit more expendable income and a lot more demands on their time and energy would really benefit from a service like Amazon Fresh.

Give us a few years, Fresh, and perhaps we’ll be back.