Shipt Review: How to Get Groceries Using Shipt
Grocery stores give me panic attacks. It turns out I'm not the only one.
In 2017 Shipt came to my city and I've been using it ever since. Here's how to use Shipt if you've never done it before, plus my review of the easiest way to get groceries delivered to your doorstep.
What is Shipt?
Founded in 2014, Shipt is a grocery delivery service that was purchased by Target in 2017.
Do I Need a Subscription?
Most of the time, to use Shipt, you'll need a subscription. They offer monthly and yearly subscriptions and which you choose will depend on how often you think you'll use the service. Monthly subscriptions are great for those who enjoy shopping but are perhaps recovering from surgery. Yearly subscriptions are the better option for those of us who don't like or don't have time to grocery shop.
Some Stores Offer Grocery Delivery or Grocery Pickup Through Shipt Without a Subscription
Stores like my local Meijer offer an alternative to a Shipt subscription - they'll let you shop directly through their own store website but your delivery or pickup will still be through a Shipt shopper. You'll pay a one-time delivery fee along with whatever amount you choose to tip your shopper. This option isn't available at all stores though.
How Much Does Shipt Cost?
You can choose a monthly subscription which is $14 a month.
The other subscription option is $99 for a full year, which comes out to a cost of $8.25 a month to use the service.
See the table below for a total breakdown of the costs associated with using Shipt.
How Much Does It Cost to Get Groceries Delivered Using Shipt?
Fee Per Month
Fee Per Delivery
Upcharge on Products
$14 for a monthly subscription, or $8.25 per month with a yearly subscription of $99.
Orders over $35 are delivered free, orders under $35 come with a charge of around $7.
There is a small upcharge on each product. For instance, the 2 for $1 chips at my local grocery store are 2 for $1.09 through Shipt. What I'm personally finding is that my orders come out to a few extra dollars than they would in store. Keep in mind though that you would also have to spend money getting to and from the store on gas.
Although you don't have to tip your shopper, hopefully you will. The app gives you an option to tip whatever you'd like once the order is completed.
Here's How to Use Shipt
- Sign up by either downloading the Shipt App from the app store or joining on their website.
- Choose a subscription option - either the monthly plan or the annual plan. You will need a credit card to pay for your subscription.
- Begin shopping by choosing the store you would like to shop at. The platform or app will show you which stores are available to shop in your area. In my city, we can choose from Meijer or Target.
- Once you've chosen your store, begin adding items to your cart. Use the filters to shop by category, or use the "search" option to look for specific items like meijer brand vitamin d gallon.
- As you add items to your cart you will have the option to specify your preferences. For instance, you may ask that you receive all green bananas or only a quarter pound of salami.
- Once you're done adding items to your cart you can check out. At the check out you'll choose your delivery time, whether or not it's okay to substitute any items the store is out of and if it's okay for your shopper to contact you with substitution options.
- You will use a credit card to complete your purchase. Your credit card will be temporarily charged percentage more than the total of your order. This is so that if your shopper does have to substitute with a more expensive item, your card has already been approved for this amount. If the total of your order turns out to be less than what you were charged you will see a refund to your credit card.
- Once your shopper has begun shopping your order, you will be notified.
- When you order is done being shopped you will be notified that your shopper is on their way to your house or whatever location you're at including work (or that you can meet them at the store if you've chosen the pick-up option available in some areas).
- If social distancing is being practiced you may be asked to wait inside your home until after your shopper has dropped off your groceries either on your porch or inside your garage. If it is not being practiced your shopper may bring your groceries right inside your home. It's best to contact Shipt regarding their current policies on this.
- Once your shopper has left you will get a notification to rate your experience and to tip your shopper.
What I Like About Shipt
- You don't have to drive anywhere
- The upcharge on items is actually pretty small and ends up being less than what most of us would spend on unnecessary purchases
- You can shop sales!
- You can shop store brand
- Saves time for other things you have to do (homework, yay...ish!)
- You're supporting flexible work options locally
- Makes it easy to meal-plan and avoid impulse purchases on less-than-healthy foods just because your tummy is rumbling or you need to get the hell out of that store
- You don't have to drag toddlers through the cookie aisle
- It's a fantastic option for the elderly, those who don't drive, working parents, or anyone who just doesn't feel like making a trip for groceries.
- It is a great way to practice social distancing
What I Don't Like About Shipt
- They will allow you to sign up for a subscription even if there aren't enough shoppers in your area to fulfill orders - an issue during holidays and pandemics
- You can't use coupons
- The selection isn't as big as the store selection (it's still huge though, honestly)
- If you're on a tight budget, the small markup on items could be more than you're willing to pay
- Pickup window is sometimes limited
- Like most corporations in the United States, Shipt isn't providing a livable wage or benefits for it's shoppers.
- Sometimes items aren't actually in stock, even when the app says they are
- Can't touch or inspect the product yourself before purchasing. I've learned to specify in my notes that I do not want dented cans.
Questions About Getting Groceries with Shipt
How long will it take me to get my groceries delivered?
Typically, you can order same-day delivery and then you'll be given a one hour window for when it will arrive. However, if groceries are in-demand, say around a holiday or you know, a global pandemic in which people suddenly feel the need to hoard fresh, raw chicken and ten clam shell containers of tomatoes then you may have to wait a day or more for delivery.
What can you buy with Shipt?
Almost anything that can be found in the stores that participate with Shipt in your area. In my city, we have Meijer and Target so I can get anything from a bottle of wine to last-minute birthday presents delivered to me. And of course, fresh groceries
So I can get alcohol delivered to my house?
With valid I.D., at participating stores, yes.
How many orders can I put in each month?
As many as you want.
Can I order from two stores in one day?
Yes, if there are available delivery times you can.
Questions About Payment
Do I have to tip my Shipt shopper?
Shipt doesn't require you to tip your shopper however, it wouldn't be very nice not to. Keep in mind that Shipt shoppers aren't paid a wage by Shipt. Although they make a small percentage off the total of your order (like, pennies off each item) they earn based off tips. If you don't tip your shopper they don't get paid to shop your order.
How do I add a tip?
There are two ways to add a tip when using Shipt:
- In the app. Open your Shipt app once your groceries have been delivered and a screen will pop up asking you to rate and review your shopper. Once you have, they will offer you the option to tip your shopper.
- On the website. Login to your Shipt account on the website once your groceries have been delivered. A screen will pop up asking you to rate and review your shopper and once you have you will have the option to tip. If this screen does not pop up just go to your previous orders tab, click the latest order and tip from there.
Does Shipt accept EBT, WIC or SNAP?
No, they do not.
Can I buy gift cards for Shipt?
No, Shipt doesn't offer gift cards.
Can I used gift cards to stores that participate with Shipt?
Can I use my Target RedCard with Shipt?
Yep! Target owns Shipt, you can use your RedCard along with any Target offers using Shipt.
Can I pay in cash with Shipt?
No. You have to use a credit or debit card to pay for your Shipt order.
Can I tip in cash?
No, you need to use the credit or debit card you have on file to tip your Shipt shopper.
Questions About Grocery Quality and Delivery
Help! I signed up for Shipt and now I can't put an order in because it says there's no available delivery times in my area! What do I do?
Honestly, I would cancel the subscription. When the service has available delivery times it's a great option. However, I have gone weeks at a time with no delivery options while still paying my subscription fee.
What if something I receive isn't the quality I would have picked for myself?
First, if you're really a stickler with your groceries, you should do your own grocery shopping. There have been times though where I've received out-of-date meat or freezer burnt items where I requested a refund through Shipt's customer service, usually via Facebook messenger.
Can I ask my shopper to use reusable grocery bags?
Probably not. For the sake of hygiene you'll most likely have to use the store's disposable bags but you could request paper bags only in the notes at checkout.
Will Shipt shoppers bring my groceries into my house and put them away for me?
It's unlikely. In the past they have but it will depend on the company's current social distancing policies.
Can I request a shopper?
You can't, but if you really like a particular shopper make sure to rate them highly in the app. In my experience it makes them more likely to be offered your orders, thus making them your repeat shopper.
Questions About Canceling Your Shipt Subscription
How do I cancel my Shipt subscription?
It's not easy. You can't just go in the app and cancel, unfortunately. Contact them via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (205) 502-2500 and be prepared to wait.
Questions About This Review/Existentialism
Necessary commentary based off of the 183652 comments I receive every night, condensed into a simple Q&A
Do you or have you ever worked for Shipt?
Are you related to someone who works at Shipt?
If you're not affiliated with Shipt then what's your game, what are you hiding?
Nothing. I told you that grocery stores give me panic attacks.
I think you're very lazy for using Shipt and not just grocery shopping on your own, wow. How should I go about telling you this?
Go ahead and leave it in the comments. I'll see it before I delete it.
Why are you lazy?
Because I'm tired.
Help! I'm ethically opposed to Shipt, what should I do?
Don't sign up for Shipt.
I'm having a hard day! Can I leave you nasty comments since this phone or computer I'm typing on gives me the illusion that you're not a real human being and it's cool for me to take out my anxiety and inner dysfunction on you?
Go for it. Life can be tough, and I'm sorry that you're having a difficult time. I ask that afterward you take a minute to check in with yourself and reflect on what's going on, inwardly so you can be kinder to the next person you encounter.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
When you use Shipt, do you get an actual receipt or an online receipt like you would if you use an app like Ibotta, etc.?
With Shipt, you receive two digital receipts: one for the total of your purchase and one for the total of your tip.
You'll also probably receive a physical receipt tucked into one of your grocery bags. This receipt isn't accurate though because it's the total of the items purchased NOT including any small upcharges on products.
For instance, at my local grocery store, Meijer, which uses Shipt for home delivery, I might pay $1.99 for a gallon of milk through Shipt, but at the store itself, it might be $1.79. I paid a twenty cent upcharge on this item to pay for the cost of the Shipt service.
Curiously, at Target I don't pay any upcharges. If a box of crayons is $5 in-store, then I pay $5 through Shipt as well. I'm assuming this is because Target now owns Shipt, so they don't need to upcharge their items since Shipt employees are also Target employees.Helpful 40
- Helpful 32
Can I use my Target REDcard when I shop with Shipt?
Yes! As of June 2019, you can use your Target REDcard when you place a Target order through Shipt. Here's how to do it:
1. Sign up for Shipt (if you're already signed up, skip this!)
2. Go to Target's main website (not the Shipt site)
3. Make sure you're logged in using your Target account
4. Once you're logged in, start shopping. You'll want to use the filters to choose "Free Same Day Shipping" so you're only shopping items offered at your local Target.
5. Check out as you normally would on the Target site. They'll automatically apply your REDcard discounts, as well as any other promotional offers before you confirm your check out.
That's it - I just did it and was able to use my usual 5% off plus whatever sales and promo codes were available. Nice!Helpful 7
My mother is elderly, it is challenging to squeeze time in my schedule to take her to the grocery store. Does Shipt accept EBT cards?
They do not, unfortunately. Caring for an elderly parent takes a lot of love and energy - do you have a local commission on aging or a caregiver respite program? Contacting one of these types of agencies might put you on the right path to finding help caring for your aging mother without burning yourself out so quickly. I have older family members who've been able to receive deeply discounted services through these resources, but it took some digging to find out they even existed.
A website called ElderCareDirectory.org is a good place to start for a list of services to look for in your state.Helpful 16
Is Target cheaper than Meijer?
It depends on what you're buying. For household items, brand name items (like Kraft and Annie's) as well as novelty items, Target is the cheaper option.
For dairy, meat and produce I find Meijer to be a higher quality/lower price.Helpful 15
© 2017 Kierstin Gunsberg