Delivery! Comparing ShopRite from Home and Price Chopper Shops4U

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ShopRite doesn't hold back on the bagging.

By Nicole Lemperle Correia

Supermarket Week is back on AOA. All this week we'll have posts comparing, thinking, and talking about supermarkets. Hey, we all have to eat.

I've been hearing a lot lately about home grocery delivery. The new Albany ShopRite offers home delivery, and the Westgate Price Chopper recently rolled out a similar service (and made sure we knew about it -- we received Price Chopper flyers advertising the service in the mail every day for weeks).

I've been intrigued by the idea. After my daughter was born last year many things changed within our family, including my work schedule and our income. I usually do each week's shopping on my Mondays off, with my one-year-old in tow. Sometimes this is awesome. Sometimes it means rushing through the store doing everything I can to stave off a toddler meltdown ("Here, hold this bag of beans. No no, don't eat the bag. Ok, now we have to give it to the lady to scan. She'll give it back! I promise!") And then there's the part where I do a circus routine to get the baby and the groceries in the house.

The idea of having someone else do the shopping -- and deliver the goods to my door -- is very appealing. So recently I gave each service a go.

Fees

Price Chopper Shops 4U charges a $10 service fee, which they were waiving through May 27. The delivery fee is $5.95.

ShopRite from Home offers free delivery for orders over $100, otherwise delivery is $6.95. There is no service fee.

See each store's site for information about delivery areas and schedules. Both chains cover a good portion of Albany and Schenectady counties via their locations in Niskayuna and Albany. The Albany ShopRite also delivers to parts of Rensselaer County.

Ordering

I placed grocery orders with each service over the weekend, to be delivered late in the day on Monday. I expected to compare the two ordering experiences, but it turns out both chains use the exact same grocery ordering system, so the experiences are nearly identical.

The ShopRite from Home landing page is very informative -- it lays out the home delivery program and fees, and gives a good overview. The Price Chopper Shops 4U page has fewer details but provides the information you need.

When you order through either service you are able to view the items on sale that week. You can view a PDF of the flyer from the store's home page, or view the sales as you search for items. (Be aware that sales for the day your groceries are delivered will be honored -- not the day you order. Sales generally run Sunday-Saturday). I really liked that you can easily compare unit prices across brands -- it was much easier in the online ordering system than doing so in the store.

That's one good thing for the budget-minded shopper. The downside to the online ordering is that you won't find the variety that you'll find in the store. I had trouble finding the store brand of certain items, so if you're the type who generally buys the generic store brand, the online ordering could be frustrating.

With both stores you must indicate whether substitutions are okay -- meaning that if the exact item you ordered is out of stock, the person filling the order may sub in a similar item. I said okay to subs.

Oh, and you must have a member card for both services, but if you don't have one they'll create an account for you and deliver the physical swiper cards. Since placing an order creates an online account for you, both systems allow you to save grocery lists, which is a nice feature.

You'll get an emailed confirmation of your order, and can call with changes or additions up until a couple hours before the scheduled delivery.

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Payment

Both stores offer pay-on-delivery via cash, check (with pre-approval), or credit card. ShopRite allows online payment, Price Chopper does not. I opted to pay both on delivery.

If you have coupons to present upon delivery, they will be validated and the credit applied on your next grocery order.

The Deliveries

ShopRite from Home

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I requested that my ShopRite order be delivered on Monday, May 7 between 3 and 5 pm. The delivery van showed up at 3:39 (minutes after I got my daughter down for her afternoon nap -- phew!). When I answered the door, the delivery man was there with a (free) bouquet of flowers and my groceries. Oh, my!

shoprite flowersHe asked where I'd like the groceries, and I had him bring them right into the kitchen (so awesome). He was extremely professional and friendly. He told me which were the perishables, and handed me three things:
+ A print out of the items in my order (substitutions noted).
+ The register receipt/coupons.
+ A delivery confirmation, to be signed in two places: confirming that the order was received in good condition, and another for authorizing my credit card to be charged. (There is also a spot for signatures relating to a pharmacy order, which I didn't have.)

Once all my groceries were inside and I had a chance to take a quick look to see that everything was there, he took out the credit card scanner and I paid.

All in all, a very pleasant experience.

The order

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Overall, I received exactly what I ordered.

Quality of produce was one of my biggest concerns. And to be honest, the quality was "eh." It wasn't horrible, but I don't think it was as good as what I would have picked out myself. The onion was a bit soft, the red pepper a bit wrinkly and sad looking.

Other than produce, the two issues I encountered relate more to the ordering system.

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I ordered decaf whole-bean coffee (we've gotten in the habit of mixing half decaf whole beans with half-caffeinated beans for our morning blend, so we always have a bag of each on hand). When I placed my order, I had selected a bag of decaf whole-bean coffee, but when it appeared on the list, it only showed up as "decaf coffee." I should have noticed that in my order confirmation, but I didn't. It's annoying that you can place an order for something but have it appear differently on the final list. The discrepancy wasn't the fault of the person filling the order, and we did get coffee, but it was ground, not whole bean.

The other problematic item was whole wheat English muffins -- another thing we're particular about. It's hard to find truly whole wheat English muffins that list "whole wheat" as the first ingredient -- Thomas' has them, and Price Chopper's Central Market brand carries them. I thought the brand I ordered from ShopRite was indeed whole wheat, because the detailed description/ingredients listed them as such. When they were delivered I realized that they weren't actually whole wheat. It's a nitpicky thing, but one of those things I'm always careful about checking for at the store, and a staple of our household diet. (We love our egg sandwiches in the morning, what can I say.)

Otherwise, everything was as ordered -- from the somewhat odd (Happy Baby Happymunchies in Organic Cheddar with Carrot) to the more run-of-the-mill (Part Skim Ricotta Cheese, Vintage Seltzer - Lemon Lime).

Update May 30, 2011: Nicole says ShopRite contacted her after seeing this post so it could deliver the correct coffee and a new, un-wrinkled pepper.

Price Chopper Shops 4U

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I scheduled the Price Chopper delivery for Monday, May 7, between 4 and 5:30 pm. It was a bit risky -- what if they showed up at the same time as ShopRite?? Awkward! Luckily, that didn't happen.

The Price Chopper van pulled up at 4:30. The delivery man came to the door with the credit card scanner, and requested payment before bringing any groceries in. Once I paid, he brought the bags to my front step, but didn't offer to bring them inside (he seemed a bit uncomfortable in the delivery role). He did, however, have roses. (What were the neighbors thinking? Two grocery deliveries within an hour, both men handing me flowers? Scandal!) So both stores are on board with the "free flowers with your first delivery." It's a nice touch, and a week later the bouquets still looked lovely.

The Price Chopper paperwork was less polished -- a hand-written form that was filled out by the person filling my order, noting substitutions (I actually liked this), and a card with the name of my personal shopper, plus the register receipt. Overall, the Price Chopper delivery experience just felt less professional. Not terribly so, but it was clear that they're new at this.

The Order

Earlier in the day I had received a call from Mary, my Price Chopper Personal Shopper (doesn't that sound hoity toity?). She had two questions: First, they were out of the Central Market whole wheat English muffins, but Thomas' were on sale -- buy one, get two free. Could she sub those? I said of course -- that was a great deal. Secondly, the Freihofer's whole wheat bread I'd ordered was also buy one get one, would I like the second one? Certainly -- somehow I missed that when ordering. This also gave me a chance to add milk to my order -- I hadn't noticed we were almost out when I placed the order.

Unfortunately, the English muffins were a fail again. I only received one package, despite being asked about the buy one/get two deal. And they were "Honey Wheat" -- not whole wheat. I purposely ordered these from each store because they are a staple that we are so particular about -- and didn't receive what I wanted in either case. The lesson there is that if there's something specific you are especially particular about, maybe you should just pick it up yourself rather than ordering it online.

I did, however, receive the two loaves of bread. I also received the milk that I added to the order at the last minute.

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The pepper from Price Chopper is on the left, ShopRite's wrinkly pepper is on the right.

Otherwise, the Price Chopper order was spot on. The produce was great -- the red pepper was large, and fresher than the pepper received from ShopRite.

Would I do it again?

The home delivery option is great to have. If there's a week that is particularly busy for my family I would certainly consider using it again. It would also be handy for something like a big event -- placing a large order for a big party or holiday, and having the groceries delivered would be very helpful.

Nothing was missed from my order with either service. In the future I would scrutinize the order confirmation and the way each item appears, and not just that it's there. I'd also shy away from ordering anything I hadn't bought at the store before, since I'm such a reader of labels and that information doesn't seem to be accurate in the online system.

I do think I spent more money than I would have if I were shopping in the store, even without the delivery fees. I comparison shop, I read labels, I shop the sales, and I stick to my list. Most of that is harder to do online, although maybe it would improve if you were ordering online every week. If you tend to fall into impulse buying, you might find that you spend less since you're spared the end-caps and checkout-line temptations.

An unexpected downside was the number of bags. I usually bring my own reusable bags to the grocery store. Aside from the environmental factor (and the small bag credit most stores are giving now), I prefer to avoid having loads of plastic bags shoved under the kitchen sink. If you have your groceries delivered, be prepared for a lot of bags. ShopRite double bags, paper inside plastic. That travels well and looks nice, but creates a lot of extra waste.

It's awesome to have delivery options in Albany, and further proof that competition is good for the local chains. And hey, two strangers handed me bouquets of flowers on a Monday afternoon -- I can't complain!

Nicole Correia attempts blogging at It's Loverly and can be found on Twitter as @nicorreia.

Comments

I used the Shoprite delivery service two weeks ago, and absolutely loved it. Sounds like we had very similar experiences, except that I was very pleased with the quality of my produce.

I had my groceries delivered around 9AM -- I wonder if the highest quality produce is picked through earlier in the day between fulfilling online orders and in-store shoppers.

Either way, very pleasant experience (I absolute loath grocery shopping if it isn't at Wegmans), and I will definitely continue to use their service.

This is really interesting. I'm probably too anal retentive in my shopping to turn it over to the store to do it for me, but it is a great concept for a certain market.

It would be neat if, in lieu of flowers for the first delivery, they'd bring everything in reusable bags. If you utilize the service regularly, you could exchange your old ones upon delivery.

While I like doing my own shopping (especially to pick out the produce), I can well imagine a scenario in the (somewhat distant)future when I'm really old and don't want to risk a fall on ice or drive in the snow to buy groceries. Services like this can help senior citizens stay in their homes longer and not be dependent on neighbors or relatives.

If you're a person who buys bulky, heavy things, home delivery is a godsend. (Liters of water? Cat litter? Both?) Also great for baking season -- no, I don't want to carry the ten pounds of butter, three bags of flour, etc. myself.

Hooray for both stores offering this new service! I'm sure as time goes on, both services will improve and hopefully, expand available items.

Yay!

I tried the Price Chopper service over the weekend. I'm pretty pregnant at the moment and it's getting harder for me to lift things. I thought it would be good to do a test-run in case I want to use this service when baby arrives.

I ordered online on Friday night. I was a little bummed out that some items were not available, for example a 5lb. bag of store-brand sugar. I chose "no substitutions" and requested delivery for 1-2:30 pm on Saturday.

I received a call at 10:30 on Saturday, saying that two items were unavailable, and would I like to add anything to my order. I really liked this part, because I realized I missed a few items in my initial order. I was also able to order items that were not available on the website.

When no order had arrived by 2:45, I called the store and was told that the driver had just left. I live 5-10 minutes from Westgate. The driver finally arrived at 3:45, an hour and 15 minutes after the scheduled time. The driver said that he had gotten lost. I explained that in addition to giving my address, I had included specific directions to my house in the "Special Instructions" section. Sure enough, those directions were on page 1 of his delivery sheet.

I had a coupon, so the driver had to call it in to the store. This took several minutes. There was something wrong with his card swiper. He swiped my card three times, even calling the store to have them direct him through the process. The swiper never did work, so he wrote down my card number. This took another 30 minutes.

By 4:30 pm, the transaction was complete. He brought my groceries into my kitchen, gave me some flowers, and said he's note on my account for them to send flowers again next time since it had been so much trouble. I felt bad for the guy. Most of the glitches didn't seem to be his fault. I considered not tipping him since I spent three and a half hours waiting for my groceries, but in the end, I tipped.

About 20 minutes later, the store called me to apologize for the inconvenience. They also told me they'd be sending me a gift card in the mail.

As for produce, I wasn't willing to give up that control. I ordered a small watermelon and 4lbs of potatoes; hard stuff that travels well. Both were just fine.

Overall, it wasn't so great, but I understand that it's a new service and sometimes sh*t happens. I appreciated that they acknowledged that it went poorly and offered some compensation even thought I didn't expect it. I will give it a second chance.

Interesting comparison!

Did you order anything frozen? Did it travel well?

So, the PC service is $16/delivery and the ShopRite is FREE for orders over $100?? That's a big difference.

Did you feel compelled to tip the delivery guy?

It seems like you'd have to shop this way often before it really felt like it saved you time...

I've been testing the Shoprite service, for pickup since they don't deliver down my way (Coxsackie), but I'm in the area once a week or so for other things. I'd have to give it a B- or maybe a C.

I've found their online shopping database to be out of sync with what the store shoppers can actually find. So, the first time they didn't have a lot of the items I wanted, and the substitutions they made were not really useable - for example, I ordered the sale brick of mozzarella, but the shopper said they didn't have any in 16 oz, and subbed a 12 oz. Only it wasn't a brick, it was grated, and had corn starch added - which I'm allergic to.

There was a lot of confusion initially about grated versus brick or wedge cheeses, which was better handled the next time I tried the service. I also don't buy much produce from Shoprite, as I get that locally. I'm going to give it one more shot, to see if the kinks are worked out, but given that I have to drive over there to pick up anyway, I may just spend the time shopping on my own. Too bad Amazon.com doesn't have more grocery options, that's the kind of online shopping experience I'd like to see.

If you regularly eat the Morningstar fake meats, Target is usually $1 cheaper than the grocery stores. And often on sale for $3/box.

Also, BJ's sells Morningstar veggie burgers, soy burgers, bean burgers, chik patties and round sausage patties for a better price - and often have a coupon in the in-store circular.

These are the junk foods of choice for my kidlets, so we do buy in bulk. :)

@cheapskate - I ordered frozen veggies from each along with a couple other frozen items- they were still very much frozen when they arrived, both services brought the frozen/cold items in insulated bags, and brought them to the door first.

@Wrigsmac- love the idea of the reusable bags. I'm sure there are logistics to consider, but it would be great if there were a way to avoid bags. I believe the 'Pea Pod' service offered by Shop & Save in Massachusetts just brings everything in large cooler bags and unloads them in your kitchen. That's another way to avoid the bag waste.

@abby - thanks for the Morningstar tip!

It's really interesting to hear everyone's experiences with these services. I certainly think the experience would improve the more you used it.

Update: ShopRite saw this post and gave me a call, asking if they could deliver the correct coffee and a new red pepper, free of charge. An hour later they showed up with a very nice pepper and the whole bean decaf coffee. Not bad.

Both the spouse and I detest the grocery store experience and have used the Shop-Rite service a couple of times with generally good results. Substitutions are usually Shop-Rite items which tend to be cheaper than the original items ordered and the final bill has been lower in both cases than the initial indication given online. Each time I have received one substitution that was definately not a valid sub but I can live with it since they were inexpensive items. Substituting pork sausage for the requested turkey sausage doesn't float in my house and neither does substituting smoked turkey tails for deli sliced smoked turkey. Who even knew they sold 6 packs of turkey tails (or that turkeys had tails!) I can find someone to take the pork sausage but the tails might be a different story.

Update: Reviewing my bank account statement this morning, I noticed that I was charged twice for my groceries by Price Chopper Shops 4U. I called, and they assured me they are crediting the amount for one of the charges back to my card. They apologized profusely and told me they would be sending another gift card to match the one they already sent.

I'm having second thoughts about giving them a second chance.

I used Shoprite delivery four times; two were great, two not so.

First two deliveries were on time, produce well selected, and cold cuts sliced thin as requested.

Third delivery was scheduled for between 7 pm and 9 pm. At 8:58 I received a call that some people had called in sick, and they would be unable to make my delivery until the next day. I was promised to be the first delivery in the 7 pm - 9 pm slot. At 8:15 the driver called, lost. Didn't bother to use the detailed directions I had provided. The bananas were delivered bruised - as if another package had been placed on top as they were stored somewhere for 24 hours awaiting delivery.

Forth delivery was scheduled for 9 am - 11 am. At 11:15 they called, again dealing with employees calling in sick. They would be making the delivery "soon". Driver arrived at 12:45. The two containers of ice cream I ordered were rather soft (the driver stated he had ice packs on top of the ice cream).

I now use the pick-up service, and am very satisfied with that. They do use many, many bags. Received a dozen eggs as the only item in one bag.

I have used ShopRite home delivery twice and LOVED it both times.

I find that it's easier to stay on budget with the online ordering system, as I truly stick to my list. I tend to be brand-loyal, so it's easy to use the search feature to find exactly what I want, rather than having to root around shelves and displays.

The delivery drivers were on time, extremely polite, and willing to put the bags wherever you want. The drivers are not allowed to receive tips. They only request that you call 1-800-ShopRite and report on their service; apparently, they get some kind of credit or gift card.

So not only is delivery free over $100 order (which, let's be honest, it's super easy to rack up $100 at the supermarket anyway), but it doesn't cost you any gas money or tip money!

In fact, the only issue I had was they switched my order of tomatoes (I'm going to chalk it up to an accident). I had ordered a 20 oz. container of roma tomatoes, and only a single tomato was delivered. However, when I called the store, they issued a $10 credit to my account to be used towards my next order. This credit was 4 times the amount of the original tomatoes I had ordered!

I share the concerns about the produce and the amount of bags that come with home delivery, and am a little leery of ordering fresh meat - the expiration date is often closer than I would have chosen myself - but in all, ShopRite home delivery is a great service.

Another update: I misread my account statement; I've actually been charged for my Price Chopper Shops 4U delivery THREE times. I have not yet been reimbursed for any of the charges. I have spent 7 hours dealing with the fallout, not including the time I will have to take off from my job tomorrow to deal with my bank and beg for them to waive my newly-incurred overdraft fees.

The Price Chopper financial office (the store referred me to headquarters as there was nothing more they could do) assures me that the charges will be refunded to my account. It has been 4 days since I reported the original overcharge, and no reimbursement has occured yet.

The financial office is hopeful that my money will be back in my account by Friday. If it's not, I've been instructed to call them back Friday afternoon. To their credit, they do admit that the overcharges were their error and are their responsibility to rectify.

I will definitely not use this service again, and would strongly caution others against using it.

I REALLY wanted Shop Rite's home delivery service to work but after trying EVERY week since it openned, today I had to give up. They can never deliver when they promise. And they do not communicate with you when there are problems. Tonight I received a call at 9:00PM saying they would not be able to deliver my order - scheduled for delivery between 7 - 9. I think we need to boycott this service until they get their problems solved. Now its 9:00pm on a Friday night and I have to go to the store - you can bet it won't be Shop Rite - so I can have food on the table tomorrow. There is so much potentional here, Shop Rite just can't execute.

Final Update: After a few more calls to PC financial office, all erroneous charges were rectified. And after a well-placed phone call by AoA Greg to Customer Relations on my behalf (Thanks Greg!!), I received a nice, fat gift card from PC. The woman I spoke to was a true professional and listened apologetically to my story.

I can't say I'll use the Shops 4U service again, but I am still a Chopper Shopper.

We just got our first delivery from Shop Rite - this service is amazing! I got everything I ordered and the delivery person was very professional and I loved that I didn't have to lug everything into my kitchen myself. I also loved the flowers!

The "glitches" were minor. They were one hour late but called beforehand to let me know, so it was no problem. And they had to substitute one item, but called and asked if it was OK since I'd opted for no substitutions. I felt like the communication was great and I will do this again for sure. Oh, and yes, they do use a lot of bags, but for me this is not a problem because we reuse those bags in our household.

I have been using ShopRite Shop-At-Home for about two months now. I LOVE IT. There have been a few glitches here and there, but if there are any problems with the order, the personal shopper will call and either make substitutions or better it. The quality of the produce has been great, but I did notice that the female shoppers tend to be better shoppers. I'm jealous about the flowers, I never received any with my first order :-( The delivery personnel have been excellent, offer to bring the groceries in, ask about coupons and always make sure the proper paperwork is delivered. I have not tried Price Chopper, but I am not impressed with that store anyway. My only complaint is also the amount of paper and plastic bags. They write your name on the paper bags, so its hard to recycle them, but wish they offered to take them back for the next week. But all in all - THANK YOU SHOPRITE !!!

I have used the ShopRite service for several months. At first, I was thrilled with the idea, the price, and the service. I raved about it to everyone I know, and posted multiple compliments on Facebook.

The honeymoon is OVER. For the last 4 orders, they have not been able to deliver on time. In one case, it was three hours late, in another, it was 24 HOURS late. So much for making my kids' lunches and getting dinner on the table that day. I thought picking up my order might be easier. The first time I did that, the order was supposed to be ready at 5 pm. It was ready at 6:20. I sat outside in the cold for over an hour!! I could have shopped for the entire order myself in the same amount of time, and saved a lot of frustration. When I expressed my dissatisfaction, they offered me a $10 credit on my next order. Lo and behold, they forgot to credit me the $10 on the next order, and then told me I would need to COME to the store in order to get my $10 credit. I have also had multiple errors with every single order.

I've had it. As soon as Price Chopper in my area begins deliveries, I'm getting a divorce. What a total let-down.

After several months of the pick-up service, I have mad a change in my process. After frequently receiving perishables with sell by dates I wouldn't pick up myself (meats with a sell by date of the date sold; milk with a sell by date three days in the future) I only get non-perishables from ShopRite.

As a bus commuter with no vehicle, home delivered groceries are a god send! I started out using ShopRite but quickly became disenchanted with their service. One, every single week they mwere out of multiple items that were advertised as on special. Even when I ordered for delivery on Monday with a new flyer out still many items not available. Felt very much like bait and switch. I also did not like that I was not allowed to tip the delivery guy - you have to call an 800# and they give them a free $5 lunch coupon, supposedly. I know what I'd like as a tip and cash is king! The worst part, though, and what really ended it for me was the quality of the shoprite brand. Horrible. Bread that looked like lace, thin and sheer, etc., etc. Most of the time, the deliveries were late, too.

Then I heard Price Chopper had home delivery! I'm so happy I went back to shopping Price Chopper - the quality of the store brand(s) simply cannot be beat, and it saves you so much $$! Orders arrive in an orderly and timely fashion, I'm thrilled to be a Price Chopper home delivery customer, never mind the fee!

I love Price Chopper delivery. My delivery person would not accept a tip (not allowed). I didn't receive flowers with my delivery so this may be new since competition now is with Shop Rite.
I love no lines in deli or check out.

I love ordering from home as you can go and check if you think you need something and not waste $$$ guessing at the store. Saves you time of loading and unloading and my delivery person comes in.

Even paying the delivery fee is worth it to me.

I have been using ShopRite online for about six months now and I am overall very pleased with the service. My one suggestion is to give it time if you use the service because you are dealing with many different people doing many different tasks at the supermarket and not all of them are 100% as efficient as you would like them to be.

For the most part, the shopper is accurate when he/she picks the items, they are all bagged in a logical manner with no overflow (love the paper inside the plastic!) and the delivery person has come right to the door and has gotten everything out in a seamless manner. Like I said...give it time and don't always go by one questionable experience. Sure, I have had shoppers pick the wrong apples and I have had drivers that were a little late, but overall, things are consistently good.

Just like when I used to shop at the store, I have had to estimate when is a good time to do my order. For example, I have found that ordering on Friday and getting the delivery on Saturday gives me the best chance to get all the items I want. On the other hand, ordering Thursday for Friday delivery left me with a bunch of items that are out of stock. Once again...not much different that the in-store experience.

Bottom line is that I love the convenience of staying home to shop groceries, I love the fact that I have a master list and a "recent purchases" list to choose from to speed up ordering, I am pleased that the prices are very similar to in-store prices, I like that they call before they leave the store to see about substitutions, and lastly, you can't beat the fact that the delivery fee is waived at only $100+ in orders!

I have been using Price Chopper's "Shops4U" and home delivery for nearly a year and recommend it. If you know of people who find it difficult to shop for themselves due to age or disability, please inform them of this service. I don't submit an order until I have over $100 worth of items listed and I have never been charged one dime for either the shopper's service or the delivery. The delivery people are not allowed to accept tips. They have always called me in advance if they were out of anything and have usually called me if the expiration date on a fresh product was too close. On these occasions, they always ask if I want to substitute something else and usually have alternatives to propose. The couple of times I called them after unpacking to let them know there was a mistake or an expiration date problem, they have not only eliminated the charge for the item but given me a $5 or $10 credit towards my next order. They carry the bags into my kitchen. They have always been on time. Frozen items are packed together in insulated containers, so they do arrive still frozen, including ice cream (if a tiny bit softened). Plus, they're all nice about it!

You can start an order and add to it at a later date or time as you think of things; the website will save your shopping cart until you are finally ready to place your order.

The downsides: (1) there are many items in the store that just do not appear on the on-line list of products available; (2) nothing beats browsing fresh produce yourself; (3) hot, just-cooked items like fried fish, rotisserie chickens, etc., cannot be ordered, even if you don't mind having to reheat them.

Glad this got a new comment as I was revisiting the food desert map and got curious. Does anyone know if there are any areas these services don't deliver to?

@B: It's easier to show where these Services deliver to by zip code.

Here's the Price Chopper link with where each store that offers Shops4U service delivers to. Just make sure you know you're zip code.

http://www.pricechopper.com/order_online/shops4u

ShopRite seems to have each store's delivery area on a separate page so here are the links:

Niskayuna Shoprite Delivery: http://www.shoprite.com/srfh_229/
Colonie Shoprite Delivery: http://www.shoprite.com/srfh_214/
Albany Shoprite Delivery: http://www.shoprite.com/srfh_232/
Slingerlands Shoprite Delivery: http://www.shoprite.com/srfh_230/

I've only ever used the pickup option, so I can't say how good delivery is, but both Price Chopper and Shoprite have called with substitutions although Shoprite tended to have more substitutions than Price Chopper so far.

I've been using the ShopRite home delivery for a while now and it's great, but I guess not without some problems. If you have anything slightly unusual produce wise they're liable to screw it up. Still, since I don't have a car it's a godsend and the delivery people are always very polite and efficient. Haven't used the Price Chopper service so I can't compare. I do prefer to support ShopRite since it's a union shop.

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Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

Today's moment of summer

Bzzzzzz.... (more)

Living in the "unhappy" belt

Are you happy living here? Would you be happier if you lived somewhere else? The Albany area ranks #142 out of 318 metro areas in... (more)

So, it's not really tiny films?

The Cuomo admin announced Wednesday that a film production company based at Central New York Hub for Emerging Nano Industries ("the new nano film hub"... (more)

What's up in the Neighborhood

Among the topics in this most recent spin around the Capital Region's online neighborhood: riding through the night, the Johns Brook Lodge, the Catskills, a... (more)

Rensselaerville Festival of Writers 2014

The annual Rensselaerville Festival of Writers returns August 15-17 in (surprise) Rensselaerville. Among the lineup of authors for this year's festival: Elisa Albert, Shin Yu... (more)

Recent Comments

... It's heartening to see that the neighborhood is seeing early stages of revival - I think a lot of cities are starting to realize the potential and charm of historic warehouse and factory buildings. I'm sort of conflicted because although I want to see them all saved, I like the sort of gritty time-worn quality of peeling paint, dirty brick, and faded signage...

Cherry Plain State Park

...has 8 comments, most recently from Carl

What's up in the Neighborhood

...has 2 comments, most recently from Carl

Albany's oldest buildings

...has 2 comments, most recently from Peter leue

Remembering Friday nights in Troy

...has 9 comments, most recently from Nicole

Morning Blend for Jul 30

...has 1 comment, most recently from Chris