Getting Groceries Online for Free

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While living in Western Pennsylvania, I’ve been able to get groceries online for free. That is, my local supermarket, Giant Eagle, does not charge a fee for store pickup.

On the other hand, you can get your first grocery delivery from Giant Eagle for free with a coupon code. After that, though, you’ll pay $9.95 per order delivered. That’s similar to paying for Instacart.

However, other stores do not let you shop for groceries online and pick them up for free. I’m thinking about Hannaford supermarkets in New England as well as Stop and Shop stores. 

With Hannaford To Go pickup, you pay $3.99 for the convenience; Stop and Shop gives you your first 60 days of pickup free. After that you’ll pay $2.95 for each order

How to get groceries online for free

I realize that paying about $4 or $7 to get your groceries shopped for and then picked up isn’t life-changing money. However, it can add up.

Also, people are thinking about ways they can cut back, not only because grocery prices are skyrocketing. Therefore, I decided to revisit the topic of my article about how to place supermarket orders online.

However, this time around I’m focusing on grocery stores that let you place your order online for free and pickup for free. For example, I’m a big fan of Target Drive Up services.

The only challenge these days with Target Drive Up is stores in places that have banned single-use plastic bags. In these instances you will pay a bag fee for your order. But more about that in the section below about Target Drive Up.

drive up groceries online target

Now onto the list of stores and supermarkets that have online ordering for groceries and offer free pickup.

Albertson Family of Grocery Stores

Albertsons is the parent company of many supermarket brands.

Therefore, the free online grocery ordering and store pickup programs are the same. All are called Drive Up & Go.

Also, all the stores have the same coupon code for new users to save money on their first order. That is, you can get $30 off an order of $75 or more for Drive Up & Go when you use coupon code SAVE30.

Below is a list of supermarkets under the Albertson’s umbrella, including Albertson’s grocery stores. Then, each name links to the store’s page about how to order groceries online and get free store pickup.

Acme Markets

Albertson’s

Jewel-Osco

Randall’s

Safeway

Shaw’s

Star Market

Tom Thumb

Vons

first order of $75 or more. This offer is good through 1/12/24.

AmazonFresh

AmazonFresh has opened physical stores in nine states and territories. They are:

  • California
  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia
  • Washington, DC
  • Washington State

If you’re an Amazon Prime member, then you’ll get free store pickup when ordering groceries online. Also, you get free delivery in certain locations.

This store locator page on the Amazon website can help you find an Amazon Fresh location near you.

BJ’s curbside pickup

In order to get free pickup at BJ’s when shopping online, make sure you filter by the “Free Pickup” button on the BJ’s website. Then, you can feel confident that everything you add to the cart online will not incur a pickup fee. (BJ’s also offers same-day delivery, but that is not free.)

Cub Pickup

Order your Cub groceries online, spend at least $35 and pickup at the store is free.

Food City

Food City in Virginia and Kentucky offers online shopping and curbside pickup through the GoCart Curbside PickUp program. It is always free.

Fred Meyer

Here is how Fred Meyer describes its online shopping option with free pickup:

“Let us shop for you! Order online, choose a pickup time and we’ll pack your groceries into your vehicle when you arrive. Pickup is free on orders of $35 or more. SNAP EBT payments for pickup orders are now accepted.”

Giant Eagle free grocery pickup

When Giant Eagle first started offering its free grocery pickup service, from orders placed online, it was called Curbside Express. Now it’s just known as Curbside Pickup & Delivery.

However, the only free part of Giant Eagle Curbside is the pickup option. That’s when a Giant Eagle employee shops for you, and you drive up to the store to pick up your order. Again, this is free.

Giant Foods

Giant now offers free pickup with no order minimum for all customers. Plus, new customers get a special deal: Take $25 off a $100 order, plus free Giant pickup for 60 days. Use coupon code NEWTOGIANT.

Harris Teeter

At Harris Teeter pickup is free on orders of $35 or more. Also, SNAP EBT payments for pickup orders are now accepted.

Meijer

As long as you order at least $35 worth of groceries or other items online, your pickup at Meijer will be free.

Pick N Save

When you order $35 or more online at grocery store Pick N Save, you can pick up your order at the store for free.

Target Drive Up or store pickup

You can grocery shop on Target.com and choose either Drive Up or Pick Up in Store. You want to click on “Pickup and Delivery” in the top menu on the Target website.

Keep in mind there are states that have instituted bag fees. That is, they’ve banned the use of disposable plastic bags in stores. Therefore, the stores may charge a nominal fee for the bags they do use.

For example, when I’ve done Drive Up at Target in Maine, I get my order in reusable bags. I’ve paid five cents for each of those bags. I’ve seen these reusable bags in use in New York City, too.

target reusable bag

However, in order to avoid the five cents, you would want to choose Pick Up in Store. I’m told that if you go into the store for pickup and bring your own bags, Target will transfer the items to your bags and refund the bag fees.

FYI, Target will hold Drive Up and or Pick Up in Store orders for a max of three days. Usually, they’ll remind you through the Target app to come and get your order, especially if you have cold items that are taking up space in their refrigerators and freezers.

Walmart

Walmart grocery pickup is always free. This was the very first drive up service I ever used when ordering my groceries online.

Whole Foods

As you know, Amazon owns Whole Foods. Therefore, like with the Amazon Fresh stores mentioned earlier, Amazon Prime members get free online grocery ordering and store pickup at Whole Foods. Some stores offer curbside pickup; with other stores you’ll need to come into the store to get your grocery order.

Final thoughts on getting groceries online for free

There are so many grocery stores in the United States. I’ve done my best to cover the most popular brands.

On the other hand, keep in mind that if your local supermarket doesn’t appear in this list, it’s because they use a fee-based service for online orders and store pickups. Many stores, like Aldi and Wegmans, employ Instacart shoppers for this service. Because of that, picking up in stores is not free.

Finally, if you know for sure that your favorite grocery store or big box store that sells groceries offers free pickup–no subscription needed–please reach out and let me know. I’ll do my own research and then add the store to this article if I find the information I need to confirm this policy.

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