How Does GoPuff Work: A Review

I’d never experienced how GoPuff works until I was staying with my daughter in Pittsburgh. She was recovering from knee surgery and needed medicine.

However, because it wasn’t safe to leave her alone, I couldn’t just run out to the store. That’s when she suggested we use GoPuff.

What is GoPuff?

I’d heard both of my college-aged daughters mention GoPuff in the past. What is GoPuff? Well, to me, it was always a service that they could use when they were wanting snacks while studying but being too lazy to get it themselves.

So, they would fire up the GoPuff app, order what they wanted and, usually, within an hour, they’d have their GoPuff order in hand. This was primarily in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where my youngest attended Lehigh University.

However, since then, I’ve learned that GoPuff is much, much more than just a snack-delivery service.

With regards to her medicine, we’re talking OTC or over the counter stuff like Advil and Tylenol. She knew that GoPuff would not pick up prescription items from the pharmacy. But they could get her the over the counter meds she needed.

Anyway, she hadn’t stocked up on those pain relievers before surgery. So, GoPuff to the rescue. That’s the chart I created to keep track of when she’d taken her medicine after surgery.

Unfortunately, GoPuff isn’t available where I live in Maine. Therefore, in writing this article about how GoPuff works, I’ve recounted my experience using it while my daughter recovered. And I’ve used my daughters’ firsthand experiences.

How does GoPuff work

I grabbed this explanation of how GoPuff works from its website.

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“Whether you need Tylenol, that one ingredient you didn’t realize you were missing until halfway through cooking dinner, your visiting friend’s favorite beer, or one of the other 4,000 products we stock across hundreds of locations, we’ll get it to you within minutes, all at the press of a button.

“Create an account using the Gopuff app or online at, add everything you need to your cart, and check out. We accept credit and debit cards, Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Venmo.”

FYI, GoPuff does not take EBT. Nor does it take cash. If you want to tip your delivery person–and you should–you will have to put it on your credit or debit card.

Basically, GoPuff is a delivery service, like its competitors DoorDash, UberEats or Instacart. However, it’s not just limited to grocery shopping. You can get everyday household essentials from them, too. Things like toilet paper and toothpaste. It’s like a convenience store that comes directly to your home.

Also, you don’t have to chat with your GoPuff shopper as they go along, picking up what you ordered. The GoPuff app will let you know what is in stock and what isn’t when you place your order.

GoPuff warehouse locations

So, where do the GoPuff shoppers, well, “shop”? At GoPuff warehouses.

Well, technically, they call them “micro-fulfillment centers.” In other words, they’re not gigantic spaces like an Amazon warehouse.

Between the GoPuff operations in the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom, they’ve set up nearly 300 of these micro-fulfillment centers. That’s where GoPuff shoppers get their stuff from and where their inventory is held.

I can’t tell you exactly where every single one of these warehouses is located. However, I can tell you where GoPuff delivers.

So I’m guessing there are warehouses in the following locations.

Where GoPuff delivers

For starters, GoPuff is headquartered in Philadelphia. The founders started the company while students at Drexel University.

Anyway, I know there’s a warehouse in Philly.

Also, it appears that GoPuff has set up warehouse locations in:

  • Chicago
  • Miami
  • Nashville
  • Phoenix

When you think about it, these are all places with colleges and universities nearby.

The college connection is key. It’s one of the reasons I’ve included a GoPuff subscription in my list of college must haves.

However, those are hardly the only spots where GoPuff delivers.

GoPuff locations

Right now, GoPuff is available in 38 states plus Washington, D.C. In some states, there are multiple GoPuff locations.

For example, Louisiana has two GoPuff “coverage” areas. One is in and around Baton Rouge, where LSU is located. The other is in and around New Orleans, where Tulane University, among other schools are located.

It’s the same with Massachusetts and North Carolina.

Given that GoPuff is based out of Philadelphia, it’s not surprising how many cities and towns in Pennsylvania they cover. That’s in Eastern PA (outside Philly), Western PA (the aforementioned Pittsburgh) and the State College area (where Penn State Main Campus is located).

In some GoPuff locations, coverage is right down to a neighborhood, such as Burns Park in Ann Arbor, Michigan, or Bed-Stuy Brooklyn in New York City.

Same thing in Pittsburgh where my younger daughter lives. The Strip District, South Side Flats and Squirrel Hill are all included in the areas where GoPuff delivers.

I mentioned that I lived in Maine. Surprisingly, delivery in the Pine Tree State isn’t where many of Maine’s colleges are located, such as Brunswick, Lewiston, Waterville, Orono or Gorham. Instead, delivery is available in Portland and some of the towns nearby, including Falmouth, Cape Elizabeth, Westbrook and Scarborough.

Finally, you’ll find GoPuff is readily available if you live in a college town or a town or city with many colleges and universities in it or nearby or just a large concentration of college students. This includes:

  • Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Austin, Texas
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

States where GoPuff delivers

Here is a list of the states where GoPuff delivers. It also includes the Washington, DC area:

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

GoPuff in the United Kingdom

Believe it or not, GoPuff is also overseas. Right now, GoPuff delivers in the following UK locations:

  • England
  • Wales

This link provides the GoPuff delivery cities and neighborhoods.

GoPuff and hosting parties

Recently, GoPuff reached out to me (I’m one of their affiliates) to remind me to remind readers that GoPuff can help you get ready for a Super Bowl party. That is, you can get ice cream, snacks and drinks delivered right to your doorstep in 30 minutes or less when you use GoPuff.

In fact, when you enter your address in the GoPuff app, it will give you an estimated time that GoPuff will need to fulfill and deliver your order. I love that precision.

Plus, GoPuff has a first order discount code to help you save. You’ll get $10 off your first five orders, plus free delivery when you use code WELCOME105 at checkout.

GoPuff hours

It appears that GoPuff works around the clock. Well, at least they do in some markets.

The key with GoPuff is to make an account so you can see all the details about GoPuff delivery in your area. For example, do you live in a location where they deliver 24/7? Or are you in a place where they only deliver up to 11 p.m. or midnight?

It’s important for you to educate yourself on when GoPuff closes. That way you won’t find yourself needing medicine in the middle of the night, only to discover that your GoPuff warehouse closed at 11 p.m.

What does GoPuff cost

I decided to do a price comparison of items you can get via GoPuff vs my local Giant Eagle supermarket. Also, I played around with addresses where I’ve lived before that are in GoPuff’s delivery perimeter.

Interestingly, I expected prices to change based on geography. Nope, they stayed pretty consistent.

That made me happy, because it means GoPuff isn’t price gouging based on expensive real estate. On the other hand, it might mean that the prices seem high if you’re used to lower costs at the grocery store.

Anyway, as far as the cost to use GoPuff, you can go about it a few ways. One, you can sign up for a subscription. It’s called GoPuff Fam.

It costs $7.99 per month and includes free delivery. Also, you won’t have any extra fees for ordering things like alcohol or tobacco. (They normally have a surcharge.) So, in other words, no delivery fees.

On the other hand, you can use GoPuff a la carte. That’s what my older daughter does.

“I usually order snackish things when I’m low on groceries,” she told me. “Or, usually when I’m craving something sweet. Like some chocolate covered pretzels or a couple pints of Ben and Jerry’s. It can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour to get the order, depending on when you order. For me it usually averages around 30-40 minutes.”

She pays around $4 for delivery. Without a subscription, she (and everyone else who doesn’t have GoPuff Fam) needs to add at least $12.95 to the cart before they can checkout and get their items delivered.

go puff bag from jane

Does GoPuff deliver alcohol

Yes, GoPuff will deliver you alcohol. However, there are a couple of caveats.

One–obviously–you have to be of age. So make sure you’re at least 21 before ordering alcohol.

Two, even though most GoPuff orders are delivered contactlessly, that’s not true for alcohol orders. The delivery person needs to confirm that you’re at least 21. So, be prepared to present proper ID.

Three, some cities or municipalities forbid alcohol delivery. I thought Pennsylvania cities would be included in this, since we have state stores for wine. However, when I checked the GoPuff app to get hard seltzers delivered in Pittsburgh, I could.

On the other hand, I didn’t see any wine options. Maybe that’s where the restrictions come up–no wine deliveries. I’ll keep checking on that.

When and where did GoPuff start

What is the story behind GoPuff? From the company’s website:

“In 2013, co-founders Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola were sophomores at Drexel University in Philadelphia when they realized Yakir, the only friend with a car, was running far too many errands for their friends. So they spent all night drafting mock-ups of the app on the back of their class notes. Three months later, they started Gopuff. Today, the company has hundreds of locations, enabling customers across the U.S. and UK to access their everyday needs, fast!”

Final thoughts on how GoPuff works

I really wish I lived in a GoPuff delivery area. While I love my Target Drive Up, I have to literally get in the car to get my order.

Sure, I could pay to have a Shipt shopper do it, but then I would have to subscribe to Shipt. And I’m not sure I would use the service enough to warrant the cost.

Maybe the next time I have to dog sit for my daughter who lives in Maryland, I’ll give GoPuff a go. Then, I’ll report back and update this article. Also, I’ll be sure to use the coupon code I mentioned earlier for new customers like me.

As a reminder: you get $10 off your first five orders, plus free delivery when you use code WELCOME105 at checkout.

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