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Shipt Cost: Fees, Pricing, & How to Save BIG

Last updated: November 16, 2021
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vector graphic showing a shipt cost visualized on a calculator

Shipt might have been a luxury service at one point, but in the wake of the pandemic, it’s a lifesaver.

It’s fast and convenient to have everything you need delivered to your home with care.

But what will that speed and convenience cost you? Is it possible to score savings on the grocery delivery service?

Read on to learn everything you need to know about what Shipt costs.

Plus, we included some tips for saving on Shipt.

Are Shipt Prices Higher Than in Store?

One of the first things you notice when using Shipt is the slightly higher price tag.

Pricing varies between stores and products.

Shipt Prices at Most Stores in General

Though there is no set rule, expect to pay an extra 20 to 30 cents on average for each item in your cart.

Some items may cost upwards of $1 extra.

Shipt Prices at Target

Since Target acquired Shipt, you can expect to pay about the same or less by using Shipt.

Note that in-store, online, and Shipt prices still vary.

Shipt Prices at Costco

Consumer Reports found an average 31% increase in prices for Costco members who used Shipt.

The platform noted that service and delivery charges made up most of the increase.

How Are Shipt Prices Determined?

Shipt doesn’t provide a specific formula for how it determines prices.

The company notes that you can expect to pay about $5 extra for a $35 order.

vector graphic showing a shipt cost visualized on a calculator

Shipt Fees

Fees. The most dreaded word for any consumer.

Of course, it helps to know what to expect before you commit so that you can decide if it’s worthwhile.

Common Shipt Fees

Unlike some delivery services, Shipt doesn’t tack on a bunch of extra charges.

These are some of the common Shipt fees:

  • Shipt Membership fee: It costs $99 per year to use the services as often as you like. Get free delivery for every order over $35.
  • Shipt Passes: Pay $10 to get a single pass for one trip. You can also get a pack of three or five passes.
  • Delivery fee: A flat $7 delivery fee applies to any orders under $35. Additionally, depending on the location, orders containing alcohol may have a $7 delivery fee regardless of the order cost.
Important Note: Shipt does not charge surge pricing. No matter what time of day you place an order or how busy the team is, you pay the same price.

Does the Shipt Delivery Fee Go to the Driver?

The Shipt delivery fee does not go to the driver. Shipt claims that the $7 fee covers the “picking, packaging, and processing” of the order.

In common language, it’s a small order processing fee.

Shipt Tip

Tipping has become a hot-button topic over the past few years.

Questions about tipping make things complicated throughout the service industry, especially with delivery services.

Unfortunately, many service jobs come with a base pay that leaves a lot to be desired.

Shipt drivers take a lot off your plate, including navigating busy stores.

How much is that convenience worth to you?

Shipt tipping is an excellent way to convey your gratitude.

What Is a Good Tip for a Shipt Delivery?

Unlike the delivery fees, 100% of the Shipt tip goes to the person handling your order.

The standard tip structure starts around 15% of the total order.

It is generally acceptable to scale up or down depending on the service quality.

That said, it’s probably best to bottom out at a 10% tip.

Why You Should Tip Your Driver

For some, the Shipt cost may seem like enough for the people handling your order.

You do not have to tip, but it could mean a lot to your driver.

Aside from the meager base pay, consider what the driver invests in the job.

Gas, phone, maintenance on their car, and more go into making that grocery delivery to you.

Tips help cover those costs and give the driver something more.

How Much Does Shipt Really Cost?

Talking about fees and charges doesn’t mean much unless you can see the big picture.

The truth is, Shipt costs vary as much as your typical local grocery shop.

For example, your favorite loaf of bread might cost $2.79 at Publix, $3.29 on Amazon Fresh, $2.69 at Walmart grocery.

You might pay $3.19 through Shipt for that same loaf of bread.

Shipt Cost per Delivery

The cost per delivery depends on how much you spend and whether or not you have a membership.

  • Orders under $35 with a membership cost an extra $7 plus tip.
  • Orders $35 or more with a membership-only cost what you see in the app, plus a tip.
  • With passes, you pay the fee for the pass, the tip, and the amount of your merchandise.

Shipt repeatedly notes that what you see in the app is what you pay. Period.

The company acknowledges that groceries cost a little more by shopping through them.

However, you can see what each item costs before you commit to buying it.

If you don’t want to spend an extra 50 cents on something, you can leave it out of your virtual cart.

Only purchase items that you’re comfortable paying the markup to get.

The power is yours.

Shipt Cost per Month

Speaking of memberships, it costs to belong to Shipt.

Like other memberships and subscriptions, you can choose to pay annually or monthly.

  • Annual memberships cost $99
  • Monthly memberships cost $14 per month

Monthly memberships appear as recurring charges on whatever credit card you use to sign up.

Example of a Shipt Order Fee

So, what does a Shipt order look like?

Let’s take a look at some examples.

To make a fair comparison, we broke down membership and passes into two separate categories.

With memberships, you can pay annually or monthly.

You get unlimited free delivery, except for orders less than $35 that have a $7 delivery fee.

Then, factor in the tip.

It would look something like this:

  • A $29 order would cost an additional $7 for the delivery fee for a total of $36. Factor in a 15% tip, and you come out around $40.
  • For a $35 order, take off the delivery charge and add the 15% tip for around $40.

As you can see, it’s more cost-effective to pick up an extra $7 or $8 worth of merchandise to bypass the delivery fee.

When you choose to use a pass instead of a membership, Shipt includes the delivery fee in the cost.

With the pass, it doesn’t matter how large or small your order is because you still pay a $10 flat fee and the tip.

Shipt costs with a pass might look something like this:

  • A $29 order plus the $10 fee for the pass comes to $39 before the tip.
  • A $35 order plus the $10 pass fee comes to $45. Don’t forget to tip your driver!

Shipt passes might benefit people who don’t plan on using the service regularly.

It’s also a great way to test the waters before committing to a membership.

Is Shipt Worth the Money?

What is your time worth?

That’s the question you need to ask if you hope to answer this question honestly.

There are several excellent reasons to pay extra for groceries to have them hand-picked and delivered to your home.

Maybe you are already thin on time and patience.

It would be nice to have somebody else handle the grocery store for you.

Think about it.

You could avoid so much stress and frustration while using your energies elsewhere.

Plus, if you happen to be sick or quarantined, you still have access to the food and supplies you need.

On the other hand, if you have an extra twenty or thirty minutes, you might want to do it yourself.

Shipt costs at least $99 per year plus upcharges and tips.

That doesn’t work with everybody’s budget.

Then, there are the people who love grocery shopping.

If that sounds like you, then maybe you want to be a Shipt shopper!

How to Save on Shipt

You can also find ways to save on Shipt if you know where to look.

Aside from various specials and promotions that you can access right from the grocery delivery app, you can get groceries and household essentials delivered to your doorstep.

Bonus tip: don’t forget to connect your store loyalty accounts through the Shipt app.

You can still earn loyalty points with Meijer, Walmart, or wherever you shop.

Even if you aren’t physically handling the shopping!

1. Use a Shipt Promo Code

Sign up for a membership to access special promotions.

Aside from those you find in-app, the company sends out emails with members-only specials.

Shipt also has a referral program that offers $10 in Shipt credit.

Get a referral code from a friend or family member to sign up, and you both get a promo credit.

For example, if you provide the code to a friend and they sign up, you get a $10 credit, and they get $10 off the annual membership fee.

2. Sign Up for a Shipt Free Trial

Are you a little commitment-phobic?

Before you sign on for a Shipt grocery delivery membership, you can try the service for free by shopping through Target.

  • Create your order through Target.com.
  • Select “same day delivery.”
  • At checkout, sign up for Shipt to get free shipping on orders over $35.

Note that you have to cancel the free trial before the period ends.

If you don’t cancel, Shipt charges your card with the annual membership fee.

3. Get a Shipt Membership

In case you haven’t already done the math, we can tell you that an annual membership is another deal.

It costs less than paying monthly or purchasing a Shipt pass.

The annual fee of $99 works out to $8.25 per month.

That saves you about $69 per year.

Take it a step further and look at the Shipt pass.

You can get one pass for $10 or save when you buy them in packs of three or five.

Five passes cost $40, giving you a free one.

Shipt Cost vs Competitors’

Shipt isn’t the only company offering an online grocery delivery service, making it a challenge to pick the best option for you.

For many people, the difference comes down to price structures.

Shipt vs Instacart Price

Customers often compare Shipt with Instacart, so let’s take a look at what each delivery service charges for grocery shopping.

Both platforms use similar service structures, have proprietary apps, and partner with most local grocery stores.

They do use slightly different fee structures.

Instacart offers:

  • Annual memberships for $99 per year.
  • Monthly memberships for $9.99 per month
  • Non-members pay a $3.99 delivery fee plus a 5% service fee.
  • All orders under $35 cost extra with Instacart.

Both services are about the same for annual memberships, but you might save a bit with Instacart’s monthly plan.

Depending on the size of your orders, the non-member fee also comes in a little lower for Instacart.

However, larger orders could suffer from that 5% service fee tacked on top.

How Does Shipt Make Money?

You might be wondering how Shipt makes money handling online grocery delivery.

Remember the importance of tipping your Shipt shopper?

That’s because the membership fees, delivery fees, and upcharged grocery items go to the company.

While some of those fees and charges cover the employee base pay, most of it goes to supporting the company’s operations.

Shipt also gets a sales commission from its partner retail chains.

Wrapping Up

How much is your time worth? When you need some household essentials and grocery times but don’t have time in your day for a grocery trip, Shipt grocery delivery may be the answer.

If you can’t wait on Amazon to deliver toilet paper in two days, same-day delivery looks pretty good.

With so many possible uses, a Shipt membership could be worth the money to afford you more time to handle more important (or enjoyable) tasks.

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