• Jenn Kalchik

Benefits of Buying Groceries in Advance

Updated: Aug 5, 2020

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I love being able to shop for what I need online. This includes groceries! I hate shopping for groceries in-person. It can take up most of my day to shop for what I need, plus I hate having to navigate my way through the aisles in a crowded store. Shopping for what groceries I need in advance has been such a blessing. Check out the pros and cons of buying groceries in advance.


Save time

The time I would've spent grocery shopping can now be spent on doing something else like cleaning the house or running other errands. When I make my grocery list of items to shop for, I can add them to my cart at the same time instead of setting aside to do both of those things separately.


It makes it so much easier to shop for groceries without having to leave my car, or sometimes my house. There are options to pick up the groceries without leaving your car or have groceries delivered directly to your house. Before COVID-19, you would sometimes get the option to choose if you wanted paper or plastic bags. I love having the groceries delivered to my house, because some items I get, like cat litter, can be heavy and it can be hard to lift them into my car at the store, then lift and carry the litter inside the house.

Avoid impulse shopping

I am a horrible impulse shopper. Even with the best grocery list, I usually forget something or stray from the list. By shopping in advance, I can purchase what I need without having the impulse to buy what I see at the store. Usually, an hour or two before my order is shopped for, I cannot make any adjustments or additions, so I have to stick with what I ordered. However, if I do need to add something after I placed my order, as long as I place it before the person shops, it's not an issue.

Stay organized

When you order groceries online, usually the service keeps track of your order. What's nice about is that you can reorder your standard groceries with ease. As soon as I run out of an item, I go into my Instacart account and add the item to my cart so I remember to purchase it for my next order.

You can't physically go to the store

I recently fractured my elbow and cannot use my right arm for the next six weeks. And being right-handed, it's been an adjustment learning how to do things one-handed/one-armed, especially when you have to rely on your non-dominant side. I've been using Instacart to order my groceries so I don't have to fumble with picking out items at the store or trying to move everything one-armed to my car and to my house. This is also helpful if I have a severe migraine and I need medical supplies/food that I cannot get myself.

Of course, shopping in advance can also have cons.


Your item might run out

This could happen even if you shop at the grocery store yourself. Back when the quarantine for COVID-19 first started, items like hand sanitizer and toilet paper were impossible to find. I would try to order it in advance, and just tell my shopper that if there isn't anything available don't hassle to find a substitution.

Your shopper may have to make substitutions

As mentioned above, if an item is low in stock, your shopper can make substitutions. Usually, this isn't a problem, but if you need a specific brand for an item like a recipe or medicine and cannot work with a generic version, then it could be an issue. For items like this, if I can't use a substitute the shopper may make, I will make a note saying that they don't need to find a substitute if an item is no longer available. I will still have to figure out how to get the item, but it's better than having to pay for something you won't use.

Your normal store may not offer an option to order groceries in advance

If it's a local or national chain where you normally purchase groceries from, you may be able to order groceries in advance. However, if it's a local store, you may not be able to.

Truly last-minute items will need to wait

Let's say your significant other texts you and asks if you were planning to get more toothpaste during your next grocery run. However, you already placed the order and the groceries are on the way to be delivered. You would need to make a separate trip to pick up the item or have to wait until your next order to purchase toothpaste.

In my opinion, the pros outweigh the cons. Next time you need to purchase groceries, consider buying them in advance, and using that time you saved on something else. Are you planning to order your groceries in advance? Use my promo code from Instacart and get $10 OFF your first order!

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