Online grocery shopping. Best. Idea. Ever. I did not think so at first. I mean how could another person choose my groceries. Only I know what I want which is probably what the majority thinks. However, after many months of using this tool I can not imagine going back.
I practically live at the grocery store. I am there at least three to four times a week. Once a week I do the “big load” shopping to replenish the basics and prep meals for the week while others are just for small things I forgot. I don’t think I can ever avoid the “small things” grocery run but I absolutely dread the “big load” shopping.
I come prepared when I go to the store with the list and the budget and the game plan to avoid walking up and down the aisles and check out in as little time possible. That usually almost always fail for me, I am easily distracted by the sale bins plus my local supermarket carries Joe Fresh products. Joe Fresh always has great stuff, it is worth perusing. At the end of the day, I spend a significantly longer time and dollars than planned.
Enter Online Shopping. The Real Canadian Superstore now offers the option to purchase your groceries online to be picked up at one of their stores – aptly named Click & Collect. I was hesitant especially when it comes to perishables. Someone else picking out my groceries?! How would that person know how I like my apples? So I started out small mainly with basics like milk, bread, eggs, juice, some pantry items and household cleaners. You really can’t go wrong with that.
It was a pretty simple process. I went to the website www.realcanadiansuperstore.ca where the option to start an order immediately greets you. It will ask for the location you wish to shop from as well as a time slot to pick up. There is a flat fee of either $3.00 or $5.00 depending on the time slot you choose (The busier time period, the higher fee). You must open a free account where you need to input a credit card to proceed with shopping. You can use this credit card for payment otherwise it’s just on record along with your PC Plus number if you are a collector.
There are several ways to go about in choosing your items:
- View Flyer & Deals
- Browse By Aisle or Brand
- Cart Starter – picks items based on your family, lifestyle, etc.
I went directly to Search. I knew what I wanted and did not want to waste any time. You can be vague (ie. milk) or very detailed (ie. 1% milk 4 litres) in your search query. The good thing to choosing a vague query is that the results will show a variety of sizes, brands and more importantly prices to compare. Some items may be on sale you might have missed had you looked for a particular brand. As you add items to your cart a tally on the top right corner shows how much you have spent. This is fantastic if you have a budget you are trying to maintain.
Once you have chosen your products and proceed to Checkout a list of the items in your cart is shown. There is an option to opt for substitutions in the event that item is out of stock along with Add Notes. You can specify your preferences for each item if you wish, for example, you would only like very ripe bananas or you want chicken breasts that are less than 2 pounds in weight. Once you complete your order you will receive a confirmation email and a final email that the order is ready along with items that are out of stock or substituted.
When you pick up your order there are designated Click & Collect parking stalls on the side of the building with a phone number to call. The staff will ask if you are aware of the out of stock or substituted items and if you wish to use the credit card on file for payment. If you choose to pay with another card, a card system is brought out for use. It takes a few minutes for the order to be brought out and once it does the staff will load the groceries in your vehicle. You don’t even have to get out of your vehicle if you don’t want to!
The moment of truth – Is my order correct? How are my apples? It is with great pleasure to announce that YES my order was correct and the apples were perfect! I have been using Click & Collect since Summer 2016 and I have been satisfied with the service. The produce and meat are the same quality as I would have chosen. There were a couple of times that a product was missed but they graciously replaced them without question. The real defining moment was placing an order for our Christmas festivities, this included the all important turkey, which I picked up on Christmas Eve. Yup, I did not have to go inside a grocery store on Christmas Eve. It was well worth the $5.00 fee!
The moral of the story, Online Grocery Shopping is the way to go and I highly recommend it. Now can you imagine if Costco offered this on their grocery products?