How Much Does Costco’s Same-Day Delivery Cost, and Is It Worth It?

When Costco launched its grocery delivery service, it started competing directly with services such as Amazon Pantry. Having a Costco membership doesn’t just give you in-store deals anymore. It also lets you get your groceries delivered right to you without paying an added delivery fee — if you live in the right place.

Read on to learn more about where same-day delivery is available and whether or not it’s worth the cost.

Which cities does Costco deliver groceries to?

Costco

Costco | Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Costco partners with Instacart to run its same-day delivery option. Instacart is an online service that arranges grocery deliveries to certain areas around the country. If you order your groceries from Costco, Instacart is responsible for sending out a shopper to retrieve and deliver your items to you.

Currently, the service is only available in “major metropolitan areas.” Typing your zip code into the website will tell you whether or not the service is available in your area. You can also choose to provide your email address to be notified when delivery becomes available near you.

For those who don’t live in the areas where same-day delivery is available, Costco’s 2-day Costco Grocery delivery option operates nationwide. Only nonperishable items can be shipped anywhere through this option, however.

How much does it cost?

Costco’s same-day delivery option operates with a $35 minimum, though its help center notes that most orders far exceed this minimum.

Participants in Costco’s membership program receive same-day grocery delivery without added fees — meaning members pay for their groceries as they would in-store, but Costco waives their delivery fees.

Non-members can purchase their groceries from Costco through Instacart directly. The service offers free delivery for your first order, but charges an added $5.99 for each delivery after that. Instacart also charges a 10% service fee.

If you don’t want to pay for a Costco-specific membership ($60/$120 annually), you can choose to become an Instacart Express member for $149/year, which waives your delivery fees and allows for unlimited grocery delivery year-round from select locations.

Is the convenience worth the cost?

Costco Wholesale warehouse

Costco Wholesale warehouse | Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Costco’s same-day delivery option is a convenient way for members and non-members to purchase and receive their groceries quickly. If you’re the kind of person who can’t walk past the potato chip aisle without adding at least one unplanned item to your cart, you might find it easier to stick to your shopping list by doing all your shopping online.

But it’s not necessarily cheaper to shop for groceries this way — even if you have a Costco or Instacart Express membership.

Technically, having your groceries delivered through Costco’s service is more expensive than buying your groceries in-store. As with any site, whether you order through Costco’s same-day site or directly through Instacart, shopping online through the service comes with added service fees to offset delivery and other costs.

For some, sacrificing a little extra cash for the sake of convenience is more than worth it. If you live in a city that allows you to take advantage of the store’s service, it might turn out to be the best financial investment you’ve ever made.

Free trials exist for a reason. It might not hurt to try it out and see if grocery delivery is worth squeezing into your budget.