Amazon Launches Affordable Grocery Delivery Subscription for Prime and EBT Users

Amazon launches affordable grocery delivery subscription for Prime members and EBT customers, aiming to improve food access in underserved communities.

Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
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Amazon Launches Affordable Grocery Delivery Subscription for Prime and EBT Users

Amazon Launches Affordable Grocery Delivery Subscription for Prime and EBT Users

Amazon has unveiled a new grocery delivery subscription service aimed at making grocery shopping more convenient and affordable for Prime members and customers using Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards. The subscription, available in over 3,500 U.S. cities and towns, offers unlimited grocery delivery on orders over $35 from Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, and a variety of local grocery and specialty retailers.

Prime members can subscribe to the service for $9.99 per month, while customers with a registered EBT card can access the same benefits for $4.99 per month without requiring a Prime membership. The subscription includes features such as one-hour delivery windows at no extra cost, unlimited 30-minute pickup, and priority access to Recurring Reservations for weekly grocery orders.

Why this matters: Amazon's new affordable grocery delivery subscription could significantly impact low-income households and those relying on government assistance programs. By offering a reduced subscription fee for EBT users, Amazon aims to make grocery delivery more accessible to a wider range of customers, potentially addressing issues of food insecurity and limited access to fresh, healthy food options in underserved communities.

Amazon piloted the subscription in late 2023 in select cities, including Columbus, Denver, and Sacramento. "Over 85% of respondents from the pilot were extremely or very satisfied with the unlimited free delivery benefit," an Amazon spokesperson stated. The company believes the subscription will pay for itself with as little as one delivery order per month from Whole Foods Market or Amazon Fresh for under $50.

The launch of this subscription service comes as Amazon continues to invest in its grocery business and compete with rivals like Walmart and Target, which offer similar grocery delivery subscriptions. While Amazon has struggled to dominate the grocery market, the company sees this new offering as a way to expand its reach and provide a "best-in-class grocery shopping experience" for its customers.

In addition to the new subscription, Amazon has made other recent changes to its grocery offerings. The company is shifting away from its "Just Walk Out" cashierless technology in larger grocery stores, focusing instead on Dash Carts that allow shoppers to skip the checkout line. However, Amazon believes the "Just Walk Out" technology will eventually become viable for full-format supermarkets.

The new grocery delivery subscription service is now available across the U.S., with a free 30-day trial for customers to test the benefits. Prime members who subscribe to the service can also earn 5% back on their purchases at Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market when using their Prime Visa card.

Key Takeaways

  • Amazon launches $9.99/mo grocery delivery subscription for Prime members.
  • EBT customers can access the same benefits for $4.99/mo without Prime.
  • Subscription offers unlimited free delivery, 30-min pickup, and priority access.
  • Amazon aims to address food insecurity in underserved communities.
  • Amazon shifts focus from "Just Walk Out" to Dash Carts in larger stores.