Raise your hand if you changed your grocery habits in the last year during the pandemic. Yeah, me too. And just like so many customers have had to adapt to the new normal, so have grocery chains around the country. Although the scope of those changes has differed across stores: As recently as this past September Costco’s CFO, Richard Galanti, said on an earnings call that the company had no plans of offering curbside pickup for their customers. But apparently the tides have changed.
Costco already offers curbside pickup for some select items like electronics and jewelry, and does both same-day and two-day delivery through Instacart, and now, reports Grocery Dive, they’re testing out curbside pickup for over 2,000 times at three locations in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The service is also powered through Instacart, and items available for purchase include both grocery and non-grocery items. Customers have to spend a minimum of $100 and there’s a $10 fee. “Item prices are the same as warehouse pricing at the time the order is placed,” their website explains. There will also be denews24nationated spots for customers to pick up their orders.
It’s not a surprise that curbside pickup has become an increasingly popular option in the past year. After all, it’s an easy way to ensure social distancing. Target’s curbside pickup grew 500% in November and December this past year, and major grocery chains like Sam’s Club and BJ’s Wholesale Club have jumped on the trend in 2020 to meet the demand. Instacart also works with 60 grocery stores around the country for curbside pickup, including Albertsons, Aldi, Publix, Sprouts, and Wegmans.
Unfortunately, you shouldn’t get too excited about this service from Costco rolling out nationally just yet. A representative for the company told USA Today that they are only testing on “a limited basis in one market at this time.”