Walmart hasn’t been subtle with their jump into the grocery game. Their Supercentres have become the ultimate emporium for all things edible for some and now with their Grocery PickUp program, Torontonians can get in on the action at their convenience.
With pickups available at all stores, a number of downtown condos, and Penguin Pick-Up locations, I decided to test out the service myself and see if it was actually all it was hyped up to be.
The app is super easy to navigate, though you can also shop off the website. All you have to do is create a login and start browsing. Items were easily searchable and product offerings were vast. The offerings include everything you can find in a physical Walmart Supercentre.
I decided to bulk up on meats like sausage and chicken which are available at affordable prices. I also stocked up on pantry and household items like granola bars, quinoa, and toilet paper. And because many are picky about their produce, I decided to order lettuce, grapes, and an apple to judge the state of their condition after the delivery and pick-up.
One thing to note when ordering is the prices on produce which are priced per kilogram, just like in typical grocery stores and Walmart Supercentres. Produce prices on orders like grapes and green beans are ordered by average weight, there is no option to order down. That means, you can’t just order a handful of the aforementioned fruit and veg, it’s all or nothing, which was okay with me.
Here’s what I ordered:
2 bags of quinoa
1 bag of grapes
1 head of green leaf lettuce
1 pack of toilet paper
1 pack of paper towels
1 box of granola bars
1 carton of eggs
2 frozen pizzas
1 package of chicken
1 package of sausage
1 pack of Tassimo disks
Placing the order was also easy. After loading up my virtual cart, I was able to review and modify my order before I confirmed when and where I wanted to pick up my groceries.
Walmart has a number of pickup locations across Toronto, which include their stores, select downtown condos, and Penguin Pick-Up locations on the Harbourfront, Yonge & Eglinton, Leslieville, and Yorkville. The service is meant to add convenience to shoppers’ lives by allowing customers to hop in and out without the hassle of hunting for merchandise and waiting in line. There is a small $3 delivery fee for pickups outside of Walmart stores and a minimum order of $50 for all pickups.
Most Penguin Pick-Ups are located at UPS stores. Orders are picked and dropped off the morning of pick-up and refrigerated (if needed) in the UPS store until you’re able to drop by.
While technically the Walmart location on Dufferin is closer to my home, I decided to choose the Penguin Pick-Up location on the Harbourfront for the purpose of this experiment.
While the app and order were simple, I did run into a few of problems. The first being the inability to change pick-up dates. After realizing I wouldn’t be able to pick-up my order on the day I had arranged, I called the number provided on the app to ask and adjust. This led me to a Walmart customer service rep who told me that while I was able to adjust the time of pick-up, I was unable to adjust the day. I had to cancel the order which was a whole other ordeal. Walmart customer service reps were unable to cancel my order for me. Instead, they gave me the phone number to the store my order was coming from to cancel with them.
The second issue was payment. Long story short, be very wary of using Visa gift cards to pay for your order. A customer service rep told me that Walmart’s system often runs into problems with them and often times, the payments do not go through, meaning you’ll need to hop on the phone with a customer service rep and change the payment.
The third problem I ran into was primarily my fault. I decided to drive to pick up my groceries which was a bit silly. I advise checking with your pick-up location to ensure there is parking before you head over, as I didn’t and ended up having to park a couple of blocks away.
Aside from a few road blocks, my experience was good. My groceries were available when I wanted them, where I (sort of) wanted them and came in tip-top shape – no bruised apple in my bags!
For pantry, poultry, and household items, the value is amazing. Walmart offers unprecedented prices that are truly hard to beat, especially with price matching options. If you’re super picky about produce, you might want to steer clear of it on the app, only because if you like your grapes a little firmer or lettuce a little crisper, those are items best picked by self.
Would I use the app again? Absolutely. It was so easy and fast to use, so much so that it’s something you could do on your lunch break or in between meetings at work. I’ll just be sure to order for days I’m confident I can come in and make sure not to order more than I can carry (or drag a friend along to carry the groceries for me).
If you don’t have easy access to grocery stores (I’m talkin’ to you condo dwellers!) or just don’t have the time or patience to walk through grocery stores after work, the Walmart Grocery Pickup service is for you.
Have you ever ordered groceries with Walmart? What was your experience like? Let Vv Magazine know in the comment section or tweet us at @ViewtheVibe.
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