Author Topic: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents  (Read 978 times)

ObviouslyNotAGolfer

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Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« on: July 04, 2019, 08:40:37 PM »
Dad (79) has been in the hospital/SNF for over a month and was discharged today. He suffered delirium due to a massive infection, which has now cleared. He was very sharp mentally a few months ago, but the infection hit very hard and fast rendering him extremely confused and, at times, angry and very argumentative. His mind has recovered somewhat, but still gets confused at times. He is in no condition to drive any time soon (possibly ever again), and my mom has never driven. Relatives in the area are helping deliver groceries for the time being, but this is a temporary solution. I live over an hour away, and my ability to get down there is limited (once a week or so!)

Hence, I am looking at alternatives to go online (preferably on my PC and not a phone app!!) and order their groceries to be delivered. We are not made of money, so the Amazon/Whole Foods idea is not all that appealing. They/we live in SoCal, and a chain there--Vons--does have delivery for orders over 100$. I have read that there are options form Target, WalMart, Instacart, and an app called Shipt (for 99$ per  year). What would you recommend? My parents are extremely computer/internet illiterate, so they will have to read me lists over the phone (if you can believe that).

Any ideas? Thanks!

« Last Edit: July 04, 2019, 08:43:01 PM by ObviouslyNotAGolfer »

SunshineGirl

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2019, 11:44:23 PM »
Iíve used Instacart & think it might be what you need. You can get delivery from several different grocery stores & itís super convenient.

fuzzy math

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2019, 07:42:47 AM »
I believe target and Walmart require you to go to their parking lot and someone delivers it to you... Might not be the best option given the health concerns going on right now. Von's and other full service places will come to your home (again "I believe", no personal experience but have seen trucks out and about)

ketchup

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2019, 07:56:02 AM »
Amazon Fresh was actually fairly reasonably priced when I tried it out.  Meat was about $1/lb more than at a normal grocery store, but pretty much everything else was +/- 10% compared to normal.

Frankies Girl

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2019, 08:40:04 AM »
Is it possible that you can hire a home health aide that does their shopping with them or for them? I frequently see older folks out with an obvious aide that takes them to the grocery or walmart or such, acting as driver, monitoring their stability (if the elder is not actually holding the cart) and fetches/carries for them so they can still go out and do things themselves but with a trained handler. Or would just come get the list, go shopping and bring back everything and put it away for them.

I'm just not sure a home delivery service would be a good idea, as your parents would either have to give a stranger (that may not have had criminal/background checks) access to their house, whether they'd even come inside or just drop things at the door, meaning your parents would have to lift/put away heavy things alone, etc...

I just wonder at the idea of them being alone except for you visiting 1X weekly. Having someone check in on them and help them to do basic shopping/cleaning (contracted through a properly vetted/bonded agency) so either you or a home health worker are checking in a few times a week might be better overall.

frugaliknowit

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2019, 08:43:42 AM »
Have you looked up Peapod?  I have used them before and have been quite satisfied.

socaso

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2019, 11:52:27 AM »
I used the Von's delivery in SoCal and I liked it pretty well. When I did it they offered a free first delivery and a $25 credit toward the first order.

TVRodriguez

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2019, 01:03:33 PM »
I've used Instacart and been happy with it.

ObviouslyNotAGolfer

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2019, 07:27:30 PM »
Thanks for your comments. Vons actually looks like a good option now, as does Instacart! He does have a nurse coming over three times a week to check his condition, prescriptions, and also some physical therapy. I offered to get other services like "visiting angels" for my mom, but she continues to refuse--partly because she's a huge hoarder and constantly claims she's getting rid of crap and just needs a few more days before she will agree to help. (God, I hate hoarders!!!) Honestly, I'm ready for both of them to go into assisted living. I was over there today actually, partly to buy them a crapton of food. My dad is  greatly improved, both mentally and physically (the hospital he was at is very good)--still a difficult time for all!
« Last Edit: July 05, 2019, 07:30:32 PM by ObviouslyNotAGolfer »

CindyBS

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2019, 06:54:33 PM »
I  just used the program restock from Target- it does toiletries, household essentials and food.  It has a minimum spend of $35, free delivery and came to the door in 2 days (would be 1 if I ordered a different time).  It worked well, but I also didn't order any frozen or refrigerated food. It did come in a very large box that would have been impossible for my elderly parents to carry in the house, they would have had to empty it on the porch. 

terran

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2019, 07:05:35 AM »
You say your parents aren't capable of driving, but would your Mom otherwise be capable of grocery shopping? If so, Uber/Lyft could be an option (of course, she'd have to get a smart phone and learn to use the app in that case). It might not actually be any cheaper than grocery delivery, but something else to look at.

Roadrunner53

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2019, 09:56:50 AM »
I shop on line for food items all the time and they are shipped to me. Walmart has a $35 minimum for free shipping. It is easy to spend $35. I order laundry soap, canned things like soup, spaghetti sauce, pasta, canned chicken, tuna, sardines, paper plates. You name it, I have probably ordered it. I shop at Costco online. I have ordered cheesy salmon patties, canned tuna, canned salmon, toilet paper, paper towels, vitamins, plastic garbage bags, ziplock bags, K-cup coffee. Costco has same day delivery service or two day shipping. I have ordered things from Target and Amazon. I have used Peapod delivery service. I get coupons all the time for free delivery or reduced delivery. The drawback of shipments is getting rid of the cardboard boxes and packing materials. For me it is easy to get the minimum to get free shipping. Sometimes I really don't need anything else but am just below the minimum. I will buy some cheap item like a nail file or a can of soup. You can also get frozen meat from QVC. I have bought chicken patties, ribs, pork patties (really good). Mostly with meat the price includes shipping. It comes in an insulated box with dry ice.

I also subscribe to Misfits Market which offers two size boxes of organic veggies. You can get a small one or a large one. You can choose weekly or every other week. You can postpone and restart as needed. If they are open to trying different fruits and veggies it would work out. If they are set in their ways, not so much. You don't know what you are getting from week to week and may not be familiar with some of the fruits and veggies. If they are foodies and like to try new and different things, they might like it. Fruits and veggies may be misshapen, slightly bruised, small or large but all are organic. You get your money's worth.

It might be wise for them to buy an upright frost free freezer so they can have a stock of things available. You can freeze bread, rolls and other perishable things. You could have them stock up on frozen veggies, frozen juices, meats and even shredded cheese. Some milks now have long expiration dates. When buying milk, buy two or three at a time paying particular attention to the expiration dates. Expiration dates sometimes go out two months.

If they eat ground meat for spag sauce or other meals, you could encourage your Mom to cook up 3 lbs, then break it into 3 one pound packages lay flat and freeze. Then when she cooks something, the meat can be thawed and used.

If you can get them set up with some of this stuff, minimum shopping can be achieved. Lots of stores offer delivery service.

I am on Medicare and get my drugs by mail thru Optum Rx. That might also be a help for them.

If they have pets, Chewy.com offers pet meds and prescription dog and cat foods. Vet has to approve it but that stuff can be mailed to them too. Not to mention dog and cat treats and supplies.

My hub is constantly cutting up cardboard for recycling.

One thing is that if you order a lot of canned or heavy things like laundry detergent, the boxes get too heavy. This is what I do when I have a big Walmart order. I break it up into maybe three $35 orders. So they don't pack the boxes so heavy. I try to jiggle the order so each shipment will be manageable when it arrives. I learned the hard way, if you order $100 worth of stuff they will try to jam it all into one shipment and it is a bitch to carry the box inside. So, I play the game and get 3 free shipments by breaking it into 3 orders equaling $105. Works for me!

Hope some of this might help!

Rural

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #12 on: July 07, 2019, 02:36:40 PM »
Walmart Grocery is now separate from Walmart.com, and delivers in little Walmart bags rather than in boxes (at least it does here where plastic bags are legal). It's available in most metropolitan areas. There's usually a delivery fee which varies depending on time of day, but seems to range from $7 to $10.

firestarter2018

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #13 on: July 07, 2019, 03:45:55 PM »
Instacart used to be way too expensive (delivery fee of $8-10 per trip, plus a several-dollar service fee, plus driver tip), but they have drastically changed their pricing model since I started using it a few years ago. You can elect an annual membership fee for $99 (used to be $149 but they dropped it due to the fierce competition among delivery services). If you do the annual fee, there are no delivery or service fees for your orders-- all you have to do is tip the driver, which is obviously optional (but very appreciated).  So if your parents shop once a week, that's about a $2/delivery fee and then whatever they want to tip the driver. For me, that makes it worth it on those weeks where I'm too busy or uninclined to shop. The new pickup service for my local grocery store has a fee of $4.95, and you still have to go pick up your order. For a few bucks more with Instacart, I much prefer home delivery.

That said, I have a feeling Instacart is bleeding money and this favorable pricing structure may not last forever. But if it exists in your area it could be a great option for your parents.

freya

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Re: Grocery delivery services for elderly parents
« Reply #14 on: July 07, 2019, 05:46:43 PM »
You're in exactly the same situation my we are in with an elderly aunt and uncle - the aunt has advanced Alzheimer's and uncle, at 93, is not far behind.  They have been refusing all help and are now living in pretty squalid conditions, which unfortunately is all too common.

We arranged for home health aides who could help them grocery shop and cook (before my uncle threw them out of the house, at least) - you can definitely get this if you arrange with the service in advance.  It may require two aides.  We supplemented this with Fresh Direct and Peapod orders on an account we set up in my uncle's name.  However, this requires a lot of time since the aides (with very limited English & computer skills) had difficulty navigating the website, and it also backfired spectacularly when my uncle tried to refuse the delivery, having forgotten what it was for.  If your parents are mentally sound and you're willing to do the ordering every week, though, this can work. 

The small price differences that exist between services are trivial compared to the larger picture here though.  If you think they need to be in assisted living and that they're not safe living at home, then you have a lot of bigger things to focus on than small price differences between carriers.  Probably it's more important for them to get food that's familiar to them, i.e. from the grocery they're used to shopping at or a similar one.  That's why we switched from Fresh Direct to Peapod, even though Fresh Direct's service & quality are better.

Best of luck!!