Grocery shopping is one of my favorite things to do. I love going to the store and going through items ingredients and it’s a good excuse to get out of the house every once in a while. Of course it’s always nice to see and physically examine the stuff we buy to be sure of its quality. But if it’s something we often buy (like basic necessities), then we probably have a good idea of its reputation already. Also, there are some hassles that do come along with having to do actually shopping (First world problems, I know. But whatchugonnado) There’s the perennial traffic, the fight over parking space, the long lines at the checkout counter, the lack of baggers and sometimes the overall hustle and bustle of a big crowd at hypermarkets aren’t as enticing to some. So, if you are such a shopper, or even if you’re just simply too busy and tired to go out for a supermarket run, then here are some grocery apps that you can download on your smartphone and can help you in your hour/s of need.
In no particular order:
I’ve used this app personally and it was the first grocery app that I ever did try to use last Ramadan. Back then, they had an introductory offer of 50% off to first time users so I went ahead and shopped on their app. The selections were adequate and they covered the basics of what a household needs in order to survive. It happened to be that I’ve been so busy that week with all our iftar invitations that I didn’t have time to go to the grocery because of the changes in schedule during Ramadan so it was timely for me to try the app. Especially since it then had a promise of delivering goods within 2 hours. Long story short, it wasn’t a good experience and they didn’t deliver within their promised timeframe. After I documented my experience on our Facebook Page, the Wadi Team was quick to restore my faith in them. Eventually they had my groceries delivered the next day without cost and with an extra coupon to shop again next time. Since then, they have removed the promise of “delivery within 2 hours” on their app. However, at time of writing, I’ve been trying to test their app again for minimum purchase info all day since this morning but it kept giving us an “Error” message and not allowing us to place an order on our carts….so maybe it’s a temporary technical issue (that’s been ongoing for over five hours now) but hey, you’re welcome to try it yourself.
After posting the issue I had with Wadi on our Facebook Page, one or two of our followers commented that we should try the Danube app — and that they have tried it themselves before with good results. I looked into the app and it’s very comprehensive. There’s a separate tab for user preferences and FAQs, which I find extremely useful. The homepage however isn’t that simple to look at…I have to narrow down a bit to see where I need to go as far as categories for frozen food or fresh produce is. The minimum purchase required amounts to 75 SAR for your first order and 90 SAR on succeeding orders and comes with free delivery. You can select your preferred time and date of delivery. On Fridays, the delivery time start at 2 PM. For the rest of the days, they start at 10 AM.
Zad Fresh is an app developed by a Saudi company that employs the same concept of online grocery shopping. So far, I liked their interface the most as it was easy to navigate and there is a Live Chat ready to respond to your questions within five minutes or less. I tried it myself and found the customer service representative pleasant and helpful. Minimum purchase is at 40 SAR with delivery charges varying on what timeframe you wish to have it sent. For express delivery of within an hour, it cost an additional 24 SAR. For same day deliveries that are scheduled two hours away or more, it’s 12 SAR. For next day deliveries, it’s for 9 SAR. From what I observe from their website and social media, most of their content is targeted towards the Saudi families and the Arabic speaking clientele, but of course, their app is also available in English.
Nana is another Saudi-born app that aims to shop and deliver goods to your doorstep in Riyadh, Jeddah and Al Qassim. According to their website, they are the first online shopping and delivery service in KSA and was actually the brainchild of a group of young Saudis. What I like about their app from seeing it was that there was a unique variety of stores you can choose from for certain goods. For example, they had enlisted a pharmacy, a deli shop and even a place that sells mobile credits in one of the grocery options. The homepage can do some standard capitalization on some words, but that’s a minor thing. As far as the supermarket area is concerned, it’s also has adequate choices and it covers the basics. There is an option for Instant Delivery or Standard Delivery but the former wasn’t available when I tried it. Standard delivery was set at 2-4 hours after my order.
I know that Amazon in the US does grocery shopping and deliveries as well, so when I checked the Souq app, I found that indeed, they too, now have a Souq Super Store section where you can purchase some grocery items as well. The perks would be that some items are eligible for free shipping so if everything you need qualifies for it, then that’s a plus. Also, if you’re coincidentally shopping for clothes or gadgets in the Souq app, then your grocery shopping can all be checked out together in one cart. They only offer deliveries by the next day though. And, there are no fresh produce or fresh meat that’s being offered in their section…only canned goods, packed confectionery, snacks, beverages, baby items, toiletries, cleaning supplies and hey, pet food!
All apps are available in the Apple Store for iPhones and Play Store for Android.