Why you shouldn’t use Amazon Fresh

Why you shouldn’t use Amazon Fresh

As I mentioned before we decided to give Amazon Fresh a try. I am sorry to say that I am not happy with the service. While there is quite a bit of potential there, I don’t think its ready for use right now.



When you order, you pick a 1 hour window for your delivery. In addition, when you forget something, you can later add it to your cart. This was great, as I remembered all the food, but upon getting ready for bed, realized I should order tooth paste.

The delivery people have been really great. They are nice, and helpful. While I’m happy to carry everything myself, they always help me bring everything up to the apartment.

To keep things cool, they give you frozen bottled water. So far it has been Dasani. While I don’t need this water (tap works fine for us) its a nice perk and we often grab one on the way out the door.

Dry ice.

I don’t really know if this is a pro, but they do use dry ice, which always is fun to play with.



When you get your food, it comes in a reusable bag, and inside is a hard foam cube. I was shocked to see how much packaging they use to ship some food. The hard foam they use is awful for the environment, and not bio-degradable. Today I was particularly offended to find a frozen item alone in one of these cubes. The packaging on the food was paper, and small, but the amazon packaging was much larger. A better solution would have been to package that item in a smaller cube, and throw it in one of the other not full bags.

EDIT: Since writing this article amazon has offered to pick up packing material.  I am glad they made this change.  It is not clear however if that actually re-use packing material or just throw it out.  Lets hope they re-use it.


I understand that this will change, however, I am not currently satisfied with the selection. I find it a little difficult to “buy in bulk” but I think this will get better every week.


While I am currently on a 90- day trial, which is very generous of Amazon, it costs $299 a year after that. Apparently this includes amazon prime, which unfortunately, I have already paid for for the year. In addition, these prices seem a little high for your average market. One report even claims it is %14 higher then regular prices.


Upon check out you are asked to add a tip to your order. This is optional, however I think amazon should really be paying for this. It seems that they are looking to maximize their profits off the backs of the consumer. Here’s a tip. Pay your delivery guys a good wage, treat them with respect, and they will work hard for you.

This is a quick photo to illustrate the waste of 2 weeks of food delivery. Not acceptable.




Needless to say, I’m still a huge fan of Amazon Prime

We want to hear your thoughts. Think its great? Have ideas on how to reduce waste? Had a different experience then us? Let us know in the comments below.

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15 Responses to “Why you shouldn’t use Amazon Fresh”

  1. sophie September 4, 2013 at 5:05 pm #

    I completely agree with all of your points! Why pay $299 on top of relatively high prices? The amount and type of packaging is absurd. The foam also makes the produce smell, which makes you think twice about what type of chemicals you’re putting into your body. I’m also on the free trial, but I’ve only ordered once and have already canceled. One more con: you have to order > $35 worth, so it’s not like remembering that tomorrow you will need some eggs and milk. You have to plan for a lot of food.

  2. Gayle September 29, 2013 at 5:48 pm #

    I have been using Amazon Fresh for 4 weeks, ordering once a week. I leave out the old bags each time, and they pick them up for reuse. I lowered the tip amount, and am happy to tip $2 or $3 for delivery because it’s about what I’d spend on gas going to the grocery store, and I believe in tipping. I buy groceries for a special needs child with severe allergies, and the price of what he needs are very similar to what I pay at Whole Foods, sometimes even less. For us, the selection is pretty outstanding – lots of gluten free and specialty items. The only concern I have is the $299 price, but I understand it’s prorated since I am already a Prime member, so I will probably go ahead and sign up when my trial ends. Overall, I am tremendously happy with Amazon Fresh so far.

    • Marco December 3, 2013 at 3:34 am #

      Hi there, I found your blog searching if tipping for amazonfresh delivery is appropriate or not. I am still not sure.

      I received my first order today. The first thing I though was about the wasted hard foam, then on their website I found this: “If your tote also has a cooler inside, you can collapse the Styrofoam liners for easier storage.”
      I assume they will pick it up and re-use it. I hope.
      About tipping…what is the difference between the amazonfresh guy and ups or fedex?

      • Megan August 14, 2015 at 3:15 pm #

        Just wanted to point out that the postal service is delivering your amazon fresh orders. At least that’s the case here on Long Island.

  3. John S December 30, 2013 at 10:19 am #

    To shoot down your biggest con that the writer of this blog should seriously edit with, you’re supposed to leave the shipping containers out on your next delivery so they can pick them up and reuse them, so only as wasteful as the buyer who tosses them. As far as I know they won’t charge you for any of the packaging if they don’t get it back later, so I’m expecting they have a lot of breakage on those. Some of the thermal bags they ship in are actually kind of nice, but I’ve not had the heart to steal one yet… in the end that’ll only probably raise their prices.

    I’m on my 3rd shipment and so far I’ve been impressed with the service (Seattle). Overall, definitely pricey, but definitely not out of range. I don’t own a car, so getting everything delivered is a huge convenience. Selection is subjective and probably varies, but in Seattle I personally feel overwhelmed with options. Love that there are local options even though, of course -_-, those are some of the priciest items they offer. As for tip, I usually do $4 everytime.

    • petersid January 30, 2014 at 6:21 pm #

      Hi John

      Thanks for the reply. At the time of writing this article there was no instruction as to what to do with the shipping containers.

      Care to share a link to where they say to leave them outside? Also, In LA the service is up and running, but I think my neighbors in my apartment building would be pretty frustrated if I left all that shipping material in front of my building just waiting for someone else to get it.

  4. Mike L February 25, 2014 at 4:15 am #

    When it comes to tipping, it’s your discretion.

    All I do is contact Customer service, tell them to pick up my bags and foam. They get there next day most the time.

  5. kris May 6, 2014 at 3:14 am #

    The Styrofoam containers are picked up along with the green bags when you get your next delivery. Can’t really list it as a con when you’ve decided to keep this stuff?

  6. Mike May 11, 2014 at 6:10 am #

    I love Amazon Prime and Amazon Fresh. First the regular Prime rate of $99 a year is a bargain. Almost every other day, we find something we need at the store and end up just going online and having it shipped FREE. The time we save running errands is like hiring a personal assistant. So the $99 pays for itself in about two months of shipping. The $200 added from Fresh at first seemed high but we’ve used it so many times, in a pinch. Like tonight, we’re out of milk and would have to make an early morning run to the store. Nope, just did the Fresh order, along with other needed things. Tomorrow early am, it’s on the porch. So far, quality of everything has been great and the prices similar to regular grocery – meaning less than Whole Foods or specialty. When I do the math – one trip to the store each week, equals $3.85 I’m paying annually is a bargain. THIS IS THE MAIN POINT. When I go to the grocery store, I buy all sorts of stuff I don’t really need but I’m being bombarded with marketing. Did I mention my usual trip to the fresh bakery case – which I eat in private driving home. So, really, I’m saving food I should not be buying for better health or need, saved gas. And I do think my time is worth more than $3.85 an hour per week. Ok, I realize that there are households that live on a very tight budget and to fork over $299 up front is out of the question, well – this isn’t for you. But for the demographic Fresh now serves, it makes sense. And I’m not sure about the person who saves the bags and cartons. Read the instructions, you’re supposed to turn them back in.

  7. Barbara June 16, 2014 at 2:00 pm #

    I’ve started using Amazon Fresh and love it. I’ve just turned 70 (a Fabulous 70) and grocery shopping has become a chore – and add that I live “upstairs” – Well, Fresh was the answer to my problems. I already got Amazon Prime so $100 is deducted from the price. That leaves $199 for the year or about $3.80 per week. That more than pays for gas and aggravation of lugging all that cr*p up the stairs. The quality has been wonderful and the prices are almost a push for my neighborhood. Some over/some under. Here’s your link that tells you to leave your totes by your door for the delivery person to pick up with the next delivery. Easy Peasy. https://fresh.amazon.com/help?ref_=nav_help


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