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Walmart takes on Amazon by offering grocery delivery — for a fee

Two of the biggest retailers in the United States are going head-to-head, and that is good news for customers. On Wednesday, March 14, Walmart announced it would be introducing online grocery delivery to more than 100 metro areas by the end of 2018, which means that it will soon serve more than 40 percent of households in the country. Of course, this sounds an awful lot like a recent initiative that online retailer Amazon announced — the ability to get your Whole Foods purchases delivered through Amazon Prime.

While Amazon’s recent acquisition of Whole Foods has certainly helped to drive down the prices of the more health-focused grocery store, it’s likely that Walmart is still, broadly speaking, the more cost-effective option. Now, Walmart Grocery Delivery will bring customers fresh produce, meat, seafood, and bakery items, all straight to their front doors. You can place an order on the Walmart website, or alternatively, use the Walmart Grocery App. Moreover, the company points out, prices on the app or online will not be higher than those you find in stores, so there is literally no incentive for you to leave the house to get your groceries.

As of now, Walmart has made its delivery service available in six markets, but will soon be adding dozens more.

“We’re saving customers time by leveraging new technology, and connecting all the parts of our business into a single seamless shopping experience: Great stores, easy pickup, fast delivery, and apps and websites that are simple to use,” Greg Foran, president and CEO, Walmart U.S., said in a statement. “We’re serving our customers in ways that no one else can. Using our size and scale, we’re bringing the best of Walmart to customers across the country.”

Speaking of size and scale, Walmart notes that it is leveraging a team of 18,000 personal shoppers to select and deliver the groceries that you need. The retailer will add even more team members in the coming months, and all employees are required to undergo a three-week training program to ensure that they select the freshest produce and best cuts of meat on your behalf.

So how much will this cost you? Unlike Amazon, which delivers groceries for free, this service does come with a rather steep $10 delivery fee and a minimum $30 order. That said, if you only want to try the feature once, you can get your first order delivered for free with the promo code Freshcar.

“Our commitment goes further than saving customers money,” Tom Ward, vice president of Digital Operations, said. “Ninety percent of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store, and we serve more than 150 million customers a week, which gives us a unique opportunity to make every day a little easier for busy families. Today, we’re expanding this promise by helping even more customers save time and money without leaving their homes.”

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