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Online Grocery Shopping (2018): Should You Buy From RedMart, Honestbee or NTUC Online?

online grocery delivery shopping singapore 2018

Joanne Poh

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Online grocery shopping has taken off in a huge way in Singapore. Aside from RedMart, NTUC Online and Honestbee, there are now a sizeable number of players like Amazon Prime Now and Opentaste.

You could chalk it up to busy schedules, ease of use, or pure laziness, but Singaporeans are increasingly comfortable with ordering daily necessities online.

We compare the available online grocers on delivery fees, lead times and costs of perishables and non-perishables to help you decide which online supermarket to go with.

Contents

  1. Top 8 online supermarkets in Singapore – delivery fees and lead times
  2. Costs of perishable groceries from online supermarkets
  3. Costs of non-perishables from online supermarkets
  4. RedMart
  5. Honestbee
  6. Fairprice NTUC Online
  7. Cold Storage Online
  8. Sheng Siong Online
  9. Prime Online
  10. Amazon Prime Now
  11. Opentaste

 

Top 8 online supermarkets in Singapore – delivery fees and lead times

Most delivery fees of online supermarkets in Singapore range around $5 to $7, with the exception of Prime Online, which charges an exorbitant $10. However, if you can consolidate your orders, you will be able to get free delivery above a certain amount for all the online grocers, including Prime Online.

Also, certain online supermarkets have a paid membership service, which rewards you with free delivery with no minimum spending if you sign up. RedMart’s subscription service is called LiveUp.

If you need something urgently, Amazon Prime Now is your best bet. However, some items may not be available or might be more expensive.

Delivery fees Lead time
RedMart $5.99 for orders under $40
$3.99 for orders from $40 to $100
Free delivery for orders more than $100
Same-day delivery available from 7am to 10pm, 7 days a week
Honestbee $4.99 delivery fee + $3.99 concierge fee for order from one merchant (delivery and concierge fees increase the more merchants you buy from)
Free delivery for orders $50 and above
Same day delivery in an hour
Fairprice NTUC Online $7 (Free delivery for orders $39 and above) Next-day delivery subject to availability
Cold Storage Online $7 (Free delivery for orders $59 and above) Same-day delivery available for orders received before 10am

Next day for orders received after 10am

Sheng Siong Online (Allforyou) $6 (Free delivery for orders $100 and above) Same-day delivery within 3 hours for orders placed before 4pm, subject to availability

Next-day delivery for orders placed after 4pm

Prime Online (Prime Supermarket) $10 (Free delivery for orders $100 and above) Next day delivery slots available from 12pm to 8pm

No delivery on Sun and PH

Amazon Prime Now $5.99 (Free delivery for orders $40 and above) Within 2 hours
Opentaste $4.95  (Free delivery for orders $35 and above) Within less than 36 hours

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Costs of perishable groceries from online grocery stores

Sheng Siong Online seems to offer lower prices for household items. RedMart and Fairprice have comparable price points with the exception of avocadoes. While Opentaste does not offer the common brands, they do have their own house brands and other organic produce.

As of 25 October 2018, these are the listed prices of perishables from the online grocers.

Meji Fresh Milk (2l) Chew’s Fresh Eggs with Vitamin E (10 x 60g) Gardenia Enriched White Bread (400g) Fresh Chicken Breasts Avocado
RedMart $5.80 $2.65 $2 $3.25 (300g) $5.95 (3 per pack)
Honestbee Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant
Fairprice NTUC Online $5.80 $2.65 $2 $3.25 (300g) $6.50 (3 per pack)
Cold Storage Online $5.80 $2.80 $2 $9.90 (4 pieces with skin) $3.45 (large)
Sheng Siong Online (Allforyou) $5.05 $2.65 $2 $2.50 (200g) $1.45 (3 per pack)
Prime Online (Primer Supermarket) $6.35 $2.60 (Seng Choon Golden Corn Eggs – 10 eggs) $2 $7.60 (Perdigao chicken breast 1kg)
Amazon Prime Now $5.60 $2.90 (N&N Large Fresh Eggs) $2 $2.93 (300g) $5.76 (3 per pack)
OpenTaste $3.35 (Milk Full Cream Brownes, 1l) $1.99 (House brand – 10 eggs) $5.50 (3-4 per pack) $1.29

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Costs of non-perishables from online grocery stores

The price differences are quite slight, however, Sheng Siong does seem to be once again providing lower prices. RedMart and Fairprice seem to have similar prices except for beverages, which vary slightly.

As of 25 October 2018, these are the listed prices of perishables from the online grocers.

Amazon Prime Now is generally a little more expensive, but they do score in the aspect of being able to deliver within 2 hours.

Opentaste does not have many of the household items that Singaporeans use, but they do have other more atas types like organic beetroot juice and instant quinoa cereal flakes.

Coca-Cola (1.5l) Kellogg’s Froot Loops Cereal (300g) Breeze Power Clean Liquid Detergent (4kg) Lay’s Sour Cream & Onion Potato Chips (184.2g) Lipton Yellow Label Tea (50 x 2g) Tiger Lager Beer (6 x 323ml)
RedMart $2.20 $4.95 $12.40 $4.75 $3.21 $17.15
Honestbee Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant Depends on merchant
Fairprice NTUC Online $2.20 $4.95 $12.40 $4.60 $3.65 $15.90
Cold Storage Online $2.10 $6.45 $12.45 $4.60 $16.40
Sheng Siong Online (Allforyou) $2.05 $4.95 $12.40 $4.30 $3.70 $15.90
Prime Online (Primer Supermarket) $2.20 $12.40 $4.75 $3.85 $17.70
Amazon Prime Now $1.80 $5.80 $12.40 $4.60 $4.20 $17.15
Opentaste

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RedMart

RedMart has become quite popular with competitive prices that are comparable to those at, say, NTUC FairPrice. The quality of their fresh produce is also at least average.

However, what sets RedMart apart is the fact that they provide same-day delivery, including on Sundays and public holidays. The website is also very easy to use and products are easy to search for.

The main downside is that you’re only entitled to free delivery if you spend at least $100, which is a higher bar than what many of the other grocery delivery services are offering.

However, if you’re a LiveUp subscriber, the bar for free shipping is lowered to $40 rather than $100, and you can get 8% rebates by paying with any Citibank credit card.

First-time customers get free delivery on first 3 orders as well!

RedMart is recommended for: Busy people who want same-day delivery and a fuss-free ordering process

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Honestbee

Honestbee isn’t exactly on online supermarket. Rather, it’s a concierge service that lets you order from multiple supermarkets or merchants and have everything shipped to you at once. They also have a super-fast turnaround time of as little as one hour.

As far as groceries are concerned, Honestbee is generally more cost-effective if you’re using it to order from more than one merchant as you can consolidate the various delivery charges.

One of Honestbee’s merchants is NTUC FairPrice. However, if that’s the only merchant you want to order from, it would actually be cheaper for you to do so directly at NTUC FairPrice’s website.

Honestbee is recommended for: Gourmands who buy groceries from several places

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Fairprice NTUC Online

Singapore’s most popular supermarket now allows you to order goods online. Fairprice NTUC Online offers the same mid-range prices we’re grown accustomed to.

The main downside is that you have to “chope” delivery slots, usually at least the day before, and they don’t deliver on Sundays and public holidays.

NTUC / OCBC Plus! Visa Credit / Debit Card holders get up to 8% off if they meet the minimum spend requirements of $400/$500 of non-FairPrice Visa transactions

Fairprice NTUC Online is recommended for: Average joes and existing NTUC members

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Cold Storage Online

Cold Storage Online tends to charge higher prices for certain products, so cost will be a key consideration when ordering from them. That being said, some people continue to shop at Cold Storage because they sell certain premium products you might not find at your regular NTUC FairPrice.

They only do same-day delivery for orders placed before 10am, so unless you’re an early riser, you’ll have to wait till the next day.

Cold Storage Online is recommended for: Atas people who want premium products

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Sheng Siong Online (Allforyou)

Well, what do you know, Sheng Siong has also jumped on the online grocery delivery bandwagon with their Sheng Siong Allforyou website.

Sheng Siong happens to be one of Singapore’s main budget supermarkets, so you can expect prices to be quite a bit lower, especially for brandless items. However, be warned that their fresh produce can sometimes be of poorer quality.

One bugbear is the fact that you only qualify for free delivery if you spend $100 or more, otherwise you get slapped with a $6 delivery charge. Given the fact that most people shop at Sheng Siong to save money, this might be a deterrent.

Another problem is that the site is a bit less search-friendly than most of the others, with products sometimes not appearing if your search term isn’t exactly what they’re looking for.

On the bright side, you might qualify for same-day delivery within 3 hours if you place your orders before 4pm (depends on your address and availability of slots though), which makes Allforyou a site to keep in mind if you need your groceries urgently.

Sheng Siong Online is recommended for: Those on a budget

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Prime Online

While not as cheap as Sheng Siong, Prime Online offers some good deals on certain items. It’s a bit hit-and-miss though, with some of the products actually being pricier as they don’t react as fast when other supermarkets put items on sale.

Their delivery is on the pricey side at $10 unless you can meet the relatively high minimum spending requirement of $100 to qualify for free shipping. There is no same-day delivery option.

If you usually shop at Prime, you are probably already a member as membership is given out free to anyone who spends $20 in a single receipt. Shopping on their website will entitle you to points, and you can also self-collect at their outlets if you don’t want to pay for delivery.

Prime Online is recommended for: Existing Prime shoppers

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Amazon Prime Now

One of Amazon Prime Now’s biggest strengths is that you receive your orders in as little as 2 hours (or 1 hour if you’re willing to pay more)

They also have a product range which goes beyond groceries to include electronics, toys, games and more, so it can be convenient to use them if there are other things you need to buy.

Finally, they offer pretty competitive prices on certain products, often lower than one the supermarkets are offering. The minimum spending requirement of $40 isn’t too high either.

The main inconvenience is that you need to download their application and sign up for an account before you order, so it’s not something most users will do for the first time on the fly.

Amazon Prime Now is recommended for: Kancheong spiders who want their stuff delivered now

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Opentaste

Opentaste markets itself as a seller of wholesale products direct from the farm. That means they sell mostly fresh produce. If the only thing you can cook is instant noodles, you won’t find much for you on their site.

When it comes to their fresh produce, they actually do offer some very good deals. So if you usually cook your food from scratch rather than buy pre-made stuff in bottles, they’re a good place to order fruit, vegetables and meat from.

The main downsides are that you’ll still need to purchase rice and most pre-packaged items like cereal and jam separately, and they deliver within 36 hours, which isn’t super fast. Still, shipping is fairly cheap and you qualify for free shipping if you spend only $35, so it might be worthwhile ordering from them in addition to another grocery website.

Opentaste is recommended for: Discerning home cooks who buy lots of fresh produce

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Which is your favourite online grocery store? Share your recommendations in the comments!

 

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Joanne Poh

In my previous life, I was a property lawyer who spent most of my time struggling to get out of bed or stuck in peak hour traffic. These days, as a freelance commercial writer, I work in bed, on the beach, in parks and at cafes, all while being really frugal. I like helping other people save money so they can stop living lives they don't like.