Amazon Prime Now offers the fastest delivery in town. But does it have the cheapest online groceries in Singapore too?
Disclaimer: All prices are correct at time of publication. As prices may fluctuate, readers are advised to check prices before purchasing. Updated 1 Aug 2017.
With the release of the ultra-fast Prime Now platform, Amazon has officially thrown down the gauntlet to online grocers and supermarkets in Singapore.
Launched yesterday for both IOS and Android, the mobile shopping app promises blazingly fast 2-hour delivery for a wide range of household goods and groceries.
Delivery is free for orders above S$40. For orders below that, a fee of S$5.99 applies. If 2 hours is somehow still too slow for you (like maybe you ran out of chicken wings in the middle of your housewarming party), you can slap on S$9.99 to get your items within an hour.
For the initial launch phase, Prime Now is available to all shoppers without signing up for an Amazon Prime account beforehand. No doubt, this is to encourage Singaporean shoppers to try out the service.
Is Amazon Prime Now the Cheapest Online Grocery in Singapore?
But how do the prices for household goods and groceries on Amazon Prime Now compare with popular choices like Redmart, Cold Storage, NTUC and Sheng Siong?
To find out, we put together a basket of 12 common food and household items, and went shopping at each of the 5 online platforms.
For staples such as rice, eggs and milk, we listed the cheapest we could find. For everything else, we chose specific branded products, including well-loved household labels like Milo and Kleenex. We also added delivery charges wherever applicable.
Take a guess as to which online shopping platform gave us the lowest overall price.
Price Comparison Between Online Grocers and Supermarkets in Singapore
|Item||Amazon Prime Now||Redmart||NTUC||Sheng Siong||Cold Storage|
|Thai Fragrant Rice – 5kg||S$11.80||S$8.50||S$6.50||S$10.50||S$14.20|
|Fresh Milk – 1l||S$2.10||S$2.10||S$2.10||S$2.10||S$3.10|
|Gardenia Enriched White Bread – 400g||S$1.95||S$1.95||S$2.00||S$2.00||S$2.00|
|Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 500ml||S$7.50||S$7.90||S$7.60||S$7.60||S$7.60|
|Lee Kum Kee Premium Oyster Sauce – 510g||S$5.14||S$6.45||S$7.25||S$7.25||S$6.45|
|Coca Cola – 1.5l||S$1.73||S$1.80||S$2.20||S$2.20||S$1.90|
|Milo Powder – 1.4kg||S$12.50||S$12.50||S$12.50||S$12.50||S$13.60|
|Kleenex Toilet Rolls – 10s||S$6.25||S$7.40||S$6.95||S$7.95||S$7.45|
|UIC Big Value Dishwashing Liquid – Refill, 600ml||S$1.40||S$1.40||S$1.40||S$1.40||S$1.80|
|Dove Daily Shine Shampoo – 700ml||S$8.42||S$11.50||S$8.65||S$11.70||S$11.70|
|Dynamo Power Gel Laundry Detergent – 3kg||S$8.40||S$8.40||S$13.35||S$9.95||S$13.35|
Amazon Prime Now: The Cheapest Total Grocery Bill
In our test, we found that Amazon Prime Now provided shoppers the best value. The 12 items added up to just shy of S$70, and was the least expensive basket at checkout – even excluding delivery charges. However, since we spent over S$40, we qualified for free delivery anyway.
Amazon Prime Now beat out the competition not because it offered the lowest prices on every product. Instead, it posted significantly lower prices in a few items to pull ahead.
But some high prices were seen too. The lowest-priced 5kg bag of rice on Prime Now was moderately more expensive than its counterparts at the other stores. For eggs, Amazon’s cheapest pack of 10 was the most expensive in the list.
However, Amazon Prime Now still ended up with the lowest overall bill. And with it’s 2-hour delivery – the fastest yet on the market – there’s no reason not to take advantage of the savings and the convenience.
Redmart: Low Bar For Free Delivery Boosts Savings
The second-cheapest grocery bill belonged to Redmart.
Glancing through our list, you’d notice that Redmart prices aren’t really the cheapest. In fact, it had the most expensive olive oil, while several other items fell in the mid range.
One advantage Redmart has going for it is the low bar to free delivery – you simply have to spend S$49 to qualify. Another advantage are the multi-buy offers which appear on a rotating basis.
We didn’t include these in our test, so as to keep the playing field level. However, if you see your favourite brand on offer, it would be a good idea to stock up for savings down the road.
NTUC, ShengSiong and Cold Storage: High Delivery Charges Erode Value
Cold Storage ended up with the most expensive basket, which probably comes as no big surprise.
What was surprising, however, was that Sheng Siong ended up being more expensive than NTUC, costing S$3.55 more across our test basket of 12 common household goods and groceries.
All 3 supermarkets have high qualifying criteria for free delivery. NTUC and Sheng Siong require you to spend S$100 or more before waiving the delivery charges. Meanwhile, Cold Storage does not offer free delivery, no matter how much you spend.
These delivery charges reduced the savings for customers shopping at NTUC and Sheng Siong, at least in the context of our test. If you plan on shopping at NTUC and Sheng Siong, do so only when your purchase is large enough to qualify for free delivery, so as to maximise the value you get.
Use Shopping Credit Cards To Max Out Your Savings
No matter which online grocery store you choose, you should always maximise your savings by using one of the best cashback credit cards in Singapore.
Also, Amazon Prime Now is offering S$20 off your first order, when you spend at least S$40 using any Visa credit card. (By the way, you’ll also receive S$10 off with 10PRIMENOW, when you spend at least S$40 on your first order.)
And, if you’re shopping on Redmart, check out with a Citi card and receive S$10 off with a minimum order of S$110. Use the code CITIAUG plus the first 6 digits of your card.
For the reasons above, we recommend the Citi Cash Back Visa Card, which gives you get 8% rebate on grocers and supermarkets. Although the cashback for groceries is capped at S$25 per month (or S$300 per year), this card also gives you 8% rebates on dining and Grab rides.
Make sure you don’t miss SingSaver.com.sg’s exclusive offer. Apply for this card now and receive S$100 NTUC or Ez-Link credits when your application gets approved.
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By Alevin Chan
A Certified Financial Planner with a curiosity about what makes people tick, Alevin’s mission is to help readers understand the psychology of money. He’s also on an ongoing quest to optimise happiness and enjoyment in his life.