Sunday, May 16, 2004

Safeway.com

Safeway.com came to town recently. On-line grocery shopping is now a reality on the Monterey Peninsula. We've been looking forward to this for some time, and it finally opened up early this month.

We tried it out last week when we were pretty busy and kinda tired and didn't want to go to the store.

So we signed up and we were on our way, happily adding stuff to our virtual grocery cart. Then reality sank in. It was taking quite awhile. Then the browser crashed. To Safeway's credit, they held the contents of our cart when we signed on again. So I added more stuff.

Then I got to the dairy case. All I wanted was two gallons of 1% milk. Or 2% would be fine. We always get the two gallons for a discount deal. But they didn't have it on line. If we wanted gallons all we could get was whole milk, and no two-fer deals. In 1% and 2% all they listed were half gallons. 

Game over.

I had to go to the store after all. When I got there I realized that many of the things I shopped for on line were cheaper in person, even though they deliver from the very store I was in. They say prices are supposed to be the same, but they clearly weren't. For example, Safeway Select pure maple syrup was a full 50 cents more on line. 

When I returned home I sent an e-mail to Safeway.com complaining about my difficulties.

They never replied.

Great idea. Lousy service. That's Safeway.com!

Maybe I'll try again in a few months and hopefully they'll have the bugs out.

Addendum: I finally got a response from Safeway on the 20th. They explained that prices in the store where the actual groceries come from may vary from what is shown on-line, and that the local price will be charged. So how am I supposed to know what the final cost will be?

A footnote to this story:

One of the things I bought was apple cider. They had a two for one deal on Safeway brand apple cider. Same with apple juice. We usually get the juice, but this time they were out, so I picked up the cider.

What's the difference between apple juice and apple cider? According to my dictionary, nothing!  

The cider tastes the same. So I wondered what on earth justified the different label. The answer was in the nutrition facts. The cider has no vitamins. None. Zilch. The juice has 120% of one's daily dose of vitamin C, so its a much better buy. They're both the same price, so why do they even bother with this cider nonsense?

A footnote to the footnote:

Speaking of apple cider, have you tried Dicken Cider?

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