Your Complete Guide to Shipt Tipping Etiquette

Are you using Shipt to shop for groceries, or need to provide a tip? Check out our guide to learn the rates and how to tip your Shipt shopper.

Are you supposed to tip those gig workers who work at jobs like Shipt? Let's find out.

Having groceries delivered is becoming more commonplace than ever. With more people working from home and learning how to survive a pandemic, simple conveniences like having essentials brought to the home is now all the rage. Many people enjoy the luxury of grocery delivery.

For those with young children, busy lifestyles, compromising health conditions, or limited mobility, grocery delivery services have become a necessity. But, keep in mind that any service that provides convenience to you requires that someone perform that service. 

And that usually means that they should get a tip. Follow this simple guide to help you determine when and how much to tip your grocery delivery service!

Shipt Tipping Etiquette

shipt tipping

Most people in the service industry rely on tips for the main portion of their income. In the service industries, hourly wages are often well below the minimum wage, with the expectation that providers will receive tips from customers to make up the difference. 

So remember that the person delivering your groceries is an independent contractor, getting paid peanuts per hour when you consider tipping. Shipt delivery personnel are relying on the tips! 

In general, Shipt shoppers make $5 per order, and an additional 7.5% of the grocery order total. This adds up to a whopping $12.50 for a grocery order that totals around $100. 

How long does it take you to shop for $100 in groceries? Probably at least an hour, when you consider all of the steps along the way. This is not a very decent hourly wage, especially when each Shipt shopper has to shop and deliver the groceries, which is likely to take more than an hour unless you are only buying a few expensive items and live very close by to the store.

Some people think that grocery delivery services are too expensive, with the delivery or pick-up fees. But, it is important to remember that you are paying for a convenience service, and that does come with some cost.

Tipping for Pick-Up Orders

Even if you go to the store to pick up your Shipt order, someone still had to do the shopping for you, wait in line, carry the bags out, and load your car.

Consider how much time and effort you have saved by not having to park, gather your mask, sanitize your shopping cart, do your shopping, wait in line, and then load up your car. 

Although some people love to shop, getting groceries is a regular necessity and can be very time-consuming, especially for those with young children or busy jobs or lifestyles. 

Having your groceries delivered is a luxury for many, and even a necessity for some. If you have someone else do this for you, it is often well worth it. So, yes, you should also tip and leave the right level of gratuity when you get a pick-up order at your favorite store.

How Much to Tip Shipt Shoppers

Consider your personal grocery shopper someone providing a service like any other. You are probably tipping restaurant servers, your hairdresser, your rideshare driver, etc. This is no different.

Plan on tipping your Shipt shopper around 15% for regular service, and plan to bump that up a bit for exceptional service, especially large orders, or having to drive a longer distance to deliver your grocery order. 

According to Diane Gottsman, a national etiquette expert, author of “Modern Etiquette for a Better Life” and founder of The Protocol School of Texas, 15% of the total bill is the minimum amount that should be left for Shipt, Caviar, DoorDash, Uber Eats, Postmates, and Instacart delivery drivers.

Your Shipt shopper is spending time on your service. And, don’t forget the wear and tear that comes with Shipt shoppers using their own vehicle for their job.

This all adds up, and should be taken into consideration when customers think about how much to tip the shopper. Without getting tips, many Shipt shoppers end up working for minimum wage or less, while you get to enjoy the huge convenience of having your grocery store order delivered right to you.

How to Tip on the Shipt App

shipt tipping

Tipping right through the Shipt app is the best way to go, since your Shipt shopper will get 100% of the tip right in their own pocket. You can even tip your shopper early, while they are checking out (although they do not see the tip right away, so you don’t have to worry about this impacting the service in any way). 

If you do not make a tip right away when you get your order, you won’t be able to make a change to this later, so it is a good idea to make sure you tip when you know they are checking out (you will be notified) or at the time of delivery.

The best way to tip your Shipt shopper is to either do it at the time of checkout or do it right after delivery. If you go into the Shipt app, you will have an opportunity to rate the service and delivery and leave a tip right at that time. 

Another option is when you receive your receipt via email, there is a link to click that takes you straight to a tipping page, where you can opt to leave a tip. This puts the tip right on your credit card.

For those customers who prefer to not tip using their credit card, you can always give your Shipt shopper a cash tip at the time of delivery of your order.

Shipt Tipping: Frequently Asked Questions

Do Most Shipt Customers Tip?

Most Shipt customers do leave tips for shoppers and drivers, making Shipt a company that people desire to work for because they can expect a respectful relationship with customers. You should not feel obligated to tip for bad service, but do remember that the Shipt shopper does not have any control over store stock, long lines, traffic, and other things that may impact your order.

Can I tip my Shipt Shopper in cash?

You can absolutely tip your Shipt shopper using cash at the time of delivery. Just make sure you track your order and know when it will arrive, and don’t arrange for having your grocery order left on your porch. When you see your Shipt shopper in person, this is the perfect time to give them a cash tip to thank them for providing you the service.

Can I change my tip after initially selecting a tip amount?

You are able to adjust the amount of your Shipt tip at any time. Your Shipt shopper sees the tip amount but does not see which customer the tip came from.shipt tipping

If I was charged a pick-up or delivery fee, do I still need to tip?

You should always consider giving a tip. The pick-up or delivery fees may go partially toward the earnings of the shopper, but mostly it is a fee the store charges. Remember, your Shipt shopper probably depends on their tips to make a decent living, just like any other provider in the service industry. It is not only polite, but expected that you provide a tip based on the service you received. A tip of 15% is considered customary, with higher percentages appropriate for especially good service or extra effort.

I requested a few grocery items that were on sale. Should I tip based on the original prices of these items?

This is entirely up to you, but paying on the full amount is probably appropriate. Consider restaurant etiquette. If you have dinner at a nice restaurant and use a gift certificate, it is customary to tip the server based on the cost of your meal before you apply the gift certificate. They are still providing the same service to you, despite your reduced cost. Think of your Shipt shopper the same way. If you are using a $1 coupon, it obviously won’t make a huge difference, but if you are buying more expensive items that are on sale for “buy one get one free,” then you may want to think about padding the tip a little.

Perfect Your Shipt Tipping

Figuring out your Shipt shopper's pay model in the gig economy is straightforward. Tipping your Shipt shopper is easy, and an important part of the responsibility of the customer. Any time you are receiving a convenience service, it should not be thought of as “free.” 

Sure, you could avoid paying delivery fees and giving tips by shopping yourself, but when you think about the time and effort you save, it is well worth a few bucks to give a tip to your Shipt shopper. Learn how to use the app and the various features related to tipping, it’s super easy!

You will enjoy the incredible convenience of having your grocery order delivered right to your door (or put right in your car when you pick up), and your Shipt shopper will continue to have a great job and provide you with the luxury of not having to do the shopping yourself! 

Although grocery delivery services and food delivery jobs existed prior to the global pandemic, the rise of lockdowns and the increased need to limit exposures have made these services explode in popularity. 

Despite the fact that pandemic concerns are settling down in many areas, it is unlikely that the grocery delivery service industry will slow down, now that people have enjoyed and relied on this service so much. 

Shipt is here for the long haul, so, as a customer, understand how it works and how important it is to tip your Shipt shoppers appropriately so that you can continue to enjoy having your grocery orders brought right to you.

Related Resources
Brian Meiggs
Brian Meiggs
Brian Meiggs is a personal finance expert, and the founder of Hustler Gigs, a personal blog helping you make extra money in the gig economy. He helps readers increase their earning potential and start building wealth for the future. He regularly writes about side hustles, gig work, and the gig economy aimed to help anyone earn more, pay off debt, and reach financial freedom. He has been quoted as a top personal finance blogger in major publications including Insider, Yahoo! Finance, NASDAQ, Discover, MSN Money and more.
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