Grocery Delivery Gets Competitive in Prague

With new delivery options launching, and more rumoured on the way, we compare the most popular
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If transactions with surly Czech cashiers have given you emotial scars then there’s no better time than the present to opt for grocery delivery and never look back. This summer has seen the launch of two new services, both offering deals to new customers, while Kaufland is rumored to have a Prague delivery service in the works. We tried the newest among the services and discovered that while price, selection, and delivery options vary, all of them (and their delivery drivers) shared one thing in common: quality customer service. Is this a new era? We hope so.

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Tesco

Started in early 2012, Tesco online is the largest delivery service in the Czech Republic with 20,000+ items ranging from fresh produce to drugstore and pet items (its ordering interface is also in English making it a popular option among expats).

Delivery zone: Throughout Prague and beyond; see detailed map coverage here.

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Delivery fees: 49-99 CZK; Fridays and evenings are the most expensive (79-99 CZK), while Wednesday afternoons are 49 CZK. Orders can be placed up to 3 weeks in advance. New customers can get free delivery now until the end of August when spending over 500 CZK.

Fun features: Click & Collect is available with pick up at the Praha Letňany branch for 39 CZK, with a current summer special of 1 CZK until August 31. The “Favourites feature remembers all of your previous online purchases so you don’t have to search through thousands of products to find your most beloved brand of peanut butter.

Tips: The “náhrada category means substitution. If you aren’t happy with blueberry yogurt when you originally asked for blackberry send it back. You can also send back any produce that doesn’t look fresh!

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Overall: Suprisingly polite and friendly delivery drivers with English-speaking customer service operators and delivery straight to your door occasionally with a free gift (chocolate bar!). Typically had the best prices and promos and largest selection. No cash accepted.

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Rohlik.cz

Started by the people behind Dáme Jídlo in mid-2014 with around 4,000 items supplied by Makro, the service has slowly been expanding with an app in both the App Store and Google Play. Delivers within 90 minutes when you order between 8.30-21.30.

Delivery zone: Prague only; company plans on expanding to Brno, Hradec Králové, Pardubice.

Delivery price: 79-99 CZK per delivery; spend over 600 CZK for 49-99 CZK delivery, spend over 1,500 CZK for free delivery. Current promo offers registered users one month free delivery and a new premium member features gives you delivery for one year for 1,000 CZK.

Fun feature: Handwrite your grocery list, snap a pic, and send and they will do the shopping for you. Also has a unique “last-minute” category. Click and buy items that are close to the expiry date (usually produce or meat) for half price.

Overall: Due to the higher cost and smaller selection it is best used occasionally or in a pinch for its immediate, same-day delivery service. (We recently purchased excellent organnic turkey as a last-minute option!). The site is not English friendly; accepts cash at the door.

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Kolonial.cz

Launched in June 2015 by the former executive director of Globus, Kolonial claims to be an eco-friendly delivery service: their delivery vehicles run on CNG fuel and all of the shopping bags used are biodegradable. Their “fresh” policy means that Kolonial does not order or store food until you want it, so same-day delivery isn’t possible.

Delivery zone: Throughout Prague and beyond including Roztoky, Jeneč, Černošice, and Říčany.

Delivery price: The service is so new that delivery prices have not yet been fixed; so far they have been running specials: currently if you spend over 500 CZK delivery is free.

Fun feature: They are the only delivery service that will take away your empty bottles – and give you the deposit back in credit for next order.

Overall: No cash option, card only. Website in Czech only. Unlike the above mentioned services they will SMS you in advance of their delivery instead of just buzzing and waking up your baby (I’m looking at you Tesco!).

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Košík.cz

Launched in spring 2015 by dentist-turned-entrepreneur Jakub Šulta and, oddly, CZ national team soccer player Matěj Vydra, this service has 12,000 + items sourced exclusively from JIP Východočeská wholesale. The category selections still seems to be in development and the website is in Czech only.

Delivery zone: Currently still within Prague only; if you live in Zbraslav, Říčany or Roztoky then you’re out of luck.

Delivery fee: Minimal order 500 CZK, free delivery for first order and orders over 1,500 CZK and for orders placed a day in advance. Same day delivery is available for 45 CZK. Currently when you order 1,000 CZK you get 200 CZK back.

Fun feature: Košík.cz is party friendly selling ice (you read it right, ICE) in 3 kg or 5 kg bags.

Overall: This is our favorite lately with melon and drinks arriving ice cold and the produce so fresh that paying more than Tesco was acceptable. For expat staples (we bought La Costenablack beans and authentic Thai coconut milk), they have the cheapest prices in town and a great selection of “exotic foods” that beats Bila and Albert.

In all fairness there were two we didn’t try: Z-Market, which was one of the first grocery delivery services in Prague (est. 1997) and offers 24-hour delivery. (Order minimum for free delivery is 500 CZK). The newer Potraviny Domu debuted its on-line delivery service in 2010. Minimal purchase for free delivery is 990 CZK. Also has an iTunes app that lets, you “tell” your iPhone what to buy.

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