More and more people are buying their groceries online, and Amazon is trying to make it easier for low-income families.
Millions of Americans are part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP — which helps families pay for healthy food. And most of them are using their SNAP benefits at the grocery store, paying for household staples like bread, peanut butter, fruits and vegetables, meat and dairy, and more.
Amazon has expanded their participation in the SNAP program, allowing shoppers to use their benefits without going into a grocery store.
Here’s what you need to know:
You can use SNAP to buy approved items from Amazon.
Amazon’s got a handy list of SNAP-eligible items for you to browse, and it’s not just bread, milk, and eggs.
Chia seeds, Oreo and Chips Ahoy snack packs, electrolyte water, and protein powder are at the top of the featured SNAP list.
If you don’t want to just browse the SNAP list, search for a product you want; you’ll be able to see on its listing if it is SNAP eligible.
Amazon now accepts SNAP as payment in 30 states & D.C.
The list includes Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and select regions of Illinois.
There are 3 different Amazon grocery programs you can use with SNAP — but they don’t include Whole Foods.
Shoppers may use their SNAP benefits via the following Amazon programs:
- Amazon Fresh: This grocery delivery service is only available in certain areas, but if you’re lucky enough to have them in your area, you can get groceries delivered to you for free — even if you don’t have a Prime account. Browse the online inventory and purchase $35 or more worth of groceries to get free delivery.
- Amazon Pantry: Customers can save money by putting together a pantry box full of food items and household products in everyday package sizes — products that would normally cost too much to ship on their own. Normally, free shipping requires a purchase of $35 or more — but all orders are free now through Aug. 31, 2020.
- Amazon Grocery: Check out the Grocery and Gourmet Food category on Amazon for shelf-stable food and household items in multi-pack sizes. Get free 2-day shipping if you’re a Prime member; otherwise, you can get free shipping in 5-8 days with an order of $25 or more.
NOTE: Whole Foods doesn’t accept SNAP/EBT for grocery pickup orders; however, many products sold at Whole Foods are included in one or more of the three categories.
Add your SNAP card to Amazon, shop for groceries, and enter your EBT PIN.
Once you sign up to use your SNAP card on Amazon, shop Amazon Pantry and Amazon Fresh, and enter your EBT PIN to pay at checkout.
SNAP recipients also can get half-priced Prime membership and 15% off select brands.
We talk more about this here, but if you’re receiving government assistance, you qualify for a $5.99/month Prime membership (reg. $12.99/month). That alone is big savings on a number of Insane Benefits to Becoming a Prime Member. Sign up for the half-price Prime membership here.
Additionally, SNAP/EBT or Medicaid cardholders can get 15% off select Mama Bear, Happy Belly, and 365 Everyday Value groceries.