Sunday, June 02, 2019

RedMart Vs. NTUC Fairprice Online

(The following review is unbiased and not sponsored)

With two young children and not living very near an MRT station, also Adamson does not really have the energy to drop by a mall to do heavy grocery shopping – we rely on food deliveries a lot. RedMart is the usual go-to because of wide selection and free delivery. Because, we all love free delivery yes?

The promise is simple. Without physical retail stores and owning their supply chain, the prices should be lower. We just accept this as a logical truth.

However, last year for Christmas and earlier this year for Chinese New Year, we hosted gatherings at our place. My husband loves throwing a party with us and friends and boy he does not scrimp on food quality. It shocks me sometimes because really, it’s quite extravagant in some cases. The last two times he commented, “baby the prices do not make sense. Some items are really more expensive and doesn’t make sense.” The dollar extra here and there adds up to over paying by almost $100 in some cases.

We started doing a price comparison with what he remembers at the nearby Giant ball, NTUC online and Redmart. Below are some comparisons between a (1) house gathering order and (2) our regular shopping cart.

Disclaimer: because of kids, we tend to choose items that are either rated highly or are or better quality. Example, face tissues we use 4 ply if available not 2 ply because it is smoother (does not cause abrasion when Myla over-uses, and absorbs more). Also, not including seasonable discount prices. For obvious reasons, we are not going to show the entire list because it’s too long! And I think it’s some privacy la about what and how we consume at home…


1.     REGULAR CART FOR HOME
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NTUC Online cheaper by $11.37. Honestly, with Redmart/Lazada rebates, and both offering free delivery, but NTUC has LinkPoints to offset… it’s really quite hard to figure out which of the two we want to use more.

My husband uses his NTUC card for other purchases, also ad hoc items from Giant which can use PAssion to accrue points.

2.     FAMILY AND FRIENDS GATHERING – 10 pax + 2 kids
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A total of $31.73 in savings from NTUC Online. It does appear that NTUC Online charges less for the same or equivalent items. Particularly during Christmas when Adamson decided everyone should have a lobster tail to go along with other food, we bought from NTUC for a lot of savings.

HOWEVER, and this is huge. NTUC only seems to sell frozen or packed food via online service. Redmart on the other hand, has a vast – by a lot – number of options. You can buy threadfin, caviar, beef steak (sirloin, chuck, tenderloin etc) from them through their partners.

I did not drill further into items such as BBQ essentials or household items. However, I suspect there’ll be further savings if we do a cross-price check.

Other comments:
  • NTUC Online delivery service is one of the best ever! Never had any issues with missing items, and the level of ‘care’ your products arrive actually quite good. My husband also commented that twice we used them, the delivery guy was friendly. Maybe because not as busy as Redmart people.. haha.

  • RedMart gave us a big heart attack during Chinese New Year. We spent a lot on items, and almost $300 worth of delivery items were not sent to us! This was like the day before our big steamboat gathering. Thankfully their service recovery was good (call centre in Singapore) and they rushed the items within 24hrs.

  • Ever since RedMart became part of Lazada, we are unable to ‘update shopping cart’ after ordering. This kinda sucks because after ordering, we’ll remember some items we forgot to add… we miss this feature.

  • Delivery charges are waived above a certain amount, NTUC Online min $60, RedMart $60.

In summary!

Use NTUC for frozen/packed items, especially if they are higher end purchases such as Hokkaido scallops, for cost savings. For regular shopping, especially if you purchase things from Lazada and accumulate points, RedMart is a more convenient choice because there’s not much price difference.

Also for higher ticket items, consider using Redmart simply because NTUC Online doesn’t have the choices online. BUT, myself and my husband both agree if you are buying meats or need fresh proteins such as fish – go down to Cold Storage. Things tend to cost abit more at first glance, but for 600 grams of MB4+ steak, they were costing only $24! That’s definitely a steal.

Last thoughts to leave you…

There are SO MANY new players in the food delivery market now. It seems that importers and distributors are selling direct to customer now. We have bought an amazing 3kg wagyu from QB Food before, and seriously the price per 100 gram is competitive and food delivered amazing. Next stop, we want to try out Ninja Food too.

I will share the experience once we give it a try!

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