Is online grocery shopping in Singapore cheaper than going to a supermarket?

We Singaporeans are addicted to convenience. I've almost forgotten what it feels like to have to step into the abyss of a shopping mall because I now buy most of my non-food necessities online, from shampoo to clothes. But buying groceries is still a bit of a hassle, especially if you have to haul multiple sagging plastic bags home without a car.

Online grocery shopping is not as popular in Singapore as it should be, and we're wondering why. Here we compare Redmart, one of the most popular online grocery shopping sites available, with good old NTUC Fairprice to see which is more cost effective.

The verdict?

A comparison between the prices of items from Redmart and Fairprice reveals that as far as processed or prepackaged products and hair and bodycare items go, prices are very similar, with Fairprice sometimes beating out Redmart's prices by a very small margin of several cents. However, Fairprice tends to have more frequent and more generous discounts.

On the other hand, when it comes to fresh produce, Fairprice is the clear winner, offering significantly lower prices than Redmart.

Redmart delivers for free if you order over $50 worth of items (first timers get free delivery on orders over $30), otherwise you pay a flat fee of $7.

You can also order NTUC FairPrice's items online, paying a $7.49 delivery fee if you spend less than $60 and $10.70 if you spend over $60. However, many fresh items like meat, fruit and vegetables are only available in-store.

For the typical family doing their groceries for the week, it appears that making a trip down to the supermarket is still going to be cheaper-particularly if you patronise budget supermarkets like Sheng Siong and ValueDollar (which are cheaper than both Redmart and Fairprice) and/or buy lots of fresh food. Of course, if you need the convenience of delivery, then the slight difference in prices shouldn't really matter that much.

No matter which method you choose, make sure you use a credit card that rewards you for spending.

If you are going to buy your groceries online, use a credit card that gives you cash rebates for online spending, such as the OCBC Frank credit card, which snags you a cool 6 per cent.

If you're heading to the supermarket instead of sitting in front of the computer all evening, then these are the best credit cards for grocery shopping in Singapore. Whichever way you choose to get your groceries, you can definitely save more money by using the right card!