How much can you make with Instacart when you shop or deliver?

Do you want to earn extra money while working at your own pace? Are you interested in working for Instacart as a full-service or in-store shopper?

We’ve looked at various sources to gather the latest information on how much you can earn on Instacart as a shopper or delivery staff. We also read various Instacart reviews and feedback from people who actually work for Instacart or earn as Instacart shoppers. 

Discover how people can earn as much as $1,200 per week as Instacart shoppers. Don’t waste your time figuring things out on your own if you skip over this article. Keep on reading to know some important tips on making the most of Instacart.

What is Instacart?

Instacart started its operations in June 2012, and since then, it has been one of the go-to delivery and pick-up services in the US and Canada. The company’s revenue has hit $1.5 billion despite the pandemic.

Instacart allows people to shop at local grocery stores using the website or mobile app. After choosing the goods they want to buy, the items will be automatically added to the cart, fulfilled by personal shoppers.

How Much Money Can You Make on Instacart?

Can you make $100 a day with Instacart?

Of course, but it depends on different factors that you’ll discover later.

Some shoppers report making as much as $1,200 per week, which translates to approximately $14 for Instacart hourly rate. But, it’s not always the case. 

Some drivers only earn $800 weekly, while others who work only on Saturdays and Sundays make $500 a week.

These rates depend on different factors, such as area, rating, and work schedule. 

For example, if you work in a busy location like New York and Washington, DC, expect more orders and earnings. On the other hand, if you deliver to Kansas or Michigan with relatively fewer orders, it’s normal to earn $500 a week.

If you want to start taking Instacart jobs, find out below how you can become full-service or in-store shoppers.

Full-service shoppers

Full-service shoppers are independent contractors who use Instacart to shop at local stores and deliver the items to customers. These Instashoppers get paid for each batch completed. If you want to have flexible work hours, try applying as a full-service shopper since they set their schedule.

How does it work?

Here’s the process involved in being a full-service shopper for Instacart.

  • You can apply using the website or mobile application.
  • Instacart asks for your full name, email, phone number, and zip code. These details help determine your location to know the available stores in your area.
  • As a full-service shopper, you can decide how many orders you’ll take in a day.
  • If you have a high rating, you’ll have access to many orders, so you can choose what batches to deliver.

What are the requirements and how do you apply?

Are you interested in becoming a full-service shopper? Below are the qualifications so you can work for Instacart.

  • At least 18 years old
  • Has a US or Canada working permit
  • Access to a registered and working vehicle with insurance
  • Owns a smartphone running on Android 5.0 or later or iOS 9 or later
  • Able to lift over 30 pounds of items
  • Willing to follow Instacart’s food safety policies

How much can you make?

A full-service shopper can make as much as $7 to $10 per order. Depending on your location, you can get one batch per hour or one batch every two hours. 

If you work as a shopper for 8 hours a day, you can earn $80 daily.

However, it’s highly dependent on your area and rating. If you live in a not-so-busy location, expect to make approximately $30 per day. Take note of these factors when applying as an Instacart shopper.

In-store shoppers

Aside from full-service drivers, Instacart also employs in-store shoppers. Read the following sections so you can decide which of the two is suitable for your lifestyle and schedule.

How does it work?

Unlike full-service Instacart drivers that can shop at any local store, in-store shoppers only wait for orders in one store. As an in-store shopper, you’ll have a planned schedule from the local store you’ll be working for.

So if you want a fixed schedule, then being an in-store shopper is for you. Your role would be to handpick the customer’s orders from the store, then arrange a pick up to deliver the items.

What are the requirements and how do you apply?

Do you want to try being an in-store shopper? Check out the requirements below.

  • At least 18 years old
  • Has a US working permit
  • Owns a smartphone running on Android 5.0 or later or iOS 9 or later
  • Access to stable internet connection
  • Able to lift over 30 pounds of items

As you might notice, Instacart doesn’t require in-store shoppers to have a car. Hence, it’s excellent for people who don’t own a car.

How much can you make?

In-store shoppers get up to 29 hours per week with a typical rate of $13 per hour. If you complete the maximum allowable hours, expect to earn at least $377 per week.

However, some locations have a lower hourly rate of $8. In that case, you can still make $232 weekly and $928 monthly. It’s a good way to earn extra money for savings or other expenses.

How do you get paid?

As a full-service or in-store shopper, you’ll receive your salary on a weekly basis. Instacart will send the payment via direct deposit to your savings or checking account. 

You can also use the Instant Cashout feature to access your earnings quickly. After completing five batches, you can already initiate a fund transfer to your debit account. 

This way, there’s no need to wait until the end of the week to get your salary. But take note that there’s a $3,000 daily limit on the Instant Cashout.

What are the Expenses on Instacart You Should Consider?

Does Instacart pay for gas? Yes, since you’re an independent contractor, the company requires you to shoulder fuel purchases.

What are other Instacart driver expenses that you should take note of?

You’re also responsible for your car’s maintenance, oil change, and repair. Aside from these charges, you should also pay for prepaid mobile plans.

Is Instacart available in your area?

Currently, Instacart is available in 52 locations across the US and Canada.

Check out this list to find out if there’s Instacart in your area.

AlabamaHawaiiMichiganNorth CarolinaUtah
AlaskaIdahoMinnesotaNorth DakotaVermont
CaliforniaIowaMontanaOregonWest Virginia
ConnecticutKentuckyNevadaRhode IslandWyoming
DelawareLouisianaNew HampshireSouth CarolinaCanada
District of ColumbiaMaineNew JerseySouth Dakota
FloridaMarylandNew MexicoTennessee
GeorgiaMassachusettsNew YorkTexas

How to Sign Up for Instacart?

Here are the steps to becoming an Instacart shopper.

  1. Go to the Instacart sign-up page.
  2. Enter your zip code to get started.
  3. You’ll be redirected to another page. The website will then ask for your first name, last name, valid email address, phone number, and zip code.
  4. Type in the referral code if you have one.
  5. If none, click Create account.
  6. Download the iOS or Android app to check your application conveniently.

After the initial process, Instacart will perform a background check for up to 10 business days. Check the document you need to present:

  • Details of your driver’s license
  • Social security number
  • Direct deposit account
  • Banking information

After Instacart approves your application, you can start signing in to your account to accept orders or ask for a fixed schedule.

How Can You Maximize Your Instacart Earnings?

Do you want to become a super-shopper? Check these top 7 tips on how to earn more on Instacart.

Act quickly

Since you’re dealing with customers who order essential goods, time is important. Here are ways to quickly process an order.

  • Choose orders from nearby grocery stores so you can quickly deliver them to the customers, then start taking new orders.
  • Learn each store’s layout in order to shop more conveniently. Knowing the item’s location allows you to plan your shopping time.
  • Park near the store’s exit. This way, you can easily put the grocery inside your car’s compartment.

Go to the busiest areas

One of the factors that affect your earnings is your location. If you go to an in-demand area, expect more batches. The app shows these high-demand areas so you can plan your target location for the day.

Look for orange and red areas on the map since they indicate more orders and more income for shoppers like you.

Go after bigger orders

Be strategic with the orders you choose to make the most out of your time. Consider waiting for bigger batches which include 25 to 40 items per order.

Below are hours to watch out for if you want to take bigger orders.

  • Morning on any day of the week
  • Late night on weekdays 
  • 10 AM to 3 PM on weekends

Use mobile payments

Take advantage of Instacart’s Mobile Checkout feature, which allows you to use Apple Pay or Google Pay. You can easily tap your phone and pay for groceries without getting your wallet. You might think that it only cuts out a small chunk of your time, but it helps in speeding up shopping time.

Grab Peak Hour Pay Boost

Make the most of Instacart’s incentives to shoppers during peak times. You should set an alarm to claim your shift before others take it. You can refer to the prior section for possible high-demand hours.

Take note of how much Instacart pays per delivery. Some shoppers report receiving up to $12 of reward during peak hours. Others say they get $8 for each order, which is still a great addition to weekly income.

Improve your rating

Aside from being considered a trusted shopper, if you have a 5-star rating, you’ll be one of the first shoppers to view and accept orders. You can then choose which batches you want to take, preferably the big batches.

Here are some ways to enjoy a 5-star rating from customers.

  • Pick customers who offer generous tips since they appreciate shoppers. Most likely, they will give excellent ratings.
  • Make sure to bring a charger to avoid having a low-battery phone. This way, you can reply quickly to clients.
  • Deliver the items promptly and in good condition.

Refer your friends to Instacart

That’s why Instacart asks you upon signing up regarding a referral code. If you refer someone to become a shopper, you can anticipate a bonus from Instacart.

The pay depends on your location, but it can go as high as $1,000 in busy areas and $100 in other places.

What are Alternatives to Instacart?

Aside from Instacart, you can also try these three grocery delivery apps. All of them have a daily cashout and weekly salary options through direct deposit.


DoorDash is available in the US, Canada, Japan, Australia, and Germany.

While Instacart allows you to earn almost $1,200 weekly, some DoorDash drivers report making approximately $800 to $1,000 on an eight-hour shift. However, the pay also depends on your location and the orders you take.


Shipt is a membership-based grocery app where you can apply as a shopper. It’s also available nationwide, providing you with more opportunities to earn extra cash.

Some Shipt drivers earn $1,500 including tips. Take note, however, that they get orders from regular customers. As a starting shopper, you can still make almost $600 excluding tips from clients.

Uber Eats

Uber Eats is a well-known food delivery service that also offers a flexible schedule for delivery drivers.

Generally, you can expect to earn $500 as a starting shopper for Uber Eats. Eventually, as you take more orders from customers who give big tips, you can make around $1,250 per week. That’s $50 more than an Instacart driver’s average salary.

Is Driving for Instacart Worth It?

If you want a flexible schedule while earning up to $1,200 a week, then try applying as an Instacart shopper. If you don’t own a vehicle or prefer a fixed schedule, choose to be an in-store shopper. Still, you can earn over $300 per week, which is a great addition to your income!