Ex-Kroger Worker Warns About "Scammers" Preying on Shoppers
She claims that the grocery chain's delivery service is easy to exploit.
As one of the largest grocery companies in the U.S., Kroger services millions of shoppers around the country. Consumers flock to the store because they consider its wide selection of organic foods and friendly customer service to be better than other grocers. But as it turns out, this preference may end up costing you in more ways than one. A former Kroger employee is now warning about a sketchy scheme that centers around the grocer's deliveries. Read on to find out why they claim "scammers" are preying on Kroger shoppers.
READ THIS NEXT: 6 Secrets Kroger Doesn't Want You to Know.
Kroger partners with Instacart for deliveries.
Getting your groceries has never been easier than it is today—especially since you don't even have to go to the store yourself. For Kroger shoppers, the grocer offers three main delivery options: Next Day or Later; Two Hours or Same Day; and Delivery Now. But only the next day or later option is actually delivered by Kroger. The two quicker options are delivered through Instacart instead.
Kroger and Instacart first partnered together back in 2017 to offer same-day delivery. Then in 2021, the two companies rolled out their Delivery Now service nationwide, which allows Kroger shoppers to get their groceries delivered in as fast as 30 minutes through Instacart.
"This service reaches up to 50 million households and it's an expansion of our thriving e-commerce model that demonstrates strategic interplay among our assets, expansive store network, supply chain, and dedicated fulfillment centers and fleet, joined by Instacart's unrivaled fulfillment model and last-mile technology to provide our customers with anything, anytime, anywhere without compromise," Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen said in a statement at the time.
But now one former Kroger employee has some not-as-nice things to say about the delivery company.
A former employee is warning about "scammers" with this service.
Consumers may want to be cautious when ordering delivery from one of Kroger's stores. On May 24, TikTok user @whitewidow1313 posted a video response to another user who asked if it is a myth that people are being "robbed" by those delivering their groceries. "It is definitely not a myth," user @whitewidow1313 said in her now-viral video, which has been viewed over 568,000 times in just a week.
She goes on to explain that she had just quit her work-from-home job working for "one of the largest grocery companies" in the country. Despite not directly naming the former employer in her original video, the user went on to further allude and eventually confirm that she was referring to Kroger in follow-up videos and comments.
"One of the only delivery services that we offered was Instacart," she said. "I very quickly learned that it's a bunch of scammers essentially. I would get calls regularly of people who placed a $100, $120 order and then when their bill came it'd be $400, $500 dollars."
Best Life has reached out to Kroger about the claims, and we will update this story with their response.
She claims Instacart drivers specifically prey on Kroger shoppers.
For this scheme, Instacart drivers will "rob" Kroger shoppers of their delivery orders, according to @whitewidow1313. But they don't just take the things they order. Instead, they switch them out for what they want on the customer's dime. "So what happens is these Instacart drivers, they don't just steal the groceries when they are supposed to deliver," she said. "They'll go into the store and they'll mark all of your items as out of stock, so then they have the option to substitute. So they'll put all of your items out of stock and then substitute it for something that's not even remotely close to what you ordered. And then you just never get your order."
As she further explained in a follow-up video, Kroger doesn't require that shoppers approve substitutions or put a cap on how much you can be charged by your driver. She claims that this is the loophole that allows Instacart drivers to prey on the chain's shoppers. "I had an elderly lady call me one time and her $120 grocery order turned into over $900 because someone had did this to her and they bought lawn chairs, candles—I mean a plethora of things that was nowhere near what she had actually ordered," the creator said in her original video.
Customers have to wait at least a week to get their money back.
The rotten cherry on top of an already concerning situation is how long customers have to wait to get their money back if they've been targeted by one of these scammers. According to @whitewidow1313, it takes at least a week for shoppers to get a refund from Kroger during these situations.
"I can't tell you how many times I would have to watch someone legitimately get robbed and have to be like, 'Yeah, 'you have seven to 10 days until you're gonna get your money back,'" she said. "It's absolutely ridiculous, in my opinion, to have to wait seven to 10 business days after you got scammed by one of the biggest companies in America. It's ridiculous they would have you wait that long."
The creator added that she was told by the company to just tell customers that was the standard process—even if they were scammed out of all the money they had. "I can't tell you how many times I'd have somebody call me crying because that was the money they had for groceries. Or that was their rent money. And there's nothing I can do about it," she explained.