My family and I recently spent a few nights at Disney’s BoardWalk Villas in a one-bedroom villa. Villas are just Disney’s fancy word for condos that you can book at select resorts, and one of the many benefits is that you get a full kitchen with your room! Because we were visiting during the COVID-19 precautions and most restaurants and resorts were closing early, we thought we’d try ordering groceries on Instacart for this trip.
I set up our order several days before we actually traveled. Now, it is very important to me that I never cook on vacation. If I have to cook a meal, it’s no longer a vacation – it’s a trip. So when I say we ordered groceries, it was mostly snacky stuff. We ordered things like bottled water, cookies, crackers, quick breakfast items, milk, and of course my favorite Mark West Pinot Noir!
I was able to choose a delivery window. I selected 5pm-7pm on our arrival date, because I knew we’d be at the pool and I’d be able to meet the driver. While the driver can drop off your order to Bell Services, there is a fee you pay to the resort for this service. In addition, I was concerned about keeping everything cool, and (let’s be honest), I have control issues and wanted to get the groceries myself!
While in theory this sounded like a good plan, in reality it just didn’t work for my family. We were hanging out at the La Luna pool at the BoardWalk, and my kids were having a ball swimming and going down the slide. I definitely wanted to be in the pool with my family instead of staring at my phone on the side, waiting for any delivery notifications. What’s more, my battery was getting low, and I’d left my portable chargers in the room. I was also concerned about getting the groceries from the driver all the way to our room on my own – so my anxiety started kicking in.
I finally got the notification that my delivery was about to arrive, so I went up front to meet the driver at the porte cochere. I asked the concierge if I could use a luggage cart for my groceries, and he brought one to me – so I didn’t have to worry about carrying everything. I waited for a good 25 minutes before my delivery actually arrived. I think my driver may have gotten lost or turned around, because according to the app, she was circling my resort for a long time.
My driver finally did arrive with the entirety of my order. I was able to pay and tip her via the app, which was very convenient. However, by the time I made it back to my room and put the groceries away, almost an entire hour had passed since I’d been alerted that my driver was near. I’ve never used Instacart before, so it’s possible that’s normal, but I was surprised that the exchange took such a long time.
I was finally able to go back to the pool, hang out with my family, and get a drink from the bar! Now, what happened to all the groceries we ordered? To be honest, most of them went unused. In fact, when we packed to come home, one suitcase was half full of dry groceries and snacks that we never even opened. Even with the limited hours that Disney is running right now, we still just didn’t spend enough time in the room to make a dent in the food or the purchase worth it. Next time, I will just go to the gift shop and pick up a few boxes of pop-tarts and a bottle of wine. While you certainly pay a premium to get those items on Disney property, I’m willing to make that tradeoff in order to save time and stress on my vacation!
Have you ever used Instacart, either at home or on vacation? What have your experiences been like? Am I the only one out there who is fundamentally against cooking while on vacation? If you’re interested in trying this service out, my referral link is below. Both of us get a $10 credit if you order through this link!