Amazon Is Adding An Instant Pickup Option In The United States

Amazon announced Tuesday that it would unveil instant pickup spots at five locations across the United States, with more locations slated to open through the rest of the year, Reuters reported.

The instant pickup locations are currently limited to college campuses in Berkeley, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Columbus in Ohio and College Park in Maryland. The instant pickup option will use facilities Amazon opened for its same-day pickup option launched in 2015.

Amazon plans on eventually using all 22 locations currently available for same-day pickup as instant pickup locations, according to CNNMoney.

The lockers will stock fast-moving items like phone chargers, snacks and general impulse purchases, according to Ripley MacDonald, Amazon’s director of student programs. “I want to buy a can of coke because I’m thirsty. There’s no chance I’m going to order that on and wait however long it’s going to take for that to ship to me. I can provide that kind of service here,” MacDonald said to Reuters.

Amazon is the world’s largest online retailer. In recent years, the company has made a push to provide instant services like offering an AR-15 guide and regular brick-and-mortar stores, as well as break into the grocery market with local and fast delivery options.

Along with same-day pickup, the company has also in the past launched AmazonFresh Pickup, which fills grocery orders within 15 minutes, or the PrimeNow program, which could deliver certain goods within an hour.

AmazonFresh Pickup is currently only available in two Seattle locations. Customers can place orders online, then drive up to their delivery location and have workers load groceries into their cars, according to GeekWire. The service is free to Amazon Prime members, with an extra $15-a-month charge for the 15-minute delivery promise.

The major retailer also announced in June that it would be purchasing Whole Foods, a major grocery provider with an emphasis on natural and healthy foods, for $13.7 billion, according to TechCrunch.

The German grocery store Aldi announced Monday that it would be launching a similar grocery delivery program that could compete with Amazon, according to CNNMoney. The store said it was partnering with Instacart to offer grocery delivery services in Los Angeles, Atlanta and Dallas. Aldi currently has 1,700 stores in the U.S. and in June announced plans to open 500 more.