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Time-Saving Tips, Errand Edition: Meet Postmates

Aug. 5, 2015
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There’s always been 24 hours in a day, but in the modern tech-driven, hyper-fast-paced world (full of distractions) it can sometimes feel like far, far fewer.  For example, those 20 minutes you spent watching cat videos on YouTube this morning when you should have been putting away your laundry?  Yeah, not sure how that happened.

Fear not! NerdWallet has a time-saving tip to keep you on task (and possibly save you money).

In the second installment of our series on app-based service reviews, we’re taking a closer look at Postmates, an app that could result in having a well-stocked home and oodles more time (but please, try to limit the cat videos).

What is Postmates?

Postmates, according to its website, is, “transforming the way local goods move around a city by enabling anyone to get any product delivered in under one hour. “  The company employs local couriers who are then paired with a customer once an order has been placed through the app. Basically, if you’re craving fro-yo on a Monday night and don’t want to interrupt your viewing of “The Bachelor,” Postmates could be the answer.

Where is Postmates available?

At the time of this writing, Postmates is available in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Boston, Philadelphia, Miami, Atlanta, Denver, Las Vegas, San Diego, Orange County, Portland, Phoenix, Austin , Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Minneapolis, Charlotte, Nashville and Virginia Beach.

How much does Postmates cost?

Postmates is not cheap. What you gain in convenience is often offset by the delivery price. Fees start at $5 and are calculated based on the distance from where your items are being picked up to where they’re being delivered. Add on a 9% service fee to the purchase price of your item and that fro-yo is starting to look more and more like an unnecessary indulgence.

Should I use Postmates?

If you’re really desperate and just can’t bring yourself to leave the warmth and safety of your apartment, then Postmates might be the answer for you. Also, if you’re planning on purchasing a lot (or perhaps something really heavy that you don’t want to drag home on the bus), it could be a good option as well. On the other hand, if it’s not too much trouble to slip on some shoes and head to the store, it might be worth saving yourself the $5 plus charges.


Check out our other app-based service review:


Kirsten VerHaar is an editor at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: [email protected]. Twitter: @kirstvh.

Image via Postmates.