Residents in eight communities in two Iowa metro areas can now order groceries online and have them delivered to their doors.

Instacart operations manager Megan Zigler says they recently launched service in the Council Bluffs-Omaha area as well as in the Quad Cities.

“Instacart is a service that delivers groceries and everyday essentials same day, often in as little as one hour,” Zigler says. “We connect customer orders with shoppers in the area who will pick up and deliver those groceries from the favorite local stores.”

The service works with a host of local grocery stores in addition to, in some cities, drug stores and pet stores. It’s not a sign we’re getting too lazy, Zigler says, but more an indication that many of us are too busy and could use one less chore.

“People are just more and more crunched for time. This gives people hours back in the week,” Zigler says. “It also alleviates a lot of frustrations that come with navigating parking lots and cashier lanes. We take on that burden for our customers.”

While there’s growing concern about “porch pirates” stealing our packages dropped off by FedEx or UPS, Zigler says Instacart customers can choose the hour they want their groceries delivered, up to a week in advance.

“If you prefer to be home when your groceries arrive, we can arrange for that very easily,” Zigler says. “Typically, our customers are home when deliveries are made since there are often chilled or frozen items, but certainly, customers have the option to make a note to their shopper that they can simply leave the items in a porch or on the front stoop.”

It’s also a big benefit, she says, for people who have mobility or transportation issues. The minimum order is $10 and for orders of $35 or more, the delivery fee is $5.99 plus 5% of the total order. There are also monthly and annual memberships for unlimited free deliveries.

Instacart now covers the following Iowa cities: Bettendorf, Carter Lake, Council Bluffs, Crescent, Davenport, Eldridge, Le Claire and Pleasant Valley.