Walmart’s online same-day grocery ready for prime time

FILE - In an Aug. 26, 2016 file photo, people walk in and out of a Walmart store, in Dallas. Walmart is testing a delivery service using its own store employees, who will deliver packages ordered online while driving home from their regular work shifts. The world's largest retailer says workers can choose to participate and would be paid. The service is being tested at two stores in New Jersey and one in Arkansas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)

NEW YORK (AP) – Walmart is expanding its same-day online grocery delivery service to more than 40 percent of U.S. households, or 100 metro areas, by year-end as it tries to keep pace with online leader

The service is currently available in six markets.

Walmart is building on its online grocery pickup program that uses personal shoppers to pick items and then take them to shoppers’ cars parked at the curb. It says it will continue to use ride-hailing services like Uber to deliver the goods to shoppers’ homes as it expands the service.

Shoppers pay a flat fee of $9.95 but they are also required to spend at least $30 per order.

Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods Market last year has raised the stakes in the grocery wars.

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