Instacart Rewards Shoppers With Gas Discounts, Caregiving Perks

The new program is tiered-based, and customers can see a shopper’s earned level.

July 11, 2022

Instacart Cart Star Loyalty Program

SAN FRANCISCO—Instacart’s new Cart Star program will reward its in-store shoppers for their work, with incentives via three tiers: Gold, Platinum or Diamond Cart. Instacart says the Cart Star program was developed as a result of shopper feedback.

To qualify for Cart Star, shoppers accumulate points based on the number of orders they fulfill, earning 10 points per customer order they shop or deliver. Gold Cart shoppers will have earned 200 points, Platinum Cart shoppers will have earned 1,000 points and Diamond Cart shoppers will have earned 2,000 points within the same three-month qualifying period. Shoppers must also maintain a 4.7 average customer rating to have access to the program.

Shoppers at all levels of the Cart Star program will have access to cash back on gas and car maintenance discounts via partnerships with Upside and CarAdvise, respectively. With Upside, Gold Cart shoppers can receive up to 29 cents per gallon cash back at thousands of participating gas stations nationwide, while Platinum and Diamond Cart shoppers can receive up to 33 cents per gallon cash back. In addition to already discounted prices, Instacart's partnership with CarAdvise gives Gold Cart shoppers an extra 25% off an oil change, and Platinum and Diamond Cart shoppers receive an extra 50% off an oil change.

Instacart is also partnering with additional rewards providers, such as, to help shoppers with backup care for their loved ones, including children, senior family members or pets, when it's needed. Diamond Cart shoppers will have access to two days of backup care per quarter, for the cost of $1 per hour or $10 per day.

"Shoppers are an important part of the Instacart community," said Tom Maguire, vice president of operations and care at Instacart. "They balance empathy and efficiency with communication and problem-solving, and we're thrilled to unveil our Cart Star program to recognize top shoppers with impactful incentives that help them stand out to their customers, improve their access to earnings and reach their personal goals."

Additionally, Platinum and Diamond Cart shoppers receive recognition in the Instacart app, indicating to customers when their shopper has achieved this status along with information like number of orders shopped and how long the shopper has been on the platform. Instacart said that in testing, customers who saw a top shopper badge on their shopper's profile were more likely to leave a higher rating and higher tip for their shopper.

Diamond Cart shoppers who are within close range of a store's location, as shown by a highlighted area in the Shopper app, will get priority access to batches of orders as well. They will also get exclusive early access to batches with the ability to accept batches before stores open.

Instacart recently announced it has overhauled its subscription service program Instacart Express, renaming it Instacart+. The service offers free delivery, credit back, reduced service fees and the ability to share subscriptions. The company said on average Instacart subscribers spent nearly two times more each month compared to nonsubscribers in 2021.

Instacart also has partnered with Walmart Canada on a virtual convenience store pilot for customers in the Greater Toronto Area.