For those of us who hate heat, run from rain, and prefer a paddy wagon than mall parking, the emergence of online grocery shopping is better than sliced bread!

I live in the suburbs of KL without a car so I was particularly thrilled to have the chance to try out Jocom, a new player on the Malaysian scene.

1. Getting started:

You’ll want to go directly to your app store and download the Jocom app. It’s fast, bug free, and you can start shopping immediately.

Like many of the mega-markets, Jocom offers a wide variety of goods, not limited to groceries and household items.

Though some sub-menus have yet to be populated with goods, the menu options suggest Jocom are working to expand their offerings. I’ll admit I look favorably on a place that lets me freshen my breath and get my kinky on side by side. As confident and carefree as I’d like to believe myself, I am just not going to buy KY from the lovely young lady at my local MaxValue who helps ring up my bananas and frozen pizza.

2. Filling my cart

The selection at Jocom is decent. It’s clear the company began by targeting the local market but they are keen to expand to cater to expats’ tastes.

A number of western favorites are featured including San Remo pastas and the French St. Delfour Jams. They are particularly weak in the organic, baking-flour, & dairy departments but offer organic eggs, one of the things I loath to pack and carry myself. We are also a fan of plain – vs. curry – Kentucky flour which is always sold out at my local market. 

The company also identifies if produce is coming from China.  One draw back is that you are unable to look more closely at the labeling on packages. Whereas I might be tempted to try new items in a traditional supermarket, I wouldn’t buy an item if I have not been able to view the ingredient list. 

Another feature I really appreciated was that certain items were listed as sold out. When planning my meals for the week, I could build on items that were definitely available vs. being faced with a last minute substitution.

3. Check out:

Jocom delivers within 24 hours if the goods are in stock. You are able to select to have everything delivered at once or as it becomes available. You will see a summary of your cart listing the delivery times. Most of mine was within 24, with two items, frozen fish and a face cream listed as 1-2 days.

4. Delivery

Once you check out,  your order is confirmed with the following screen. As you can see above, it’s a bit vague! What happens next is someone calls you on the phone to arrange for delivery.

They came shortly after our agreed time – late by 5-10 minutes but had called me to let me know they were arriving shortly. The drivers were courteous and professional and indulged my wish for a photo.

5. The goods

Their fresh produce was fab and was just as beautiful and fresh on my counter as it appeared on the website. I am not a fan of unnecessary plastic and appreciated that single items like my red cabbage or bunch of asparagus didn’t have extra plastic bags. I also ordered a kilo of Dory fish fillet which came frozen in 2 portions in two yellow plastic bags. At first, I was put off as I am so used fish and meat being excessively wrapped. Upon further thought I am grateful to avoid the need of landfilling more packaging. All items arrived in reusable shopping bags.

My experience of Jocom online shopping:

Competitive prices and fresh produce.  Identifies produce from China. Icon depicts items sold out. No un-welcome substitutions.

Limited selection for expat tastes for now. Communication teething issues. Unable to see close up of food ingredients/labels.

Jocom is definitely one to watch, especially if you are on a budget! As an expat on a local contract, I will definitely be shopping with them again for  pantry staples & produce. Why pay 5.10 for a bag of San Remo pasta when you can get it for 4.60, delivered quickly to your door!