Instacart Deactivation: Why Shoppers Get Deactivated and how to Get Reactivated

instacart deactivation

Instacart is a prime example of a company that operates within the gig economy, providing flexible work opportunities to individuals who want to earn money by shopping and delivering groceries for others.

If you’re an Instacart Shopper — as most of us independent contractors — you can get fired at any time. Instacart sends out an email before they disable a driver account with details about the problem. Occasionally the driver tries to log in in the driver app with no chance, only to find out from support that their Instacart account has been disabled.

That’s a fact. Doing a great job and garnering high performance marks, you probably don’t need to overthink this one.

With that out of the way, let’s talk about some common reasons for Instacart deactivation.

I’m referring to those altogether avoidable things that can bring drivers to lose their jobs and you can avoid—unless you don’t care about getting let go.


Below are different reasons why your Instacart account may be locked. If you need to reactivate your account, contact support by calling 1-888-246-7822 or emailing


Reasons Why Your Instacart Account May Be Locked


One of the most common reasons an Instacart account may be locked is due to a failure to comply with the terms and conditions outlined in the agreement between Instacart and the shopper.

The Instacart agreement is the contract that outlines the relationship between Shoppers and the grocery delivery services.

One of the common mistakes of small business entrepreneurs is entering into contracts and agreements without thoroughly understanding what is in the agreement. Many simply sign without reading what is expected of them and the rules that they need to follow.

This is made even worse when joining online programs where it is easy to hit the “I Agree” button without even scanning what is in the agreement.

Everyone who signs up for a drive account is required to follow Guidelines that outline pillars and the standards of the platform. So if you haven’t done it yet, take the time to read the contract for the United States and Canada below:


Instacart platform allows users to stay at home, order groceries from their favorite grocery store and get them delivered.

The San Francisco headquartered company relies on a combination of in-store hourly employees and contractors. In-store shoppers pick groceries, while on apps like Instacart, contractors can choose to accept a “batch” of deliveries and pick and deliver or just deliver. The batch includes information such as customer locations, items requested and tip offered.

If you are an in-store shopper you must follow all of the Instacart employee rules.

If you are a contractor you must follow all of the Instacart Shopper rules.

Natalia Montalvo, the company’s director of shopper engagement and communications, said the in-store shopper role was built on the premise of “flexibility, efficiency, innovation and customer service.”

“Over the last few years, we’ve implemented new tools, resources and guidelines to help shoppers deliver the best customer experience possible,” Montalvo said in a statement. “To achieve this, we expect in-store shoppers to show up for scheduled hours, pick high-quality items, complete orders in a timely manner and provide excellent customer service.”

Providing excellent customer services is essential for both positions.

Related Article: Instacart Delivery Jobs


Instacart delivers alcohol from warehouses and grocery shops, but also from breweries that it already has partnerships with.

Recently Instacart expanded the alcohol delivery experience for customers across the U.S.

Customers in 14 states, as well as Washington D.C., can now have alcohol delivered in as fast as an hour from national, regional and local grocers such as Albertsons, Kroger, Publix, Schnucks, Sprouts Farmers Market and Stater Bros., as well as wine and liquor specialty stores like BevMo, Binny’s Beverage Depot, and Total Wine & More in select locations.

Instacart Alcohol delivery rules are pretty clear. You must be 21 or older to order alcohol. As Shoppers you have to complete the alcohol training and always respect the alcohol delivery policy. Full service shoppers are legally obligated to verify any form of ID and never leave alcohol unattended. If you are a custtomer, please note that your personal information is not stored on their personal devices.

Related Article: Best Alcohol Delivery Apps

instacart rating deactivation


The Instacart rating system is designed to be an important measure of quality on the Instacart platform, helping keep the customer experience safe and efficient.

If you do not know yet how ratings on Instacart work you are at the right place.

At the end of each delivery, users are able to rate shoppers from 1 to 5 stars.

A 4.5 rating is... really really low, your account is at risk of deactivation and you simply know that you're in danger of getting fired. A sure way to get your account deactivated is by delivering poor service to Instacart customers.

An unhappy customer can cancel the Instacart account at any time.


While you are free to receive delivery offers and not accept them, you should never accept a delivery and do not complete it. It is the same on other platforms including Shipt, food delivery services and rideshare companies.

There are minimum Consumer Ratings and Completion Rates required to remain active on the Instacart platform.

A cancellation occurs when you accept a delivery and then decide to cancel it. This is not appreciated by Instacart and is tracked with your cancellation rate.

If you absolutely need to cancel a delivery, you can do it directly with the Shopper app. However from a user's perspective, this causes frustration and a poor experience.

Under the new policy, your Instacart account is put under review if you have to suddenly cancel a batch.

Related Article: How Late Does Instacart Deliver


We have recently received an email from a Shopper. He said: Instacart deactivated my account because I gave the receipt to the customer.

You should never give the customers the receipt even if they have a membership subscription. You can actually get deactivated if you do that.

Basically, customers get Instacart receipts emailed to them. The company doesn’t want Shoppers giving customers the grocery receipt for different reasons.

Keeping the receipt is also a way for you to protect yourself in the case of fraud or false claims including missing items. The Shoppers must have proof like the receipts to show that all items requested were purchased.

💡 Pro TIPS: We also suggest you take off all stickers that reveal any sales or prices, like a buy-one-get-one.


An Instacart account is deactivated permanently if you engage in or encourage fraudulent conduct. Instacart suspicious activity includes:

Use third-party bot

Instacart is one of the same day pay jobs. Drivers are independent contractors, they are not paid minimum wage and get paid for gigs. Many of them, frustrated with the intense and often unpredictable nature of grabbing batches, or because they simply want to make more money, started using bots.

Using a bot drivers can get a batch faster than a human would be able to. But they also run the risk of Instacart suspending them from the app, since the Instacart Shopper terms of service prohibit the following:

  1. You may not make any automated uses of the Shopper App or the Instacart Platform or gain any other unauthorized access therewith.
  2. You may not attempt to decompile, reverse engineer, disassemble, hack, defeat, or overcome any of Instacart’s software, encryption technologies, or security measures or data transmitted, processed or stored by Instacart.

Despite the risks, bots have become an increasingly common tool for some drivers. Keep in mind that If shoppers are blocked from using the app, they can’t get any more delivery jobs.

Misuse of the payment card

The Card is a credit card that drivers use to pay for some (but not all) Instacart orders. Each Shopper receives a

Card by mail. Misappropriation of funds or cash-back attempts can lead to deactivation.

Unauthorized use of Instacart’s trademark or intellectual property

Trademark infringement is the unauthorized use of a trademark or service mark on or in connection with goods and/or services in a manner that is likely to cause confusion, deception, or mistake about the source of the goods and/or services.


One of the most common reasons for an Instacart deactivated account is: Sharing your Instacart account with a friend or bringing anyone along (including a partner or minors) who does not have an Instacart Shopper account while providing services on the platform.

The Shopper guidelines are pretty clear about it. Co-shopping is clearly not authorized. Take a look at our guide to delivery with someone else.


You are committed to following all applicable laws,and adhere to applicable regulations.Temporary suspension or deactivation may result if a Shopper violates federal, state, or local law or regulation while providing services through the Instacart platform. Examples include:

  • Failure to maintain adequate insurance
  • Breaking any local, state, or federal law while providing services through the Instacart platform

💡 PRO TIP: Get Paid To Drive Safe

Instacart Deactivation: Why You Got Deactivated + How to Get Reactivated

There are a number of reasons why your Instacart Account may get disabled or deactivated. Take a look at our guide and try to avoid them. If you have been deactivated from using the Shopper app, lear...


Safety of users is the first concern for Instacart. Common unsafe behaviors that can lead to having your driver account canceled include:

  • Physical contact with a customer
  • Drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Do not respect customer privacy and contact Instacart customers after the delivery is over.
  • Use inappropriate or abusive language.
  • Have a conduct discriminatory.


You must follow delivery guidelines that promote food safety, adhere to regulatory guidance, or accommodate customer dietary restrictions. For example, keeping gluten free and non-gluten free food separate should always be followed.

An insulated bag is required and can make for a better customer experience. Finally, delivery people should deliver orders safely and in accordance with relevant safety standards. For example, don’t tamper with or open packaging during delivery.

This can lead to foreign matter in food, which may pose a significant food safety risk for customers. We suggest you consult our guide to gear for drivers.

12. Failure To Pass The Background Check

Is your instacart account deactivated after background check? One common reason for an Instacart account to be locked is a failure to pass the required background check, which may include criminal record checks and driving history checks.

How to Reactivate Instacart Shopper Account?

Instacart reserves the right to cancel your Shopper account at any time and for any reason.

Even if you saw the Instacart deactivation email coming, losing your job often comes as a shock. Following our experience an instacart reactivation is not an easy process.

So, how to reactivate an instacart shopper account? Handling an Instacart Shopper account deactivated cannot be easy and there are no specific legal requirements for a rehiring policy.

If your driver account has been wrongfully deactivated by instacart, you have an opportunity to start the Instacart deactivation appeal by contacting Instacart shopper support and dispute your deactivation.

After confirming your identity, providing your account information, and completing the necessary steps to rectify the issue, you can expect your Instacart account to be reactivated and fully operational once again.

For Instacart Shoppers banned for serious reasons or misconduct, you will be probably permanently banned and there’s very little chance that you’ll be able to ever shop and drive for Instacart again. However, for minor reasons, you can appeal the decision directly with Instacart.

You can take a look at our guide with the best Instacart alternatives .

⚠️ Some scammers are currently proposing their services to reactivate your account. Beware!

Instacart Customer Account Deactivated

If you are wondering if there is a code of conduct for customers, the answer is yes. The code strictly prohibits inappropriate use of the platform for users too.

In a recent medium post the company highlighted the importance of Instacart customers to ensure an environment of safety, respect, and integrity for everyone on the platform.

During the coronavirus lockdown, customers started relying on groceries delivery apps such as Instacar, Shipt, Amazon…

Some of them did an inappropriate use of the platform, luring Shoppers with a big tip, only to decrease or remove the tip altogether after the delivery. Indeed once a delivery has been made, customers had up to three days to adjust the tip on the order (with the update to the customer tipping Instacart reduced the tipping window to 24 hours).

If you do not know how tips work on the platform, we suggest you consult our guide to Instacart tipping. People biting grocery delivery workers with big tips can be banned from the platform.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know My Instacart Account Is Locked?

The most common indication that your Instacart account has been locked is receiving a deactivation email from Instacart. If you receive this message, follow the instructions provided to determine why your account has been locked and what actions you can take to reactivate it. If you have not received a deactivation email and are unable to log in to your account, it is possible that the Instacart platform itself is facing technical issues (in which case it is recommended to check their social media or website for updates on outages).

Does Instacart Deactivate For Inactivity?

No, Instacart will not deactivate a shopper's account for inactivity. You can be inactive as long as you want.

Can You Make a Second Instacart Account?

No, Instacart does not allow users to have multiple personal accounts. Each person or household is limited to one account. However, you may use a secondary account for business purposes. The platform does not limit accounts to a single delivery address or ZIP code.

Instacart Deactivation: Final Thought

Better safe than sorry. Now you know all the ways to avoid the instacart deactivation. Reactivating a shopper account is not impossible. And if, in the end, you still wind up with a ‘pink slip’, it's probably for the best. There's almost certainly another delivery job opportunity for you.

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