Does Big Y Take EBT? Everything You Need to Know

Have you ever found yourself wanting to purchase groceries at Big Y but wondering if they accept EBT? Well, I’ve got good news for you! Big Y happily accepts EBT payments at all their stores, making it easy for those in need to shop for their groceries worry-free. Whether you’re a SNAP recipient or simply prefer using EBT for your grocery purchases, Big Y makes it simple and hassle-free, so you can focus on getting what you need.

Shopping for groceries can be stressful, especially when you’re on a tight budget. That’s why it’s important to know where you can use your EBT to get the most for your money. With Big Y accepting EBT payments, you can rest assured that you’re getting quality groceries at affordable prices. Not only that, but Big Y also offers a wide range of healthy food options, making it easy to choose nutritious foods that fit within your budget.

When it comes to buying groceries, convenience is key. That’s why Big Y is the perfect option for those who rely on EBT payments to shop for their groceries. With a variety of locations, easy-to-navigate stores, and knowledgeable staff, shopping at Big Y has never been easier. So, the next time you need to stock up on groceries and have EBT, head over to Big Y and enjoy a hassle-free shopping experience!

What is Big Y?

Big Y is a regional chain of supermarkets located in the northeastern United States. It was founded in 1936 by the D’Amour family and is headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts. The chain currently operates over 80 supermarkets, including Big Y World Class Markets, Big Y Express, and Fresh Acres specialty market.

Big Y is known for its commitment to providing customers with the best possible shopping experience. It offers a wide range of products, including fresh produce, meat, seafood, bakery, and dairy products. It also has a pharmacy, a floral department, and a liquor department. In addition, Big Y offers a variety of services, including online shopping and delivery, catering, and gift baskets.

What services does Big Y offer?

  • Online shopping and delivery
  • Catering
  • Gift baskets

Does Big Y accept EBT?

Yes, Big Y does accept EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) as a form of payment. EBT is a government program that provides financial assistance to low-income individuals and families to help them purchase food. Big Y accepts both EBT cash benefits and SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits, which are used to purchase eligible food items.

EBT Benefits AcceptedAccepted formats
EBT Cash BenefitsEBT Card with PIN
Snap BenefitsEBT Card with PIN, WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program

Customers can use their EBT card to purchase eligible food items at Big Y. These items include fresh produce, meat, dairy products, and bread. Non-food items, such as cigarettes and alcohol, cannot be purchased with EBT. Before making a purchase, customers should check the list of eligible items and make sure they have enough funds in their account.

What is EBT?

Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) is an electronic system in the United States that allows state welfare departments to issue benefits to recipients via a plastic debit card. Unlike traditional paper food stamps, EBT cards are used like a bank debit card to purchase eligible food items and other goods at participating retailers. The EBT program is part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which is managed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

How does EBT work?

  • Recipients receive their EBT card from their state welfare department.
  • The card is pre-loaded with the recipient’s benefits amount, which can be used to purchase eligible food items and goods.
  • The EBT card is swiped at the retailer’s point-of-sale (POS) system like a debit card.
  • The amount of the purchase is deducted from the EBT card balance.
  • Some retailers also offer cash-back options from the EBT card, which can be helpful to recipients who need to purchase non-food items like diapers or medicine.

What are the eligibility requirements for EBT?

To be eligible for EBT benefits, applicants must meet certain criteria, including:

  • Income limits based on household size and expenses
  • US citizenship or legal residency status
  • Why is EBT important?

The EBT program is important because it provides essential food assistance to millions of low-income and vulnerable households in the United States. SNAP is the largest food assistance program in the country, serving more than 40 million Americans each year. EBT benefits also help stimulate local economies by increasing food demand and supporting retailers who accept the cards. Many major grocery store chains, like Big Y, accept EBT to help ensure that all families have access to fresh, nutritious foods at affordable prices.

Does Big Y take EBT?

Yes, Big Y supermarkets are authorized to accept EBT cards for SNAP benefits. This allows eligible customers to purchase groceries and other food items at any Big Y store location. Big Y is committed to being an inclusive and welcoming retailer, and accepting EBT benefits helps support their mission of providing affordable, high-quality food to all members of the community.

WalmartEvery state*
TargetEvery state*

*Walmart and Target accept EBT nationwide, but may not accept WIC benefits in all states.

What are the eligibility requirements for EBT?

If you are in need of food assistance, you may be eligible to receive benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as EBT. The eligibility requirements for EBT include:

  • Income: Your income must be at or below the gross income eligibility limit based on your household size.
  • Residency: You must be a resident of the state in which you are applying for benefits.
  • Citizenship: You must be a U.S. citizen or a qualified non-citizen.
  • Work Requirements: If you are between the ages of 16 and 59, you must work or participate in a work program for a certain number of hours each month to receive benefits, unless you are exempt from this requirement due to a variety of circumstances.

It is important to note that eligibility requirements may vary depending on your state and circumstances. You can check your eligibility and apply for benefits through your state’s SNAP agency.

What types of items can be purchased with EBT?

EBT, or Electronic Benefits Transfer, is a system that allows low-income individuals and families to purchase eligible food and non-alcoholic beverages. However, not all items can be purchased with EBT. Below are the types of items that can and cannot be purchased with EBT.

Eligible Items for EBT Purchase

  • Bread and cereals
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Meat, poultry, and fish
  • Dairy products
  • Soft drinks, candy, cookies, snack crackers, and ice cream
  • Seeds and plants that produce food for the household to eat

Ineligible Items for EBT Purchase

Items that cannot be purchased using EBT include:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Tobacco products
  • Hot prepared foods that are meant to be eaten immediately, such as fast food items
  • Non-food items, such as cleaning supplies, toiletries, and pet food

How to Determine if an Item is Eligible for EBT Purchase

Some items are questionable when it comes to EBT eligibility, such as energy drinks, protein bars, and hot chicken from the deli. The best way to determine if an item is eligible for EBT purchase is to look for a sign that says “EBT Accepted” or to ask the cashier or store clerk. Additionally, when shopping at Big Y, EBT items are clearly marked with a “EBT” label on the shelf price tag to help make shopping even easier.


Overall, EBT can be a great resource for those who need assistance with buying food and non-alcoholic beverages. While there are restrictions on what can be purchased, there are still many options available to help make meals and snacks more affordable and accessible.

Eligible EBT ItemsIneligible EBT Items
Bread and cerealsAlcohol products
Fruits and vegetablesTobacco products
Meat, poultry, and fishHot prepared foods
Dairy productsNon-food items

Remember, if you have any questions or concerns about what is eligible for EBT purchase, do not hesitate to ask the store employees for assistance.

What is the purpose of EBT?

EBT stands for Electronic Benefits Transfer, a system that allows eligible individuals to receive government benefits through an electronic card, which is similar to a debit card. The primary purpose of EBT is to provide low-income families with access to basic needs, such as food and shelter. It is a government-funded program aimed at reducing poverty and hunger in the United States.

Here are some of the other purposes of EBT:

  • Efficiency: Prior to the implementation of EBT, government benefits were provided in the form of paper coupons, which were difficult to manage and often subject to fraud. EBT allows for a more streamlined and efficient distribution of benefits, reducing administrative costs and wait times for recipients.
  • Privacy: EBT provides a certain level of privacy for recipients, as transactions are made electronically, reducing stigmatization and judgment by others who may be aware of their use of government benefits.
  • Flexibility: Recipients of EBT can use their benefits to purchase food and other necessities at authorized retailers, making it easier to access vital resources no matter where they live.

EBT is most commonly associated with the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides food benefits to millions of Americans each year. However, it is also used to distribute benefits for other government programs, such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).

It is important to note that not all retailers accept EBT, as they must be authorized by the government to participate in the program. Big Y, a regional supermarket chain in the Northeast, is one of the retailers that does accept EBT for eligible purchases. This program allows low-income families to stretch their food dollars further, ensuring that everyone has access to the basic necessities of life.


Overall, the purpose of EBT is to provide assistance to those in need, reducing poverty and ensuring that basic necessities are accessible to all Americans. While there are some limitations to the program, it remains an essential tool in the national effort to combat hunger and promote economic stability.

Can EBT be used for online grocery shopping?

Yes, EBT can be used for online grocery shopping in select states in the US. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) launched the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot Program in 2019 to test the feasibility of allowing Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants to purchase groceries online using their EBT cards.

As of 2021, the program is available in over 47 states, including the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. However, the availability of the program may vary from state to state, and not all retailers may accept EBT payments online.

If you’re a SNAP participant, it’s best to check with your state’s SNAP agency to find out if the program is available and which retailers are participating.

Benefits of using EBT for online grocery shopping

  • Convenience: Using EBT for online grocery shopping eliminates the need to physically visit a store, providing a convenient option for those who may have mobility or transportation issues.
  • Accessibility: Online grocery shopping opens up options for those living in food deserts or areas with limited access to grocery stores.
  • Increased safety: Online shopping reduces the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and other illnesses as it allows for contactless delivery or pickup.

How to use EBT for online grocery shopping

To use EBT for online grocery shopping, first, check if the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot Program is available in your state. Then, follow these steps:

  • Visit the participating retailer’s website and create an account.
  • Add items to your shopping cart and proceed to checkout.
  • Select “EBT” as your payment method and enter your EBT card number.
  • Select “SNAP” as your payment type and enter your PIN.
  • Complete your order and choose a delivery or pickup option.

Participating retailers in the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot Program

As of 2021, some of the participating retailers in the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot Program include:

RetailerNumber of States

Note that this is not an exhaustive list, and availability may vary from state to state. Check with your state’s SNAP agency for more information.

In which states does Big Y have locations?

If you’re looking to do your grocery shopping at Big Y with your EBT card, it’s important to know which states have Big Y store locations. Big Y is a regional supermarket chain that primarily operates in the New England region, specifically in Connecticut and Massachusetts. However, there are a few important exceptions to keep in mind.

States with Big Y Store Locations

  • Connecticut
  • Massachusetts

Big Y Express and Fresh Acres Stores

In addition to traditional Big Y stores, there are also Big Y Express and Fresh Acres locations. Big Y Express is a convenience store concept that offers groceries, prepared foods, and fuel. Fresh Acres is a specialty market with an emphasis on fresh and gourmet foods.

Currently, Big Y Express has two locations in Massachusetts, and Fresh Acres has one location in Massachusetts and one location in Connecticut. So, if you’re in one of those states and looking to use your EBT card at Big Y, these stores could be a good option to consider.

Big Y Stores Without EBT Acceptance

It’s worth noting that not all Big Y locations accept EBT. Specifically, the Big Y World Class Markets in Longmeadow and Wilbraham, Massachusetts do not currently accept EBT. If you’re planning a grocery trip and hoping to use your EBT card, it’s best to check with the specific store location before you go to ensure that they accept EBT.

Big Y Store Locations Table

StateNumber of Big Y Locations

As you can see from the table, Massachusetts has far more Big Y locations than Connecticut. However, six stores in Connecticut still offer plenty of options for grocery shopping with your EBT card.

What is the history of Big Y?

Big Y is a family-owned and operated supermarket chain that started in 1936 when Paul D’Amour, a second-generation French-Canadian, opened his first grocery store in Chicopee, MA. With the help of his family and a strong work ethic, D’Amour was able to grow the business, opening more stores in the area.

By the 1950s, the company had expanded to 10 stores and was operating under the name Big Y. The company continued to grow, adding more stores and innovations such as the first supermarket in New England to have a bakery and a deli.

Today, Big Y operates over 80 stores throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, with over 12,000 employees. The company is committed to providing exceptional customer service, supporting local communities, and offering high-quality products at competitive prices.

Big Y and EBT

  • Big Y accepts EBT as a payment method for eligible food items.
  • Customers can use their EBT cards to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, dairy products, and other food items.
  • Customers cannot use EBT to purchase alcohol, tobacco, or non-food items such as household supplies or personal care products.

Big Y’s Commitment to Community

Big Y has a long-standing commitment to supporting the communities in which it operates. The company regularly donates to local food banks, sponsors community events, and participates in charity drives.

One of Big Y’s most notable community initiatives is its Coins for the Community program, which raises money for local non-profit organizations. Customers can donate their spare change at the checkout, and Big Y matches the donations dollar-for-dollar, up to $1,000 per organization per quarter.

Big Y Store Features

In addition to offering a wide variety of high-quality products, Big Y stores also feature a number of amenities and services to enhance the shopping experience for customers.

PharmacyBig Y stores feature on-site pharmacies staffed by licensed pharmacists.
Butcher shopMany Big Y stores have full-service butcher shops with trained meat cutters on staff.
BakeryBig Y stores offer a wide selection of fresh-baked bread, pastries, and other bakery items.
DeliBig Y delis offer a wide variety of fresh meats, cheeses, and prepared foods.

Whether you’re looking for fresh produce, high-quality meats, or a delicious prepared meal, Big Y has everything you need to feed your family and live well.

What other forms of payment does Big Y accept?

Big Y is a supermarket chain located in the Northeast region of the United States. The chain accepts a variety of payment methods to make shopping convenient for its customers.

  • EBT: Big Y accepts EBT as payment for qualifying food purchases. This payment method allows customers to purchase groceries using government-issued benefits.
  • Credit cards: Big Y accepts most major credit cards including Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover. This provides another convenient option for customers to pay for their groceries.
  • Debit cards: Big Y also accepts debit cards. This includes both PIN and signature transactions.
  • Checks: Big Y accepts checks as payment. Customers must provide a valid photo ID and have a check guarantee card to use this payment method.
  • Gift cards: Big Y offers gift cards that can be used towards the purchase of groceries or other items sold at the stores.
  • Mobile payment: Big Y recently launched its own mobile payment platform called myBigY. This allows customers to pay for their purchases using their smartphone.
  • Apple Pay: Big Y also accepts Apple Pay for customers who prefer to make contactless payments using their iPhone or Apple Watch.
  • Android Pay: Customers with Android devices can also use Android Pay to make contactless payments at Big Y stores.
  • Big Y Express Savings Club: This program allows customers to link their checking account to their rewards card. Customers can earn rewards, get discounts, and pay at the register using their Express Savings Club card.

As you can see, Big Y accepts a wide range of payment methods to make shopping as convenient as possible for its customers. This variety of payment options means that customers can choose the method that works best for them and enjoy a seamless checkout experience.

Payment MethodAccepted
Credit cardsYes
Debit cardsYes
Gift cardsYes
Mobile paymentYes (myBigY)
Apple PayYes
Android PayYes
Big Y Express Savings ClubYes

Overall, Big Y’s numerous payment options make it easy for customers to shop and pay for their purchases with minimal hassle.

How does the use of EBT affect revenue for grocery stores like Big Y?

EBT, or Electronic Benefits Transfer, is a government program that provides food assistance to low-income families by giving them access to a designated amount of money on a debit card. Grocery stores, including Big Y, accept EBT as payment for eligible items.

While EBT does provide financial assistance to these families, some may wonder how accepting EBT affects the revenue of grocery stores like Big Y. Here are some insights into this topic:

  • EBT can increase foot traffic: By accepting EBT, grocery stores are making themselves more accessible and attractive to low-income families. This can lead to an increase in foot traffic and potentially more sales.
  • EBT comes with restrictions: While accepting EBT may bring in additional customers, these customers are limited in what they can purchase with their benefits. For example, EBT cannot be used to purchase hot foods or non-food items. This restriction may result in less revenue from these types of products.
  • EBT fees: Grocery stores that accept EBT may be subject to transaction fees for each sale made with an EBT card. These fees can vary by state and can add up over time, potentially impacting a store’s bottom line.
  • Government incentives: To offset the potential loss from transaction fees, some states offer incentives to grocery stores for accepting EBT. Incentives can include tax breaks or other types of financial rewards.
  • Community goodwill: Accepting EBT not only supports the needs of low-income families but also promotes goodwill within the community. Stores like Big Y that accept EBT may be seen as socially responsible and caring for the needs of all customers, regardless of their financial situation.


The impact of EBT on the revenue of grocery stores like Big Y is complex and can depend on various factors. While EBT may bring in additional foot traffic and promote community goodwill, the restrictions on purchases and transaction fees can also have an impact. Ultimately, accepting EBT is a decision that grocery stores must make based on their own financial goals and priorities.

Increased foot trafficRestrictions on purchases
Promotes goodwillTransaction fees
Access to government incentives

Overall, accepting EBT is a personal decision that grocery stores like Big Y must weigh based on their own unique circumstances and priorities. It’s important to consider the pros and cons of accepting EBT and make a decision that aligns with the store’s financial goals and values.

Does Big Y Take EBT? FAQs

1. What is EBT?

EBT stands for Electronic Benefit Transfer. It is an electronic system that allows state welfare departments to issue benefits to recipients who can then use an EBT card to access their benefits.

2. Does Big Y accept EBT cards?

Yes, Big Y does accept EBT cards. You can use your EBT card at any Big Y location to purchase eligible food items.

3. What kind of food items can I purchase with my EBT card at Big Y?

You can purchase eligible food items using your EBT card at Big Y. Eligible items include any food or beverage that is intended for human consumption. However, you cannot use your EBT card to purchase hot or prepared foods, tobacco, alcohol, or non-food items.

4. Can I use my EBT card to purchase groceries online at Big Y?

Yes, Big Y now accepts EBT payments for their online grocery ordering and delivery service.

5. Is there a minimum or maximum amount for EBT transactions at Big Y?

There is no maximum or minimum amount for EBT transactions at Big Y. However, you must have enough funds in your EBT account to cover the cost of your purchases.

6. Can I use my EBT card to purchase items on sale or with coupons at Big Y?

Yes, you can use your EBT card to purchase items on sale or with coupons at Big Y. The discounted price will be applied to your EBT card purchase.

7. Can I get cash back from my EBT card at Big Y?

No, you cannot get cash back from your EBT card at Big Y. EBT cards can only be used to purchase eligible food items.

Closing Thoughts

Thank you for reading and we hope this article has answered any questions you may have had about using EBT at Big Y. With our ongoing commitment to providing high-quality food products and exceptional customer service, we look forward to serving you in-store and online. Visit us again for more helpful information in the future!