There are a handful of lobster companies that catch their own and will ship the best mail order lobster straight to your doorstep. It’s a pretty special experience for your special evening or party. This page will go through the entire experience from choosing the right company all the way to getting rid of the lobster shells and all stops in between. We’ll start with live lobster and then lobster tails. Click here to skip down to the lobster tails section.
Comparing Live Lobster Deliver Companies
Below are the top Maine lobster delivery companies in the industry, compared side-by-side, that are known to have the freshest live lobster as well as the most reliable shipping processes. The grid is for 1.25lb lobsters delivered.
|Category||Company||Most Popular Size||Average $/Lobster Dinner*||Customer Ratings||Go To|
|Highest Customer Ratings||Lobster Anywhere||2 lb.||$335||5.0|
|Best for Sustainability||Crab Place||2 lb.||$280||4.5|
|Best for Lobster Tails||Cameron’s Seafood||12 oz.||$350||4.7|
|Best Variety||Fulton Fish Market||2 lb.||$270||4.6|
|Best for Lobster Meat||Wulf’s Fish||1 lb.||N/A||4.8|
|Most Frequent Discounts||Get Maine Lobster||1.5 lb.||$275||4.9|
|Best Website Experience||Winter Harbor Lobster Co-Op||1.5 lb.||$335||4.6|
|Best for Smaller Lobsters||Sanders Lobster Company||1.5 lb.||$270||4.5|
*Estimated cost of one item in the company’s most popular size.
We’re all adults here, and we’re pretty certain you can read that comparison and make your own choice about what you want. However, we’d like to provide some of our own insights and gut reactions that might not be evident in the grid.
Buying Tips from Lobster Pros
- We have used 1.5lb lobsters in that grid, but each company has multiple sizes. Click through and see which one has the best prize for your meal.
- All of the companies are top notch and will have fresh lobster, or they wouldn’t be listed. Basically, you can’t make a bad choice, so don’t sweat the decision.
- We tend to *love* shipping costs. We completely understand that it always feels like a rip-off, but hear us out: free shipping is never free shipping. That cost is rolled into the price of the lobster, and you can’t see it. When shipping is listed, you have a better understanding of where the costs go. We like this visibility.
- Choose your top two. Sometimes these places get busy, and if you want lobsters for Valentine’s Day or the 4th of July or for Christmas, other people probably do, too. If you see the prices differ too much from that grid above, you are seeing high demand and low supply. Try elsewhere if cost is a big concern.
- You want to eat live lobster within a day of delivery. Most everyone is looking for Friday or Saturday delivery, and that typically increases shipping costs. Just beware of this trend before going through the process.
What Size Lobsters to Order?
Here, we feel like we have some knowledge to pass along – we’ve done this a few times before. Other’s may disagree, but this is our very strong opinion.
There are two big factors that affect what size lobster to order:
- appetite or size of people at the table
- amount of side dishes you will serve
We also think about a third factor, which is the specialness of the event. When we mail order lobster, it’s a pretty big deal in our house. We don’t want to eat just a little. We want to get FULL on lobster. We’ll put leftover side dishes in the fridge. Also, if you are pairing lobster with beer, bellies tend to get full quickly, so beware.
“You’ll find most companies that ship lobster also have 1.75lbs and 2.2lbs and lots of ways to dial in the correct size for everyone.“
Keep in mind there is a taste factor that relates to size, as spoken by people in-the-know. The smaller the lobster, the more succulent and sweet the taste. That is all well and good if you have 30-40 lobsters a year. However, if you only do this once in a while and want to get full, we are confident that you can order the larger sizes and not taste a difference.
Lobster’s Little Extras
A lobster dinner is typically a celebration and a special event at minimum. Having live lobster delivered to your door is even more special. Often, a lobster dinner comes with a few things that really make the evening pop. We want to make sure you don’t miss these little pieces so that everyone around your table can enjoy this lobster dinner to the fullest.
Don’t forget lobster crackers. Even if you have super strong hands and don’t need them, it’s possible that others at your table don’t share your strength. Plus, lobster crackers are a novelty. They are cheap and easy to find if you are looking in the right places. We have a few options here, but this is by no means the full list:
Bibs. These aren’t for every occasion, but they are definitely for some occasions. You will know best if your meal should include them for real or even as a joke. Here are some spots to buy them:
Wetnaps & Hand Cleaners. If you don’t live on the ocean or aren’t from a coastal town, then you likely want the smell and grit of shellfish off your hands. There isn’t a perfect answer, but there are a lot of workarounds on the market today. You’ll be the person who thought of everything if, after the lobster course, you pass out hand wipes.
Lobster Pot. This isn’t necessarily for the table, but please oh please don’t think a regular old stock pot is going to fit four lobsters, especially if they are 2lbs or more. Lobster pots aren’t that expensive, and this is an item you should definitely not skip – or else you might be cooking one lobster at a time while everyone else pretends they aren’t mad at you. Here are a few places to order pots that we would recommend.
Shipping & RECEIVING
You’ve ordered everything and live lobsters are headed to your porch. Now you need to get ready to receive them. The first order of business is to make sure someone is going to be around at the moment they are delivered. As you know, delivery times are not always exact, so you need some wiggle room in case they show up late or early. Your lobsters will be on ice and in a Styrofoam box, so you have some room for error, but don’t push it. Have a neighbor look out for them, but figure out how to get them directly into your fridge.
You should also leave a note on the porch for the delivery person. Let them know to set your package somewhere in the shade or beneath a blanket to keep the package out of the direct sunlight.
Second, get them into the fridge (or a cooler if you don’t have room in the fridge). You want to keep the lobsters cool but not frozen. We like to use our big cooler that we layer with ice, lay down some kitchen rags between the ice and the lobster, and close the lid. That usually does the trick, and we don’t have to pull a bunch of kitchen gymnastics to rearrange the fridge for a night. NOTE. Fresh water will kill the lobster. So, keep this from them, and that includes melted ice. Some companies pack their lobster in seaweed for this purpose. If you have access to that, layer that on top of the ice. If you are unsure, lay down a plastic layer between the lobster and any potential water.
Third, if you bought that big lobster pot, and you have several 2+lb lobsters, it’s going to take a while to bring that pot to a boil. Plan ahead and get it on the stove as soon as you can. Fill it about 3/4 full. You can always scoop water out later if your lobsters displace too much, but you want to make sure they are fully submerged.
Fourth, as mentioned, you want to cook these within a day. What we like to do right before we cook them is set them in the freezer for 2-4 minutes. This further slows them down and makes them easier to handle when putting them into the water.
We’ll stop here with the live lobster section and move into Lobster Tails. If you want to read about How to Dispose of Lobster Shells or Read our FAQ Section on mail order lobster instead, just click those links to jump below.
Getting mail order lobster tails takes out the middleman from the grocery store and helps increase the freshness of the lobster tails that you’ll eat. Here is a comparison grid of a few companies that specialize in shipping lobster tails of all sizes. We’ve used small lobster tails as our example.
|Company||Min Tail Order||Price/tail*||Rating||Order|
|The Crab Place||2||$22.01||4.7|
|Get Maine Lobster||4||$27.49||4.9|
|Global Seafoods||5 lbs||$14.44||4.6|
|Sea to Table||1||$18||4.7|
Same as with the live lobsters above, here are a few of our insights for buying lobster tails:
- We are listing 4-6oz tails, but each company has multiple sizes that they offer.
- Tails will arrive frozen no matter which company you choose.
- Frozen tails create the possibility to buy in bulk or in larger quantities. You don’t need to eat these within 24 hours of arrival, like with fresh live lobster.
- Think about the meat of tail being around 2/3rds the weight of the tail. As in, a 6oz tail is 4oz of meat. A 9oz tail is 6oz of meat.
How to Prepare Lobster Tails
We cover this subject in-depth on our lobster tails page, so go there to learn how to cook them. Additionally, we have some top recipes on that page for grilling, broiling, and baking. Check them out.
We have a pretty easy solution for you that is not at all fancy. What we do is pull all uneaten parts of the lobster into a plastic bag and tie it tight. Try to cut a hole in this bag so that you can wrap it really tight with no air. Then, place that bag in another plastic sack and tie that closed (no holes this time). If you are like my mother-in-law, you’ll go three, maybe even four, bags, just to be sure. Finally, and this is really important, put it in the trash and immediately take the trash out. You won’t realize the pain and stench we save you until you don’t follow our advice. Same goes for crab and shrimp.
How Much Do the Best Mail Order Lobster Services Cost?
For a ballpark answer, the most common order is four lobsters, so we’ll use that for our proxy. To have four fresh 1.25 lb lobsters + shipping will run between $140-$200. For 1.5 lb, costs range between $200-$260. And 2 lb is between $240-$330. Having said that, these are general norms, but they can fluctuate for all kinds of reasons, so you might find cheaper or more expensive costs when you look these up.
What Should I Look for in a Lobster Delivery Company?
Any company listed on our site meets the standards of our recommendation. These are companies who have been doing this a long time. For our money, we always shop around and try something different. We are price conscious, so we will find who is offering the best deal for the size lobsters we want on the day we want them. We most commonly recommend Lobster Anywhere and Get Maine Lobster. They are two of the biggest names out there. They have earned their places at the top. We have a deal with them to offer up their best prices, which is why they are most commonly at the top of our recommendations. However, any company listed on our site is a good company.
What’s the Best Sized Lobster to Get?
If it’s just a question of being satisfied after the meal, we would recommend 1.75-2lb lobsters. They are on the bigger side but worth it, especially if the lobster isn’t accompanied by heavy sides and heavy drinks.
If you are making lots of side dishes and appetizers, you can notch that recommendation down to 1.5 pound lobsters.
If you are only interested in the top flavor, go for the 1.1-1.25 lb (chix). The meat is more flavorful and sweeter in the smaller ones, though you’ll get fewer bites.
How Do Mail Order Lobster Services Ship Live Lobsters?
Depending on the lobster company and the shipping company, they mainly ship your order in a Styrofoam-lined box that has gel packs and sometimes contains dry ice. Lobsters can typically survive in this cooled state for 48 hours, and there are some options for 2-day delivery. However, to ensure freshness, we recommend overnight delivery.
What to Do When Live Lobster Arrives?
If you aren’t home, have your delivery person or neighbor put your package in the shade or a garage. Once home, and when you have the package in your hands, check the box and make sure everything you ordered is there and that all lobsters are still alive.
Next, keep them cool. If it is close to mealtime and the box they came in still feels cool, just keep the lobsters in there and wait. If the meal is a long way off, then transfer them to the fridge – if you have room. We tend to keep ours in a cooler rather than rearrange the fridge for a day. Ice packs work great and protect the lobsters. If you use ice, just keep the fresh water off the lobsters or it will kill them
How Soon Should I Cook the Lobster from a Lobster Delivery Service?
The sooner you cook the lobster, the better the meal. However, the rule of the industry is within 24 hours. This isn’t always possible, as many people order delivery for the day before to ensure that a late arrival won’t kill the party. No matter your timeframe, it is important to keep fresh water from live lobsters, as it will kill them. But, it’s still important to keep them moist. There are many methods for storing live lobster, such as using seaweed or damp newspapers.
What if Your Delivery Is Wrong, Damaged, or Missing?
As with anything, take a photo and video immediately if you think your lobster is dead or damaged. We don’t want to speak for how each company will or should respond, but we would advise you contact them immediately. They will have a process for first determining if lobsters are, in fact, dead. They will be able to walk you through what to do next.
People Also Ask
Maine lobster fishers source the lobsters, then the companies ship the lobster to your door. Some of the best lobster delivery companies include Lobster Anywhere, Crab Place, Fulton Fish Market, and Cameron’s Seafood.
Yes – several companies in Maine will ship lobsters to your door. Most companies also offer lobster meat and lobster tails to purchase.
Lobsters typically cost between $57 and $78. The company you choose and the size you buy will influence how much you pay. Keep in mind that lobster prices can also change throughout the year.
Maine lobster fishermen ship live lobsters to homes across America. If you’re looking for a specific provider, check out the pricing grid at the top of this page. Some of our favorites include Lobster Anywhere, Crab Place and Cameron’s Seafood.
Take note of our Affiliate Relationships that may exist with this page and companies listed on it.