ASDA has announced some important changes in response to the latest coronavirus lockdown – here’s what you need to know.
Key updates include doubling the amount of stores that are partnered with Uber Eats, as well as increasing the number of its own home delivery slots.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
The supermarket is also introducing a virtual queuing system via an app to 420 of its larger stores, plus it's doubling the hours of its so-called safety marshals.
Asda confirmed the update this morning, January 6, as the third lockdown in England legally comes into force.
The grocer urged shoppers not to panic-buy as it “has strong product availability across its stores and depots”.
Shop staff are also “working around the clock to keep the shelves stocked” to ensure good availability.
How to cut the cost of your grocery shop
MONEY.CO.UK has shared some top tips with us to help you keep your supermarket spend down to a minimum.
- Write yourself a list – Only buy items that you need. If it isn't on your list, don't put it in the trolley
- Create a budget – Work out a weekly budget for your food shopping
- Never shop hungry – You are far more likely to buy more food if your tummy is rumbling
- Don't buy pre-chopped veggies or fruit – The extra they'll charge for chopping can be eye watering
- Use social media – Follow your favourite retailers to find out about the latest deals
- Be disloyal – You may want to go to different stores to find the best bargains
- Check the small print – It’s always worth checking the price per kg/lb/litre when comparing offers so you’re making a like for like decision as a bigger box won’t necessarily mean you get more
- Use your loyalty cards – Don’t be afraid to sign up to them all. They all work slightly differently – work out what bonus suits you better and remember to trade in your points for additional rewards
Roger Burnley, Asda CEO and president, said: “As Covid restrictions are tightened across the UK to protect our health, we will continue to do all we can to keep colleagues and customers safe in store as we have since the start of the pandemic.
“Our stores and distribution centres have proved to be highly resilient to the challenges of a national lockdown and we are confident that we can continue to deliver choice and value for customers in the weeks ahead.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Doubling the use of Uber Eats
Asda is doubling the number of stores that are partnered with Uber Eats to 200 locations from February.
At the moment, the supermarket offers this service – which aims to deliver food in 30 minutes – in 100 of its shops.
Customers can currently order from 350 Asda own-brand products through Uber Eats.
However, you should keep in mind that you'll still pay a delivery fee on top of your order, plus you may also need to pay a service fee.
Delivery fees can cost up to £3.99, while service fees are typically 10% of our order.
We’ve asked Asda for a list of locations that are lined up to get Uber Eats and we’ll update this article when we know more.
Which Asda stores offer Uber Eats delivery?
THE following Asda stores currently offer delivery through Uber Eats – but this list will be increasing to 200 locations from February.
- Abbey Park
- Barnes Hill
- Bradford Cemetery
- Breck Road
- Brierley Hill
- Bristol Filton
- Burgh Heath
- Gillingham Pier
- Great Bridge
- Hemel Hempstead
- High Wycombe
- Hull Hessle Rd
- Hyson Green
- Isle of Dogs
- Leicester Abbey Lane
- Longwell Green
- Lower Earley
- Milton Keynes
- Old Kent Road
- Preston Fulwood
- Sefton Park
- South Shields
- Southgate Circus
- St Matthews
- Sutton in Ashfield
- Weston Super Mare
2. Increasing Asda home delivery slots
The supermarket will increase the number of home delivery slots to 900,000 per week by the start of April.
Asda says it has already hiked its delivery capacity by 90% since last March, with it currently offering 850,000 slots per week.
However, shoppers at rival supermarkets including Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s have claimed delivery slots are "running out" following the start of the new lockdown.
Asda delivery slots cost between £1 and £7, depending on the time and day of week you want your food delivered – plus there's a minimum spend of £40, if not there's a £3 charge.
Click and collect is free for next day or later deliveries, but you must spend at least £25 or pay an additional £4 charge.
3. Virtual queuing in more stores
Asda has rolled out its virtual queuing system, run by a free app called Quidini, to 421 of its larger stores.
The nifty service means customers can wait in their car instead of queuing outside if the shop is busy.
To secure your place in the queue, shoppers must scan a QR code or send a text message on their phone.
The QR code brings up a countdown so you can see where you are in the queue.
Or if you send a text, you’ll get a reply when it’s your turn to go inside.
Quidini was previously only available in 50 stores at the end of November.
4. Automatic counting technology
Automatic counting technology has been installed in 100 of the busiest Asda stores.
The software keeps tabs on how many shoppers are inside at any time so staff can stop more people entering when stores become full.
At this point, you'll be expected to wait outside until other customers leave.
Asda says this will allow shoppers to socially distance.
We've asked the supermarket how the technology works in reality and we'll update this article when we know more.
5. Doubling hours of safety marshals
Asda will double the hours of its existing safety marshals to help shoppers with any Covid-related queries.
The supermarket says stuff will be on duty at the front of every store from 8am to 8pm.
It first introduced 1,000 new safety marshals in September 2020.
At the time, Asda told The Sun that some of the safety marshal vacancies could be filled by existing staff on top of their current roles.
6. More sanitiser stations
Shoppers should be used to seeing hand sanitiser stations at the entrance of supermarkets.
But Asda says more of these stations have now been installed at the front of all 631 stores.
It comes on top of the 3,500 stations already in place inside shops.
7. Increasing the cleaning of baskets and trolleys
Asda says it'll also be increasing the frequency of cleaning regimes for basket and trolley handles.
The Sun is waiting for clarification about how often its equipment is currently cleaned.
8. Adding "protective coating" to touch points
Customer touch points – such as fridge and freezer handles and checkout areas – will have a "protective" layer of antimicrobial coating to keep shoppers safe.
Back in September, the supermarket told The Sun it was applying this coating to baskets and trolleys.
The same technology, known as Bio Master X shield, is already used to kill bacteria and viruses in the NHS Nightingale Excel hospital.
9. New in-store signage
New point of sale signage to remind customers to respect social distancing will be placed in stores.
The signs will also ask shoppers to browse on their own if they can to ease congestion in stores.
Here are the latest supermarket lockdown rules for Asda, Aldi, Lidl, Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and M&S.
Supermarkets are allowed to stay open as they're deemed essential for shoppers.
Keen to do some DIY? We explain whether shops such as B&Q and Homebase are open in lockdown.
Source: Read Full Article