Coles And Woolworths Introduce Dedicated Shopping Times For The Elderly and Disabled
Starting from tomorrow Woolworths will be exclusively opening their doors to the elderly and people with disabilities an hour early so these customers can avoid the mad shopping rush that has accompanied the worsening COVID-19 crisis.
Coles, meanwhile, will be launching a dedicated “Community Hour” for these shoppers from the 18th of March (Wednesday).
Both Coles and Woolworths will be opening for these demographics at 7am and will then open to all customers from 8am. To enter during 7am-8am, shoppers will need to present the relevant Government issued concession card.
However, both supermarkets said that this may not be available at all stores. Coles said that in WA and parts of Queensland Community Hour will be held from 8am to 9am, with normal trade thereafter.
Woolworths has said its dedicated shopping hour will run until at least this Friday and may continue into next week.
“While we’ll continue to do our very best to restock our stores during this period of unprecedented demand, we know many of our elderly customers have been missing out of essential items when they shop,” Woolworths Supermarkets Managing Director Claire Peters said. “This temporary measure will give them, and those with a disability, the opportunity to shop before stores officially open – helping them obtain the essential items they need in a less crowded environment.”
This measure may lessen demand on the supermarkets’ online services, which have also been swamped. Woolworths suspended all online deliveries out of Victoria supermarkets yesterday.
Today, Coles also announced that it will no longer accept Click&Collect orders, and that vans will prioritise delivering groceries to those genuinely in need.
Coles CEO Steve Cain said, “We have significantly increased the number of team members working in our stores to support this level of unprecedented demand and we are actively recruiting for 5000 more casual team members.”