UK supermarkets have been forced to make a lot of changes since the international outbreak of COVID-19.
2m floor markings, one-way walking systems, and enforced limits on sought-after items have all been introduced to create environments whereby customers can access what they need as safely as possible.
As the UK lockdown softens, some of the regulations in Tesco, Aldi, Sainsbury’s and Asda stores are being altered ever-so-slightly.
Social distancing and reduced capacities remain in place at all stores (queues are still to be expected), but what’s different?
Here’s what you need to know.
Aldi stores are now open until 10pm every day except Sundays, when they close at 4pm. The supermarket is recommending people visit in the evenings for a quieter shopping trip. Late mornings are often busiest.
All Aldi stores open half an hour earlier on Sundays for NHS, police and fire service workers, as well as emergency workers with a Blue Light card.
The elderly (over 70s) may also visit Aldi 30 minutes early on Monday to Saturday and shop in peace.
All visitors are being encouraged to shop alone.
Opening times vary at Tesco stores, but most are now open until 10pm.
Elderly customers are being prioritised 9am – 10am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
NHS workers can shop at main Tescos supermarkets 9am – 10am on Tuesdays and Thursdays – and/or one hour before stores open on Sundays.
Restrictions on some items (toilet roll/pasta) remain in place.
Tesco says you should shop with “no more than one other person”.
Asda supermarkets are now open 8am – 10pm every day except Sundays, when hours are reduced to 11am – 5pm.
Key workers still have priority access to stores on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8am – 9am, and Sundays 9am – 10am.
Asda is encouraging people to shop by themselves if possible.
Sainsbury’s is opening most of its stores from 8am – 10pm Monday to Saturday. Sunday hours may vary depending on store size and location.
All key workers can shop half an hour before Sainsbury’s stores open. Elderly customers are being prioritised 8am – 9am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
There are still some buying limits in place on a number of items in store and online – such as UHT milk.
Currently, only one adult per household is permitted to enter Sainsbury’s stores.