England has entered its second national lockdown in place from this morning (November 5), which means a return to stricter rules inside and outside of homes.
While thousands of pubs, restaurants and non-essential shops are forced to close their doors, supermarkets are readying themselves again for lockdown shoppers.
To ensure stores are Covid-19 secure and help reduce the risk of infection to staff and the public, rules and extra measures have been introduced in the last few days.
Many of these will look familiar to shoppers in Cambridgeshire, but there’s some new ones too.
So we have pulled together all of the rules for every leading supermarket ahead of the second lockdown. Here’s what they all said:
In response to the MEN, Tesco said they would continue to do whatever they could to make sure people could get food in a safe environment.
This includes a ‘traffic light system’, markings and sanitised umbrellas handed out in queues.
“We have installed a simple ’traffic light’ system in some of our larger stores to help us manage the flow in and out,” they said.
“Once in-store, please keep to the social distancing markings. If there’s a queue outside and it’s raining, we’ll be handing out sanitised umbrellas in our larger stores.
“Hand sanitiser and cleaning stations are available around our stores, and we continue to have social distancing guidelines and signage in place.”
There will also remain screens at the checkouts and shoppers will be encouraged to use contactless payment where possible.
They added: “When you visit our stores, please follow the legal guidance on wearing a face covering.
“If you forget to bring one, we have packs available to buy at the front of our stores, which you can open immediately and pay for with your shopping later. As a reminder, the police can issue fines for not wearing a face covering, unless you’re exempt.”
Asda said their colleagues have been working tirelessly to ensure that they could maintain the level of customer service they have during the pandemic.
“We have quickly shifted how we work to match demands across our range of products,” they said.
“We have introduced new initiatives to supplement the comprehensive safety measures that make our Asda stores a COVID-19 secure place to shop and work.
“These changes adhere to the advice from the Government and have been put in place to keep you and our colleagues safe.”
Here are nine measures they have put in place:
Face coverings – Customers must wear face coverings while in-store. Customers can enter Asda stores without a face covering if they have a medical condition or invisible disability that prevents them from wearing a covering.
Following the recent change in Government guidance, all Asda store colleagues will now wear a covering while at work unless they have a medical exemption.
Asda Safety Marshals – Asda has created 1,000 new Asda Safety Marshals stationed at the front of every store and in the aisles of larger stores.
These colleagues will be on hand to help customers with safety queries and reiterate Government guidelines to wear a face covering and maintain social distancing while they shop. Customers who do not have a covering when they enter the store will be offered a pack of disposable masks that they can pay for as they complete their shopping.
Additionally, those marshals stationed at the store entrance will provide sanitised baskets/trolleys to customers as they enter the store.
Additional hand sanitisation stations – Asda has introduced additional hand sanitisation stations in the busiest sections of all stores in addition to the multiple cleaning points already found throughout stores.
Antimicrobial handles – Asda is applying a protective coating to all basket and trolley handles, creating an antimicrobial surface that limits the spread of bacteria. The same coating technology (Biomaster X shield) is already used to limit the spread of bacteria in the NHS Nightingale Excel hospital.
Social distancing – Keeping customers and colleagues safe has been a priority throughout lockdown and this remains unchanged as social distancing measures are gradually eased. As parts of the UK refine their safety measures and new changes are implemented, Asda continues to support these across stores in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Hygiene measures – Asda takes the safety of customers and colleagues very seriously and has a number of hygiene measures in stores, including the use of sanitiser spray and increased cleaning in busy areas. Asda has also placed perspex screens at checkouts and kiosks to protect our colleagues.
Store opening hours – Some stores are now open 24 hours. To find out your local store opening times, visit the store locator.
Scan & Go – To help reduce contact in stores Asda has rolled out ‘Scan and Go’ mobile to all supermarkets, superstores and supercentres. Customers can use their own device to scan their shopping and pack as they go. Many of the larger stores also offer Scan & Go handsets in addition to Scan & Go mobile.
Contactless payments – Credit and debit card contactless payment limit amount has now been increased to £45.
Like the other supermarkets, Sainsbury’s is no exception in having numerous measures to keep shoppers safe.
They stressed shoppers should follow the official guidelines for your local area and wear a face-covering when shopping in their stores in England, Scotland and Wales.
Their safety measures are:
Greeters will be outside all supermarkets and busy convenience stores to remind customers to wear face coverings when they enter the store. If you do not have a face covering when you arrive at a store, their colleagues will help you find one.
All Sainsbury’s colleagues have been provided with face coverings and all colleagues now wear face coverings when they are working on the shop floor and not behind a safety screen.
They’re continuing to offer priority access to home delivery slots for the most vulnerable customers, and based on information received from the Government, they’ve been able to contact over 600,000 customers and offer priority access.
They’ve increased the number of home delivery and Click and Collect slots available and are offering 700,000 weekly slots.
They are now able to accept new customer registrations online for home delivery and Click and Collect slots. They are also now accepting new Delivery Pass registrations.
For vulnerable customers who have been offered a slot and are unable to place their order online, they are offering a telephone ordering service and we now have five times the number of colleagues on hand to help with this.
To reduce queuing times both inside and outside our stores, they have extended many of our stores opening hours.
Customers are now welcome to shop with us at any time during store opening hours, however, NHS and care workers will still have priority entry from 7:30am to 8am Monday to Saturday and elderly, vulnerable and disabled customers will still have priority entry from 8am to 9am Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Customer sanitiser stations are in place so that customers can sanitise their hands, baskets and trollies at the front of our stores. This is in addition to our colleagues regularly sanitising all of our baskets and trollies before use.
They have installed perspex safety screens in our petrol filling station stores and have extended our opening hours in many Convenience stores to 10pm or 11pm.
They have launched a Volunteer Shopping Card to enable people to shop for others easily in-store.
In a recent letter to shoppers, Aldi’s CEO, Giles Hurley, reassured their shoppers that they had a number of measures to ensure they could be safe while shopping.
There are a number of measures in place:
• All their stores have a traffic light system at entrances to ensure a safe number of people can shop at any one time, whilst maintaining social distancing.
• There are protective screens at all 7,000 of our checkouts and all stores have sanitisation stations for customer use.
• There are clear signs and social distancing markers advising how to shop safely.
• They are encouraging payment by card or contactless when possible, with an increased contactless limit of £45.
• They continue to provide NHS, blue light and vulnerable customers priority access at specific times.
“Our colleagues wear face masks in store unless they are behind screens at the checkout, or are exempt for medical reasons,” Mr Hurley said. “Thank you for supporting us and keeping others safe by wearing one too.
“All of our stores are fully stocked, we have good availability and there are regular deliveries, at least once a day. There is no need to buy more than normal so please shop considerately.
“If you can’t make it into one of our stores, we are increasing the availability of our new click and collect service, which is now available in 12 locations, with more stores being added weekly.”
Lidl has put in place a crowd control system to help manage social distancing in the stores.
This includes guards or team members at the store entrances during busy times of the day, to keep track of the number of customers coming in.
They said: “Rest assured we are continuing to work closely with the government during these challenging times to ensure the correct measures are put in place in our stores, for the safety of both our team members and customers.
“To help you plan your next store visit, we’ve put a traffic light system in place so you can find the quietest time to shop.
“Wearing a face covering in our stores is mandatory in Scotland, England and Wales in line with government regulations, to help keep everyone safe.
“If the Perspex screens at our tills do not provide an adequate level of separation between members of staff and our customers, then our staff members will be wearing face coverings as an additional level of protection.”
Lidl has also introduced changes to its bakery section, where customers should use the tongs provided.
As a temporary measure, there are disposable gloves for you to use in order to bag loose items yourself, safely. In addition to this, there will also be a pre-bag selection of loose bakery items.
Morrisons is advising online shoppers to book a delivery slot ‘as far in advance as possible’ due to high demand.
Customers who are self-isolating are asked to mention this in the Delivery Instructions section at checkout.
Those who are self-isolating and in need of an emergency grocery delivery need to phone 0345 611 6111 and select option five.
NHS workers also still have priority access to a Morrisons store who can visit a store from 6-7am, Monday to Saturday, and 9:30am on Sundays to be able to shop when it is quieter.