Good news for people with health risks. Grocery store chains across the country are beginning to offer special shopping times for vulnerable shoppers.
With many stores reporting sanitation processes in place after closing, the ideal time for high-risk populations is the first hour of being open. Most stores are also shortening their regular hours to allow for re-stocking and cleaning.
Check websites and store locations for delivery, in-store pick-up, and curbside pick-up availability. Many chains are expanding these services. Ordering continues to be available online.
With things changing fast, hours may be altered daily at different store locations. Always call ahead or check online before leaving the house.
Southeastern Grocers’ stores which include Winn Dixie, Harvey’s Supermarket, Bi-Lo, and Fresco y Mas will be open Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM. All stores will be closing at 8:00 PM until further notice. Stores owned by Southeastern Grocers include:
Target is asking that the first opening hour of every Wednesday be reserved for at-risk shoppers. Their website lists these shoppers as people who are over 65, pregnant women, or individuals defined by the CDC as being at-risk due to health issues.
All Target stores will be closing at 9:00 PM until further notice. Visit their website to read about their new rigorous cleaning policies.
Publix grocery stores will also offer expanded hours, with stores and pharmacies opening on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 7:00 AM to 8:00 AM for shoppers 65 years and older.
Online shopping, delivery, and curbside/in-store pick-up continues to be available. All Publix stores will close at 8:00 PM daily. Pharmacies closing hours vary.
Wal-mart currently has decreased its hours from 7:00 AM to 8:30 PM. Stores will open one hour early on Tuesdays (at 6:00 AM!) for shoppers 60 years and older. This will run from March 24th to April 28th.
Walmart will be closing its Auto Care Centers for the time being. Auto Care staff will be remobilized for stocking and sanitizing.
Dollar General, with over 16,000 stores in 44 states, is often the most accessible store for rural residents. It will be designating the first hour of each shopping day to vulnerable customers and is encouraging all shoppers to leave that window open for people at-risk.
Starting Wednesday, Whole Foods will encourage all customers 60 and over to shop in their first opening hour. Check hours in your location as they may vary.
Stores will now close two hours early. All food samples, salad bars, and hot bars are temporarily closed.
Whole Foods is owned by Amazon and will offer delivery through their delivery services.
Big Lots is also designating their first hour of the day, every day for at-risk populations. They have also begun offering curbside pickup as of this week.
Although they offer much more than groceries, Big Lots has a fairly large selection of foods and beverages as well as household supplies.
Tuesdays are Senior Days at Walgreens with shoppers 55 years old and up receiving a 30% discount all day, both in-store and online. The store will also be open for senior shoppers only from 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM on Tuesdays, but all products can also be purchased (store-wide) from their drive-thru window, eliminating the need to go inside.