Longer hours making it easier for everyone to shop

Final Coles Community Hour on Thursday as trading hours get back to normal

5 May 2020

From this Friday, Coles will help make life easier for all customers by expanding trading hours for everyone, including opening almost 200 stores earlier at 6am*. The changes are being made to help ease the pressure faced by all Australians, including parents and carers who are busy home schooling their children, in addition to many customers working from home.

For the past seven weeks, the first hour of trade from 7am to 8am on weekdays has been dedicated to Coles Community Hour, so elderly and vulnerable customers as well as emergency services and healthcare workers could have access to essential food and groceries.

Coles Chief Operations Officer Matt Swindells said Coles Community Hour had been very popular with eligible shoppers, but now that demand for groceries and product availability were returning to more normal levels it was time to welcome all customers back whenever stores were open.

“Our number one priority remains the health and safety of customers and our team members. As the government begins to look at easing restrictions, customers should remember that appropriate safety practices will still apply and ask all customers to support with the same amazing collaboration we’ve seen in the past few weeks,” he said.

“The reason we started Coles Community Hour was because excess demand led to limited availability, which meant we had lots of people eager to get into stores early in the morning. Having a dedicated shopping hour for some of the most vulnerable members of the community, as well as those working on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic, was really beneficial.

“With supply almost back to normal for essential groceries, Coles is reopening this hour to all customers again as well as opening earlier where we can, to make shopping more convenient for everyone in the community.”

Coles has also reopened Coles Online orders, which had been dedicated entirely to elderly and vulnerable customers during the peak of demand, to all shoppers – providing another shopping option to customers who may otherwise have needed to visit a store.

“We’ve doubled our capacity in Coles Online so there is now more opportunity than ever for customers to either have their groceries delivered to their homes or collect them at their convenience,” Mr Swindells said.

Health and safety in our stores

While trading hours and product availability are returning to more normal levels, it is important that we continue working together to protect vulnerable members of the community and stop the spread of COVID-19.

For customers, we have created guidelines on how to stay safer and minimise your contact with other people by being a “Coles Speedy Shopper” – including by planning ahead, shopping alone, and packing your own bags at the checkout.

The team is sanitising trolleys and baskets between customers, and in the busiest stores, Coles continues to monitor customer numbers to help maintain social distancing and will sometimes require customers to wait before entering.

Coles is working on the rollout of new Coles sanitiser stations in supermarkets, incorporating wipes for trolleys and baskets, and we continue to roll out clear protective screens at staffed and self-scanning checkouts to help maintain social distancing in stores.

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For further information, please contact Coles Media Line (03) 9829 5250 or media.relations@coles.com.au

* Where state laws allow 

Longer hours making it easier for everyone to shop

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