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Tesco, Asda, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s have updated customer rules throughout the coronavirus pandemic. When is the quietest time to shop to avoid queues?
The supermarket giant has brought in new measures to monitor the flow of customers in stores.
This includes a traffic light system that limits how many people can enter at one time and tracks who is leaving the store.
Google data shows the best time to shop to avoid being caught in a rush.
While this will vary from store to store, some times are generally quieter than others.
Shopping on weekdays before 11am or after 8pm appears to be the best time to avoid queues, according to the data.
If visiting on the weekend, shopping after 7pm is less likely to be busy.
The supermarket chain has said it will limit the number of customers entering stores if necessary.
How busy the store is will be checked by members of staff at the front of stores and in the aisles.
Asda shoppers should try not to visit on a Saturday or Sunday if they want a quiet experience.
Shopping before 10am on a weekday may be the least busy, the data reveals, with quiet periods in the afternoons around 3pm.
Marks & Spencer
Most Marks & Spencer Foodhall locations no longer have queues outside, but this can depend on the area.
A statement on its website states: “Our stores are open, subject to changes in government guidelines and localised lockdowns. Extra measures are in place to keep our customers and colleagues well.”
Those picking up groceries could skip busy periods by shopping before 12pm or between 4pm and 6pm on a weekday.
Visiting on a Saturday afternoon and all day on a Sunday is likely to be the busiest period, according to Google data.
Morrisons has brought in more members of staff to monitor the doors and assess how busy the branch is.
“So you can shop safely, we’ve introduced thousands more colleagues,” a spokesperson commented.
“We have store entrance greeters, checkout queues managed, colleagues wearing face coverings, or serving you behind protective screens, and we’re asking our customers to wear face coverings too.”
Like many supermarkets, shopping first thing in the morning or last thing at night on a weekday is likely to have the fewest number of shoppers around.
When long queues began to form outside stores, Sainsbury’s issued advice for those hoping to beat the rush.
Its website says: “The majority of our supermarkets are now open from 07.00 to 22.00 and we encourage you to visit our stores throughout the day to avoid queues when stores open in the morning.”
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