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Drive-through groceries arrives in Christchurch

Drive-through groceries arrives in Christchurch

First there was drive in movies; more recently we’ve learned to drive through for burgers and fries and now … yes, now its drive-through groceries.

But only if you live in Christchurch

Garden City shoppers can now order their groceries using Woolworths online shopping site and pick up the order in a drive-through at the supermarket chain’s Bush Inn store.

On a trial basis, New Plymouth Woolworths shoppers have been able to pick up their groceries for nearly a year – but not at a drive-through.

In Christchurch, pick up times are based around traffic patterns and so you can collect your order before you collect the kids from school or on the way home from work. And there is a special Saturday morning pick up for those who are busy during the week.

Scheduled pick up times are between 12 noon and 3pm and 5pm and 7pm on weekdays and between 8am and 10am on Saturdays.

“It’s pretty straight-forward,” says Woolworths Online divisional manager Richard Harrison. “You simply place your order on the Internet site at http:// www.woolworths.co.nz, specify your chosen pick up time and drive through to collect the goods.

“It’s a bit like phoning through your order to the local grocer. Now you have the option of having your groceries delivered or you can pick them up.”

At the drive-through there is a door at which you ring a buzzer whence an assistant will help you load your pre-bagged groceries in to your car.

The drive-through pick up at Woolworths Bush Inn is in a lane that runs behind the store off Waimari Road.

Woolworths charges a fee of $5 to pick and pack your groceries for the drive through. If you order over the Internet and want it delivered, it will cost you between $9.50 and $15 depending on the size of the order.

Woolworths has launched the service in Christchurch following the success of the grocery order and pick up service at Woolworths New Plymouth.

The company had wanted to test how popular online shopping would be in rural areas. Rather than set up a courier delivery network in Taranaki, it offered the pick up option as an easy way of assessing demand.

Mr Harrison says it proved very successful and the rural delivery service began in the North Island earlier this year. The South Island already had rural coverage but no drive-through service.

Woolworths has been operating its online grocery supermarket in Christchurch for more than three years and it is very popular with local shoppers, he says.

“Really what we have now for Christchurch and New Plymouth shoppers is the best of both worlds. You have the convenience and simplicity of ordering over the Internet and the choice of picking up your groceries at a time when there’s less traffic about or to have them delivered to your door.”

The Christchurch service began in early August and Mr Harrison says numbers are growing as word spreads about drive through grocery shopping.

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