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Asda has expanded its one-hour Express Delivery service to 96 stores, bringing rapid orders of its full online range of groceries to millions of shoppers nationwide.
With the pandemic driving record online grocery sales, Asda is one of many supermarkets to introduce new, quicker ways for shoppers to get their essentials.
After a limited trial, which Asda says ‘exceeded expectations’, this wider rollout will see Express Delivery available from select stores in all four UK nations.
Here, Which? looks at how Asda’s new system works, and how it compares to the other high-speed delivery options offered by the big supermarkets.
How does Asda’s Express Delivery work?
Express Delivery is available for Asda’s entire online grocery range of more than 30,000 products.
You can select an Express Delivery slot in the ‘Today’ column at the checkout to receive your order within one hour, as long as you live within a three-mile radius of a store offering the service. If you don’t, Express Delivery won’t appear as an option.
There’s no minimum or maximum spend for Express Delivery, but you can’t order more than 70 items. It costs £8.50 for a slot in the majority of places. (When we tried booking a slot for an address in Hull, we were offered £8.00 delivery.)
Asda says it’ll launch Express Delivery at more stores if it proves popular with customers.
Although 96 stores, spread across much of the country, may sound like a lot, Asda has over 300 supermarkets in the UK. This means there could be many households that aren’t able to use the new feature.
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How else can you get groceries from supermarkets quickly?
If you’ve needed essentials in a hurry over the past year or so, you’ll know that Asda Express Delivery isn’t the only way to get a quick delivery from a supermarket.
Here, we’ve rounded up other rapid delivery options available from major supermarkets at the moment so you can compare them side by side.
For the purposes of this story, we’ve taken ‘rapid delivery’ to mean within one to two hours of ordering. Links take you to supermarkets’ and delivery services’ websites.
Uber Eats and Deliveroo
Are you a loyal Asda (asda.com) customer, devastated that your local store isn’t doing Express Delivery? There might be a solution of sorts.
Asda is one of multiple supermarkets available through takeaway delivery app Uber Eats (ubereats.com). You might have more luck with this, as over 300 Asda locations are currently available on Uber Eats compared to the 96 that have Express Delivery.
Several other supermarkets are on Uber Eats and Deliveroo. Orders will be fast using these apps, and sometimes delivery fees are cheaper than standard online weekly shops. But products are often priced higher on Deliveroo and Uber Eats than they are if you shop with a supermarket directly.
To take some examples from Asda, a Gino D’Acampo Italian Style Meatballs pizza was £4.00 on Asda.com, but £4.80 on Uber Eats. That’s 20% higher.
And an Asda own-brand Cheeky Monkey birthday cake was £10.00 on the grocer’s website, but £12.00 on Uber Eats. Another 20% markup.
You’ll also usually only be able to order from a limited range of products from each supermarket – especially when compared to the full range of tens of thousands of products on supermarket websites (and Asda’s Express Delivery).
Here’s a rundown of which supermarkets are available on each platform:
- Deliveroo: Aldi, Co-op, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose
- Uber Eats: Asda, Iceland, Sainsbury’s
Some of these partnerships are still technically in the trial phase, and some supermarkets have more branches signed up than others. The best way to find out which supermarkets can deliver to your house is to search for them on the relevant app.
- Find out more: are you paying more for supermarkets on Deliveroo?
The Co-op’s own delivery service (coop.co.uk) offers groceries within two hours for households in eligible areas. When we tried ordering to a southeast London address, one-hour slots were available throughout the day – including in the next hour – costing between 99p and £1.99.
You can order up to 30 items from a limited range and there is a £15 order minimum.
You can place Co-op orders below £15 on Deliveroo, though there could be a ‘small order fee’ added if you do this.
If you live in Milton Keynes or Northampton, you may be able to order a delivery via robot through the Starship Food Delivery app.
In other places, it’ll likely be the more traditional method of a human on a bike, though the convenience store chain has plans to expand its robot deliveries to five more towns or cities through its partnership with Starship.
M&S and Ocado Zoom
M&S’s grocery range is available to order online via Ocado. You can order fast delivery from Ocado Zoom (ocado.com), which offers a choice of over 10,000 products.
There’s a £15 minimum order and the grocer says deliveries can come within an hour or later the same day. Delivery starts at £1.99.
Ocado Zoom is only available in areas of West London at the moment.
Sainsbury’s Chop Chop
Sainsbury’s has its own rapid delivery service called Chop Chop (chopchopapp.co.uk).
It has a minimum spend of £15, a £4.99 delivery fee, and a limited range of essentials on offer. Deliveries arrive within an hour via bike.
At the moment it is available in selected areas including Bath, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, and London.
Tesco’s Whoosh (tesco.com) ‘superfast home delivery’ service promised everyday essentials and ‘little luxuries’ within an hour. You can order from a range of 1,700 products.
At the moment it’s available in selected areas including parts of London, Liverpool and Manchester.
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