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Tips For Shopping Online During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Bessie Hassan, money expert at Finder, shares with us her insight on how to shop responsibly online during the COVID-19 outbreak

Online, shopping

As anyone who has recently shopped for groceries knows, queues, product shortages and swelling crowds have become the new normal. Although panic buying is starting to ease across the country, certain items are still hard to find in-store. Supermarket shelves have been cleared of toilet paper, hand sanitiser, paper towels and cleaning wipes, with dry foods like rice and pasta also running low.

Not only does this make grocery shopping stressful and inconvenient, but it can also put your health at risk. As social distancing ramps up and businesses close across the country, an increasing number of Aussies are turning to online shopping to purchase staples. 

Unsure where to shop or which retailers are offering delivery? Here’s what you need to know:

Major supermarkets 

Due to increased customer demand, Coles has suspended online ordering and click and collect services so it can focus on delivering goods to people in “genuine need”. The supermarket has also temporarily suspended its UberEats delivery service. Customers can still shop in-store. 

supermarket, shopping
Harris Farm Supermarket

Woolworths has temporarily paused delivery services throughout parts of Victoria. The supermarket has advised it will continue to service Melbourne metro areas, along with the rest of the country. Pick-up orders are also temporarily unavailable due to stock shortages. Customers can still shop as normal in-store. 

Some IGA stores are still offering home delivery to select suburbs, along with click and collect services. Harris Farm is also still offering home delivery for a small fee. 

Independent grocery delivery services

This is the best option if you’re self-isolating or in mandatory quarantine. Although Coles and Woolworths have suspended services in certain locations, you can still purchase non-perishable food from eBay, Amazon and Catch.

Prefer to purchase locally? A number of smaller boutique grocery delivery services are now operating throughout Australia. For instance, Melbourne’s YourGrocer allows users to make online purchases from local businesses and receive same-day delivery. Sydney’s Ooooby is also delivering fresh fruit and vegetables to select locations. Keep in mind that many of these services are temporarily closed as well, so do your research beforehand. 

Uber Eats, online shopping

Uber Eats is also delivering basic groceries from select convenience stores, while meal kit delivery services like Marley Spoon, Dinnerly and HelloFresh are all still operating during this time. You can also post a grocery shopping job on Airtasker if you can’t get to the shops yourself. 

What to look out for online

Price gouging on items like hand sanitiser and face masks has become widespread as profiteers attempt to cash in on public fear. Some eBay and Amazon sellers were capitalising on the surge in consumer demand, with health products like hand sanitiser selling for extortionate prices online. 

coronavirus, shopping, face masks

Pharmacists and online businesses have also been accused of charging high prices for products usually available for a couple of dollars. Consider how much your item is really worth before purchasing online to avoid being overcharged. 

Social distancing or being in quarantine isn’t fun, but it’s important to take social distancing measures seriously to limit the spread of infection. Shopping online and arranging for home delivery is a smart way to keep yourself and the community safe. Living in a digital age enables this. 

If you can’t arrange for goods to be delivered online, reach out to a friend or family member who may be willing to help. Remember to thoroughly wash your hands and always wear a mask when receiving deliveries to your home. 

Women Love Tech would like to thanks Bessie Hassan From Finder for her article.

Women Love Tech

Written by Women Love Tech

Women Love Tech is an award-winning lifestyle technology site. Discover the best smartphones, latest apps, cool gadgets, social media, emerging tech and news. Be inspired by our regular profiles of women in tech as we continue with our mission to promote women in STEM and to make technology easy and fun!

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