Aldi to launch click and collect services in Dublin on Monday

Group managing director calls for grocery workers to be bumped up vaccine priority list

Customers will be able to order their shopping online at least one day, and up to one week, prior to picking it up. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Customers will be able to order their shopping online at least one day, and up to one week, prior to picking it up. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

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Aldi Ireland will on Monday begin the rollout of a new click and collect service for customers of the discount grocery chain.

The service will allow customers to order their shopping online at least one day, and up to one week, prior to picking it up for a fee of €4.99. The service will launch next week initially only in its Sallynoggin store in Dublin.

Once the concept is fine-tuned at Sallynoggin, it will be rolled out to more stores, possibly as many as 15, over coming months. It is expected that this phase of rollout will include Aldi outlets in all the major urban centres of Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway.

According to group managing director Niall O’Connor, if the service works well and there is demand for it, it will be rolled out further.

“We will be led by demand. If the demand is that it should be in every store, we’d look at that. We are open minded,” he said.

Home delivery

The new venture is Aldi’s first foray into e-commerce in Ireland. The supermarket chain launched home delivery services last summer in a partnership with Deliveroo, but those transactions are handled by its delivery partner and only give access to a slimmed down range of about 400 Aldi products.

Aldi has built in-house a new transactional website for the click and collect service, which will sell almost all of the 1,800 products available in its stores. Its centre aisle special buy products will not be available online, however.

Mr O’Connor said the service is “contactless” and the customer experience was designed with pandemic safety measures in mind. When a customer arrives at a participating Aldi store at their allotted time to pick up their shopping, they will text a number supplied to them at the time of booking and park in a selected bay. This will alert a member of staff to bring the pre-packed order out to the customer’s car.

Irish goods

In an interview with The Irish Times, Mr O’Connor also said that he expects Aldi will buy €1 billion worth of goods from Irish suppliers this year, up from €850 million in 2020. It expects to open six more stores in 2021, including Bayside in Dublin, Dunshaughlin in Co Meath, Newbridge in Co Kildare, Douglas in Co Cork, and Cahersiveen and Killarney in Co Kerry.

Mr O’Connor also suggested that grocery retail workers should be bumped up the vaccine priority list, due to their exposure to the public for work: “In light of grocery staff providing such an essential service, I think they should feature on that priority list and be a little closer to the top. Certainly not ahead of the elderly and vulnerable. But they should be higher up and I am hopeful that the Government would consider that.”