Waitrose & Partners launches two-hour delivery trial with On the dot

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From today, Waitrose & Partners customers can have their food and drink delivered straight to their door within two hours or on the same day for the first time as part of a new trial.

The supermarket has teamed up with On the dot, the last mile retail delivery startup, to launch ‘Waitrose Rapid Delivery’ in selected London postcodes (SW5, SW6 , SW10, WC1, WC2, EC1, CR5 and CR8).

Customers in these areas will be able to choose up to 20 items from more than 1,500 products at rapid.waitrose.com.

Before completing their order they will be given the option to receive their shopping within two hours of placing the order or to specify a one-hour time slot on the same day. There is a £10 minimum spend and a £5 charge will apply for using either service.

All products will be hand–picked and prepared for delivery by Waitrose Partners before being collected and delivered by On the dot.

The trial is designed to respond to the increase in customers shopping ‘as and when’. According to research carried out for the Waitrose Food Report 2017/18, two thirds of us regularly or occasionally visit a supermarket more than once a day. This trend is particularly prevalent among 18-to 24-year olds who are twice as likely to regularly visit a supermarket twice a day as the over-55s.

Using On the dot cargo bikes as well as vans to make deliveries is predicted to save up to four tonnes of GHG emissions a year.

Richard Ambler, head of business development at Waitrose & Partners, says: “Customers are increasingly wanting to buy whatever they want when they want it. For many, we have moved away from the weekly supermarket visit to give us more fluidity with our busy lives and give us better control against over-buying and waste. Our trips to the supermarket are therefore much more frequent – Waitrose Rapid Delivery ensures we give our customers even greater flexibility and convenience to get their shopping as and when they want it.”

Santosh Sahu, CEO at On the dot, adds: “The grocery sector is undergoing its biggest shift for decades – one where convenience and immediacy will win. Customers are shifting away from the routine of the big weekly shop – instead, time-poor and convenience-driven consumers are opting for ultra-fast deliveries of small baskets at a time that suits them. Customers want to take back control and remain informed on the status of their deliveries in real-time. Waitrose & Partners has always put the customer first and this partnership recognises the influence that delivery has on a customer’s shopping experience. On the dot enhance this customer experience by delivering great quality food to customers’ front doors. We are very excited to be partnering with one of the UK’s leading retailers and can’t wait to help Waitrose provide the rapid service its customers want.”