American retail and e-commerce giant Walmart has announced an extension of the shopping periods for senior citizens through May 2020.
The Arkansas-based firm would continue with the time structure, which initially began in April, the Denver Channel reports.
Extended Shopping for High-Risk Seniors
This means that retail stores and pharmacies owned by the firm will open from 6 AM to 7 AM on Tuesdays for seniors at most of Walmart’s locations. In addition, Sam’s Club, Walmart’s sister retailer, will continue to offer senior shopping houses from 7 AM to 9 AM on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Other retailers have joined Walmart in its crusade to help seniors and other citizens vulnerable due to the pandemic. For instance, Florida-based supermarket chain Publix had designated 7 AM to 8 AM on Tuesdays and Wednesdays for citizens aged 65 and older who would like to access its stores.
The firm went one further, designating 8 PM to 9 PM and 7 AM to 8 AM on Thursdays and Fridays respectively for healthcare workers and first responders. Target will also open special times on Tuesdays and Wednesdays for seniors over 65, pregnant women, and anyone else that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has designated as being at risk.
Free and Easy Community Help
Walmart has also provided a service that will help make it easier for vulnerable people to get the supplies they need during this time.
Earlier this week, the retail giant partnered with neighborhood social networking site Nextdoor to launch a new “Neighbors Helping Neighbors” program to help vulnerable community members get assistance from neighbors heading down to a Walmart location.
The in-app feature will let Nextdoor users post their needs to groups associated with their local Walmart. From there, they can request shopping assistance and get the supplies they need, delivered to them by a community member.
Users can log on to Nextdoor’s mobile app and website to access the feature. From there, they can clock on the “Groups” tab, where they’ll find local Walmart locations pinned to the top of the page. Then, members can post their requests to the news feed and ask for the assistance they need.
Interested members can also check details on their message boards and through direct messages.
Both companies have touted the new service, pointing out that it will help the elderly, vulnerable, and high-risk people who need someone to help them with some minute shopping tasks.
The feature could also provide a cheaper alternative to using several online grocery delivery services, as most of those will need some tipping. Assistance is provided on a volunteer basis, and members can assess the risk involved with going to the grocery shop if they want to.