We probably never thought grocery shopping would turn into a scary, dangerous and anxiety-inducing task but here we are. And when you’re a last-minute holiday shopper (Christmas is just a few days away!), this rings even more true. We’re all trying to stay home as much as possible and lessen the number of trips we’re taking to stores to help reduce our own exposure to the coronavirus and to help flatten the curve, but stores are coming up with new ways to protect customers and communities as well during the holidays. Earlier in the year, Costco changed its store hours and reduced the number of people allowed in warehouses and big box retailers like Walmart and Target in Vermont stopped selling non-essential items altogether. Since the beginning of the pandemic, several stores added curbside pickup for safer shopping, and it’s saving last-minute shoppers everywhere.
Target has offered this service for a while now, but due to the fear we all have of being around large groups of people right now, several other stores have decided to add the service as a way to keep customers safe and healthy while still providing them with all of the products they want to purchase — holiday gifts included. If you’re crunched for time (or a bunch of gifts aren’t arriving until after Christmas), here are the retailers offering this service.
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How it works: This service is available at most stores but not all so make sure your local store offers drive up service before placing any orders. If your store does participate, the service is available 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. local time. To place an order, go online to Kohl’s website and browse through their Drive Up eligible items. Eligible items will be marked as “Drive Up.” Once you complete your order online, you will receive an email within 2 hours letting you know your order is ready. When you arrive, park next to the curb by the “Drive Up” sign. Call the store using the number found in your email and press 0 when prompted. A store employee will bring your order out to your car. Everyone on your list needs these cozy boots.
You can choose either to pick up in the store or curbside pickup (often available same day) when ordering online. You’ll get an email confirmation telling you where to go in the store to pick up your items, and for curbside pickup, you’ll receive an email with an “I’m here” link you can click when you’ve arrived at the designated curbside pickup location. There are plenty of chic and practical gifts for the homebody, chef, stylish friend, and more.
How it works: Download the Target app and add the items you need to your cart. Simply check the Drive Up option at check out and pay for your order through the app. You’ll ben notified when your order is ready and when you want to pick up your items, let Target know you’re coming in the app and pull into one of the designated Drive Up parking spaces in the Target parking lot. An employee will bring your items out to your car for you and place them in your car. It is worth noting that Target will not let you order refrigerated items through this service. They do not have refrigerators to store cold items so you will only be able to order non-refrigerated items. Your foodie friend will love a Lodge Dutch oven.
How it works: First, you’ll need a membership. Then, members place orders via the Sam’s Club app or at samsclub.com. Products marked ‘Pick up in Club’ are eligible. After you’re finished shopping, select a pickup time and checkout. Same-day pickup is available if you need your items ASAP. Upon arrival to the club, members will use one of the designated pickup spots, and a Sam’s Club associate will load items into their cars.
How it works: When shopping online, simply select “Store Pickup” at checkout, and you’re set! Bonus: You’ll get $10 to use on a future purchase with curbside pickup or if you buy in store. And there might even be some sips and sweets to take with you on the road. We’re stocking up on this celeb-favorite Elisa necklace for everyone on our list.
How it works: Place your order through the ALDI website or app (you can order through Shipt too!) and make sure to choose the correct store at check out. Select a pickup time and let ALDI know what vehicle you will be arriving in. When you get to the store, park in one of the designated curbside pick up parking spots so an employee knows to bring you your order. An employee will load the groceries right into your car for a completely contact-less experience.
Bed Bath & Beyond
How it works: Shop online or using the store’s app and then check out and confirm who will be picking up the order. Your order will be ready in two hours or less (you’ll be notified via email) and you can drove to the store, pop your trunk and an employee will bring your order to you.
How it works: Use the Best Buy app from your phone tablet or computer to place your order. You will receive an email when your order is ready to be picked up and you can open the app for step-by-step instructions. This iRobot vacuum is $45 off, and you can also pick up a bunch of electronics, gaming equipment, and more.
How it works: This Washington-D.C-based beauty retailer announced earlier this week that select locations now offer ‘Contactless Curbside Pick-Me-Up’. To use the service, call the available store to place your curbside pickup order with a Beauty Expert. Then drive to the store, park near the entrance and call to confirm your arrival (note that you will need your ID to confirm your order through your closed car window). A Beauty Expert will then deliver your order to your car, placing it in the trunk or through a rear window.
Psst: They’ve got a bunch of foolproof holiday gift sets ready to gift.
How it works: Walmart allows you to order groceries for curbside pickup either online or through its app. Choose and pay for your groceries through the app or online and let them know when you would like to pick them up. Once you’ve arrived, simply let them know through the app or call the store and someone will bring them to your car. Apple Airpods and the Apple Watch are majorly discounted right now.
How it works: This store isn’t offering curbside pickup at this time, but they are offering in-store pick up so you can drastically reduce the amount of time you spend inside. Simply place your order on Home Depot’s website and wait for an email letting you know your order is ready for pick up. You can pick up your order at the Customer Service center. Who wouldn’t want a Dyson for Christmas?
How it works: Simply go to the buybuyBaby website and find the items you’d like to purchase and select “reserve now”. After you select your items, you can reserve them at check out using your credit card (a $1 authorization will be temporarily placed on your card). You will then receive an email that your items are ready for pick up. When you arrive, you call the store to let them know you have arrived and an associate will bring your order out to you where you will be able to pay for your order. Pro tip: when you are searching for your items, filter them by “Find In-Store” to make sure they are available for pickup at your local store.
Surprisingly, you can find non-baby stuff here including the Revlon One-Step, and it’s 33 percent off!
The Container Store
How it works: Only certain stores are participating in this service. To find out if a store near you is participating, visit The Container Store’s website. If they are, you can place your order online or over the phone and call the store when you’re ready to pick it. When you arrive, a store member will bring your order to you.
How it works: Wegmans, Publix and various other grocery store chains are offering curbside pickup through Instacart. Download the app and place your order through Instacart. It is worth noting that due to the high demand, there will probably be a longer wait than usual for Instacart orders.
Cost Plus World Market
How it works: This works pretty much exactly the same way as online shopping except you’ll select curbside pickup at checkout. Just select your store and you’ll receive an email when your order is ready. When you arrive, remain in your car and just call the number provided in the email and a store employee will bring your order out to your car.
A version of this article was originally published April 2020.
Before you go, check out all of the cloth face masks available online in the gallery below: