Christmas shoppers were sent into a panic over the weekend when ‘non-essential’ retailers including clothes shops and department stores were closed as part of tougher Tier 4 restrictions introduced for London and swathes of the South East.
The sudden move to shutter stores less than a week before Christmas means some shoppers are scrambling to pick up last-minute gifts in time for the big day. Yesterday crowds flocked from Tier 3 and Tier 4 areas to nearby towns under Tier 2 restrictions in the hope of finishing off their shopping. Others are battling for online delivery slots, with Royal Mail and courier services inundated by orders.
Fortunately there is a way to escape the madness. Big name retailers including John Lewis, Marks & Spencer and Argos are continuing to operate their click-and-collect services at branches under Tier 4 restrictions, allowing shoppers to shop online and pick up items in person.
But beware: some have set Christmas order deadlines as early as tomorrow and need at least a day to get products to your local collection point. Here, FEMAIL reveals the deadlines and details you need to know.
Christmas Eve orders: Last-minute shoppers can pick up a present on Christmas Eve at Argos
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Immediately*
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 24 December*
Argos stores in Tier 4 regions are open for the collection of pre-paid online orders only. Collections will be given to customers outside the door and they will not be able to purchase items in any store. Some products can be collected immediately in store but this depends on local availability and stock. Items can only be returned to an Argos store within a Sainsbury’s supermarket.
*Depending on stock in local stores
Stores not offering click and collect
Big name stores that have suspended click and collect services include:
- JD Sports
- Oliver Bonas
- River Island
- Selfridges (London)
- The Perfume Shop
- House of Fraser
- Sports Direct
CURRY’S PC WORLD
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Same day for products in stock
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 24 December at 3pm*
Stores in Tier 4 regions are open for collection only. Click and collect is free for shoppers. If the product is in stock, it can be picked up on the same day. If it’s not in stock at your local store, there is the option of sending it there on a day that suits you.
*For products in stock in store. Deadline to send products to store is 21 December
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Within 30 minutes*
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 24 December at 12pm*
Most stores in tier 4 areas in London and the South East are now open for click and collect only. At the moment The Entertainer expects branches to be open until 5pm on Christmas Eve but advises customers to check opening times before visiting. The zero contact process means customers will be able to remain socially distanced without needing to enter the store.
*Depending on availability
Plenty of options: John Lewis shoppers can collect orders at Waitrose and Co-op stores
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Next day
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 22 December at 4pm.
Click & Collect is available from most John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners shops, as well as selected Co-op branches and Booths food and wine stores. Customers are encouraged to check opening times before travelling.
MARKS & SPENCER
Don’t miss out: Deadline for click and collect orders is 6pm on 23 December
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Next day
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 23 December at 6pm.
Marks & Spencer Food Halls and Marks & Spencer Food branches remain open as essential retailers. Some larger M&S stores that contain a Food Hall remain partially open, allowing customers to shop a limited selection of items as normal. Click and collect is available at Tier 4 branches. Last orders for clothing, home and beauty products is 23 December at 6pm. Check details for your local branch on the M&S website.
Great if you’re in a hurry: Next click and collect orders can be available within an hour
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Within one hour
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 23 December
At Next stores within Tier 4 restrictions within England and Wales, you will be able to continue to collect parcels and make online returns, but you will not be able to enter the store. Items in your local store are now available to shop and reserve on our website. Just click the ‘Store Stock Checker’ button on the products you like, enter your postcode or location to check stock in your nearest store, then pay for your order online. Store staff will reserve and prepare the item in under one hour, and text you when it’s ready. Collections are made by passing items out to customers.
*If products already available in store
Get your toys! Smyths will be open for click and collect orders this week
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Same day when ordered by 3pm
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: N/A
Click & Collect orders will be processed as normal. Collection times depend on stock at local branches. Once the item is ready, customers are emailed. The orders are held for two days. If a customer is unable to collect in person, he or she can send someone on their behalf as long as they have a photo ID.
Stock up on books: Waterstones will be open for customers who order over the phone
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: From two hours after ordering
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 23 December at 2pm.
Waterstones bookshops in Wales and those in England under the restrictions of Tier 4 are now closed. However, until the end of trade on Wednesday 23 December, these shops will continue to fulfill customer collection of Click & Collect and Delivery to Shop orders. Waterstones will continue to take Click & Collect orders (either placed online or by phone) until 2pm on Wednesday, but we do advise customers to confirm opening hours online at Waterstones.com before arranging collection or ordering via Click & Collect.
THE WHITE COMPANY
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: Same day when ordered by 12pm
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: 24 December at 12pm
Following the latest government guidance, The White Company has temporarily closed stores in Tier 4, but customers can still place a telephone order. Order by 12 noon to collect the same day from a selection of stores. Available from Monday 21 to Thursday 24 December.
AVAILABLE FOR COLLECTION: 2-3 working days
CHRISTMAS ORDER DEADLINE: Today
Stores in Tier 4 regions are closed but remain open for collection. Items can be ordered online and collected from a store of your choice within 2-3 working days. It means customers should order today to guarantee delivery by Christmas.