Everything You Need To Know About The UK’s New Supermarket Regulations

To help prevent stockpiling, major supermarkets across the UK are introducing shopping rules.

The recent outbreak of coronavirus has given rise to a lot of people panic buying and stockpiling goods. The supermarkets and government have repeatedly asked people not to do this, and yet, if you go into a supermarket today, you wouldn’t be surprised to find the shelves completely empty. Due to this panic buying, supermarkets are finding it difficult to restock the shelves and many of those in need cannot buy the things they require. Therefore, many supermarkets have instated new regulations to ensure that everyone can get what they need.

Here’s a list of everything you need to know about quantity restrictions, opening hours, online shopping and deliveries at the moment.


Asda customers are now only allowed to buy three of any one product across all food items. Asda are also closing all of their service counters, such as delicatessens and fish counters, and are asking their customers to notify them if they’re self-isolating when ordering online.

For home deliveries, Asda drivers will be wearing gloves and items will not be brought inside the house by the driver. Asda have asked that people ensure their delivery details are up to date, because drivers will not wait for a long time for you to collect your shopping and a slow response could result in your items being returned and refunded.


Tesco have imposed a cap of two units on the most popular items, which include toilet roll, soap and long-life milk. The limit is three on everything else. Tesco will be closing all of their service counters and all stores will be closing at 10pm to allow for restocking.

If you are self-isolating, you should inform Tesco when ordering online and a driver will drop your goods off in your desired area. All drivers will be wearing disposable gloves. The supermarket will not be charging for plastic bags at this time.

Tesco have also asked those customers who are able to to opt for click and collect, in order to help free up delivery slots for the elderly and vulnerable. Tesco will also prioritise one hour every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning between 9-10am (except in Express stores), for the elderly and vulnerable.


Aldi do not deliver groceries but have recently announced an increase in their orders from their suppliers. They have reassured customers they have sufficient stock to cope with demand and replenish the shelves. However, customers are limited to buying four units of any one product during each visit.


Sainsbury’s are also among the shops telling customers they can only buy three of any item, and they are also shutting their fresh food counters. From Monday March 23, Sainsbury’s are planning to give online customers who are over 70 or have a disability priority access to online delivery slots.


Yesterday, Ocado said it had decided to temporarily close until Saturday March 21 to deal with the number of orders they had. When they re-open, they will have a virtual queueing system in place.

Ocado delivery drivers will no longer be carrying shopping into your home and have asked customers not to hand plastic bags back to drivers, as they have paused their recycling scheme for now. Ocado have also chosen to prioritise deliveries for existing customers, so new customers will not be able to book a delivery slot at this time.


Morrisons are also only allowing customers to buy up to three of any food items. They would like you to notify them if you are self-isolating when you order online, and are asking that all customers keep hold of plastic bags rather than returning them.


All of Waitrose’s cafe’s have been temporarily closed and they have introduced a cap of three on certain products and two, on packets of toilet roll. Waitrose will also be launching a protected shopping period for the elderly and vulnerable, effective as of Friday, which will be the first opening hour of every store.


Several Iceland shops across the country have started setting aside an exclusive early morning shopping slot (8am-9am) for the elderly and the vulnerable, to help them acquire the produce they need.


Like Aldi, Lidl have imposed a restriction of four units of any item across all of their stores.

We will keep adding to the article as and when we have new information.