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Shopper fury as Tesco hikes minimum spend for online delivery orders

Written by: Rebecca Goodman
Tesco has made two changes to its online shopping system, increasing the minimum spend and the fee customers pay if they don’t meet the threshold.

From Tuesday 2 May, customers will need to spend at least £50 for home delivery orders. If you fail to reach this amount, you will pay a £5 charge.

This is an increase from the current minimum spend of £40 for getting your shopping delivered, and a fee of £4 if you spend less than this amount.

However, the minimum amount customers need to spend to qualify for the click and collect service will remain at £25, with the surcharge for baskets under this standing at £5.

As with the current system, if substitutions take an order below the £50 minimum spend, you won’t have to pay the £5 fee.

Customers with a delivery saver plan (off-peak and anytime) will also need to meet the minimum basket spend of £50 to avoid paying an extra fee.

However, for any customers incurring the charge, Tesco confirmed you‘ll accumulate Clubcard points and these will be added to your account when you check out. This will also apply if you have a delivery saver plan.

It comes as the supermarket giant recently announced it was shaking up its Clubcard scheme, making it less generous to customers.

From 14 June, shoppers exchanging their Tesco Clubcard vouchers for rewards to be spent at ‘partners’ across travel, days out and restaurants will receive twice their value, rather than the current triple value.

Customer fury

Tesco customers have reacted with anger on social media sites.

One shopper tweeted: “Why on earth are Tesco increasing the minimum basket charge to £50 from the 2nd May, totally the wrong year to do this when everyone is struggling, that’s an increase of £10, think I will be cancelling my delivery pass.”

Another posted on Twitter: “I note with dismay your intended increase of minimum basket amount for home delivery. A £10 increase is huge. As a disabled, housebound customer this will impact me greatly. My income is already limited and I have to rely on home deliveries. Please think again.”

And one shopper wrote: “Tesco have increased their online minimum basket to £50……oh great, just what we need in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis. I only shop online due to my long working hours but think I may now give my nearest supermarket Aldi a go.”

The move by Tesco comes at a time when food inflation is soaring and millions of people are struggling to afford their supermarket shopping.

Food prices have hit a new record high, increasing to 17.5% in March, the ninth month in a row that food inflation has hit double figures. This means households who don’t change the way they spend will have to fork out an extra £837 a year to pay for their food shopping, according to the British Retail Consortium.

Tesco is the biggest UK supermarket with a market share of 26.9%, according to data from Kantar, yet it faces rising competition from other supermarkets and discount stores, who have all been striving to attract and retain new customers in the face of soaring grocery costs.

How do Tesco’s online shopping fees compare?

From 2 May Tesco shoppers will need to spend at least £50 for free delivery, or face a £5 fee for home delivery.

This is one of the highest minimum basket spends across the major supermarkets.

The only major supermarket with a higher minimum spend before it offers free home delivery is Ocado, which charges between £2.99 and £6.99 for orders of between £40 and £75.

At Sainsbury’s, the fee is £7 unless shoppers meet a minimum spend of £40 and at Asda, there is a minimum spend of £40, otherwise shoppers are charged a £3 fee.

At Morrisons and Iceland there’s a minimum spend of £40 and a fee of £3 if this isn’t met.

What does Tesco say?

A Tesco spokesperson said: “To ensure we can continue to serve our online customers as effectively as possible, from 2 May we are making some changes to our minimum basket threshold, the first change we are making in nearly eight years. For the vast majority of our customers, there will be no change to the way they shop.”

It is understood that the average basket value for online orders sits above £90.

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