Frequently Asked Questions

Last updated: Fri, 13 August 12:06pm

Olive

Need more help? Speak to Olive, the Countdown Virtual Assistant

Our hard-working Customer Care team is experiencing a high volume of calls and emails at the moment so please use Olive, our virtual assistant.

Store hours and Customer Care:

All Countdown stores will open at 8am and close at 9pm nationwide. This is to help make sure that we can give our team time to re-stock stores.

We understand your frustration and appreciate your patience at this busy time.  We’re currently experiencing a high volume of calls and our team is working hard to help all of our customers as quickly as possible. Please continue to treat our team with kindness and empathy, we’re all doing our best to help.

If you’re an online customer and need help, please speak to Olive - our online virtual assistant.

We are seeing very few, if any, queues at our stores and, at this stage, a priority shopping hour isn’t needed. We’ll absolutely continue to monitor the situation and make changes if needed. 

Online shopping:

The website is up and running as normal.  There may be times when it becomes overloaded; we’d encourage Kiwis not to stock up and simply shop as normal.

Our available slots are filling up quicker than usual. If our website isn't showing any available slots, please continue to search for the next available delivery slot. Unfortunately, we aren't able to arrange delivery slot bookings over the phone.

Our Priority Assistance Service is back in place to ensure that our most vulnerable New Zealanders can continue to get groceries if they have been asked to stay at home.

For people who are already approved for this service, your Priority Assistance Service status is still active and valid. 

Yes. For customers picking up their online order at our stores, there will be a separate queue to ensure they can collect these orders quickly and easily.  

To minimise time in store when you Pick up your order we have temporarily paused our Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) option. All orders will be packed into paper bags.

All deliveries are once again contactless to help keep our team and customers safe and healthy. Delivery drivers will now knock on a customer’s door, leave the groceries on the doorstep and send a text message to let the customer know their delivery has arrived. 

Refunds are taking longer to process than usual so please bear with us. If you need a refund our virtual assistant ‘Olive’ can help with that. 

Product Limits:

To make sure there is plenty for everyone, we have put a limit of one on all masks and a limit of three on the following Categories: Flour, Rice - Bags, Dry Pasta, Canned baked beans & spaghetti, UHT Milk, Frozen Vegetables, Toilet Paper, Paper Towel, Personal Wash, Hand Sanitiser, Paracetamol, Household Cleaner, Period Products, Baby Formula.

There is a limit of 6 per liquor Category, per customer i.e. Customers are able to purchase up to 6 bottles of wine, 6 packs / bottles of beer and 6 packs / bottles of cider in one transaction.

Yes, these limits apply to all Countdown stores nationwide and our online shopping site.

The limits are in place to make sure there is plenty for everyone. We will continue to monitor stock levels over the coming days and will adjust them as we can. 

We have plenty of food in our supply chain, however we want to help encourage customers not to stock up.  Please only buy what you need.

We understand that these temporary restrictions may be frustrating however our message is please don’t stock up - simply use what you have and need today.  We will not run out of food.

The more New Zealanders shop, the less there is for others  - including people who are required to be in self-isolation, people who are health or immune-compromised, older New Zealanders, people who can’t afford to make ends meet, or people who can’t physically access a supermarket.

We would ask all New Zealanders to be kind, consider others and consider what you’ve got in your pantry already.

We know that baby products are absolutely essential for parents and caregivers.  We are not running out of any baby products - we have plenty of baby formula, baby food, baby wipes and nappies in stock. The limits will just mean there is plenty for everyone. 

Contactless payment limit increase:

We have a range of specials in store including our current Hot Hot promotional programme which is continuing this week and next.

We have 4000 products on Great Price which are also available across all our stores and online, providing low prices on your essentials.

Stock levels:

No. We have plenty of food and groceries in New Zealand.  We’ll continue to manage any increased customer demand in our stores, but we also need customers to remember that when they buy more than they need, others will go without that day. 

Customers should shop as they normally would and be thoughtful of others to ensure that all New Zealanders have access to the food and products they need. There is no need to panic about food and groceries.

Physical distancing:

The safety of our team and our customers is our main priority.

We’re supporting the Government’s recommendations to encourage physical distancing by reinstating tools in our stores to help people create space between themselves and others, and our team. These include markings on floors, perspex screens at checkout, using the shopping trolley as a tool and closing off every second checkout and every second self-service checkout - supported by good hygiene practices.

We’re also limiting the number of customers in our stores at any one time, to ensure there is plenty of room for our customers and team to physically distance themselves from each other. 

The safety of our team and our customers is our main priority and we have a number of measures in place to help prevent the spread of the virus. These include: 

  • Maintaining our comprehensive food quality and hygiene standards across the store
  • A detailed cleaning programme in our stores every day, supported by increased cleaning across high traffic areas.
  • Signs in stores to encourage good hygiene and care for each other
    - asking those who are self isolating to not enter the store.
    - sharing guidance on common hygiene and physical distancing.
    - advising to use the size of a trolley as a distance guide between each other
  • Floor marking distance guides at checkouts
  • Recommending customers use Paywave where possible.

The government’s recommendation during the last lockdown was that when it comes to shopping in the supermarket during the lockdown is to have one person do the shopping per family.

We know that for some families that may not be possible, so if you do need to bring your children shopping, please make sure you’re maintaining physical distance between your group and other customers in the store. 

All New Zealanders need to take responsibility to follow the Government’s advice and maintain physical distancing, whether that’s inside a supermarket or waiting in line to go into one

We are trying to support this with a number of measures in store. These include closing every second checkout and self service checkout, putting markings on the floor to help with distancing, and installing perspex screens at the checkout.

Ultimately, we need customers to help us out too by remembering to maintain physical distancing and protect each other’s bubbles. 

Health and safety:

We’re reinforcing our good hygiene measures as well sharing Ministry of Health guidelines with our team.  We increased our regular store cleaning as a precautionary measure.

We’re also installing wipes at the entry and hand sanitiser at the exits of our stores nationwide in the next two weeks.

We’d strongly encourage our customers and our team to wear face masks or face coverings in our stores in accordance with the Government’s advice to Kiwis.

We’re doing everything we can to keep our customers and team healthy and safe. While we’re passionate about reducing single-use plastic, we’ve decided to temporarily stop accepting BYO containers. 

The safety and health of our team is our priority. Across our business we have taken the opportunity to review our processes and are reinforcing our normal hygiene measures, sharing Ministry of Health guidelines on prevention and regularly communicating with our team across multiple channels about how to stay safe and healthy. 

We’ve got a range of measures in place in our stores to keep our team and customers safe. These include extra cleaning and hygiene measures, perspex screens at checkout, physical distancing measures and we’re also encouraging team to wear masks.  

We’re following the government’s requirements around self-isolation for any of our team members who are returning to New Zealand from overseas.

The health and safety of our customers and team is our utmost priority. We’re continuing to reinforce our good hygiene measures as well sharing Ministry of Health guidelines with our team.

Supporting our team:

The safety, health and well-being of our team is our greatest priority. As our business is an essential service and our stores will be open each day, it’s really important that we look after them.

We are very grateful to our team members and suppliers who are working tirelessly to do the best job possible. Please continue to respect and support our team members, particularly if a product isn’t available or the checkout queues are longer than normal.