Tesco Christmas Pigs in Blankets Topped Pie

Source: Tesco

Tesco and Asda have brought forward the date their Christmas online delivery slots will become available, following “unprecedented” demand last year.

Tesco will open access to Christmas slots to Delivery Saver subscribers at 6am on November 7, a week earlier than in 2022. The slots will go on general release on November 21. Asda opened Christmas slots to its Delivery Pass holders on October 3 – two weeks earlier than last year and “earlier than ever before” it said – and more broadly on October 10.

Asda warned customers the slots “sell out fast at this busy time” and “once they’re gone, they’re gone”.

Tesco said it was “helping customers get organised early this year” with the “simple hack” of signing up for a six or 12-month delivery plan – the anytime, 12-month option costing £83.88 – which gives members a “headstart to secure a coveted Christmas slot”.

“As we help customers plan ahead for their Christmas shop this year, there is no better time to sign up to a Delivery Saver plan and benefit from festive priority slot bookings,” said Tom Denyard, MD of Tesco Online.

Asda said the move was in response to falling disposable income figures among UK households.

“We know customers are thinking about ways they can spread the cost of Christmas this year, so to help these shoppers get a headstart with preparations we’re releasing our delivery slots earlier than ever,” said Simon Gregg, senior VP of e-commerce at Asda. “And with over one million slots available in Christmas week, we’re confident shoppers will be able to secure their preferred delivery slot.”

Ocado launched its first round of Christmas delivery slots to Delivery Saver members in the last week of September, similarly two weeks sooner than it did last year. M&S, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons are mostly repeating their 2022 slot release schedules.

Last year, Tesco shoppers attempting to book a Christmas delivery slot reported website crashes and hours-long wait times to reach the front of a queue of close to 300,000 people.

Tesco told complainants on Twitter it was “seeing an unprecedented volume of traffic on our website and because of this some customers are temporarily experiencing a problem when logging onto our website or placing orders”.

The supermarket implemented a “temporary limit” on the number of people using the website to manage the “unprecedented volume of traffic” on its systems and scrambled its IT teams to resolve the issues.