Senior-Only Shopping Times

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Can someone please post a list of all local markets who have set aside time for seniors only to shop? I heard Gelson's allows only older folk to shop between 7AM and 8AM: are there any others?

Update by edhat staff

The below list was compiled by VNA Health:

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Carpsouth Mar 19, 2020 06:43 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Gelson's began 7-8 AM yesterday. Noozhawk has article and pictures about this 1 day ago. Nextdoor also says Albertson's on Calle Real in Goleta. I wemt to Gelson's on Wednesday arrived 6:50 ane was about #100 in lime.

a-1584672002 Mar 19, 2020 07:40 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I called Von's at Turnpike today, and they have no plans. Here's a suggestion. All those schools (including all 3 high schools) have feeding programs for children. How about adding another line for seniors? The Food Bank could provide fresh veggies and fruit for seniors, and could put items in trunk of car, not exposing seniors to coronavirus dangers. What's the point have having a store open early for a LARGE group of people/seniors to get in line together, and then shop together?

shorebird Mar 19, 2020 07:49 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

GOOD QUESTION 7:40. Not sure it is a good idea for 100 people with immune systems in the sunset of their years to mob up to shop together.

therealbebe Mar 19, 2020 10:20 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

If you are near the SYV: El Rancho, New Frontiers, and Valley Fresh have 7am-8am shopping time for seniors and immuno-compromised families. Not sure about Alberston's. This was in quick response to the community pushing for it. If there are more squeaky wheels in SB, they will do it, too.

menchar Mar 19, 2020 11:04 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Actually, by corporate decree, all stores in the Albertson's group (including Vons) are at a minimum to dedicate two hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays 7:00 to 9:00 AM for seniors, pregnant women, and people with compromised immunity symptoms. I went to the Albertson's in Carpinteria this morning at 7:00 and there was a line of about 50 people, mostly seniors, waiting to get in. As a practical matter, there were many young and middle age people in the store and no screening was taking place at the door. Folks were not maintaining 6 foot distancing, most seemed oblivious to the concept. No paper products available whatsoever. Water sold out (but city tap is water is safe) but plenty of gatorade for hydration when you do get COVID-19. Meat counter was somewhat stocked, no yogurt, no mac and cheese, no disinfectants. Most frozen foods available, also tortillas but mostly the less popular ones. Milk, cheese available. Volume discounts were all in play, which encourages over purchase. Once home I wiped all the food down with disinfectant wipes. If I get COVID-19 Iif I don't have it already) it will be from going to the grocery store I imagine. Stay safe everyone.

mp805 Mar 19, 2020 11:21 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Good post MENCHAR, thanks for sharing your experience. I noticed this as well when I went shoppiong at Vons Turnpike, people didnt respect the 6foot distancing when I was in line to pay and in general. The food supply is intact, we are in good shape

RHS Mar 20, 2020 01:14 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I was at Turnpike Vons and agree that many customers seem oblivious to the idea of social distancing. When checking out a young man and woman behind me kept getting impatient that I was letting the customer in front of me finish before I moved forward. When I did move ahead he immediately started unloading his cart and was about 2' from me. I asked him to back off please and he seemed to get a light bulb moment. He did back away. So sometimes it is just that people are habituated to certain behaviors. They can learn alternatives.

RHS Mar 20, 2020 01:15 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I was at Turnpike Vons and agree that many customers seem oblivious to the idea of social distancing. When checking out a young man and woman behind me kept getting impatient that I was letting the customer in front of me finish before I moved forward. When I did move ahead he immediately started unloading his cart and was about 2' from me. I asked him to back off please and he seemed to get a light bulb moment. He did back away. So sometimes it is just that people are habituated to certain behaviors. They can learn alternatives.

mtndriver Mar 20, 2020 08:08 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

This is not senior specific but Trader Joe's is handling things really well. About 50 people at a time in the store, people lining up outside separated well, staff only at alternate checkstands, so spacing there. Limits on how many of any item you can buy (2, mostly), but the store seemed amply supplied, especially compared to last week when most shelves were empty. Only things really low were pasta, rice, and canned goods. Plenty of milk and eggs and bread and veggies, cheese, wine (of course!), beer, and meats. Waited in line to get in about 20 minutes, but the shopping once inside was easy-peasy.

a-1584718195 Mar 20, 2020 08:29 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Whole Foods 7-8 am for people over 60 years old. They were stocking shelves but many items not available or low. Later in the morning ( 9 AM) no lines and not crowded in store.

suz Mar 20, 2020 08:46 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I got to Gelson's this morning at 6:45. Already about 25 people in line. At 7 they ushered us in, passing a sanitized cart to everyone. People were pretty orderly and not hoarding. Shelves not full, but not empty either. Lots of choices in meat and produce and cheese. Dairy was slim pickings. Even found some tp and clorox. Bonus-fresh croissants had just been brought over from Renaud's!!

Michele Mar 20, 2020 09:23 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Based on the photos from Noozhawk, the density of the line looks like a great way to catch the virus.

Luvaduck Mar 20, 2020 09:48 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I went to Albertson's to pick up milk and bread. No line, but also no bread, empty meat-counter, barely any milk. I left with a half-gallon of milk and an onion. The close to 380# lady behind me in an electric cart had her basket full. Her attendant/assistant pulled 2 fully-loaded carts. I'm not knocking the weight-disabled senior woman--I don't know her story--but what good are senior and vulnerable hours if there are few essentials on the shelves and some seniors or vulnerables are also hoarders? Limits need to be set, either in dollar amounts or # of items. It's sad and unfortunate, but many people are behaving badly and erratically.

Ahchooo Mar 20, 2020 12:25 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

I agree. We were advised to have supplies at home for two weeks. No need to have enough toilet paper for a year. Now those of us who didn’t hoard can’t get any at all in most places.

a-1584732948 Mar 20, 2020 12:35 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Farmer' Market for senior citizens. Drive up, tell the vendor what you want (carrots, tomatoes, Swiss chard), pay, move to next stand while still in car. OR, free meals for kids are drive up at all the schools. Make a drive up at the same schools and give/sell ($10 bag?) senior citizens fresh food. I never would have believed that Santa Barbara would treat seniors as a "swipe left".

happy camper Mar 20, 2020 12:38 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Props to Trader Joe's- went there yesterday afternoon- a line to let a few in at a time, designated distances on the walkway. someone disinfecting each cart as they give it to you. reasonably stocked shelves. At checkout stands, every other one is closed so good 'distancing', plus they disinfected the area where they put the food prior to each check out. smelled like a hospital! Of note- I am well over 65 (in late 70's and can't imagine the benefit of shopping early with other in same risk-likely age demographic! Why would I want to stand in line with others who are the most susceptible to this hideous virus? I understand the concept that we get to shop earlier, or perhaps there is more on the shelves, but seems to me it might be counter-productive.

Marathoner Mar 20, 2020 02:58 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Vons was not crowded recently while Ralphs had long lines. Less wait, less exposure. No clue why the difference.

banana Mar 20, 2020 03:21 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

The VNA senior hours list needs to be verified store by store, and that is no easy task. Can someone do a survey of the stores, talking to store managers, to verify which ones are holding senior hours? For example, Ralph's on Carrillo, according to a live person in the produce Dept. at 3PM on Friday, says they are NOT open at 7, but at 8. That Ralph's also has a recording that does NOT mention any senior hours.

winter Mar 20, 2020 05:20 PM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Went to Vons, and Albertsons, late...about noon...lots of seniors...guess they don't know they can go early...

a-1584776487 Mar 21, 2020 12:41 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

This is all absurd. If everyone simply shopped as they always have there wouldn’t be overcrowding or hoarding. They are not going to close down grocery stores, ever. People are acting crazy.

sbdme Jun 10, 2020 10:34 AM
Senior-Only Shopping Times

Ralph manages to carve out a half hour each day for seniors. Isn't that generous of them. Want to know why seniors go late? During senior hours they are stocking and their employees are in the way. Don't try to ask them about anything, because they don't know. They shelves are not well stocked.