The retailers with the shortest and longest delivery times

ALL but essential shops are currently closed as the nation faces at least another two weeks of lockdown.

You can only leave your house for a limited number of reasons, but that doesn't mean you can't still engage in a bit of retail therapy from your sofa.

Whether it is ordering a new toaster, shopping for some bubble bath or buying a new dress, millions of products are just a click away.

Plenty of stores are still offering online ordering and home delivery – although often, delivery times are longer than usual because of a surge in demand.

We've compared the delivery times for more than 50 shops to find out which ones will get you your goods the fastest.

The comparison has been done with standard delivery options, as listed on each retailer's website on April 20.

A number of the retailers listed do offer faster services like next day delivery if you are willing to pay a bit more – but remember to factor the cost into your final bill.

Often opting to click and collect your goods in store is the fastest option, but many retailers have stopped offering this because their stores are now closed, in line with government guidelines.

And don't forget – it is worth checking prices for goods at a number of retailers before buying.

Even standard delivery costs vary enormously, so do check exactly how much you're spending before you complete your transaction.


Fashion retailers have been coping with an upswing in demand since the UK went into lockdown, particularly for certain items such as loungewear.

7Some have managed to keep their delivery times fairly short, whereas others are warning of longer wait times as they try and keep up with the volume of orders.

Among the retailers we looked at, Next and Zara were the only ones still offering next day delivery.

Next had completely shut its website, but reopened a couple of weeks later after revising the measures it had in place to keep staff safe.

At the other end of the scale, retailers including Matalan and Asos warned that deliveries were taking longer than usual because of the unusual situation.

Asos is currently saying its deliveries may take 14 days to reach you, while Matalan said it could be up to 10 days.

Should you order non-essential items at all?

The government has said that only shops selling "essential items

Shoppers have been criticised in recent weeks for continuing to buy items such as barbecues and garden equipment, as well as treats such as Easter eggs, which many do not think qualify as “essential” items.

So should we be buying things online which we don’t strictly need?

In an interview with The Sun, ethicist and corporate philosopher Roger Steare, who has worked with the NHS, banks, the military and the police, suggested that you should think carefully before shopping.

“You need to ask yourself what the essentials are for a good and decent life,” he said.

“You may feel you need those £200 trainers for your daily exercise – but do you need them more than a family who are reliant on foodbanks to whom you could donate that money instead?

“My favourite philosopher Albert Camus said: "Life is the sum of all our choices."

“Some of our many dilemmas can be answered by asking yourself if you are willing to sacrifice some of your personal needs for the greater good.”

Home and garden

Lots of people have decided to take the opportunity during the UK lockdown to make improvements to their homes and gardens.

And while some have been criticised for visiting shops to buy plant pots and lampshade, it is possible to stay and home and get products delivered to your doorstep instead.

B&Q currently offers next day delivery on a number of items, and Argos also said in can delivery some things within 24 hours.

However, if you want to order anything from The Range you may have to wait more than a fortnight, and when we checked some stock in Ikea, the first delivery slot we could get was more than three weeks away.


If the worst happens and you suddenly find yourself with a broken washing machine or in need of a new fridge, your best option at the moment is to order one online.

Both AO and Appliances Direct can get some appliances the day after you order, and Currys said it will take between five and 10 days to deliver your products.

Be aware that with AO, you pay a different amount depending on when you choose to have your goods delivered.

Currys does have a next day delivery option and it costs £5 – so it might be worth paying if you need something urgently.

Office supplies

With office workers, teachers and kids stuck at home there has been a boom in people buying office supplies and stationery.

Viking Direct, which sells to businesses as well as individuals, can get your working from home essentials the day after you order them.

If you are looking for something a little more fancy you may have to wait – Paperchase offers delivery but only within seven to 10 days.

Toys, games and books

Entertaining the kids – or yourself – might be becoming a difficult task.

If you are in need of something to keep you or someone else quiet for a few hours, Game offers two-day delivery on its computer-based fun.

Smyths is also a good bet for toys, with a delivery window of three to five days.

Others are taking longer: The Entertainer said you might wait up to 10 days for your order to arrive.

And if it’s books you want, Waterstones is currently estimating it will take between seven and 10 days to deliver what you’ve bought.

Heath and beauty

With supermarkets running low on stock and people trying to go out as little as possible, you may find it easier to order your health and beauty essentials online.

The Body Shop can deliver its products in between two and three working days.

But if you want some of Lush’s eco-friendly products, you will be waiting a bit longer.

The retailer said its current delivery estimate is between 15 and 20 days as it works through a higher number of orders than usual.

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