Retailers set aside shopping times for vulnerable senior customers

COVID-19 Health & Wellness Sustainability
Last updated: 
Empty shopping cart at grocery store
Encompass Health has compiled a list of retailers that are setting aside special shopping hours for those most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

More and more retailers are doing their part to help those most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

According to the CDC, seniors and those with underlying conditions such as diabetes, lung disease and heart disease are at an elevated risk for severe illness if they contract the virus. In response, many retailers are setting aside special hours for them to shop.

For our patients and those who care for them, use the list below to find retailer near you.  


At Target, the first hour of shopping each Wednesday is reserved to support vulnerable guests, including the elderly and those with underlying health concerns.


From March 24 through April 28, Walmart stores will host an hour-long senior shopping event every Tuesday for customers 60 and older. This will start one hour before the store opens. Pharmacies and vision centers will also be open during this time.


Starting March 24, Publix is reserving Tuesday and Wednesday mornings from 7 to 8 a.m. for seniors 65 and older to shop. Publix Pharmacy will also open at 7 a.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays for seniors.

Southeastern Grocers

Southeastern Grocers, the parent company of Winn-Dixie, BI-LO, Harveys Supermarket and Fresco y Mas, allows seniors and customers at high risk during the outbreak to shop from 8 to 9 a.m., Monday through Friday, in all stores. All pharmacy locations will open at 8 a.m. on weekdays.

Whole Foods Market

All Whole Foods Market stores in the U.S. and Canada will service customers who are 60 and older one hour before opening to the general public. Check your location, as many stores have changed their hours amid the COVID-19 outbreak to allow for additional cleaning and restocking.

Dollar General

Senior store hours at Dollar General allow vulnerable customers to shop during the first hour that stores are open to avoid busier and more crowded shopping periods.

Stop & Shop

Northeast retailer Stop & Shop is designating an hour and a half at the start of each day from 6 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. to service shoppers 60 and older. 

Big Lots

Big Lots stores are reserving the first hour of each day for senior citizens and those most vulnerable to become severely ill from the virus.

The Fresh Market

The Fresh Market announced the first shopping hour from 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. on weekdays will be reserved for seniors and other individuals most at risk (those with chronic health conditions such as heart disease or diabetes). 

Additional senior resources

In addition to the special hours, others are creating pathways to support those most vulnerable.

Through a newly formed group on the Shopping Angels Facebook page, volunteers across the country are digitally connected to the sick and elderly in need to provide free grocery delivery.

Please note participation may vary by location and be subject to change. Email us at to add additional stores to the list or to request an edit.

Encompass Health compiled this information from publicly available sources. Encompass Health is not endorsing any vendor and is not responsible for the quality of services or information provided by third parties. Encompass Health receives no remuneration from the organizations listed.

The content of this site is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical conditions or treatments.