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Thread: Shopping experiences

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lighttouch's Avatar
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    Shopping experiences

    What are the benefits and draw backs to high street or online / digital shopping.

    Here's my story from yesterday

    GP Surgery
    Drove and visited my GP's surgery to collect prescription and get a flue jab. Easy parking and automatic opening doors at surgery

    Visit village next
    Parked up in accessible bay and dropped off prescription. Woman held door open for me.

    Haircut in village
    Came out of pharmacy and nipped into gents hairdresser's next door. Easy level access and assistance from John to get in and out of his haircutting chair. Paid cash - lively conversation. He'll never go bust as you can't get your hair cut on the internet!

    Need to buy a vacuum cleaner
    Drove to Domestic Appliance shop in village. Parked on double yellow lines displaying badge. Shop has level access and friendly service. I was trying to give business to my local shop by buying a vacuum - sorry earliest they could get the model I wanted was late November - in 6 weeks time after £50 cash back has ended - sorry but no purchase there.

    Debenhams at the Trafford Centre
    Had checked on internet about drawstring black shorts - yes they have them.
    Drove to Trafford Centre - free parking! Entered Shopmobility to hire a scooter - great. Only had £4 in change on me - could only afford one hours hire charge costing £3 - set the timer on my phone for 60 minutes.

    Needed a butty, drink and loo before shopping. Found a cafe, parked up and used crutch. Helpful staff, paid via card. First class customer service. Now loo time - loads of accessible loos - a cleaner offered to open door - didn't need to but nice gesture. Back on scooter using lift - chatting with woman in lift - reversed out and went into Debenhems. Enquired about shorts I wanted - wait for it - told they aren't in stock so I could order them over the internet - good grief!

    Scooting back through the mall of Trafford Centre
    Drove into WH Smith to get magazine - helpful staff found magazine I wanted. Was on scooter driving to payout - disaster my scooter couldn't reach the pay desk. Technology to the rescue. The assistant said I didn't need to pin in my card details as it has contactless technology built into card - he waved my card near the cash till and it debited my card - very impressed. Hour nearly up - quick get back to Shopmobility.

    Dropped off scooter and a very nice lady offered to take me to my car in a wheelchair as it was bucketing down - great service - nice one Fran.

    Drove home, looked on smartphone for vacuum clear. Found the model I want with £50 cash back. Ordered it, paid for it on smartphone and asked for it to be delivered to my local supermarket tomorrow - what is known as 'click and collect'

    To summarise - trying to buy stuff in person in a physical shop is a waste of time. It's so easy to browse the internet on a computer, tablet or smartphone. It's quicker, cheaper and hassle free for me.

    I'll only visit the high street for haircut, coffee or to pick up a prescription.

    The digital world has my full support as it removes all disabling barriers and is so much more efficient - what's your experience.

  2. #2
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    I am the same Lighttouch. I do most of my purchasing online.
    I am unable to go out on my own, which restricts me a lot. I use an attendant pushed wheelchair, so always need someone to push me around.
    A lot of shops are still difficult with a wheelchair, doors not wide enough, steps etc. Some shops have excellent staff, very friendly, helpful, but some really cannot be bothered. Supermarkets are, in the main, very good. I shop for groceries online one week, (my partner works nights,week on, week off), the second week, we usually go to a supermarket.
    My Doctors does not have automatic doors, which can present a problem. My Hairdresser has a fairly high step. Both of these are only 2 minutes from my house though, so I try to walk there with my stick and support from partner. Takes me a good while and I end up paying for it with more pain etc. My partner usually collects my prescription and takes it to the chemist, as it is a bit further away and they have a very high step into the shop, and a narrow doorway. (too far to walk and unable to get up the step and through the door with my wheelchair)
    I have a mail order catalogue account, so that gets used for a lot of household purchases and birthday/christmas present shopping. (I even got my wallpaper for the lounge from the catalogue, at a cheaper price as well)
    We go to a couple of local shopping outlets and towns, but again, accessability to some shops leaves a lot to be desired.
    I prefer to sit in the warm, with a nice cup of tea and do the shopping from my armchair to be honest. A lot less stress, quicker and no obnoxious staff.
    We are, however, trying to arrange a visit to the Manchester Christmas Market this year. It will mean using the train, which I do not like, but hopefully if we plan it all in advance it will be worth the trip.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Lighttouch's Avatar
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    If you are coming to Manchester for the Christmas Markets I'm not sure which train station you'll pull into - either Victoria or Piccadilly. They have small wheelchair accessible hopper buses between the stations and the accessible Metrolink from Piccadilly to St Peter's Square as there's a big Christmas Market in Albert Square.

    Shopmobility Manchester - FREE parking and free scooter hire http://www.shopmobilitymanchester.org.uk

    2013_Christmas_Market_Map___Updated.jpg

  4. #4
    Senior Member Kodiak's Avatar
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    Well what I do is that I drive to Tesco in Wick, (22 miles away). On Arrival,(Free Car Park and plenty of Disabled Bays), I claim one of their Mobility Shopper Scooters, (Free), and I go and buy anything and Everything I need for Christmas. If I buy anything big the staff are more than happy to help, they are all very helpful. If there is something I want and can't get it at Tesco then I look on the internet.

    Since Tesco is the only Large Store in Caithness it is the only place to go. The next Large Store is 120 Miles away and that is just too far to travel as an overnight stay would be required. Usually Tesco has everything I need or want so I am quite happy shopping at Tesco.
    Last edited by Kodiak; 06-10-13 at 12:12.
    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.
    Edgar Allen Poe

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the info on the Christmas markets ighttouch, very helpful. I will have a look on the link for shopmobility and hopefully we will have a nice day out.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

  6. #6
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    I do the majority of my shopping online, but then I was never one who enjoyed wandering around the shops even when I was in good health.
    I do go to the retail park occassionally with my daughter, just to get out of the house, but it means she has to push me in my wheelchair and unfortunately I'm no lightweight. ( have been referred to NHS wheelchair service, so that might help)
    My one bugbear is that my doctors surgery doesn't have automatic doors, and the health centre I attend for my physio, although an automatic outer door, once inside you encounter heavy spring loaded doors, which with a rollator is VERY awkward.
    You would think medical institutions would be more accessible wouldn't you.

    hips

  7. #7
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    I agree hips, as they are the places we probably have to visit more than anywhere else. Doctors, hospitals etc should all have accessible doors. My worst one is probably the Dentist. All the rooms are up a very narrow flight of stairs, so I don't even bother going now. I am trying to find one local, that takes NHS patients and is accessible. Even my dog's vets has auto doors, all on one level etc, so how can medical places not have the same?
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

  8. #8
    Senior Member beau's Avatar
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    With my rollator I often end up going through doors backwards, that's if they will push inwards. To get out I often have to wait until someone holds the door for me.

  9. #9
    Senior Member susieboots's Avatar
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    I do 99% of my shopping online - almost all of Christmas present shopping done throughout the year.

    My preferred supermarket is Aldi. However, they don't have the motorised shopping trolleys only the ones which attach to the wheelchair -unfortunately I can only use my wheelchair when accompanied by someone to push me.

    Sainsburys are the best for motorised trolleys, they are stored next to the Customer Services and staff are so friendly and helpful. So I do enjoy browsing in Sainsburys clothing and homeware section. The trolley can even be driven all the way up to the car, and a trolley attendant will take it back into the store and help to unload - brilliant (Fosse Park Sainsburys in Leicester) Yes I drive all the way there from Sleaford! well it gets me out lol.

    Asda - sorry but rubbish. You have to go instore to customer services, hand over your card, they give you a key, and you have to go back to the entrance to collect a trolley. At no point does anyone offer to assist!

  10. #10
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    How ironic, I telephoned my dentist 2 weeks ago as I hadn't been for 12 months because her room is upstairs and there is no way I can do their stairs.
    The receptionist said "no problem, we can book you in to see her in one of the downstairs rooms, it just means booking you in for an appointment when there is an available room"
    I was so pleased, and am actually seeing her this Wednesday.

    hips

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