Home » Tesco and Sainsbury’s hit with technical issues disrupting deliveries

Tesco and Sainsbury’s hit with technical issues disrupting deliveries

Thousands of Tesco and Sainsbury’s customers were left without their shopping after technical glitches hit both supermarkets.

Shoppers took to social media to share their frustrations as many had their online orders cancelled while others were unable to pay for their food instore.

Sainsbury’s customers were unable to make contactless payments on Saturday following an overnight software update, and the company was not able to fulfil the “vast majority” of online deliveries.

Meanwhile, Tesco said it was working to fix a technical issue that had affected a small proportion of orders set to be delivered on Saturday.

The issues have now been fixed, with both supermarkets offering apologies to disgruntled customers.

A handwritten sign outside a Sainsbury’s store in Cobham informs customers of technical problems (PA Wire)

In an email sent to customers, the CEO of Sainsbury’s, Simon Roberts, said he understood how inconvenient the disruption was and promised that the supermarket was resolving the issue.

“I hope this message gives you the information you need for now and I want to give you my personal reassurance that our teams are doing everything we can to fix this issue as quickly as we can,” he said.

However, this did not stop the Sainsbury’s page on X, formerly Twitter, being inundated on Saturday with customer complaints.

Retired teacher Iain Sankey claimed the East Dulwich branch had had no internet and had only been able to accept cash when he visited on Saturday morning. “Luckily, I had enough cash but astonished to find that there were still no manned tills in this situation,” he wrote on X.

Other customers were not so lucky, with one Sainsbury’s customer claiming to have spent up to an hour shopping before realising it was cash only at the tills.

A notice informing customers of technical issues at a Sainsbury’s in Huddersfield (PA Wire)

Matt Sargent wrote on X: “Spent over an hour shopping in Swindon Sainsbury’s only to get to the checkout and find that the card payment systems are down. We need to talk Sainsbury’s!”

A spokesperson later said: “We can confirm that contactless payments are now back up and running in all stores, alongside all other forms of payment. Our Groceries Online ordering system is working as normal and customers can place an order for delivery any time from tomorrow.

“We apologise to customers for the inconvenience caused by technical issues today – thank you for bearing with us.”

Meanwhile, Tesco customer Craig Butcher told The Independent that he was due to receive a delivery but got an email saying it was cancelled because of a “system issue”.

Tesco and Sainsbury’s have both said they are dealing with ‘technical issues’ (PA Archive)

Other customers took to X to share their frustrations over the cancellations, with one customer writing: “So Tesco has cancelled my home delivery tonight (when I’m working all weekend – great!). It’s again due to technical glitches.”

Another said: “Second time you’ve cancelled our order within hours of scheduled delivery time due to a ‘technical difficulty’. Completely unreliable, won’t be placing any more orders & would recommend shopping elsewhere if you need guaranteed delivery.”

A Tesco spokesperson said: “The vast majority of our online orders are being delivered as normal, but due to a technical issue earlier today we have had to cancel a small number of orders. We are contacting affected customers directly, and we’re really sorry for the inconvenience.”

The disruption comes after Sainsbury’s announced a plan to save around £1bn in costs through reduced delivery, waste and replenishment costs and the increased use of automation. The supermarket said it would use more automated tills and warehouse robots, as well as AI forecasting tools to ensure it had the right stock in stores.

CEO Mr Roberts did not rule out job losses as a result of the changes. He claimed the group’s “legacy systems” were slowing it down and leading to more waste than necessary.