No, a new armchair or a smartphone aren’t considered essentials. It does look like the biggest online retailer in South Africa has received the go-ahead to trade and do deliveries throughout the national lockdown. You just won’t be able to buy luxuries.
Takealot announced today that its request to continue trading has been approved, as long as people are only able to buy essentials. The government is placing increasing pressure on retailers to only sell essential goods. It has already prohibited the sale of alcohol and tobacco products effective from tomorrow (Friday, 27 March) for three weeks.
It’s safe to say the shops are slammed today, as everyone stocks up for the lockdown period. But you can put that trolley aside, because Takealot will be functional, so you’ll be able to have products delivered to your door. No reason to leave the house, right?
The statement, published on the retailer’s social media channels, mentions that payments on its platform are currently disabled. “We have temporarily disabled payment methods for all goods while we reconfigure our platform to remove the ability to purchase non-essentials. Customers will be notified directly about pending orders and returns in due course.”
We’re not sure what exactly will constitute as essential products, but it should be more than just face masks, toilet paper and nappies. So rest assured, there is a plan B if you run out during the stay-at-home period.