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OpenTable Facilitates Reserved-Time Grocery Shopping at Markets & Restaurants During COVID-19

April 30, 2020

As we all work to stop the spread of COVID-19, OpenTable has teamed up with participating grocery stores and markets to help limit the number of people who enter at a time and reduce crowds and wait times for shoppers. Just as people can make a restaurant reservation or join a waitlist, they will now be able to reserve shopping times or join a virtual line in the OpenTable app.


It works in two ways:

  1. Reserved shopping times: Just like reserving a table at a restaurant, you can reserve a time to enter a store.
  2. Online waitlists: If you haven’t pre-reserved, instead of standing in a physical line to get into a store, simply enter a code on your phone to join an online waitlist. Then wait for the notification in a car or down the block away from any crowds.

OpenTable’s new grocery product leverages their reservation software so that grocery stores, major retailers, and restaurants can display available shopping times for customers to book in advance or join a waitlist at the door. Not only does this help control crowds in a simple and contactless way, but it also provides a safer option for shoppers, especially those at high risk, to get their groceries without waiting in a crowded line.

To help managers limit the number of people in their store at one time, party sizes and shopping windows will vary depending on the grocer. To keep the flow of people moving as efficiently as possible, shoppers can also opt in to receive an alert via text or notification when it’s their turn to shop.

Reserved shopping times have rolled out in select cities and they’ll be coming to more stores near you soon, right on the groceries page in the OpenTable app, as seen below.

OpenTable Groceries