ARGOS stores are currently shut across England but shoppers can still collect orders.
Customers can also still order items for home delivery from Argos online.
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It comes as England is in the middle of a four-week coronavirus lockdown, which is due to end on December 2.
Is Argos open?
Standalone Argos stores in England are now closed except if you're picking up an order which you've made and paid for online.
You won't be able to make a purchase in store or return any items you've purchased previously or online.
And when collecting an online order at the store, you'll have to wait outside for the package to be handed to you.
Argos stores in Scotland and Northern Ireland remain open, while shops in Wales reopened on November 9.
What about Argos stores that are located in Sainsbury's shops?
Supermarkets can remain open during the lockdown because they sell essential items, such as food and other important items like loo roll.
But Argos shops in Sainsbury's stores are closed, except if you're picking up an order which you've made and paid for online.
In other words, you can't make a purchase in these Argos stores either.
However, you can return items here, unlike at standalone Argos stores.
How can I return something?
If you don't want to go to an Argos shop in a Sainsbury's store, or you don't live near one, you shouldn't miss out on getting your money back.
Argos has extended its returns policies to help people in lockdown.
For purchases made from October 18 onwards, you have until January 24, 2021 to return the goods.
The usual returns rules apply, for instance, you'll have to have a receipt or proof of purchase.
How do I click and collect at Argos in lockdown?
With click and collect, you buy the item online and choose the click and collect option at the checkout.
You can choose where you want to pick up the item, including at Argos, in a Sainsbury's shop where there's an Argos or at a collection point.
You'll get a message telling you when your item is ready to collect which includes an order number and a collection code – keep hold of these as you'll need to show them when collecting your order.
How to protect yourself while online shopping
- GUT FEELING: Stick to popular retailers such as Amazon, Currys and Argos.
If you are looking at less well known sites, trust your instinct. Do not shop anywhere that looks unprofessional, has odd pop-ups or is selling items at prices that seem too good to be true.
- FAKE NEWS: Do not reveal any unnecessary personal information. All you need to give is your name, address and payment details.
Avoid clicking on links on emails. Phishing scams can stem from messages that seem legitimate, but send you to bogus sites that collect information to steal your identity.
Instead, type the URL directly into the search bar.
- NOT SO SMART: Use your computer instead of your mobile. Most phones do not have anti-virus software, and it is harder to tell whether shortened URLs used on social media are legitimate.
Also, wait until you are home and on a password-protected wifi network as public hotspots do not protect your data. Regularly update your browser to boost your security.
- HACKED OFF: Using the same password for every retailer you sign up for may seem like the easy option but it makes hackers’ job easy.
Use complicated passwords, make them different for each site and change them every few months.
- ADDRESS IT: Check that the website you are using has HTTPS in the URL, as the “S” indicates that the way your information is being sent is secure. Another sign of a secure site is a small padlock on the screen.
You'll have up to seven days to collect it from your chosen store.
If you don't think you'll be able to collect it in time, you can extend it (except for Tu clothes orders).
Just go to your account online and look at recent orders and you'll have the option to do this.
Previously you could pay for an item you ordered for collection when picking it up in store, but this is not available at the moment – you need to pay for it online.
How do I get Argos home delivery?
You can shop at Argos online and get it delivered to your home to avoid having to leave the house during lockdown.
You'll have to set up an account if ordering for the first time but that doesn't take long and you can find step-by-step instructions here.
Delivery costs for small items costs from £3.95 and you can even get same-day fast track delivery on some purchases.
Delivery is more for larger items, starting from £6.95.
And for some large kitchen appliances delivery is free.
You'll generally pay more if you want the item sooner or if you want to choose the exact time it's delivered.
If you have to self-isolate you should contact Argos to rearrange your delivery date.
You can get some delivery items installed too, but only washing machines, washer dryers, dishwashers and freestanding cookers.
The installation service for other items is on hold.
You can also get these items taken away and recycled, but again on other items this service is paused.
All non-essential shops across the country have now closed their doors as England has entered a second lockdown – and that includes toy shops.
Supermarkets are open and they have certain rules you need to follow in store when visiting – and there may be some limits on items too.
Pubs, bars and restaurants are closed but they can serve takeaways – find out what your favourite food chains are doing.
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