Covid-19: Aldi trials audio prompts to help blind and partially-sighted shoppers

Aldi has announced that it is working with the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) to help blind and partially-sighted customers safely enter its stores during the Covid-19 crisis.

Aldi is trialling audio prompts at its traffic light entry system to help customers maintain social distancing in stores.

The grocer introduced the traffic light system in May to help safely control the number of shoppers entering and leaving its UK stores. Working alongside its technology supplier, Ocucon, the retailer is trialling the enhanced solution which also uses a series of beeps to let blind and partially-sighted customers know that they can safely enter.

The solution is currently being trialled in Aldi’s Goldthorpe store in South Yorkshire.

"Social distancing has turned the world upside down for people with sight loss,” said Marc Powell, strategic accessibility lead for RNIB. “Not only has it prevented many people from being guided effectively, but many of the indicators to aid social distancing are visual in nature, making them inaccessible for people who are blind or partially sighted.”

Richard Thornton, communications director at Aldi UK, added: “We are always looking at how we can enhance the shopping experience for our customers and ensure government guidance is strictly followed. We are pleased to have worked with RNIB and Ocucon to trial audio prompts within our traffic light system to help visually impaired customers shop safely with us, and we will continue to review this.”