OPERATIONS DURING ALERT LEVEL 4 (9 APRIL 2020)

We’re past the halfway mark and the Prime Minister is “cautiously optimistic” that our collective efforts are working in the fight against COVID-19.

Our aim has always been to help our WineFriends follow the clear government directive to STAY AT HOME and, in an effort to do this safely, we closed our service off to new subscribers two weeks ago.  We needed time to see how our warehouse team and couriers would manage.

Instead, we started a wait list for new subscribers and we’ve been slowly offering up spots as our warehouse has capacity.  We’ve also been enabling our loyal WineFriend customers to make extra orders in a controlled way with our Thursday 3pm ‘Customise A Case’ feature, capped at 100 orders.

Like the Prime Minister, we’re also cautiously optimistic.  Our warehouse has exceeded expectations so, from 6pm today, we’ll be opening up our subscriptions again and closely monitoring numbers.  If you have a friend, family member, or neighbour that you think would benefit from having delicious wines, tailored to their taste, and delivered to their door, now’s the time to tell them — we can help!

Wishing you a safe and happy Easter in your bubble!

Debbie Sutton 
WineFriend CEO and Co-Founder 

 

OPERATIONS DURING ALERT LEVEL 4 (27 MARCH 2020)

We’re in unchartered territory and, as such, we’re reviewing our operations on a daily basis. Our overriding objective is to help people follow the clear government directive to STAY AT HOME — and we need to continue do this safely.

The government continues to include alcohol on the ‘essentials’ list and it has specifically stated that online liquor stores can sell alcohol (last updated at 11am today). It has also been clear that liquor stores outside of Licensing Trust areas may not open to the public or deliver online. WineFriend has always been an online only store — we have never had a bricks and mortar shop and we are not using one to get orders out to you.

Over the past few days we have been inundated with new subscribers and extra orders, and we’re very conscious of not adding further strain to our warehouse and couriers who are working hard, and who we want to keep safe.

As of today we are no longer accepting any NEW WineFriend subscribers. 

If you currently have a WineFriend subscription we will continue to deliver to you and enable you to stay at home.  However, if you cancel your subscription, you will not be able to reactivate during Alert Level 4 operations.

If you are not currently a WineFriend subscriber, we will have a waiting list for newcomers and, should the situation change, you will be offered a WineFriend subscription on a first come, first served basis.

At this stage, we will also not be offering any further one-off purchases from our website, however if you have a current or future delivery scheduled with us, we will deliver this to you as per your current schedule. 

If you have any questions, please contact us by email at hello@winefriend.co.nz in the first instance, or on 0800 946 337 for anything urgent.

We really don’t want to disappoint but we need to make sure we’re acting responsibly because we’re all in this together. The only thing we can be sure of is that things will continue to change and evolve, so please bear with us as we figure this out one day at a time.

Stay safe,

Debbie Sutton 
WineFriend CEO and Co-Founder 


FOR OUR PREVIOUS OPERATIONS DURING ALERT LEVEL 4 STATEMENT FROM 25 MARCH 2020 SEE BELOW

The safety and wellbeing of our staff, customers, families and fellow Kiwis is of the utmost importance to us.

As a small Kiwi business, we made the decision last week to work from home. Our independent warehouse facility and our courier service have been advised that they are able to continue operating under the classification of essential services. So, for as long as alcohol is also classed by the government as essential, we are able to get wine to you. We hope this gives you another reason to do what we should all be doing, and STAY AT HOME. 

Luckily for us, we haven’t had to change much of our business operations. We have a very small team who are able to work remotely, in our warehouse every order has always been opened and closed by a single staff member so they work independently of each other, and our WineFriend cases are packed into TCP’s (think, large transit containers) so the courier can collect them in a contactless manner. On top of these regular systems, our warehouse and courier suppliers have also put in place even stricter protocols to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their staff, and in turn, all of us.  

We often describe a WineFriend subscription as the ultimate ‘try before you buy’ because our customers are able to purchase more of the wine they love from their account. From tonight, we will be turning off this feature because many of our small suppliers will not be operational and, if they still are, we can’t be sure that their supply chain is working as safely as ours. It’s just not a risk we’re willing to take.

Instead, if you find that you need more wine and you're heeding the advice and not leaving your home to buy it, please check out our pre-selected ‘Grab & Go’ cases or take a moment to 'Customise A Case' — it’s really easy and kinda fun and, let’s face it, you’ll have the time.  All of these wines are currently in stock in our warehouse and do not require suppliers to ship to us.

And as we hunker down, and slow down, in the coming weeks, we just ask for your patience as we try and fulfil your orders. They might not be on time, but we’ll do our best to get them to you.

We hope that Yvonne’s informative, and often hilarious, tasting notes, will bring a smile — and that you’re able to take this time to really smell the rosés.

Stay safe,

Debbie Sutton 
WineFriend CEO and Co-Founder 

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