Amazon opens UK’s first till-free grocery retailer in London

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LONDON (AP) – Amazon has opened a till-free supermarket in London, its first brick-and-mortar expansion outside of the US, as the company relies on strong demand for contactless stores.

The online retail giant opened the doors to its Amazon Fresh store in the west London borough of Ealing on Thursday. It is said to be the first in a series of stores in the UK capital to use its automated checkout technology.

Shoppers use a smartphone app to scan a QR code so they can enter the store. They can fill their shopping bags with milk, eggs or other groceries while cameras and sensors track what is being taken from the shelves.

Purchases will be charged to an Amazon account after exiting and a receipt will be sent via email. You don’t have to wait in line to pay at the checkout. This feature is more attractive after the pandemic and has highlighted the need for social distancing.

Amazon already operates 26 cash register-free convenience stores under the Amazon Go brand and two larger supermarkets called Amazon Go Grocery in the USA. As part of the UK launch, Amazon also unveiled its new private label grocery brand from Amazon.