Convenience comes to France in the form of Auchan Drive

I often complain about the lack of convenience in France because I really miss services designed to make your life easier, which seem to be available everywhere in the US (except public transportation…)  We have drive-thru windows not only at fast food places, but also at banks and pharmacies. Some stores stay open 24 hours a day so you can do your grocery shopping whenever you want. Customer service actually exists and is usually superior to what I find here.

A lot of services in France are quite ridiculous with the amount of time it takes and the amount of work the consumer has to do. Just trying to get internet connected and it takes weeks and weeks and numerous phone calls to get it done.  Don’t bother trying to call on weekends, or during lunch, or in the evenings, or during vacations when you are not working because no one else is either. And be prepared to pay something like 30 cents a minute to call someone to help you.

But recently I discovered Auchan Drive. Auchan is one of those huge we-sell-everything stores like Carrefour or Walmart. They’ve introduced a new service where you order your groceries online through auchandrive.fr and then you can go pick them up whenever you want (at least 2 hours later).  You simply type in your customer number and someone brings your groceries out to the car for you. No more crowded aisles or waiting in line or bagging groceries yourself!

The best part is, it does not cost extra. It is completely free to use Auchan Drive. But of course, now that we are moving to Chambery, I discover that there is no Auchan in Savoie. Anyone know if Carrefour has something similar? I quite like the idea of never having to set foot in a French grocery store ever again.

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  • http://toutesdirectionspourlafrance.blogspot.com/ L

    I’ve seen billboards around here advertising shopping online with Carrefour and I believe Champion (now owned by Carrefour). I think they even deliver to your house. I’ve never really looked into it, but I went shopping yesterday (Saturday) and all those screaming kids darting out right in front of my cart just about made me lose it. That and the people who mosy around while I’m trying to shop quick. Internet grocery shopping just might be worth a try.

    Ls last blog post..Taxes

  • http://toutesdirectionspourlafrance.blogspot.com L

    I’ve seen billboards around here advertising shopping online with Carrefour and I believe Champion (now owned by Carrefour). I think they even deliver to your house. I’ve never really looked into it, but I went shopping yesterday (Saturday) and all those screaming kids darting out right in front of my cart just about made me lose it. That and the people who mosy around while I’m trying to shop quick. Internet grocery shopping just might be worth a try.

    Ls last blog post..Taxes

  • http://www.edgeoftheforest.wordpress.com/ Andrea

    I think I’ve seen ads at Carrefour about that, but never really looked into – mostly because my French is too terrible to try to manage calling them and finding out where to pick it up.

    I agree, though, that never having to step foot in a Carrefour again sounds very enticing. The last shopping trip I took with a friend last week involved an elderly French man literally pushing my friend and her groceries out of the way in line so he could go before her. I’m not kidding. No one in the line had any idea what to do, or say, they just sort of all stared with gaping mouths.

  • http://www.edgeoftheforest.wordpress.com Andrea

    I think I’ve seen ads at Carrefour about that, but never really looked into – mostly because my French is too terrible to try to manage calling them and finding out where to pick it up.

    I agree, though, that never having to step foot in a Carrefour again sounds very enticing. The last shopping trip I took with a friend last week involved an elderly French man literally pushing my friend and her groceries out of the way in line so he could go before her. I’m not kidding. No one in the line had any idea what to do, or say, they just sort of all stared with gaping mouths.

  • http://karenuccia.blogspot.com/ KC

    I hope someday Auchan will offer that service here in Italy! Shopping is so time consuming here and people treat shopping in the big stores like Auchan and Carrefour like a family outing so they are always packed with slow moving people. It’d be nice to be able to avoid that.

    KCs last blog post..Sessa Saturday: Street

  • http://karenuccia.blogspot.com KC

    I hope someday Auchan will offer that service here in Italy! Shopping is so time consuming here and people treat shopping in the big stores like Auchan and Carrefour like a family outing so they are always packed with slow moving people. It’d be nice to be able to avoid that.

    KCs last blog post..Sessa Saturday: Street

  • ksam

    Why not just get your groceries delivered? Then you don’t even have to drive to the store!

  • ksam

    Why not just get your groceries delivered? Then you don’t even have to drive to the store!

  • http://www.ielanguages.com Jennie Wagner

    I was just looking into Carrefour’s Ooshop, and they do sell groceries online. The main difference between Auchan and Carrefour is that Auchan does not deliver, but picking up your groceries is free. Carrefour does not have a pick-up service, so the groceries must be delivered and you have to pay 9,95 € for the delivery.

  • http://www.ielanguages.com Jennie

    I was just looking into Carrefour’s Ooshop, and they do sell groceries online. The main difference between Auchan and Carrefour is that Auchan does not deliver, but picking up your groceries is free. Carrefour does not have a pick-up service, so the groceries must be delivered and you have to pay 9,95 € for the delivery.

  • http://bisoufrancaise.blogspot.com/ Amerigirl

    As with everything in France, you have to live in a big city to have any conveniences. Auchan drive is just available for like 20 stores in the whole country. Carrefour and intermarche deliver groceries, but you have to live in Paris or Lyon.

    Amerigirls last blog post..Land Lines in France — Good, Bad and the Ugly

  • http://bisoufrancaise.blogspot.com/ Amerigirl

    As with everything in France, you have to live in a big city to have any conveniences. Auchan drive is just available for like 20 stores in the whole country. Carrefour and intermarche deliver groceries, but you have to live in Paris or Lyon.

    Amerigirls last blog post..Land Lines in France — Good, Bad and the Ugly

  • http://family-counts.blogspot.com/ barbara

    Hi Jennie,
    Thanks for your visit at my blog.

    I’m really on a very local level where Iam and am content buying what I need from the small shops. My supermarket is less than 10 min on foot, so I tend to just cart it home.

    But,everyone has to do what’s besy for their lifestyle. Auchan drive could be handy for other people.

    barbaras last blog post..I miss you-I miss you not, USA

  • http://family-counts.blogspot.com/ barbara

    Hi Jennie,
    Thanks for your visit at my blog.

    I’m really on a very local level where Iam and am content buying what I need from the small shops. My supermarket is less than 10 min on foot, so I tend to just cart it home.

    But,everyone has to do what’s besy for their lifestyle. Auchan drive could be handy for other people.

    barbaras last blog post..I miss you-I miss you not, USA

  • http://www.correresmidestino.com/ Zhu

    That’s awesome! I doubt they have it in Nantes though.

    The customer service (or lack of) was a shock to me when I came back this year. I guess I’m not used to it anymore…

    Oh, and I can’t believe all the helplines in France are over taxed, not 1800 like in Canada or the USA.

    Zhus last blog post..Rebel France IV

  • http://www.correresmidestino.com Zhu

    That’s awesome! I doubt they have it in Nantes though.

    The customer service (or lack of) was a shock to me when I came back this year. I guess I’m not used to it anymore…

    Oh, and I can’t believe all the helplines in France are over taxed, not 1800 like in Canada or the USA.

    Zhus last blog post..Rebel France IV

  • http://www.couponcodes4u.com coupon codes

    The customer service (or lack of) was a shock to me when I came back this year. I guess I’m not used to it anymore…

Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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