Minister: Last Name System For Going To Stores

April 3, 2020

[Updated] “Grocery stores, pharmacy and gas station visits will be done on specific days according to your surname,” Minister of National Security Wayne Caines said, with some shopping on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays; while others will be Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with Sundays reserved for seniors.

Speaking at this evening’s press briefing, the Minister said, “I will now share some key operational guidelines as it specifically relates to the movements to grocery stores, pharmacies and gas stations.

“Grocery stores, pharmacy and gas station visits will be done on specific days according to your surname. Last names beginning from A to K, your days for going to the grocery store, pharmacies and gas stations are Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

“If your last name starts with L to Z, your shopping days for pharmacies, grocery stores, and gas stations are Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

“Sundays are reserved for our senior citizens, senior citizens are anyone commencing at the age of 65 years and above. A senior can go on any day that corresponds with their last name, but remember specifically Sunday grocery shopping is set aside for seniors.

“Please note that only one householder is allowed to travel for groceries, no children should accompany any individual.”

Update 11.30pm: There appears to be changes to what was said at the press conference earlier this evening.

The Premier has tweeted in reference to this. He said, “There was some negative feedback regarding the naming system for grocery shopping, given there was no advance notice. Thanks for the feedback, nobody is perfect! That system will not come into place until Monday. So you will have time to go to the store over the weekend.

“Also, there was some confusion regarding a statement from Min. Caines. We want only 1 person from household to go shopping, but if you are a single parent and you have children, yes you can bring them. However what we are encouraging as few people to go out.

“Finally, the last name system will not apply to Pharmacies. If you need your prescription then you need to get your medication, and not wait days.”

In addition, the graphic tweeted, is listing the name division as A-L and M-Z, rather than A-K and L-Z.

Update April 4, 4.30pm: The Premier tweeted again, he confirmed there was some confusion, and said the graphic below is correct, and the correct division is A-L and M-Z.


Update 6.07pm: It — as in A-L and M-Z — is now listed in an official Government document on the Government website, which states: “From 6th April, shopping will be on specific days according to your surname:

  • A – L: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays
  • M – Z: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays
  • Seniors & the disabled may go any day that corresponds to their last name.
  • Sunday will be reserved for seniors & the disabled only

Screenshot a to l govt doc

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Comments (63)

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  1. Truth is killin’ me... says:

    Lindos not open on Sundays so seniors miss out on their stores innit.

    • Ok says:

      That is incorrect. Seniors are also allowed to go on the days of their last name.

      • Sam Adams says:

        But they miss out on their dedicated day (Sunday)

    • Everything is an issue says:

      There were 10 cases of Covid-19 in Macau an island off Hong Kong. The Government had a 100 percent lock down with nobody but delivery personnel going out. Not one complaint. 100 percent buy in. No covid now. But in Bermuda, nothing is ever right, and everything is always questioned and everyone can do better but they never step up. We still have the virus.

  2. Anthonette Simons says:

    so how doe this work as not everyone has a car and there is no transportation for people to use so if I have to give someone a ride and we have different last names how do we do this I have to wait in car till the next day and go to the store twice.

    also how does this work for pick up or it does not matter as I can go and pick up my groceries on what ever slot they have available?

    And most seniors will need someone to drive them so that person will not be able to shop on Sunday and most seniors do not shop on Sundays or Saturdays as that is their sabbath.

    was this just thrown together because someone said it on the internet.

    Also what about essential workers if they do not have that day off

    • Vortex says:

      Very simple

      1 give them a list to get you what you need
      2 lots of seniors drive
      3 nobody goes to church anymore
      4 You can go again 2 days later

      • Chris says:

        You may not go to church, you sound like tou never went to church in the first place. Stop trampling on religon just cause your not a believer. You should be thank full as the west was born on judeo-christain values which gives tou the right to do what you do today.

        • CHRIS says:

          The modern “west” was born out of the Enlightenment movement. Not any religion. And not for nothing but u sound like the most irreligious person on this thread! Be kind and help others when u can and all of this will be over quicker.

        • Sandgrownan says:

          Er no.. religion is about control and is authoritarian in its nature. So no.

  3. Concerned says:

    What about single parents who have no other adult in their household?

    • wahoo says:

      They would do what they usually do only every other day.

    • Imjustsaying says:

      Also, there was some confusion regarding a statement from Min. Caines We want only 1 person from household to go shopping, but if you are a single parent and you have children, yes you can bring them. However what we are encouraging as few people to go out.

  4. Shuri Munt says:

    What about single parents with kids? How will such parent get to the grocery store?

  5. Richard says:

    Total over-reaction. Supermarkets coped fine all week until Thursday when this lockdown was announced. Rationing when people can go will just create more panic shopping. Government is now overreacting and interfering.

    • Bermuda Onion Gal says:

      I suspect, with no other excuse to get out, the groceries would have long lines daily. After a few tweaks, the new system will mean shorter lines and an easier, less time consuming, shopping experience for all.

    • Sam Adams says:

      Agreed – there were no panic driven lineups until the gov’t announced the total lockdown.

  6. Chrystal says:

    What are the rules for walking your dog that needs to go out 3 x a day?

    • So yeah says:

      I’d say just do it as long as you haven’t been stopped. What are they going to do, say they think they saw you earlier?

      They aren’t going to be monitoring your individual house all day. This isn’t China where you have a social score and they’re monitoring your activities to make sure you comply.

      They don’t have the manpower to keep tabs on every 24hrs a day.

  7. Concerned single parent says:

    How are single parents supposed to get groceries during the next 2 weeks if we can’t take our kids with us to the store? We can’t leave them home alone. We are not allowed to have anyone come over and watch them. The wait for grocery home delivery is already over a week. If we had known about this prior to tonight we could have planned but finding out about it tonight did not allow us to prepare. Please provide some direction around how single parents get our groceries.

    • sage says:

      Good question.

    • trufth says:

      Agree. I purposely avoided rushing to panic buy Thurs and Fri (like we were asked) planning that I would go this morning, Saturday. Well bc of my surname, I can’t go until Monday now.

  8. Ridiculus! says:

    So for days the Premier said don’t rush out to the grocery stores. So I didn’t thinking they would be open and I could go after the rush. I took him at his word – that was a mistake! Surnames A-K can’t go to the grocery store now until Monday!

    If I need something including a prescription from the pharmacy- oh ‘A-K’ I wait till Monday again.

    What about the single mother who isn’t allowed to take their child with them – leave them at home, regardless of their age?

    This all should have been announced earlier!!!

    • Spanky says:

      Maybe you should read the above article???

      • Gillian says:

        Ridiculus’ comment, like the first 20 or so here, was made before the 11:30pm update which sorted out most of the objections.

  9. gillisn says:

    Not the worst idea – in fact I think it’s a great idea…but terrible notice, truly horrible notice!! Apart from the Premier, does anyone in government have a brain that can think beyond one step…..seriously!!

    • gillian says:

      Well done to the Premier for responding and making this effective Monday, letting people get medications as needed and allowing single parents to shop with kids if necessary – well handled!

  10. Pure Madness!!!! says:

    So question, if there is a one parent household with young children what is a person supposed to do. You do not want a persons who does not live at a residence to be at a residence that they do not live in and the closest person to them that they know is not in their immediate area, then what….
    I personally, am not in this predicament, however I do know some folks who are.
    Also can essential workers go to the grocery store on any given day or only on the assigned day.

  11. Lol What says:

    So let me get this straight.

    Our Premier said that there was no need to rush to Grocery stores, because they would be open and there was plenty of food, etc.

    Then the next day they decide to restrict the days you can go, starting the day after. Some people cannot go to the store until Monday!

    What if I am in the group that cannot go until Monday, and I didn’t go because the Premier told me not to! Now I have no food for an entire weekend.

    Also, we are doing Prescriptions based on last name too? Really? So if I need my prescription filled today because I am out and my last name isn’t the right letter, I can’t get that done either.


    This is all for 35 cases total, 21 active.

    Currently .0333% of the population has this, and not only can we not leave our houses for 2 weeks (and they’re already talking about maybe longer!) but we also are being restricted on the few essential services they left open.

    Oh, but Seniors who are the most at risk can go 4 days a week. Instead of providing services to make them go LESS we allow them to go MORE, and they are the ones who we are supposed to be all staying home to protect.

    Is there no logical thinking occurring? It seems like everyone is running around in a panic.

    We can’t open the borders anytime soon at this rate, so be ready for no economy. Vaccine is ages away, probably mid-2021.

    Beginning to feel like we cut our finger and instead of disinfecting and bandaging, we just chopped our whole arm off instead because it may have gotten infected.

  12. wahoo says:

    Makes sense. I would also like to pack my own bags.

    • Heya says:

      Hardly, Burt has mismanaged this from the start, he has caused panic and is making it worse by putting letter restrictions making people panic more. How many tests were done today, as the number outstanding is the same as the day before. Do we have any tests left? The govt are hopeless.

    • Not so Safe says:

      You can pack your own bags nothing stopping you. In fact I was told today that if I wanted to use my own bags I would have to pack them myself as they have been told to use the paper ones but there would be no charge. Fair enough – I let the packer pack the paper bags.

  13. Islandboy says:

    And when is this to be implemented? I only saw this after the 8pm curfew started. I’ve been at home for over a week and a half and I’m running out of some supplies. I was planning on going tomorrow (Saturday) to get what I need for the next week or so. Now I’m being told I can’t go until Monday? Sorry, but that’s not okay. You can’t blindside people like this, you need to give some notice of these changes and not abruptly decree them. I would have gone today if I had some forewarning. I may have to break the rules to get what’s necessary to endure this pandemic.

  14. Sunday shopper says:

    Not sure why the markets would even open on a Sunday now. They need business to make it worth their while, but now only seniors. No problem with the rules but Sunday schedule doesn’t make sense.

  15. SmithsMan says:

    This is truly madness, not at all thought through. So what about people that need a ride to get to the store? And so sorry for the single parents etc that have already commented. Govt are just copying Cayman, who plan to run island wide testing soon. Same here? Lets see how far it has spread already, and hopefully how many have had it and recovered with actual info at hand it may change the way we deal with this.

    The Premier has done well so far, but this is a mistake, especially after his comments on grocery store access just yesterday.

    • Ridiculous says:

      Cayman went into lockdown for a week and have reopened already.

      Their situation was far more progressed than ours.

      Just because other countries are doing things doesn’t mean they are appropriate for us to do. It is .0033333% of the population that currently is inflicted with this.

      Panic is a crazy thing, and since no one ever actually reads anything beyond headlines these days all they see is what other countries are doing and think we should be doing the same. They don’t see the huge discrepancies between our situation and those situations and thus don’t understand why these measures are not necessary for us in this current state.

      Not only are they not necessary, it would not be a surprise if they end up doing more long-term harm than they are ‘preventing’ in the short term (newsflash, they’re not preventing much if anything.)

      There is some tentative actual info on hand out there –

      Infection Mortality Rate: .66% (Flu is typically .1%)

      Herd Immunity: 60-70% necessary given the transmission capabilities (Assume higher for us, given the size of the island. We are currently 0.0055% by the way, and at this rate will be at 1.5-2% by the time a vaccine comes out. Can’t safely open the borders until a vaccine comes out at this rate.)

      The entire lockdown was a panic decision because we had 1 batch of tests which came back with some positives.

      This ridiculous last name system is just a further poor decision that punishes those who actually believed our Premier’s words when he said that Grocery stores would be open and you’d be able to go to them.

      Turns out, some people who were avoiding the lines and being responsible now can’t even get groceries until Monday. Wonderful decision, punish those who listen.

      Next time the Premier says you shouldn’t do xxx, just remember this situation and go do xxx. Turns out that is actually going to be the better choice based on what we have seen thus far.

  16. In Mark's Opinion says:

    I haven’t even been to any grocery store this week because of the long lines.I was going tomorrow thinking the line should be shorter.Have to shoe I.D to shop. Is their plan to drive people crazy for the New World Order.This cure is going to be worst than the virus. All these rules being put in place.

  17. drew says:

    They wouldn’t have to do this if 3/4 of the island hadn’t swamped the grocery stores on Thursday and Friday panic/binge shopping as if they would be closed for the two weeks.

    • Okay then says:

      And now they’ve implemented an utterly ridiculous and ill considered plan that only serves to punish those who need support (single mothers, etc.) and those who followed the rules and didn’t swamp the stores.

      Turns out you should always do exactly what they are telling you not to do, because everyone else is going to and then they’ll just punish you for not doing so as a result.


      Not even half a percent of the population has this but we are being locked in our houses for 2 weeks and told when we can pick up Groceries, Prescriptions and Gas.

      The amount of freedoms people are willing to give up based on panic is outrageous – this is NOT protecting anyone at this point, we do not have community spread where we cannot trace it and all we are doing is making it worse at this point.

      We are going to come out of this with a tiny proportion of the population immune, no vaccination in sight and still unable to open our borders. Flights May 1st? Good joke, how will we be allowed flights when we aren’t even at 1% of the population immune! 1 Flight with 3 sick people will put us in a far worse situation than we even are.

      These measures are significant overkill and are not reflective of the measures implemented elsewhere. These measures are being undertaken by countries in far more progressed and dangerous circumstances that have FAR less ability to control and monitor the situation than we do, given the respective logistics.

      It’s unfortunate that we even have our politicians panicking rather than using rational thought in a time like this.

      Sometimes you can do more harm than good, regardless of the fact that you may have only the best intentions at hand.

  18. Vortex says:

    It’s not 35 infected, we have barely tested.

    It is probably hundreds, thousands even.

    Reality. Stay home.

  19. Just A Thought says:

    Instead of having Seniors go shopping, how about the Politicians who have special cars volunteer them for these 2 weeks to be utilized for delivery services of Groceries/Medicine/etc. to seniors in need.

    I’m sure they can manage that. They’re allowed complete freedom of the island after all, so it would hardly be an unreasonable request compared to what almost everyone else is having to give up.

    They never will of course. Everyone ELSE should compromise but not them.

  20. This doesn’t make to much sens at all,and while this may work for some, it wont work for many others who don’t have transport and depend on others for transport, case and point my last name begins with S, and the person who lives very close by that can take my wife to get groceries, last name begins with D and the other that can assist last name that lives near by begins with G, so how is a person with the name S suppose to get their groceries, unless we call for family members with the same last name, but they are in Warwick and Southampton and we live in Pembroke. I understand the concept but this is getting ridiculous.

  21. Sue Le'Strange says:

    Sorry I’m confused. My last name begins with L, what days can I shop?

    • JohnBoy says:

      Are you serious???

      • Dave says:

        Are you serious mate? Last night they said L-Z had Tues, Thurs, Sat. Now its Mon, wed, friday… but the other media still has the old days. And now the premier is saying it all goes into effect monday.

        So does seniors day start tomorrow or does it start next week as all of this goes into effect monday…

        im confused as all %### and dont want a 10k fine if i go out tomorrow and I doubt 100% of the regiment and police know whats going on either.

  22. Guy says:

    This is a stupid decision. Just like many others who thought the stores would be open, we decided to get groceries on Saturday. Now since we’re in the first group we have to wait and try to come up with food until Monday!

    And like everyone has said, what about the single parents out there who cannot bring their children with them?

    And the shift workers who might not have their shopping days off?

    And what if I need a prescription, or just Tylenol but it’s Saturday, so now I have to suffer for two days before I can buy anything!!

    These restrictions based off of panicking politicians is just going to insight chaos and rebellion across the island!!!

    • Imjustsaying says:

      Also, there was some confusion regarding a statement from Min. Caines We want only 1 person from household to go shopping, but if you are a single parent and you have children, yes you can bring them. However what we are encouraging as few people to go out.

  23. Sue Le'Strange says:

    I like to buy fresh vegetables from our local farmers and these stands are only open Saturdays and Wednesday. Can we all support them still?

  24. Really?? says:

    I agree with these comments. The plan was rushed through. To restrict us from walking our dogs on the Railway Trail is now putting me and my dog in danger as we are now forced to walk on the roads!

  25. Triangle Drifter says:

    One really has to wonder how some people managed to survive so far in life. A-K, L-Z, & they can’t figure out what that means to their name. Good grief!

    • JohnBoy says:

      Maybe they can videochat with some preschooler for a consultation.

    • Question says:

      There were conflicting instructions. In one place it said A-K, L-Z, and in another place it said A-L, M-Z.
      When you’re talking about a $10,000 fine and six months prison, these details matter.
      There were also conflicting instructions about when the shopping restrictions were to start. First they said Saturday, then they said Monday, They also changed their mind about whether children may accompany an adult to go shopping.
      It’s a mess.

    • Dave says:

      But youre wrong. Hasnt it been switched to A-L, M-Z? You wouldve caught a 10k fine if your last name started with L or M.

  26. Bruno says:

    This is so incredibly stupid and will cause all sorts of confusion and panic buying and its done so last minite and with no warning whatsoever. for days they have been saying dont worry dont panic buy the grocery stores will be open during the shutdown and now at the last possible moment they tell you you cant go when you need to, you can only go on certain days. stupid stupid stupid and very wrong to do to an already stressed and worried public.

  27. Spanky says:

    Maybe you should read the above article???

  28. Bermuda Onion Gal says:

    With the tweaks subsequently added, I love the new plan. Hopefully, the plan will ask for ID, rather than current, since TCD is closed and new addresses may not have been legally changed. It’s obvious that the admin team are exhausted. After chilling at home as much as possible over the weekend, hopefully all will evolve smoothly over the coming weeks.

  29. Ridiculus! says:

    So the rules start Monday, oh now that the Premier gets involved. All you have to do is watch a press conference and see that Minister Caines is out of his depth, he doesn’t even seem to know what is in his press briefing. Does he even give it a quick read prior to standing at the podium?

  30. Honestly says:

    The government officials have been making announcements during this past week. If you need to go to the grocery store…GO! If you need prescriptions…GET THEM! Everyone can go to the grocery stores, pharmacies, vegetable stands today. Social Distance yourselves accordingly! All this negativity is unnecessary! These statements have been made more than once, everyone should be on the same page!

  31. La Verdad says:

    God lord complainers, this is an emergency situation. Be creative and work it out for God’s sake. Where there is a will, there is a way. I’m 75 years old and working it out! WORK IT OUT!

  32. PANGAEA says:

    Not many of you have been through the hell of WW11

    “”"” Mummy will the bombs fall tonight . No ! go back to sleep”"”" . Mummy ,will the bombs fall tomorrow night.

    Many of you do not know what hard ship is, because you have had it too good for too long.

    You don’t know what rationing is, no sugar ,no butter , no shoes. no nothing!

    I am 84 year end my wife is 82 we have been on self quarantine/ lock down 7 days before all this stared and you are just on your first day . WOW !

    We will stay in our home for as long as it takes and so must you.

    This is a tug of war, we all have to pull together, is that too much to ask.

    I fall into the A to L category Wednesday is my day.

    Come on guys get it together, if not every body looses.

    With love.

  33. Imjustsaying says:

    If you all did your own research and didn’t rely on the government to feed you info you would have seen this coming. Also we must keep 5g cell signal out of this island. I’m deadly serious.

  34. Chris says:

    They are communist what choice did they have.

  35. As a senior citizen with bad knees I need my friend to help me do my grocery shopping. The person lives in St George and I live in Pembroke. Also. The letters of our last names are not in the same list. Please help me to be able to do my shopping. Thank you.

  36. Struggling says:

    How are we suppose to shop anyway if some of us are not working at all and are not eligible for the benefit application because we don’t do 15 hours a week??? Its Hard!!!