More than 70 additional commissaries are scheduled to start the online ordering/curbside pickup service at their stores by the end of July, according to the Defense Commissary Agency.

That’s an increase of more than six-fold. Until Monday, there were 12 stores in the continental U.S. that have the Commissary Click2Go service, which began rolling out two years ago. That number is rapidly increasing, with eight stores in North Carolina and South Carolina starting the service Monday, and another Tuesday.

But by the end of July, according to the current schedule, about 87 stores — nearly half of all 178 stateside stores — will have the online ordering/curbside pickup service. There are 236 commissary stores worldwide.

Commissary officials announced June 28 that customers will have one more reason to use the online ordering/curbside pickup service at their stores: officials are waiving the $4.95 service fee for each order, until further notice. The service fee is normally waived the first 30 days after the Click2Go service is initiated at a store.

“We’re out to establish a strong eCommerce presence in keeping with [the Defense Commissary Agency’s] strategic goals to make the commissary benefit accessible to as many patrons as possible,” said Bill Moore, DeCA’s director and CEO, in an announcement of the fee waivers.

The stores launching Click2Go today are:

• South Carolina: Charleston Naval Weapons Station, Parris Island Marine Corps Recruiting Recruit, Fort Jackson and Shaw Air Force Base

• North Carolina: Camp Lejeune, Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station, Fort Bragg North, Fort Bragg South

• June 29: Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina

On June 1, commissary officials announced they would fast-track the rollout of Click2Go to reach all stateside commissaries by the end of the year, spurred by the success of the online ordering/curbside pickup program — and customers’ calls for more locations during the pandemic. Rollout in overseas stores will start soon afterward.

Just weeks into an accelerated rollout of the curbside pickup service, Moore said, “we are pleased to be able to waive the service fee for a limited time to encourage this increasingly popular convenience for our patrons to enjoy their commissary benefit.”

In the June 1 announcement, Moore said he envisions the commissary system eventually being able to offer delivery.

Officials have also made improvements to their e-commerce platform, to include adding online payment capability and more product information. There are improved navigation and search functions, featured sales and promotions, and upgraded mobile-friendly options such as the ability to see order history for ease in re-ordering products.

Karen has covered military families, quality of life and consumer issues for Military Times for more than 30 years, and is co-author of a chapter on media coverage of military families in the book "A Battle Plan for Supporting Military Families." She previously worked for newspapers in Guam, Norfolk, Jacksonville, Fla., and Athens, Ga.

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