O2 has announced it will change its store opening hours when lockdown ends in England on December 2.

As stores across England reopen O2 has reviewed the opening hours for each store, opening later and longer wherever possible, to help people doing their Christmas shop do so safely.

In total, O2 has added an extra 1,000 hours for customers to shop, and stores will stay open up to 10pm across the country.

A number of other retailers have said they will extend opening hours - with midnight opening and 24-hour trading for some.

Hours are being changed by Waitrose, M&S, Aldi and Primark among others.

Research conducted by O2 revealed half of Brits have missed going to the shops during lockdown, with 60 per cent stating they enjoy going to their high street store.

The research demonstrated the value of face to face service, with 41 per cent of shoppers wanting to see and touch products they are interested in. The late-night sessions will give customers more time to get tech advice, choose a new handset or chat to colleagues in store outside of normal working hours.

With O2’s Qudini virtual queuing technology in place, there is also no need to wait in the cold, as social distancing continues to limit the number of customers in store. Instead, they will join a virtual system, receiving a text when an advisor is ready to assist them in a personal one-to-one appointment.

In line with government guidelines, the following process will be in place in stores:

O2’s Director of Sales Gareth Turpin said: “We know that tech is always high on many Christmas lists each year. We want to make it as easy as possible to get the best advice on that new phone or tablet, and we’re adding thousands of extra trading hours to help the high street and give more time for face to face service as people do their Christmas shopping.”

Charley Constantinou, Regional Leader at O2 for the South Coast says: “I have really missed being away from stores and can’t wait to return to welcome my store teams back and help customers with Christmas gifts. As a region we have stayed connected throughout lockdown, from up skill training to online learning and daily video interactions, we feel fully supported to return back to store knowing we can meet the needs of our customers in the safest way.”

364 stores across England are confirmed to reopen on the 2nd December 2020 resulting in 404 stores open across the entire of the UK. Opening hours from 2 nd December will vary depending on the location of the store, and will be updated on the O2 website.