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THRIFT DRUG OFFERS FREE DELIVERY TO HOMES, WORKPLACES IN PHILADELPHIA AREA

 PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- In an unprecedented move, Thrift Drug, Inc. has become the first major drug store chain in the Philadelphia area -- and one of the few in the nation -- to offer free delivery to customers.
 The service will go into effect Feb. 25 and is designed to provide the ultimate in shopper convenience.
 The house-call of the past will no longer be a dim memory for single mothers, two-paycheck families, senior citizens or harried workers. Prescriptions will now be delivered to homes and offices with just one phone call. In addition, customers also may order from the complete retail store selection, including over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, health and beauty aids, convenience foods and home products.
 "We are simply responding to our customers' requests for more convenient services, and there's nothing more convenient than having your prescriptions and other products delivered to your home or office," said Sal Talamo, regional vice president for Thrift Drug.
 The delivery service will be available from 149 stores in the Philadelphia market, which encompasses southeastern Pennsylvania, most of southern and central New Jersey and parts of Delaware. Free delivery applies to any prescription order, or any order of $15 or more. For purchases less than $15, a $3 delivery fee will be applied to the cost of the order.
 For free delivery, customers simply call their local Thrift Drug store to place their orders and/or relay their prescriptions numbers. Those calling before 11 a.m., Monday through Saturday, will receive their deliveries the same day; all office deliveries will be completed by the end of the working day.
 Thrift Drug said it expects this service to appeal to a wide variety of people, including the elderly, who are frequently homebound; families who simply desire more convenience or those who have sick children at home; and the "time-starved" working adult in the 25-45 age group.
 The Philadelphia area is one of the oldest metropolitan areas -- outside of Florida -- with 16.5 percent of the population over the age of 65. Of these, a growing number no longer drive and are dependent on friends and family for transportation and errands.
 "This service should have great appeal to older adults, especially those who can't drive and otherwise would have to pay for cab fare or depend on a family member or friend," said Talamo.
 In addition, people between the ages of 35 and 49 spend at least 47 hours each week at work or commuting, sleep about 50 hours a week, and have to squeeze leisure activities in between family responsibilities and household chores for the remaining hours in the week, he added.
 "Considering that both adults work in over 70 percent of all households, time is becoming one of the most precious commodities any business can offer," Talamo said. "We believe that we can serve a great portion of our customers who are looking for services such as free delivery to allow them more time for recreation."
 These statistics support the continued growth of home delivery services throughout the country. In addition to familiar delivery services such as pizza, many other companies are now returning to door- to-door delivery for services like dry cleaning and dairy products.
 Since its founding in 1935, Thrift Drug has grown to become the 11th-largest drug store chain in the United States. A subsidiary of JCPenney Co., Thrift Drug, Inc. operates more than 500 stores in 17 states across the country, including 164 in the Philadelphia area.
 /delval/
 -0- 2/25/93
 /CONTACT: Trish Orchard of Thrift Drug, 412-967-8811, or Vern Waring of Quigley Communications, 215-627-2862, for Thrift Drug/


CO: Thrift Drug, Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: REA SU: PDT

MJ-CC -- PH019 -- 0397 02/25/93 12:49 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 25, 1993
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