What Will Restaurants Be Like When They Open Back Up?
It’s going to be a whole new world in there.
One of the things you might be fantasizing about in a post-COVID-19 life is date night at your favorite restaurant again. As the country looks at action plans to open back up, going out for happy hour or a bite to eat might look way different. The guidelines enacted by each state will differ as stay-at-home orders are eventually lifted, but when that happens, here are some clues about what going out for pizza might actually be like.
Your server might wear a mask and gloves.
Personal protective equipment isn’t just for healthcare workers. Last week, California Governor Gavin Newson outlined policies for the state’s restaurants, according to the Los Angeles Times. One of which was having servers wear masks and gloves to bring you your drinks and dishes. Now that we’re getting more used to wearing masks when out in public anyway, this new uniform might not even make you do a double take.
Your temperature may be taken at the door.
Restaurant workers will likely be given temperature checks when clocking in, according to Eater New York. Mayor Bill de Blasio said that this is something that will likely have to be implemented in all workplaces around the city. In some states, like California, these temperature checks may be required for customers too, before they’re seated. One of the hallmark symptoms of COVID-19 is a fever, so this might be critical in identifying potentially sick patrons and prevent any possible infection.
You might be socially distancing from other diners.
Since COVID-19 can spread via close personal contact, you’ll have to continue social distancing in restaurants, according to Restaurant Business. Tables will be spread 6 feet apart and no more than 10 people will be sat at a table, according to the initial guidelines for restaurants from the White House. Oh, and bars will remain closed. You’d think this would make reservations harder to come by, but there are questions about how long it’ll take for people to poke their heads out and feel okay about dining in once given the go-ahead to do so. Like with everything, this is the new normal and we'll have to see how it plays out.
Your table might look different.
Common-touch items, like salt and pepper shakers, may be removed and replaced with tableside hand sanitizers. There also may not be glassware or plates when you get to your table, as servers may clean tableware or take it out of packaging in front of you for assurance, notes Hospitality Technology.
You may read—and then discard—a paper menu.
Governor Newson says that disposable menus will be coming to California restaurants. Considering COVID-19 can linger on surfaces—and menus are notoriously germ-y anyway—disposable options may keep you healthy in more ways than one.