How to be More Protected While Shopping
During the Pandemic
By Clyde Kincaid
Remember when shopping was fun? Many considered it a good way to relax. Remember how great it was, with families and friends roaming around malls full of entertainment, as everyone spent hours choosing the ideal shirt or picking the sweetest banana. Sounds amazing, right?
Well, that has to remain a dream for some time. The new normal is a world of constant disinfection, social distancing, masks, and plexiglass sneeze guard. In short, everything that reduces physical contact.
During quarantine, going shopping is similar to entering dark tunnels, where the enemy is everywhere. It can attack you at any time. Therefore, you have to prepare yourself for battle. As Sun Tzu said, 'the art of war teaches us to rely not on the chance of the enemy not attacking, but rather on the fact that we have made our position unassailable'.
Why We Should Be Cautious
Shopping is dangerous because malls mean massive gatherings. What is more, it is all indoors. Let's be real - providing proper ventilation for such a large building is impossible.
As coronavirus is mostly spreading from person to person, being around other people has become a threat to your health. That is why the world has implemented social distancing. In shops, this includes physical barriers like Sneeze Guards. The acrylic sneeze guard has basically been reinvented due to the pandemic.
Basic Rules to Follow
We must admit that the best precaution is to avoid crowded places or any human interaction. Even the most advanced protection, for example, sneeze guards, can't guarantee complete safety. After all, you can come into contact with someone who has been infected on your way to the mall or back.
CDC, for instance, says limiting face-to-face contact is the best way to reduce the spread of coronavirus. The organization especially focuses on such measures of social distancing to practice as:
- Staying at least 6 feet away from everyone else. This is about two arms' length. Don't forget that it applies to all directions. The only time when you can avoid this is when there is a physical barrier (a glass sneeze guard, for example).
- Staying out of crowds and mass gatherings. Don't gather in groups. Many countries allow going out in a group with a maximum of two people.
- Following guidance from the local authorities.
- Covering the mouth and nose when there are people around. It's crucial to maintain a 6 ft distance even if both people’s faces are covered.
- Staying connected when you are outside. Anything from social media to calls suits. You just need a method to call for help, if necessary.
Limiting physical contact is essential. People must remember this when deciding how to travel. However, the truth is that there's nothing safer than delivery. Some stores and restaurants offer a no-contact one. This means that the delivery man leaves the package in a pre-agreed place.
Choose Reliable, Socially Aware Sellers
Imagine the following. A customer follows all the safety measures possible, including wearing face masks and using a disinfectant, but the seller doesn't. Will all the customer’s precautions be effective? Probably not.
Stores don't need to isolate their employees. However, they can contribute to limiting face-to-face contact. At least by installing an acrylic sneeze guard. Frankly, any solid material will work. Sneeze guard glass is one of the best materials to maintain distancing.
A lack of proper protection for employees poses a threat to both their health and consumers' health. Imagine how many visitors interact with a cashier in a single day. Apart from looking after workers, pay attention to having disinfectant supplies and a good ventilation system. Both are vital. Bacteria can survive on a surface for several hours. Some believe that it can survive in the air as well.
Only mutually beneficial collaboration can lead to a happy ending. Regular citizens, authorities, and businesses must work together to fight COVID-19. What do you think, who must take the most responsibility? What have you personally done to prevent the spread of the virus?
About the Author
Clyde is the executive director of a chain of stores, with an incredibly famous brand. He has worked in this sector for about 15 years. He has a business management degree and has also completed an MBA, currently serving as a brand advisor at Fortuna Visual New York.