After weeks and even months of being closed to the public, many restaurants are now reopening to some degree. For some, this means offering takeout or outdoor dining. In other areas, establishments can allow indoor dining with certain restrictions. In all cases, owners must follow strict protocols for ensuring the safety of both employees and customers.
Our restaurant reopening checklist has the items that are most important for serving patrons while slowing the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses. Everyone will feel safer and more confident when you’re following this guide to restaurant reopening.
Face Masks & Gloves
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is the simplest and most effective way to lower the risk of transmitting germs. All house-facing staff, from servers to cashiers, should be wearing a face mask or covering whenever they interact with customers. Cloth washable face masks are usually sufficient for restaurant services, though FDA-approved masks may be required for food processing. Servers also should wear disposable gloves and change them frequently to avoid carrying viruses from surfaces to other people.
In addition to offering bathrooms with soap and running water, restaurant owners will want to stock up on hand sanitizer. Keeping a small bottle at every table, along with the bars and checkout counter, allows customers and staff to neutralize germs quickly. This is especially vital if wearing gloves is not practical while handling certain food items.
Restaurant Protective Sneeze Guard: Plexiglass
Installing plexiglass sneeze guards has many uses in a restaurant. These safety shields have long been installed at buffets and salad bars to prevent coughing or sneezing on the food. You can also place them at tables, cashiers stations and more to form a protective barrier. Guards with side shields add protection and stability. Some designs include a small slot at the bottom for sliding through trays, money and other small items.
Partition Panel Dividers
These dividers are basically a larger version of sneeze guards. By placing them behind bench seats or between tables and booths, you create social distancing and stop airborne germs without needing to completely change the floor layout. The barrier shield can be made of many materials such as plexiglass, polyvinyl or plastic. When a group leaves, sanitize them quickly and you’re ready for the next customers.
Disposable Menus & Condiment Bottles
In some cases, sanitizing individual items between uses simply isn’t practical. Buying or printing disposable paper menus is a good way to practice health and safety. Hand a new menu to each person that comes in and toss it into the trash or recycling when they’re done. Reusable ketchup bottles and shakers spread viruses easily, so replace them with individual condiment packets that can be tossed out afterwards.
Cashless Payment Methods
Paying without cash already becomes more common every year. But in a pandemic, it’s even more important, as hard currency is a risk for spreading contaminants. Make sure you have several cashless payment services set up to accommodate customers. If you’re offering delivery, a combination of online ordering and payment with contactless drop-off is the most sanitary you can be.
With the right measures in place, reopening a restaurant safely will be a manageable task. Sharper Uniforms is here to help with all your hospitality needs whether they be high-quality uniforms or health and safety supplies.