Shopping during the pandemic has become an intricate task, not only because of the change in shopping habits but also due to the constant fear of getting infected. As governments have relaxed lockdown rules, the number of people visiting stores has increased, and this has heightened the risk of transmission. However, the need for essential goods or products cannot be ignored, and thus, people have to find ways of shopping safely. Here are some essential tips on how to shop safely during the pandemic.
1. Plan Your Shopping and Avoid Rush Hours
Plan your shopping by understanding what you need and where to find it. You’ll finalize your shopping faster, so there’s no need to linger in stores. Avoid peak hours when there are more customers, which can increase the chances of spreading germs. Plan your shopping with an online list or direct message to ensure that you don’t forget anything important.
2. Wear a Mask
As more and more information is shared about the pandemic, it is clear that masks reduce the risk of transmitting the disease. CDC recommends wearing a mask or any cloth face covering when in public places. The mask should cover your nose and mouth entirely, and once you are done with your shopping, it should be disposed or washed as per the manufacturer’s recommendations.
3. Maintain Social Distancing
Social distancing means staying at least six feet away from others. Most stores have markers or signs on the floor to help customers maintain the distance required during the pandemic.
4. Sanitize Your Hands
Sanitizing your hands regularly reduces the chances of transmitting germs. Carry a hand sanitizer or wet wipes when shopping. Use them after touching items, carts, or any commonly handled surfaces. It is also essential to avoid touching your nose, mouth, or eyes.
5. Use Contactless Payment
Contactless payments are a safer alternative. Where possible, use electronic methods of payment rather than cash to avoid contamination. Most retail shops have provided these options to consumers and even encourage their use.
6. Clean Surfaces
Carry a disinfectant wipe and clean the cart or basket you plan to use. To further protect yourself from the virus, try using self-checkout kiosks. They reduce human interaction and reduce contact with contaminated surfaces.
7. Choose the Right Store
Opt for stores that have taken measures to ensure customer safety. Stores providing hand sanitizer, limiting the number of customers inside a store, and enforcing the use of masks are ideal for shopping.
In conclusion, shopping during the pandemic can be safe if the above guidelines are followed. Remember, taking preventive measures is still the best way to avoid contracting COVID-19. Be cautious and alert, and most importantly, stay safe.