Some of the COVID-19 rules and stipulations you’ll encounter
By Tania Arora, Staff Writer
Gone are the days of easily dining at a restaurant or flirting with single ladies and men at a bar. Now with or without masks, staying at least two meters apart is the new and required “cool.” The government gave a thumbs up to reopening parts of the economy slowly—nothing is the same though. Restaurants and bars have been given a set of guidelines to follow and whether you like them or not, you’ll have to follow them.
Every establishment you enter can question you about your travel history and health. If you are found sick, all have the right to deny you entry. Maintaining a distance throughout is mandatory. Before you enter a restaurant, you will be required to touch base with your best friend—hand sanitizer—and then will be handed the menu. Some restaurants now use small cards with QR codes or disposable paper menus to avoid sharing contact with others. So the next time you leave a restaurant, maybe take the menu with you and dispose of it yourself.
If you are someone who is a “regular” at a particular establishment, or if you eat out at your favourite restaurant to talk to your main server—that should no longer be occurring. The service providers are now instructed to stand away from customers, wear masks, and avoid any physical contact. Some establishments even discourage talking. Although it hinders the process of providing an enjoyable experience for guests coming to the restaurant, it is a rule and considered very important by the government. A lot of times, it is also hard to figure out who is comfortable with the distance. While some people get paranoid even when someone is four meters away from them, others might be okay shaking hands or standing close together.
Even the ways of packaging and taking home leftovers have now changed post-COVID. It is not considered safe to touch one’s food or take it back to the kitchen to repack, exchange, or add anything on. Expect to hear a big “no” and receive boxes in return if you ask the service providers to pack your food.
Consider the lives of the people working to ensure a sincere guest experience irrespective of how risky it can be. We need to ensure everyone’s safety in order to have a good time outside of our homes. And when you are ready to leave, make sure to follow the arrows and directions leading you in and out of the restaurant, as the new dine-in rules also stipulate that restaurants have controlled entry and exit points.