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Reopening post lockdown

Restaurants and Bars across New Zealand and Australia are reopening this week as COVID-19 restrictions being to relax. We’re sure keeping your staff and customers safe and compiling with new regulations will be your main priority, so we put together some guidelines to help you with getting back to business as easily and safely as possible.

Cleanliness - Dining establishments have been closed to the public for weeks it’s recommended that they are properly cleaned and sanitized before reopening as well as thoroughly at closing. Be sure to disinfect high touch surfaces such as tables, menus, counters and bathrooms. These will also need to be cleaned regularly between each seating so ensure that cleaning products are close by for your team members to use once a customer has come into contact with any surface.

Staff members - Rosters should be done by now and all staff will have been contacted with their new hours and the other team members they are on with.  Ensure they are all in good health and comfortable to return work, and if they don’t feel well in the slightest it’s best they stay home. Be sure to include health and safety talking points in your daily meetings/huddles and continuously reiterate the new procedures or each table being allocated a single server. Keep health and safety top of mind by constantly reminding your team on the importance of proper hygiene and social distancing. Provide all staff members with personal protective equipment such as gloves and masks to limit their chances of catching the illness

Limit customer capacity - By now your floor plan should be determined to keep your seating area from being too crowded at any one time. Stress on your social media and shop front the importance of making a booking before visiting. Display signage outside and inside so customers are aware at all times of what is expected from patrons and staff. Set up signs at the entrance reminding customers that social distancing laws are in place and they may need to wait to enter if you are at max capacity. 

Be sure to provide hand sanitizer upon entry of the restaurant and also at the counter for extra measure if you prefer. It’s recommended that the staff regularly wipe down the counter area with antibacterial spray or wipes. You may also want to consider contactless checkout where possible and accept cards only not cash.

In Australia before setting a plan in place, we recommend that you check in with your local state health authorities for location-specific guidelines. For New Zealand check out these guidelines from Hospitality NZ .

Good luck! It’s been a long wait and these precautions are in place to help us get back to “normality” as safely as possible.