With many restaurants opening back up, many are starting to wonder whether it’s safe to begin visiting them or if they should wait it out. Preventing the spread of the coronavirus will involve following these guidelines.

  1. Social distancing is still the top priority.

Staying at least six feet away from other patrons is the best way to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Many restaurants will be enforcing social distancing rules by keeping tables at least six feet apart and limiting the number of people sitting at each table.

  1. Workers will have to be vigilant about hygiene.

Hand washing and using hand sanitizer is critical when it comes to keeping the restaurant free of viruses. Servers will need to wash their hands before their shift and in between each customer to ensure they aren’t spreading the virus. Kitchen staff will need to be even more vigilant by washing their hands every time they touch their face or contaminated surfaces.

  1. Items like menus and utensils will look quite different.

Disposable menus or laminated menus that can be disinfected after each use will become the norm. Reusable utensils and straws may be replaced with disposable ones until the virus is under control. Items like ketchup bottles and salt and pepper shakers may also disappear and be replaced with single-use options.

  1. Masks and gloves may be required.

Whenever social distancing isn’t feasible, cloth face coverings are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Restaurant workers will have to wear masks for most of their shift and whenever they are in contact with guests. Guests will likely be required to wear them whenever they aren’t eating or drinking. Gloves may or may not be required, depending on the hand washing options available.

  1. Outdoor seating will be utilized whenever possible.

Studies have shown that the virus is less likely to spread outdoors, so many restaurants will favor outdoor seating versus indoor. Ventilation systems with UV light may help limit the spread of the virus indoors.

The restaurant industry needs the support of its patrons to stay open, but they must be visited and operated responsibly to prevent the virus from spreading rapidly.