Enjoying a coffee or glass of wine, snacking on samples, and taking your time to browse all the isles while grocery shopping is now merely a dream because of the coronavirus pandemic. Although some stores are getting rid of some safety measures, there are rules you still need to follow. In September, Walmart announced one-way aisles and only one open entrance to the store would be switched out. But there is still an entire website dedicated to explaining store policies designed to keep you, other customers, and employees safe.
Read on below for a great refresher on all the rules to keep remembering! (And be sure to look out for the 8 Grocery Items That may Soon Be in Short Supply.)
Surely this one is a broken record by now — but for good reason. Masks are one of the best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the CDC. This is especially crucial when you’re inside and around food.
What’s just as important as wearing a mask is picking out the right now. Surgical masks, N95 masks, and cloth masks with multiple layers of fabric are great options, the Mayo Clinic says. Be sure to wear it snug against your face, make sure it’s covering your mouth and nose, and if it’s washable, wash it!
“We respectfully ask our members to use social distancing guidelines while shopping in our warehouses by allowing at least 6 feet of space between each person,” Costco says on its website. Still not sure how far is six feet? Follow floor decals or use a cart (or two)! A large shopping cart is around 3 feet long.
Grocery stores aren’t the only ones still enforcing social distancing rules, here are 5 Weirdest Ways Restaurants Are Forcing You to Social Distance.
Seniors, those with vulnerable immune systems, and essential workers still have access to many grocery stores before the rest of the public. Trader Joe’s is continuing to open an hour early on Wednesdays and Sundays for special shopping hours. Walmart’s hour is on Tuesday one hour before the general opening. Other stores, like Kroger, Aldi, Safeway, and more, also are offering special shopping hours. It’s best to check the supermarket’s website before you shop to make sure.
Many stores have actually relaxed their policies on reusable bags, allowing them inside the store again. However, some of these places like Whole Foods, Costco, and more are requiring customers to pack their reusable bags themselves. This limits the number of people touching food products and bags.
Pre-pandemic, reusable bags weren’t the cleanest option. Here’s why bringing your own bad is The Worst Grocery Shopping Mistake You’re Making Before Entering the Store.
Back in May, Costco limited customers to only three meat products per person. Other limits in the store exist, as well, on things like paper towels, toilet paper, disinfecting wipes, and more. “Costco has implemented limits on certain items to help ensure more members are able to purchase merchandise they want and need,” the company’s website says. “Our buyers and suppliers are working hard to provide essential, high demand merchandise as well as everyday favorites.”
Bulk buying shook the grocery industry when the pandemic began, making it hard for manufacturing plants to keep up with an increase in demand. This is The Startling Reason Why Cokes Are Increasingly Harder to Buy.
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