The moment many of us have been waiting for has arrived - Singapore has finally announced it'll be moving into Phase 2 on 19 June, Friday
! ? While there's no real rush to go out and dine in at your favourite cafés just yet
, we know we're excited to finally get the chance to sit down, enjoy some ambience, and catch up with our friends over a cup of coffee. Before you head out to eat at that burger joint you've been craving for weeks, run through this easy and essential 13-step checklist to make sure you maintain proper hygiene while dining-in
Before arriving at the restaurantCredit: Giphy1. Call ahead to make a reservation
The maximum group size is 5 diners per table. However, eateries will not be able to seat as many people as they usually would, so it's best to call ahead and reserve your slot! This also helps the restaurant manage their headcount so they can stick to social distancing requirements.
P.S. Businesses have been advised to keep long lines from forming, so making a reservation is a good way to ensure you won't be turned away if the line is too long.
2. Look up the menu beforehand
Menus are one of the items in a restaurant that get passed around from customer to customer, and eateries may not be able to sanitise them so quickly. Save yourself the worry and look up their menu online if it's available, or head to their social media to check for promotions. You can even screenshot or save the menu to your phone and browse at the restaurant itself.
Credit: Giphy3. Avoid going out if you have symptoms like cough, sore throat, or fever
The first line of defence starts with us! If you feel even a little unwell, change your plans or let your makan kakis know that you'll have to take a rain check. While we can now go out more freely, we still need to be socially responsible. Your friends will understand if you need to reschedule, and it's always better to be more cautious about your health and the health of those around you.
4. Try to plan your visit during off-peak hours
If you can, time your meal to coincide with off-peak hours so that you have a better chance of avoiding crowds, both in the eatery itself and in the surrounding area.
5. Don't forget your mask and hand sanitiser!
We're still required to wear face masks when in public, so don't forget yours! ? Tuck a small bottle of hand sanitiser into your pocket and you're ready to go. You can also bring along your own pen for any situation where you may need to record down your particulars for tracking purposes.
During your meal6. Be aware of your distance from others
We are still supposed to maintain a distance of 1 metre even while dining out, including 1 metre between groups. Markings will be on the chairs, tables, and even floors so be alert and stick to the required distance.
7. Use wet wipes or multi-surface sanitisers before sitting down
Restaurants will already be under strict guidelines to clean and sanitise regularly, but multi-surface sanitisers
can be useful for giving your tabletop or chair handles a quick wipe down and lessening your own anxiety.
P.S. Make sure any sanitiser you use is food-safe or contains no harsh chemicals!
8. Drink from your own cup or bring your own utensils
Restaurants will be sanitising their cutlery more often, but we understand if you feel may feel uneasy about using shared cutlery and utensils. If you can, keep reusable utensils, your own water bottle, or a reusable cup in your bag. It's good practice to ask the staff first if they're okay with you using your own utensils - some places might request for you to use disposable utensils instead.
9. Store your belongings while you eat
Pre-pandemic, many of us would have just left our handphones on the table while we eat, but now we're more aware that that can expose it to germs and other particles in the air. ? Leave your handphone, wallet, and other belongings in your bag while you eat. If you have a pouch or carrier for your mask, use that too! If you don't have a specific carrier, even repurposing an old envelope for a day can help keep your mask clean while you eat.
10. Use contactless payment if possible
Ever since the Circuit Breaker started, more businesses have shifted to contactless payment options to reduce points of contact between staff and customers. Paywave, Paynow, Paylah, GrabPay, favepay, and so on are a great way to go contactless - and they're super convenient too! Most eateries will be able to let you know their payment methods via social media, so you can take it into consideration when planning a meal out. ?
If you do need to exchange coins or notes, you can put them in a separate pouch and rinse or clean them once you get home as a precaution.
11. Keep your meal short
We know it'll feel amazing to get to share a meal with friends again, but try to keep your meetups short and sweet!
After your meal12. Wash your hands
Once you finish your meal make sure to wash your hands! Use soap and water, and clean every part of your hands thoroughly. You can also use antibacterial wipes or hand sanitisers for some extra freshness. Remember to wash any reusable utensils you may have used too.
13. Leave a good review if you had a good experience
Ever since the Circuit Breaker started, many restaurants have been struggling to keep business afloat. If you have a good experience at a restaurant, make sure to let your friends and family know! Whether it's leaving a good review with the manager or sharing it on your IG story, it can mean a lot to a small family-owned business, or even the staff at a chain restaurant. ❤️
While we're excited to finally be able to visit our favourite eateries again, let's remember to keep social distancing and proper hygiene habits while doing so! ? Our health and safety should always be our top priority, no matter how much we want to have a meal with our loved ones.