With COVID-19 restrictions having been lifted across the country, businesses are free to operate as they would have pre-pandemic. It’s incredibly important to be mindful, however, that the pandemic is still ongoing. While mask mandates are no more, many Canadians remain concerned about their health. In order to ensure your place of business continues to thrive, it’s wise to continue implementing safety precautions.
Restaurant owners, we’re looking at you! With April in full swing and warmer weather on the way, you likely have the start of patio season on your mind. And why wouldn’t you? Surely, there are people all over the Canada who can’t wait to revisit the patio experience. So, keeping everything we mentioned in mind, what are the smartest ways to prepare your restaurant for patio season?
Develop a strict cleaning schedule.
Both your customers and your staff members will appreciate your attention to the need for cleanliness. Ensure that each table is adequately sanitized between usages. It’s important to keep the patio area as neat and tidy as possible as well. The overall look of your patio will help to draw people towards it. But, more importantly, a safe environment is one that will make customers feel comfortable.
“Your restaurant’s pre-pandemic cleaning protocol isn’t going to cut it anymore,” insists Dana Krook on TouchBistro.com, “Develop a new restaurant cleaning process and schedule that ensures high traffic areas are cleaned often. You should also make sure staff know how to clean a credit card reader and other high-touch restaurant technology.”
Create a patio-exclusive menu.
How cool would it be to bring one of your chefs out to the patio to create patio-specific meals in front of your visitors? Even if you can’t safely set up a barbeque or cooking station outdoors, creating a menu specifically for the patio is a great way to entice hungry members of the public to visit your eatery.
“Don’t be discouraged if you don’t have the space for a bar or kitchen equipment outside,” says Doug Radkey on RestoBiz.ca, “Create a summer menu that’s inspired by an outdoor patio. Develop a menu plan with the entire kitchen and bar teams with the restaurant’s target market and concept kept close in mind.”
Remove shareable items for the tables.
When patio season begins, it would be wise to create as contactless an experience for each customer as possible. By remove shareable items on the table, such as menus and condiments, you significantly reduce the potential for the virus to spread. Customers are getting used to viewing menus online anyway. Be sure to have your online menu readily accessible by placing a QR code on the table.
“Swap out your reusable menus for paper menus that you can dispose of after parties use them, or go digital with QR code menus,” agrees Krook, “Switch communal condiment bottles out for single-serving packets, or pour them into condiment cups and give them to customers on request.”
With Unity Payments’ commission-free online ordering system for restaurants, you can offer your customers a QR code that they can scan with their handheld devices. It gives them quick and easy opportunities to order food and beverages and pay when they’re done! For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-661-3761 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.