How to Shop Safely During the Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed life for many people. Even if you got the vaccine, it is understandable that you might be worried about the safety of friends or family members who could not get it. Even with the vaccine, the varients that are going around can be a cause for concern. While you can't avoid all human interaction, there are ways you can ensure your experience shopping and going to stores is as safe as possible. Take a look at these helpful hints so you can apply them to your life. 

Wear a Mask

Wearing a face mask is one of the best ways you can protect yourself and others around you, including your family at home. Science has shown that wearing a mask can reduce the viral load you come in contact with, thereby lessening your chances of getting a full-on case of COVID-19. Although it was difficult to come by masks at the beginning of the pandemic, it is possible to once again start purchasing KN95 masks from retailers such as Amazon. These form to your face a little bit more, come in a variety of colors, and there are sizes for both children and adults. 

Sanitize Everything and Often

Sanitizing is another useful way of reducing your chance of getting the virus or bringing it home. You should sanitize your cart when you go shopping, but it can also be helpful to sanitize certain items, depending on what you are using or buying. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are helpful for cleaning carts and your hands in-between shopping sessions while using a spray such as Lysol is another effective way of ensuring that you are killing the germs on tougher surfaces or ones that are commonly touched by others. If you choose to stay in a hotel, for example, spraying down common surfaces in your room might help you feel more comfortable while reducing your chances of getting COVID-19.

Switch to Online Ordering or Pickup

Rather than go into a store for your shopping needs, this might be a good time to try buying items online, using pickup, or both. Many stores are using commerce platforms such as Bopis that make it possible for you to order from your favorite shop, pay for the items, and have them picked up or delivered to you. This can eliminate the frustration of trying to navigate among crowds, while saving you time. Overall, it can keep you out of situations where you might come into contact with the virus. 

Go During Less Crowded Times

If for some reason shopping online is not an option or pickup doesn't work for you, make a point to go when stores are not as crowded. This could be when people are more likely to be at work and children are still at school, or perhaps it could be later at night when everyone has gone back home for the day. Avoiding crowds can dramatically reduce your chances of getting the virus and it can make it easier to maintain a six-foot distance. Try to get what you need during this timeframe, so you aren't making multiple stops to the same store within the same week. 

Although there is no way to stay totally risk-free from COVID-19 when you are out shopping, there are ways you can prevent transmission so you and your household can stay safe. Wear a mask when you go out, and make sure that you are sanitizing yourself after you are done shopping, along with common areas that are easily touched, such as your cart. Consider switching to online ordering or pickup, so you aren't spending as much time in stores. Alternatively, go shopping when it is less crowded in the store so you can keep distance between yourself and others while feeling safe. These suggestions can help you feel empowered while keeping you and those you love safe no matter where you are headed. 

Related: How the Sale of a Sting CD Sparked an Entire Industry