When was the last time you ate inside of a restaurants? For many of those here in the Garden State, it’s probably been since last March right before the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic started — forcing many small businesses to quickly close down. Well, it looks like indoor dining is set to make its return on Friday, September 4. While some people are exuberant about the prospect of dining inside of their favorite restaurants, there are still new rules that will need to be enforced.
Governor Phil Murphy announced the news recently, also soon after his announcement that gyms and fitness centers were given the green light to reopen as well. Naturally, indoor dining presents its own challenges, especially when people are placed in close proximity to one another. While some of the rules stated in the executive order are obvious, such as wearing masks unless you’re eating, tables being 6 feet apart from one another (maximum of 8 customers per table), and a maximum capacity of 25%, there are other things you should be mindful about that aren’t as well-known. Here are 3 important things you should remember when you do indoor dining next.
Be respectful to the staff
When the threat of a deadly disease is there, you need to remember that the staff is doing all they can to protect guests and themselves from getting sick. They’re required to wear masks, so just be mindful about thee risk that they’re taking to serve you at your next visit.
Some establishments may not be full staffed either, so know ahead of time that you may need to wait longer for your orders to come. Make sure to also appropriately tip your server for their services, especially during these challenging situations. In some instances, they’re still walking longer distances because of outdoor dining. And lastly, just be respectful towards them.
Follow through on reservations
It’s happened before, but flaking out on a reservation with indoor dining is going to be more annoying for everybody — so if you plan on making reservations, just follow through on the commitment. If you cancel, leave a proper amount of time because indoor seating is prime real estate and limited.
Any last minute cancellation will not only inconvenience a restaurant, but also to other diners who are eager to do indoor dining.No one likes a no-show, that’s an absolute no during these times.
Don’t congregate indoors/at the bar
Yes, we all know that restaurants are places for social activities, but if a staff member asks you to disperse from the bar or other areas, please be respectful about it. In the executive order, it mentions that patrons are barred from walking around while eating. You’ll need to do all of your eating, drinking, and socializing at the table.
If you need to use the restroom or other facilities, just remember to bring and wear your face mask as you walk around. Also, it’s best to quickly go about your business and return to your table promptly.