Everything you need to know if you're planning to visit a pub or restaurant from July 4
Pubs and restaurants in England will be allowed to reopen from Saturday, July 4, provided measures are in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Here’s what you need to know about the new rules that will be in place if you’re planning to head out for a drink or a meal once the lockdown restrictions are eased.
How many people can visit?
If you’re eating or drinking indoors, up to two households can gather to eat or drink together. Outside, groups of up to six people from any number of households will be allowed.
Will you have to give your details?
Pubs and restaurants are being asked to keep a temporary record of any visitors for 21 days and to pass this information on to the NHS test and trace service if it could help to manage a coronavirus outbreak.
The Government has yet to publish full details on how this will work, with concerns being raised about data protection and at least one Sheffield venue saying it feels ‘uncomfortable’ about being asked to hold such details.
Is music or comedy allowed?
Live performances are currently banned and venues have been asked to keep any the volume down if playing recorded music as this means customers are less likely to shout or get too close, which increases the risk of coronavirus being spread through tiny airborne droplets.
What social distancing is required?
The Government has slightly relaxed its two-metre social distancing rule to enable more venues to reopen It now says people should stay at least two metres apart but where this is not viable can be no closer than one metre provided measures are in place to mitigate the risk.
Venues have been asked to calculate the maximum number of customers that can ‘reasonably’ follow social distancing guidelines and to move tables and chairs where necessary to help people comply.
Will I have to book?
Booking is not mandatory, according to government guidelines, but many venues have said customers will be required to book a table.
Table service must be used where possible indoors and is encouraged outdoors, with customers asked to order via apps if these are available. Visitors are also encouraged to pay contactlessly, with some venues not accepting cash.
What other measures should you expect?
Queuing systems should be in place at the entrance and for toilets, and additional parking for cars and bikes should be provided where possible to help visitors avoid using public transport.
Clear guidance on social distancing and hygiene should be given to customers upon arrival, via signage, and before they visit, by phone, on the website or via email.
Customers should be encouraged to use hand sanitiser or wash their hands upon entering, and parents ought to be reminded that they are responsible for supervising their children at all times.
Condiments like salt and vinegar should be provided in disposable packets or containers should be cleaned after each use, and cutlery should only be provided when food is served.