As most of the country transitions away from enhanced community quarantine to either general CQ or modified ECQ, Filipinos will soon find themselves gradually going back to normal. For many of us, that means going back to shopping malls, many of which have been largely shuttered for almost two months now.
Which is why some malls are already gearing up to reopen as quarantine restrictions are lifted. Still, not everything will be just as they were before the coronavirus pandemic. Like many other businesses, shopping malls are putting strict security and safety measures to ensure they do not become virus “hotspots.”
Megaworld Lifestyle Malls, for instance, are not taking any chances and have invested heavily in equipment, manpower, and training to manage the expected influx of customers going back to the malls when they reopen today (Saturday, May 16).
This includes the introduction of brand new and state-of-the-art disinfection chambers stationed at different mall entrances as well as thermal scanning and foot baths for everybody going inside the malls.
Disinfectant chambers are set up at entrances of Megaworld Lifestyle Malls
To further illustrate how serious they are with ensuring with customer safety, only those aged 21 to 59 will be allowed to enter all Megaworld Lifestyle Malls, which means guests must present their IDs upon entry.
Dining in is still not allowed in all dining establishments in the mall. Instead, pick-up counters and drive-thru stations are in place for takeout orders and deliveries
Meanwhile, in accordance with the new community quarantine guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF), chapels, entertainment and leisure establishments, including cinemas will remain closed.
Social distancing will be strictly observed
Here are the other measures Megaworld is introducing in all of its malls:
- All guests, mall employees and store personnel are required to wear face masks at all times
- Social distancing of 3 feet apart within mall premises and when queuing at concierge, ATMs, cashiers and comfort rooms is strictly implemented
- Alcohol and hand sanitizers are available
- Guests are encouraged to use cashless transactions for their purchases
- Elevator and parking card push buttons are sanitized every 30 minutes
- Parking cards are sanitized before deployment at the card dispenser
- Sanitation squad is deployed at all times to deep clean door handles, handrails, comfort rooms and common areas
- Escalator handrails are disinfected using UV light
“The safety and well-being of our guests, employees and retail partners remain our topmost priority and we have put in place more intensified safety measures to help ensure a safer and happier shopping experience for everyone once we reopen our doors,” says Graham Coates, first vice president and head, Megaworld Lifestyle Malls.
Footbaths will be part of the new normal in mall safety measures
Megaworld Lifestyle Malls include the following: Eastwood Mall, Eastwood Citywalk and The Clubhouse at Temple Drive in Quezon City; Lucky Chinatown in Binondo, Manila; Uptown Bonifacio, Forbes Town and Venice Grand Canal in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City; Three Central Mall, Paseo Center and San Lorenzo Place Mall in Makati City; California Garden Square in Mandaluyong City; The Village Square Alabang in Las Piñas City, Twin Lakes Shopping Village in Laurel, Batangas; Southwoods Mall in Binan, Laguna; Mactan Alfresco in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu; and Festive Walk Mall in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.
*This story originally appeared on Esquiremag.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Preview.ph editors.