How to Keep Food Halls Germ Free: Our Top Practices
Food halls are some of the most popular places to dine, but they can also be some of the dirtiest. With so many people coming in contact with one another, the best defense against the spread of germs is a good offense.
Wondering what your game plan should be? GoTab is here to teach you how to keep food halls germ free. A good place to start is with a contactless ordering and payment system. This can help reduce in-person contact while providing customers with a quick and personalized dining experience. Paired with thorough strategies for cleaning and communication, it can maximize the chances of a germ-free dining hall.
Read on to learn more about the top three practices for improving sanitation within a food court restaurant.
#1 Offer Customers Contactless Service
As we’ve explained, contactless ordering and payment is one of the best ways to reduce the spread of germs. A contactless point-of-sale (POS) system enables social distancing and premium customer service.
Unsure of how a contactless menu works? Let us explain.
- Customers use their smartphones as the POS. Because customers are ordering on their phones rather than at cash registers, multiple people can order simultaneously without standing close to each other in line.
- Throughout the experience, customers have the option to call for a server, ask questions, or provide feedback without leaving their table.
- Once the meal is done, patrons can choose their preferred payment method (i.e., with a digital wallet or in-person with cash).
Customers are drawn to food halls for the variety of culinary options, so they’ll appreciate that this service lets them further personalize their dining experience.
How Viruses and Harmful Bacteria are Transmitted
Since being in close proximity to someone coughing or sneezing is the biggest cause of infection, contactless service is a beneficial solution. It lowers the spread of germs and lets customers choose the level of personal interaction that makes them comfortable.
Curious to know all the ways viruses and harmful bacteria are transmitted? When it comes to respiratory viruses like COVID-19, there are three main paths:
- Contact Transmission – When you touch an infected surface or come in contact with someone who is infected
- Droplet Transmission – When you come in contact with either a small or large droplet of liquid that has the virus
- Airborne Transmission – When you come in contact with smaller droplets or particles that are in the air
Contactless ordering reduces contamination and contact transmission. Next, we’ll discuss a strategy for preventing droplet transmission.
#2 Clean and Reduce Shared Surfaces
If the pandemic hasn’t already turned you into a leading expert on all things cleaning and disinfecting, here is a quick list of best practices:
- Staff should wash hands throughout the entire food preparation process (i.e., before, during, and after).
- Proper hand washing requires scrubbing your hands for twenty seconds with soap and water. Alternatively, use a hand sanitizer that has 60% alcohol to avoid contamination.
- Staff should avoid touching their eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Tables and chairs in the food hall should be cleaned throughout the day. Likewise, shared surfaces in the back-of-house should be cleaned at least once per day to avoid harmful germs.
While the risk of viral transmission from surfaces is low, it is important to have a scheduled cleaning routine and good hygienic practices.
How a Digital POS Reduces Surface Transmission
Do you know how many people touch a restaurant’s menu in one day? The answer is much higher than anyone would care to imagine. And the worst part? Those menus may not be cleaned as often as other shared surfaces, such as tables and chairs.
A cloud-based POS reduces the likelihood of surface transmission of harmful germs because it minimizes the number of surfaces customers have to share.
#3 Communicate with Signs and Messages
Do your food hall customers know how to clean up after themselves once they’ve finished dining? If you notice trays lingering at tables rather than making their way to the self-service recycling station, poor signage might be to blame.
Communication is essential for improving sanitation practices. Once again, contactless technology is another way to display standard messages to customers. Consider reminding customers of your food hall’s policies directly on their digital receipt.
Beyond clean-up, the CDC suggests posting visible signs throughout the building to help customers navigate best practices. Messages can simply advocate for:
- Proper handwashing techniques
- The best way to wear a mask
Team Up with GoTab
Food halls have something to offer everyone, making them the ideal spot for casual dining and group hangs. But as the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, it’s important to guarantee safe and germ-free dining experiences in venues of all sizes.
GoTab’s contactless technology is designed with you and your business in mind. Our tools provide your customers with quality service without sacrificing the personalized dining experience that keeps them coming back for more. Our digital, cloud-based technology makes ordering and payment a convenient, contactless transaction.
Ready to team up? Learn more about our tech and request a demo with us today!
The Lancet Respiratory Medicine. Covid-19 transmission—up in the air. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(20)30514-2/fulltext
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Restaurants and Bars. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/business-employers/bars-restaurants.html