In an effort to keep shoppers safe during these uncertain times, Walmart has announced some major changes to its safety protocol for shoppers. Starting Saturday, April 4th, the retail giant will begin to limit the number of customers who can be in the store at a given time and will also create one-way traffic through its aisles in many stores.
“Starting Saturday, we will limit the number of customers who can be in a store at once. Stores will now allow no more than five customers for each 1,000 square feet at a given time, roughly 20 percent of a store’s capacity,” said a statement on the company’s website.
To limit the number of customers allowed inside the store at a given time, shoppers will be required to line up at a single-entry door and will be allowed in one-by-one and counted. Once the maximum number of shoppers is inside the store, customers will be allowed entry on a “1-out-1-in” basis.
While waiting in line for your turn to get into the store, it’s important to practice safe social distancing.
The customer limits will be enacted at all Walmart locations across the country.
Once inside the store, you may notice some changes regarding how you’re allowed to navigate through the aisles. At many, but not all, Walmart locations, the company will institute one-way paths customers must follow.
“We’ll also institute one-way movement through our aisles next week in a number of our stores, using floor markers and direction from associates. We expect this to help more customers avoid coming into close contact with others as they shop,” the company said.
These are only the latest in a long line of changes Walmart has made in an effort to protect shoppers and the community during this outbreak. In recent weeks, the company has also closed stores overnight for cleaning and restocking, installed sneeze guards and social distance markers, made gloves and masks available to employees who want them, and more.
However, store officials still felt more needed to be done to help flatten the curve.
“While many of our customers have been following the advice of the medical community regarding social distancing and safety, we have been concerned to still see some behaviors in our stores that put undue risk on our people,” the company said. “We want to encourage customers to bring the fewest number of people per family necessary to shop, allow for space with other customers while shopping, and practice social distancing while waiting in lines. We’re also seeing states and municipalities set varying policies regarding crowd control – which has created some confusion regarding shopping.”
If you need to do a supply run, please stay safe and follow proper social distancing as we all try to get through this together. And don’t forget, grocery delivery services, like Instacart, Shipt, Favor, and others, can allow you to shop from the comfort of your home and have your order dropped off at your front door so you can avoid the crowds altogether.