To prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus, many countries around the world have imposed lockdown in their major urban centres. Similar measures have been taken by the authorities in all big and small cities of Pakistan, where markets and shops, other than those dealing in grocery items and medical supplies, have been completely shut down until further notice. People all over the country are being advised by the authorities to practice physical distancing, especially when heading out to buy necessary medical and food supplies. So, if you don’t know how to safely shop for groceries during the COVID-19 pandemic, then you have come to the right place. In this blog, we’ll list down and discuss some very important rules for safe grocery shopping during the coronavirus outbreak.
Let’s get started!
How to Safely Shop for Groceries During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Things to Know
Here are some tips on how to practise physical distancing and stay safe from contracting coronavirus when you are out to buy essential groceries.
Maintain a Distance of At Least 2 Metres
Practising physical distancing is among the basic and most important rules for safe grocery shopping during the coronavirus outbreak. Try keeping clear of people on your way to and from the market, and when inside a shop, if it’s possible. Don’t rush, be patient and wait for your turn if you have to access goods from a shelf, fridge or freezer. Some shops and superstores are helping out people in practicing physical distancing by limiting the number of people inside the premises at a time. However, when you are purchasing groceries, try to keep your distance from shopkeepers and other staff members as well. Also, avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose after you are done shopping until you are back home and have washed your hands.
Precautionary Tips: Before grabbing the handlebar of a shopping trolley, try to disinfect it with sanitising wipes or a liquid hand sanitiser as a precautionary measure. Also, if hand sanitisers are out of stock in stores in your neighbourhood, then instead of worrying, you can simply follow this very easy DIY recipe to make your own hand sanitiser at home.
Shop Alone, If Possible
Of course, there are exceptions for single parents with small children or patients who cannot be left alone at home, but if it’s possible for you, then you should try to shop alone. These little acts that you may carry out individually may result in a reduced number of shoppers at stores, making physical distancing possible to be practically achieved. Moreover, It will also reduce the number of your household members exposed to the potential threat of the virus.
Important Takeaway: According to research conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO), on average, it takes around 2-14 days for people before they develop any symptoms of the coronavirus, and during all this time they can be unknowingly transmitting it to other people they get in touch with.
Prepare a Grocery Shopping List Beforehand
It is natural for you to feel worried about potentially being stuck indoors when preparing for a home quarantine, which may mean self-isolation for 14 days, so you want to stock up on enough supplies. However, this doesn’t mean that you end up panic-buying as it may let you get your hands on the products that you won’t even need. So, instead of facing shortages of food and medical supplies, try creating a list of all the grocery items you need to buy before heading to the market. It would be even better if you do your homework on your grocery shopping list at least a day before you go shopping.
According to the experts, your shopping list amid the coronavirus outbreak should include non-perishables or long-lasting perishables, which can last for days. Fresh produce, pantry staples, long-lasting perishable canned goods, frozen items, light snacks, medicines, toiletries and different types of disinfectants and cleaning supplies.
Note: The aforementioned items are just for you to have a better idea about what to and what not to include in your coronavirus grocery list, however, the items you are going to stock up on totally depend on your household preferences. On a side note, you can read our blog to learn more about the coronavirus grocery list.
Limit the Time You Spend at the Grocery Store
One of the best tips to safely shop for groceries during the COVID-19 pandemic is to limit the time you spend at the grocery store. This is only possible if you have your grocery list ready and you are shopping alone, which means you would know which items to buy and you would not have anyone to chat with. Since shops and markets are accessed by the general public coming from everywhere, any one of the shoppers can be a virus carrier, so for your own safety, it would be better for you to spend as little time as possible inside the store. Also, limit your grocery store visits to once every 10-14 days, just as an important precautionary measure in this regard.
Opt for Online Shopping Or Delivery Services
One of the most important rules for safe grocery shopping during the coronavirus outbreak is choosing the option of online shopping or delivery services instead of going to the shop physically. As more people shop for groceries from home, the number of shoppers on the streets and in shops will ultimately be reduced, decreasing the chances for the virus spread among a community.
Well, home delivery service is not something new and almost every other store now offers it. Then there are e-commerce services that sell groceries online through their websites and applications, which means you can now shop for groceries using your smartphones too. Meanwhile, if you are a dweller of Karachi, then here are some of the most popular online grocery stores from where you can purchase all your food and medical supplies.
Disinfect Every Item You Buy
It may sound like a tedious task but you should be doing it for the safety and wellbeing of yourself and your household members. So, whenever you bring home groceries, try to sanitise and disinfect each and every item since the germs of the coronavirus can survive on surfaces from hours to days. However, it is not certain how long the COVID-19 virus survives on surfaces, but it seems like the time duration of its survival varies from material to material. A study suggests that the coronavirus remains active and infectious in the form of airborne droplets and on fibrous materials used in packaging such as cardboard, paper, and fabric.
Now that we have given you all the important tips to safely shop for groceries during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s time for us to wrap up this piece. Let us know if we have skipped mentioning anything important in this regard by emailing us at email@example.com. Your feedback helps us make our blog more informative and useful for our readers.
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