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How to navigate dining out during lockdown

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Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2020

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From skipping cooking and cleaning to sharing a taste experience with your loved ones, eating out has many perks. But before you paint the town red, there are some considerations you should be mindful of, such as staying on budget and social distancing.


Here are some tips for eating out affordably and keeping safe during the lockdown.


Do your homework

Do a Google search to find the most recent menus online to make sure there are meals available in your price range. Next, see what the prices of drink and dessert options are, whether sides are included in the meal price or if they’re charged separately. You can also check for vouchers or deals on Hyperli and Daddy’s Deals.


Consider going Dutch

Most restaurant meals come in huge portions, so consider sharing. For example, you could get one plate of fries or nachos to share. You could also split desserts such as waffles, pancakes and cake. For hygiene best practices, remember to use your own cutlery and separate plates or ask to have the portions plated separately before the meal is served.


Take it outside
Sit outside if there’s an outdoor option at a restaurant. Not only will you enjoy the lovely weather, but you’ll also have more air circulation and ventilation. It’s also easier to social distance when you aren’t hemmed in by four walls. Before choosing the outdoor option, though, check whether the tables are spaced out too.


Always be cautious
Call beforehand to ask about the restaurant’s safety practices. Remember to wear your mask when you aren’t eating or drinking anything. This includes when arriving at the restaurant, when going to the bathroom, when interacting with waiters and when leaving. Remember to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water and to sanitise before and after your meal. Remind those you are with to follow these best practices too.


Dine smart
Although going for supper is a popular option when eating out, lunch generally doesn’t cost as much. Eating out during the week on less popular days, particularly on a Monday, may mean you could get a discounted meal too. Use apps such as Yummy Deals and Eat Out to find specials, such as buy-one-get-one-free, at nearby restaurants and to make bookings.


Keep your distance

It’s important to try and maintain a distance of 1–2m between yourself and others. This includes when you’re arriving, leaving or going to the bathroom. If a crowd of people is arriving, wait until they are far enough for you to keep a safe distance of at least three steps.


Lastly, enjoy your meal! According to the World Health Organization, the risk of contracting COVID-19 through food or drinks is very low. While it’s important to keep yourself and others safe during this time, doing regular activities such as dining out with loved ones can make the ‘new normal’ easier to cope with.