Starbucks has announced the reopening of 150 of its UK sites from tomorrow (14 May), amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
With the easing of restrictions allowing more travel on roads, beginning 14 May it will begin a phased reopening of Starbucks drive-thru locations across the UK as well as a handful of takeaway-only stores
The coffee chain revealed new precautions put in place which include social distancing measures introduced inside its stores with extra cleaning protocols and precautions, including more frequent cleaning and sanitising of high-contact surface areas and increased handwashing by partners.
Starbucks has also introduced its ‘to-go’ only model, offered via Drive-Thru, takeaway or delivery – minimising partner and customer touchpoints. All drinks will be served in a to-go paper cup, although it will continue to honour its personal cup discount.
Contactless payments have also been introduced as plexiglass screens are also in place across all its stores.
All stores will be serving a ‘near-complete’ beverage menu, with food being offered with a slightly more restricted menu, focused on its “most popular” items.
As partners prepare for a phased re-opening of stores, Starbucks UK general manager, Alex Rayner, recently shared a letter to UK partners detailing the various experiences customers can expect under modified operation, including heightened safety protocols.
The letter read: “We are living in unprecedented times. The impact Covid-19 has had on all of us is significant – each affected in their own way. I want to thank you for your resilience and the kindness you have shown each other as we manage this, together.
“Every decision we make as an organisation puts your health and well-being – and that of our customers – first. The temporary closures of our stores in March was a difficult decision but the right one.”
The letter continued: “During this time, we have been actively engaged with our China and US operations teams as well as operators in Europe who have seen their restrictions ease ahead of ours.
“We have been learning, testing and refining these operational standards every day and have tailored to the specific needs of our government and healthcare officials. You will be able to work safely in our stores.”