Hooray, pubs are now open again in the UK well okay that isn’t exactly fresh news they have been open for a few weeks now. But if you think a trip to your local is going to be the same experience then you will be in for a surprise.
Many people are describing this has a post-COVID-19 world but that isn’t quite right. We aren’t post-COVID-19 yet and likely won’t be for some time the virus is still very much a concern and as such going to the pub should be treated much more carefully and cautiously.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t go but it means you need to pay careful attention to the guidelines and rules in place. Which nicely brings us around to the topic of this piece what exactly are the new rules for pubs in the UK? Well let’s get right down to it and take a look, shall we?
Going up to the bar to order is a part of the classic British pub experience but if you want to be safe you probably won’t be doing it. While bar service isn’t strictly prohibited it is heavily discouraged with many pubs doing table service or asking you to use apps to make your orders. Even if a pub/ bar is offering counter service you will need to be quick so as to free up space and reduce contact.
Indoors or Outdoors?
Table service is strictly the way to go when it comes to pubs now. There won’t be anymore standing around with drinks talking with friends. In order to reduce the risk of contact people will need to sit and try to not move around much. Outdoor seating is still allowed but safe social distancing measures need to be maintained.
We touched upon this earlier but let’s take a look at apps in more detail because you'll likely be seeing more of them in bars, clubs, and pubs. Apps are strongly encouraged to help make the ordering process easier/ safer and you should also expect to pay with your credit/ debit card as well if you can’t use the app.
Music and Entertainment
Do you enjoy listening to some of your favourite tunes while at the pub or even doing a little dancing? Well if you said yes then bad news because you won’t be listening to or seeing any due to safety concerns. One of the main concerns for pubs was the need to ensure people don’t need to shout which means no music and well no dancing is pretty self-explanatory.
Food Glorious Food
Everyone enjoys a pub lunch, don’t they? Well, the good news is many pubs can still serve food but the way they do it will be different. Again, you will likely need to order with an app and you also shouldn’t expect cutlery or condiments on tables. In fact, when it comes to things like sauces, salt, and pepper these will often only be provided in sachets.
Name and Number
It might seem a little formal or even impolite to some but if you want to visit a pub, club, or bar then you will need to leave your name and contact details. All these establishments are being advised to assist with the NHS track and trace system and records will be kept for up to 21 days.
No More Than 30
Many people might be surprised by how empty their local pub or favourite bar looks when it reopens. But this is for a good reason as these establishments can’t have over 30 people indoors. Even if the venue in question is quite large and could accommodate bigger groups at the moment the flat 30 people maximum rule stands. This is designed to help reduce the contact between people when it comes to not just visiting the pub/ bar but also coming into contact with each other when leaving as well.
If you’ve been keeping up with the news about COVID-19 then you likely already know about some of the issues in regard to public toilets. But how are pubs and bars impacted by this? Well, the current guidelines urge establishments to be very cautious and use a “limited entry approach” with many establishments using a one in and one out approach.
Six is The Magic Number
If you planned on visiting the pub with all your friends or relatives you haven’t seen in a while then bad news because the maximum number of people is capped at six. And the guidelines also state that only two households of people should mix. This remains the case for outdoor establishments like beer gardens as well.
So, that is everything you need to know about the new guidelines and rules for pubs and bars in the UK. Things are different and likely will be for quite some time to come and it’s important you pay attention to these new rules and guidelines. Drink responsibly like you should (hopefully) have done in the past and have fun but remember safety first.