Eastern Ontatio Health Unit / Bureau de santé de l'Ontario

Shopping Etiquette

Stores are keeping up with new information and carefully changing how they operate to provide services that protect customers, employees and their families. A section 22 order is currently in effect to provide additional measures to operate safely for owners and operators of multi-department retail and grocery stores including pharmacies. Many services continue to be offered online. If you must go out to shop or pick-up essentials, follow all public health precautions such as masking, hand sanitizing and physical distancing. Consider limiting your trips or going during non-peak hours.

Shoppers must be mindful of their shopping and check-out behaviours and follow the store's instructions.

  • Follow store signs.
    • Stores may be staggering the number of people entering the store at the same time.
    • Stores may have designed aisles to become one-way, with markings on the floor.
    • There may be markings on the floor near the check-out to guide you in maintaining your distance.
    • Listen to the instructions of staff. They have been trained on precautions.
  • Shop alone.
    • This allows for fewer people in the store and easier physical distancing.
  • Have a detailed list.
    • Organize your list by aisle if you always shop at the same store. This will limit your time in the store and the traffic within the store.
  • Understand that certain products may be less available.
    • Take only what you need.
    • Get enough supplies so that if you or someone in your household becomes ill, you have what you need for 2 weeks.
  • Shop with your eyes.
    • Avoid touching items that you do not intend to buy.
  • Understand that it takes longer to get through the cash in order to allow for physical distancing.
    • Some stores may close every second cash in order to allow for better physical distancing.
    • Wait your turn before loading the conveyor belt.
    • After placing your items on the conveyor belt, move to the end of the conveyor belt. Do not wait in front of or near the cashier.
  • If the store allows you to use your own reusable bags, make sure they are clean.
    • Some stores may only allow staff to pack items using store-provided plastic bags.
  • Use tap to pay if you can.
    • This will reduce the surfaces you touch and avoid money exchanges.

Eastern Ontatio Health Unit / Bureau de santé de l'Ontario