Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for retail, tourism and hospitality customers

Guidance for customers on how the retail experience in shops, tourism and hospitality businesses is changing due to coronavirus.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for retail, tourism and hospitality customers
Tourism and hospitality

Tourism and hospitality

Your experience using commercial services is changing due to coronavirus. Businesses within the tourism and hospitality sector, following government guidance, are working to ensure the safety of customers and colleagues. This good work is supported with relevant guidelines from trade bodies and wider industry, but the successful return to business will be highly dependent on positive customer behaviours. The guidance below is intended to be used by customers and can also help to inform the signage used in tourism and hospitality businesses.

Customers should:

  • keep up to date with and follow Scottish Government advice on when it is safe to travel and visit services provided by the tourism and hospitality sector – they may not all be open at the same time or in the same phase of the Route Map.
  • keep up to date with travel advice from Transport Scotland - including on face coverings
  • refrain from travel or visiting tourism and hospitality services if you have symptoms of illness or if you are in the shielding group, or others in your household are unwell or symptomatic – please check with NHS Inform if you are unsure or need further advice.
  • pay attention to and follow all instructions and advice that is provided by businesses and their staff – this is for your safety and that of other customers and staff
  • provide your contact details when using hospitality services to support Scotland’s Test and Protect service
  • check with businesses in advance on any requirements for booking systems they have put in place to manage limitations on capacity to comply with physical distancing requirements – this will avoid both a wasted trip if you are unable to be admitted and pressure on transport systems
  • stay in your own household group, observing physical distancing guidelines at all times, and do not let children wander off and mix with others
  • keep your hands clean - use the hand hygiene products that are provided for your use, or use your own, before or after you touch any common areas – businesses will also be doing this but regular hand hygiene is good practice and reduces the risk of transmission
  • catch coughs and sneezes in a tissue and dispose of any tissues into a bin and wash hands immediately
  • if an individual does not have tissues to hand, they should catch coughs and sneezes in the crook of their elbow
  • exercise caution if crowds are gathering at any bottleneck points – this should not happen as businesses will have plans in place to manage this risk, but always be mindful to avoid crowds as this presents a higher risk of transmission
  • go prepared – you may wish to prepare and take your own food and drink on trips as it may not be possible to purchase these items on site – if in doubt check with businesses in advance on what services are open
  • please ensure that you are considerate to staff that are providing guidance and advice, and abide by their instructions.  Please be courteous and understand that staff are working in challenging circumstances.
  • consult the up to date advice on wearing face coverings as this may change in line with developing health advice
  • bear in mind that some people may find these measures more difficult to adhere to than others e.g. those with sight loss, autism, learning disabilities, dementia, or other communication or mobility needs. Please be considerate of them, respecting and accommodating differences by giving way when you are out and about.
  • be prepared to show ID for age-restricted purchases and possible removal of face coverings if requested. Staff are facing increased pressure at this time regarding age-verification, with face-coverings recommended for use.
  • abusive behaviour will not to be tolerated and at its worst it could constitute criminality.

1m zone in hospitality

If you are using hospitality services, such as pubs, restaurants and cafes, the premises may be operating within the 1m physical distancing exemption. This will be made clear through signage as you enter. It means additional mitigating measures will be in place to reduce the risks of operating at 1m as oppose to 2m. You must follow the guidance and instructions of staff at all times and be mindful to maintain your own distance of 1m from others out-with your own household. This is to keep you and others safe and persistent non-compliance by the public may lead to the premises having to close.

We are clear that it will take businesses, employees and customers to each play their own part in making responsible choices to allow us to make progress in reopening the tourism and hospitality sector safely. At all times always put safety first.

First published: 10 Jul 2020 Last updated: 10 Jul 2020 -