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Shisha, buffets remain banned but Egypt's restaurants to reopen 'very soon': Chamber of Tourism

Egypt has reopened its economy, with restaurants set to follow this month

Ahram Online , Thursday 4 Jun 2020
Cairo restaurant
A file photo of a restaurant in AlHussein area (Photo : Reuters)

Egypt’s Chamber of Tourism said on Thursday that the government will issue a decision “very soon this month” to reopen restaurants and cafeterias with strict new safety regulations.

Shisha smoking, open buffets and chidren’s areas will be banned, however, and workforce levels in restaurants will be limited to 50 percent.

According to a statement from the body, there will be periodic inspections to make sure that restaurants are complying with the regulations.

The chamber also stated that restaurants hoping to resume work must apply to the chamber with a plan in accordance with the government’s precautions to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Restaurant dining services have been suspended in Egypt since March as part of strict regulations in the wake of the spread of the pandemic, although they have been allowed to continue offering takeout and delivery services.

The government has this month begun reopening suspended facilities and businesses, and is expected to review the daily 8pm curfew and other restrictive measures next week.

It is looking to get back to normal starting from the second half of June, according to cabinet spokesman Nader Saad, speaking earlier this week.

Restaurant precautions

According to the chamber’s statement, restaurants will be required to do the following:

· Provide hand sanitisers for guests at the entrance.
· Avoid crowding at the entrance and exits.
· Organize a waiting list and make online or telephone reservations.
· Measure the temperature of guests at the entrance and of the staff daily before work.
· Provide periodic sanitisation inside the restaurant.
· Provide sanitisation of things like door knobs and taps.
· Provide good indoor ventilation and periodically clean the air conditioners’ filters.
· Avoid crowding in restrooms.
· Ban open buffet service and depend mainly on set menus.
· Close children’ areas.
· Only have 50 percent of staff working.
· Leave not less than two metres between tables and 1 metre between every person, and only have four chairs maximum at family tables.
· Provide one-use cutlery to guests as an option.
· Provide tissues and sanitisers on tables.
· Provide delivery all day and all week.
· Not allow shisha or parties.
· Ensure staff have gloves, masks and sanitisers.
· Not hire the elderly or people suffering from chronic diseases.
· Make staff aware of all the basic protection precautions against the coronavirus.
· Inform the authorities as soon as a case of coronavirus appears among the staff.
· Managers must sign a commitment to all these regulations.

Violations of these regulations will see the manager’s license revoked and the establishment closed.

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