One of the first types of businesses impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic was restaurants. As health and government officials learned more about how the virus is spread, dine-in restaurants were quickly identified as a potential threat to public safety.

The impact of COVID-19 on restaurants was tangible. As of March 25:

  • 3% of restaurants had already permanently closed.
  • 44% had temporarily closed.
  • 11% said they anticipated closing within the next month.

Many restaurants, however, have adapted, offering alternative options to dining in. Restaurants with curbside pickup and home delivery options in particular are thriving.

Thryv user Dinners Done Right made several adjustments to their business model in light of the pandemic.

  • They halted the self-service parts of their homemade meal service, and they transitioned all meal prep to staff only.
  • The business began offering curbside pickup so customers didn’t have to leave their cars.
  • They set up a delivery service, even offering to travel outside their typical geographic limits to accommodate customers in need.

Here’s what they say about the safety of their services on their website:


They even sent an email to customers about the new offerings:


How safe is curbside pickup?

As curbside pickup gains popularity among restaurants and consumers, health officials are still learning about the virus and how it’s spread. The CDC recently advised that COVID-19 is not solely spread by person-to-person contact. It can also be spread by contact with contaminated surfaces or objects.

“It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads, but we are still learning more about this virus.”

So, many are wondering if curbside pickup and even no-contact delivery options are even safe?

In short, they can be. Learn more about curbside pickup safety and best practices.

How to Make Curbside Pickup Safer

There are a few steps you can take to make curbside pickup as safe as possible during the pandemic.

  • Have staff maintain the largest distance possible between themselves and customers.
  • Do not lean into vehicles to speak to customers.
  • Avoid handing anything directly to customers.
  • Instead of passing food through the driver’s window, ask customers to roll down the passenger side window, and place food in the seat.
  • Limit touching of shared surfaces, like POS devices and receipts. Offer online and mobile payment options, so customers can pay from their own devices instead.
  • Continue frequent handwashing practices.
  • Reduce the number of staff members on site at any one time to the minimum you need to keep your operation running.
  • Assign each staff member to one job to limit the possibility of cross contamination as much as possible.