We wanted to give you an update on our business operations during this challenging time for our country and the world.
The health and well being of you, our customers, your families and our employees are our biggest concern at this time. Following on from the Government advice and as we do not usually have more than 1 or 2 customers in the shop at any one time we will continue to stay open and operate the best we can.
However, to ensure that we can minimise any possible contact and risk of infection, we will change our interaction with customers visiting the shop in the following ways:
Keep at least 2 metres apart while dealing with you
We have hand sanitiser available as you enter and leave the shop
We will clean all common touched surfaces such as door handles and stair rails regularly during the day
We will clean/sanitise hand grips/saddles and other surfaces of your bike before receiving it or handing back to you
- Due to social distancing (keeping 2 metres apart) we are not able to offer bike fitting at this current time
In the short term we do not expect any issues with our supply chain at this point in time. However, as this situation continues, we may experience some disruption to supply and services that may affect the delivery dates of products they make and/or assemble here. Please bear with us on this as we are trying to mitigate things as best we can.
The scientific advice also says that fresh air is good for you and what better way to get it and also keep your distance from others is take a bike ride.
We’re so lucky to work in a field that brings so much to the world. Who can argue with the benefits of fresh air, vigorous exercise, and the freedom and joy that bicycling can give?
Good health to you, and may all of your bike rides be glorious.Regards
Pete, Rob and the Team.
Association of Cycle Traders Covid-19 Guidance
GUIDANCE FOR BICYCLE SHOPS STAYING OPEN
Following the announcements made by the UK government on 23rd March 2020, bicycle shops have been made an exception to the forced business closures. Further information on this announcement can be found within this document here.
The ACT welcomes this decision as we believe that bike shops, as well as cycling in general, can play a key role in tackling this pandemic, in ways such as:
- Providing a lower-risk option for key workers to get to and from work
- Supporting key workers using bicycles for deliveries
- Providing a safer form of exercise (as long as social distancing measures are kept), which benefits both physical and mental health
Bike shops that are to remain open must ensure a distance of two meters between customers and shop assistants, and only let people enter the shop in small groups to ensure that spaces are not crowded. Other measures such as queue control are also required.
It is up to each retailer to decide whether they are to stay open or not. First and foremost please consider your own safety and the safety of your staff before choosing to stay open.
For those retailers that choose to stay open, The ACT has put together this guidance document to help with continuing with business and remaining safe at the same time.
Minimise the risk of virus spread and infection
- Limit the number of customers in your store at any one time. This can be done by locking the door and having customers knock to enter, or by operating an appointment system.
- Ensure social distancing measures are kept while in store. A distance of 2m should be kept between all staff and customers at all times. This should also include receiving and handing bikes over as part of a repair or service – it might be an idea to exchange bikes outside where possible, as well as wiping bikes down with antibacterial wipes or spray after being handled.
- Social distancing should also be kept while queueing. The same distance of 2m should applied. The ACT have provided a poster that retailers can print out to pot on display in their stores. This can be found here.
- Try and keep to contactless payments where possible. Card contactless payments can be made for transactions up to £30. There is no limit on phone payment apps such as Apple Pay or Google Pay. The ACT have provided a poster that retailers can print out to pot on display in their stores. This can be found here.
- Increase the amount of cleansing of the shop. The retail areas and workshops of your shop, especially all contact points such as doors, handles and surfaces, should be cleaned regularly and after every time they are touched.
- Continue to follow NHS guidelines. The guidelines found here need to be followed, including but not limited to washing hands regularly and covering a cough or a sneeze with a tissue (and disposing of the tissue immediately) or your sleeve.
Consider temporarily adapting your business
It may be an idea to adapt the way your business operates to reduce contact with customers further, whiles still providing essential services. For example:
- Continuing with reduced services and staff;
- Managing the retail side of your business online, with customers buying through your website and collecting in store.
- Managing the workshop side of your business on an appointment only basis.
- Delivering and collecting bicycles to and from customers’ homes.
- Prioritising key workers;
- Offering servicing and repair priority to key workers, such as NHS staff and food delivery riders.
- Providing offers and discounts to key workers, which may or may not include free servicing.
Messages for customers and those looking to cycle
It is important that customers are aware of the measures you are putting in place so that they can follow them.
- Inform your customers of updates and the measures in place. You should contact your customers, either via email or through your social media channels, of the measure you have in place regarding social distancing. It is also worth updating them on opening times if these are different to usual.
- Put up signage in key places. If you put in place any measures that prevent people just walking in, as suggested above, then it’s a good idea to put a poster on the front door making customers aware of this. It’s also recommended to put up signage in store to remind people of social distancing, i.e. staying 2m apart. Posters you can print off can be found here and here.
Customers looking to use their bikes during this period should be responsible.
- Encourage customers to cycle responsibly. This includes only cycling when travelling to and from work, to shop for necessities or to exercise once a day.
- Remind customers not to cycle in groups. Everyone should be avoiding social gatherings, and this includes group rides. If using cycling to exercise this should be done alone. If choosing to ride with those you live with, then a 2m distance should be kept between each other as a minimum.
To keep up with the latest updates and news, please regularly check The ACT’s website here.
COVID-19 OPERATIONAL ADVICE FOR MOBILE MECHANICS
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement last night in which he stated non-essential businesses and premises must now close, further information regarding bicycle shops has now been published.
As bicycle shops are considered an exception to the measures and can remain open for business, it follows that mobile mechanics would also be included as an exception from our understanding.
You can read the Government guidance here.
The ACT has made the following recommendations for mobile mechanics staying open.
Adopt a contactless model
Following Government advice, you should eradicate all forms of contact between yourself and the customer and maintain a two metre distance at all times. Collections and deliveries should take place as follows:
- When arriving at a customer’s address maintain a two metre distance from the door and call them to alert them that you are outside. Failing this, ring the doorbell and then step back to the two metre distance.
- The customer can then bring their bike outside the house and leave it in a suitable place before stepping back inside the house or to a two metre distance away.
- You should then handle the bike wearing gloves and disinfect the entire bike- paying particular attention to contact points such as the handlebar, brakes, gears etc. – before loading it into your method of transport.
- Again, call the customer when you are outside or ring the doorbell before stepping back to a two metre distance.
- Disinfect the bike wearing gloves to make it as safe as possible for your customer to handle.
- Leave the bike in a suitable place where the customer is able to collect it while maintaining the two metre distance.
- All employees should be wearing disposable gloves in the workshop and whenever handling bikes.
- You should remind all employees to wash their hands for 20 seconds more frequently and catch coughs and sneezes in tissues.
- Frequently clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are touched regularly, using your standard cleaning products.
Avoid card-not-present fraud
- cardholder’s name as it appears on the card
- card expiration date (month, year) as it appears on the card
- billing address
- card security code
- phone number and/or email address
- account number