Coronavirus update: 19th March 2020
Ikea is closing all of its UK & Ireland stores at 6pm on Friday 20th March 'as a precautionary measure against the ongoing risk of COVID-19', the retailer has confirmed.
'These are extraordinary times, and our absolute priority is to ensure the health and safety of our customers and co-workers,' said Peter Jelkeby, Country Retail Manager and Chief Sustainability Officer. 'We have listened carefully to them, to the advice of the UK and Ireland governments, and have been closely monitoring the situation as this evolves. This is the right decision for us to take at this point. We look forward to welcoming our customers back to our stores in the future.'
In regards to its employees, Ikea said: 'People are at the heart of the Ikea business and the retailer is committed to supporting its co-workers in the best possible way during this complex and fast-evolving situation.'
Earlier this week, Ikea put in place additional precautionary measures including the closure of its restaurants, cafes and bistros; enhanced cleaning routines; and the closure of its outside playground facilities in response to the ongoing pandemic and the UK government’s latest self-isolating and social distancing guidelines.
The Swedish home furnishings company previously announced the following changes to keep customers and co-workers safe and cared for. They were as follows:
1. Ikea will close its customer restaurants, bistros and cafes in every store. The Swedish Food Markets will remain open, but the Pick 'n Mix range will not be available.
2. External play areas will be temporarily closed so that Ikea can 'refocus cleaning resources elsewhere in the store'. However, the Småland play areas will remain open.
3. Ikea has implemented some 'new approaches to enable greater distancing between customers and co-workers.' These changes will be implemented in the Pax, Kitchen Planning, and payment areas. For kitchen measuring and kitchen installation, Ikea installers will connect with customers prior to the service taking place to assess if any precautions need to be taken.
4. Ikea is urging customers to use cashless payment where possible. Customers are reminded that Ikea accepts all major credit and debit cards, as well as Apple Pay and Android Pay.
5. To further enable social distancing, Ikea has also cancelled all upcoming events and workshops in the store until further notice.
6. Customers are reminded that they can shop online if preferable, where Ikea's full range is available to purchase on its website or via the app. 'You’ll be able to have our products delivered directly to you and, shortly, you will also be able to request a contact-free delivery,' Ikea confirms. Although, be warned – while shoppers are stockpiling in supermarkets, Ikea reveals they are experiencing 'high demand' online and, as a result, longer delivery times than normal are expected.
7. If you or someone in your household are self-isolating, Ikea is asking you to book a delivery slot after the isolation period has ended. If you already have a delivery scheduled during a period of self-isolation, Ikea is asking customers to reschedule.
8. Ikea has put an 'enhanced cleaning plan into action' with more frequent and deeper cleaning, particularly in the Småland play areas, and on trolleys and doors.
9. Hand washing facilities are available in every store for all customers and employees. Ikea is actively encouraging workers to take more regular breaks to wash their hands, and for customers to do the same.
10. Ikea continues to welcome customers to collect their order in stores and at collection points where the service is available, but in line with government advice, anyone with symptoms is asked to remain at home.
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The information in this story is accurate as of the publication date. While we are attempting to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, the situation surrounding the coronavirus pandemic continues to develop rapidly, so it's possible that some information and recommendations may have changed since publishing. For any concerns and latest advice, visit the World Health Organisation. If you're in the UK, the National Health Service can also provide useful information and support, while US users can contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
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