Why Shopping At Macy's Will Be Totally Different Now

It might have been a while since any of us have set foot in a department store, but that's about to change thanks to a decision by Macy's to open their doors (gradually) over the next few weeks. But don't expect things to go back to the way they used to be, because the department store chain need to make sure shoppers and staff are protected against COVID-19.

The new rules at Macy's include no more ear piercings. No more "spa services." No more makeup samples to play with (but looking is fine). Over in lingerie, bra fittings will be suspended; in the men's section, dress shirts cannot be tried on in-store; fragrances will be handed out on those rectangular strips of cardboard (known as blotters). Employees will also be expected to wear masks and undergo "wellness checks" (does this mean get their temperatures taken? The definition is unclear) before starting work (via ABC).

Department stores will adhere to the same social distancing rules as groceries

Like their counterparts in food retail, Macy's will put up plexiglass shields at its checkout counters. They will also be offering contactless curbside deliveries and pick-ups for people who may want to shop but have chosen to remain at home. Customers and guests will also be asked to continue practicing social distancing.

Macy's has already reopened 68 stores in Georgia, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas, so we'll actually get a glimpse of what pandemic shopping might look like. But if these extra precautions still don't convince you to break your no-shopping streak (at a brick-and-mortar store, that is), you're not alone. Macy's chief executive Jeff Gennette says they expect between 15-20 percent of their typical business at first, and they hope to go from there. "We'll see how they [the customers] respond, and based on that, we'll be a lot smarter," Gennette said (via New York Times).