Although restrictions have been lifted, almost three-quarters (73 per cent) of Britons are still worried about visiting shops and cafés where no Covid-19 measures are in place, reveals a survey from Mitie.
More than half (53 per cent) of respondents to a survey of 5,000 British adults, undertaken by OnePoll in August, say they will only go into shops that have visible anti-Covid control.
Access to a regular flow of clean air is a high priority for more than half of adults (54 per cent), who declared they would be more comfortable spending time inside high street shops and cafés where there is increased air ventilation. And more than a quarter (28 per cent) would like to know that technology to reduce viruses from the air, such as UV light, to be installed.
In addition to clean air systems, over half (54 per cent of the sample wish to see a more rigorous cleaning regime in place and a similar number (52 per cent) want social distancing to continue in shops, and half (50 per cent) would want to see hand sanitiser available in all stores.
The survey also shows that consumers are not ready to give up face masks. Three in five (59 per cent) questioned plan to continue wearing masks when visiting stores and 45 per cent want shops to enforce a mask policy.
Other conditions that would offer peace of mind are better touch-point cleaning, which a third (36 per cent) want to see in shops and cafés, while a quarter (25 per cent) of the sample would like temperature checks on everyone using the building.
The survey indicates that investing in safety measures also makes sound business sense. Two-thirds (67 per cent) of respondents would look more favourably on a business that can show it is taking the virus seriously and is Covid-secure. And more than half (54 per cent) of them would choose to spend their money with businesses that can show they are maintaining Covid safety measures.
Such measures would entice a fifth of UK adults (22 per cent) to linger in a store. A compulsory mask policy, social distancing measures, more cleaning and visible air ventilation would all encourage shoppers to spend up to 30 minutes longer inside if they were installed.
Daniel Guest, chief operating officer at Mitie Technical Services, said: “By investing in measures like increased cleaning regimes and technology like UV light that can help kill viruses in the air, retail and hospitality businesses can keep their customers safe, prevent the spread of the virus, and give consumers the confidence to spend time on the high street.”
Mitie has advice on its website for businesses wishing to create a Covid-secure environment for customers.