Coronavirus has changed just about every aspect of our lives. The vast majority of us are being smart and staying home as much as physically possible. The concept of traveling is, for now, only a memory and a long-term goal. So people are finding some ways to have some form of “travel” in their lives. But if they want to buy anything to help them with their future travels, they may have been doing it locally, at big box stores, since shippers like Amazon have long delays for anything considered non-essential.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), even that might change now, depending on where you live.
Business Insider reports that big box and other stores in certain areas of the country are being barred from selling nonessential items, in an attempt to get customers out of stores as quickly as possible.
Stores such as Walmart, Target, Costco, etc., are allowed to stay open because they sell groceries, medications and other items deemed “essential.” However, they also sell “nonessential” items such as clothing, electronics, sports equipment, etc. Stores have been noticing that customers come in and wind up browsing these “nonessential” items because they’re bored at home.
Of course, this browsing puts customers and store employees at risk for spreading or catching coronavirus because they’re congregating in select areas, and not social distancing. In some areas, storefronts that aren’t open because they’re considered “nonessential” (read: clothing or electronic stores, for example) have said it wasn’t fair that big box stores could stay open to sell essential items but also wind up selling the same non-essential items they can’t sell because they’ve been forced to close.
Vermont’s Agency of Commerce and Community Development began directing “big box” retailers to stop in-person sales of non-essential items in order to reduce the number of people coming into the stores.
Some state counties have also enacted similar mandates in order to stop consumers from spending any more time in these establishments than is necessary to get their essential items.
Some consumers applaud these efforts, realizing that safety and health are more important than a new soccer ball. Others, not so much. As quoted from Twitter in response to these mandates:
- So what if my microwave blows up during the quarantine?? Am I not supposed to have one?? (Mine’s fine but I’m sure it’s going to happen to someone.) ~kasey_n-landon
Of course, you can still order things online…they’ll just take a while. And some places let you order items from the big box stores and you can just pick them up.
But if you want to physically go into the store to buy your new microwave or luggage, it may not be an option right now, depending on where you live.
#stayhealthy #stayathome #washyourhands
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary