Amid ‘social distancing’ during COVID-19 crisis, Starbucks moves to ‘to-go’ only

Coronavirus

FILE – This June 26, 2019 file photo shows a Starbucks sign outside a Starbucks coffee shop in downtown Pittsburgh. Starbucks Corp. reports financial earns on Wednesday, Oct. 30. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

(WIAT) — As businesses remain open but are changing daily operations during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, Starbucks is switching to a less personal model of serving coffee in the United States and Canada stores.

Starting Sunday, March 15, Starbucks will be moving to a “to go” model in all company-owned stores in the U.S. and Canada for at least two weeks.

“As we all know, the situation with COVID-19 is extremely dynamic and we will continue to review the facts and science and make the proactive decisions necessary to protect our partners, customers and communities,” wrote Rossann Williams, executive vice president and president, U.S. company-operated business and Canada.

Here is how Starbucks will be operating as of Sunday.

  • We are pausing the use of all seating, including both the café and patio areas
  • Customers can still walk up and order at the counter, through the “order ahead” feature in the Starbucks app, via the drive-thru and use delivery
  • We will have a modified condiment bar in all stores
  • You may see modified “order ahead” handoff areas on a store-by-store basis
  • Temporary closures for company-owned stores in high-social gathering locations, such as malls and university campuses
  • Temporary store closures or reduced operating hours in communities with high clusters of COVID – 19 cases 

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