Malls are now opening during the pandemic, but should you really be going?

On the list of businesses recently reopening during the coronavirus are multiple shopping malls. But with coronavirus infection rates still rising in many states, there are a few things you might want to weigh before heading out for a shopping trip. 

Simon Property Group, the largest operator of shopping malls in the U.S. is reopening 49 locations amid the coronavirus. They will reportedly be offering masks and hand sanitizing packets upon request to guests, as well as temperature readings taken by an infrared thermometer. Security staff will also be looking to ensure patrons are observing social distancing guidelines and maintaining six feet of distance. 

Other malls may not offer the same resources, so it’s best to check in with your local mall to decide if you want to visit should they open. In the case of folks returning to malls, experts say the density of people inside can be difficult to manage. Some retailers inside large malls are also limiting the number of people who can be allowed inside at once, which could mean ending up in a line. 

Department stores such as JCPenney; Bed, Bath and Beyond; Kohl’s; and Macy’s are also reopening, with locations both in and out of malls. 

Can I go shopping at my local mall?

After checking to see whether the mall nearest you is open, consider your own risk level when it comes to COVID-19. If you are in any of the groups identified by the CDC as high-risk, it’s likely a better idea to stay home and try to make use of online shopping or pickup options. If you aren’t and haven’t been ill for at least two weeks and haven’t come into contact with anyone else who has, it really depends on your comfort level in situations where there are likely to be lots of people. 

Experts are still recommending everyone stay home as long as they can during the pandemic. 

Sources: New York Times, CNBC, CNN, Washington Post, CDC

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