McDonald's says it will reopen 15 of its restaurants in Britain on May 13 but has no plans yet to reopen any outlets in Ireland.
The fast food giant, which shut all 3,650 of its branches across Ireland and the UK on March 23, plans a heavily pared-down menu and temperature checks on arriving staff. Initially the outlets will provide food only by home delivery.
Today’s move follows field-testing at a lone McDonald’s outlet on a new regime to keep staff and customers at low risk of virus transmission.
“We will return with much smaller teams in our restaurants and as a result will be returning with a limited menu. This will support social distancing in our kitchens, whilst still providing many of McDonald’s iconic menu items,” said Paul Pomroy, chief executive of McDonald’s UK and Ireland.
McDonald’s said in a statement it had “no definitive date” for reopening any of the 95 restaurants in the Republic of Ireland or the 30 in Northern Ireland. Together they employ more than 8,500 people across the island.
Mr Pomroy said McDonald’s would announce the locations of the 15 reopening outlets next week. Its deliveries there will be provided by Uber Eats using what he called a “contact-free collections and drop offs” system.
Among measures being employed at the 15 locations:
“When we return it will be different as we all adjust to this new normal,” Mr Pomroy said.
“Slowly but safely we will return to towns and cities across the UK and Ireland.”