As you might know, Walmart had to shorten its hours due to coronavirus regulations. Now, however, they are finally returning to normal! The store announced the changes just last week in a public statement.
Walmart’s New Rules
Of course, Walmart never shut down entirely and remained a popular spot to stock up on food and necessities during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, just like all other stores, it needed to follow strict restrictions. That required shorted store hours, as well as customers and staff wearing masks and protective gloves. While some of those policies will stay in place, Walmart officially changed its store hours on June 5. Now, the stores will open at 6 a.m. and close at 11 p.m.! Likewise, the pharmacy and vision center spots will return to the regular schedule on July 3.
“When the pandemic started to hit hard early last year, we restricted our shopping hours,” Dacona Smith, executive vice president and chief operating officer for Walmart U.S., said in a statement. “We said then that we would continue to stay very close to the best science and guidance around the virus and make business choices aimed at protecting the health and safety of our customers and associates. As COVID-19 cases leveled out, we expanded our closing time late last year, and now, with the number of fully vaccinated Americans growing higher every day, we believe we can adjust hours once again.”
In Addition To Longer Store Hours…
Walmart looks forward to a future where all Americans can shop without fear of COVID-19. In addition to the long working hours, Walmart has also made other important changes as Americans continue to vaccinate. For example, it will increase capacity by 20%. Furthermore, the fitting rooms will open up to customers again, and those vaccinated can walk around the store without masks. While it’s a massive step towards the normal experience while shopping, unvaccinated buyers must wear masks and comply with social distancing rules. The staff continues sanitizing shopping carts and using sneeze guards at every register.
That said, Walmart will follow all local rules, which will mean not all locations will return to normal hours. “As a company, we will continue to maintain our focus and will remain ready to react and adjust as needed in order to ensure we are doing our very best to help keep our customers, associates, and communities safe,” Smith added. Meanwhile, weekly senior hours (from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. on Tuesdays), will remain in place at all stores.
As you might imagine, Walmart is far from the only store adjusting to the “new normal.” Target will also loosen restrictions. Recently, Target announced customers and workers who are fully vaccinated don’t have to wear masks in the store anymore, and fitting rooms are reopen. “Fitting rooms are open at all Target stores,” the company’s website reads. “We’ll continue to frequently disinfect and clean our stores throughout the day, as we have throughout the pandemic, and have team members dedicated to high touch areas like fitting rooms.”
Hopefully we continue to see more movement forward!