After two long months, new and used car showrooms in England will start to reopen from June 1, 2020, which is a much-needed boost and welcome news for all those involved with the motor trade industry.
The announcement recently made by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, gives motor trade dealers the opportunity to open their doors to customers if they can follow the Covid guidelines set out by the UK government.
The Prime Minister said: “I want to give the retail sector notice, so they too can get ready. So, I can announce that it is our intention to allow outdoor markets to reopen from June 1st, subject to all premises being made Covid secure, as well as car showrooms.”
The government said that the risk of transmission of the Coronavirus is lower in outdoor spaces, Mr Johnson added, “Car showrooms often have significant outdoor space and it is generally easier to apply social distancing”.
During the lockdown period many dealerships have been trying to sell vehicles online using click-and-collect services, so now showrooms will be meeting their customers face to face again, how will they ensure our safety?
Vehicle showrooms will be required to display a certificate showing that they are managing the risk of coronavirus by complying with all the government guidance required.
Hand sanitiser will be freely available for everyone to be able to wash their hands. All magazines and brochures will be removed to help avoid any transmission of the virus. Tea, coffee, and all other refreshments will also not be available to ensure customer hygiene and safety.
Dealerships will be required to enforce strict social distancing on the premises. Like many businesses already back open and trading again, new one-way systems will be put in place around showrooms and forecourts, all vehicles will also be kept locked to stop customers from entering them. Signs will be erected around the site to remind people to keep two metres apart.
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The advice to keep two metres away from each other means that customers will need to test drive new and used cars alone.
Test drives will most likely still be allowed, but the motor trade dealer may not accompany you when you take a vehicle out for a spin, this is subject to the terms and conditions enforced by their motor trade insurance policy, Trade plates may also need to be visible. The vehicle will also need to be thoroughly cleaned before and after each customer test drive.
There will still be a number of dealerships offering customers a click-and-collect service allowing for you to safely browse, research and buy online.
Many manufacturers and showrooms offer full contactless vehicle purchasing, just order and pay for the make and model online and it can then be delivered straight to your home.
Finally, it is advisable to contact your local motor trade dealer directly to gain more information about the vehicle and all financing options available before placing any order online.