For those of you who have been stuck at home unable to get some critical remote working furniture delivered, there is hope. No longer will you have to wait for a delivery slot in almost a month's time, because Ikea is reopening the majority of its shops on 1st June. In England and Northern Ireland, anyway.
The news was announced today, and because the company isn't stupid enough not to take social distancing seriously there are some serious caveats involved. The first is that not all Ikeas are re-opening, because the smaller branches (like Planning Studios and London collection points) will be staying closed. Also the Coventry store, which was due to close this summer anyway, is staying closed for good.
There are rules in store as well, like the fact children's play areas and the restaurant are both staying closed. If you've got a hankering for the meatballs, and don't fancy making them yourself, the little takeaways at the end will be open offering some hot food for you to leave with. You're also only allowed in if you're shopping by yourself, though there are exceptions that let people come in with carers or one of their children. But only one of those, for obvious reasons. Like the fact kids have no place in Ikea anyway.
Obviously there will be queues outside the shop, a one way system on the inside, extra cleaning is taking place, hand sanitiser stations will be distributed throughout each shop, and you're not allowed to pay with cash. Though who is paying with cash at Ikea anyway? There are also reduced opening hours, so you can only go between 10 am to 8pm Monday to Saturday, and 11am to 5pm on Sunday (except in Belfast which is noon until 6pm).
Ikea has all those rules outlined on its new reopening page, as well as a full list of the Ikea branches that are reopening: Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Croydon, Gateshead, Exeter, Greenwich, Lakeside, Leeds, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Norwich Order & Collection Point, Nottingham, Reading, Sheffield, Southampton, Tottenham, Warrington, and Wembley.