We have all received emails from salons, fitness centers, and restaurants in the past week letting us know that they are closing for social distancing. On the one hand, we all understand the importance of social distancing and how it can help us stay as healthy possible. On the other hand, we want to take care of the people who have been taking care of us.
While we have no control over the virus, we do have the opportunity to make choices that will help small businesses and independent professionals stay in business. If your income has remained steady during this time and you have the ability to help, here are a few things you can do to support the businesses and professionals you love.
Hair Stylists, Estheticians, Nail Techs, Salons and Spas
If you had an appointment booked between now and April 30, pay for your service on the day of your appointment. When you are able to reschedule your appointment, offer to pay the full amount the day of your service. If your stylist refuses to let you pay in full, offer a gracious tip.
Ask if you can purchase hair care and skin care products directly from them. Would they offer shipping or porch delivery so you don’t have to leave the house?
Buy a gift certificate or gift card that you can use in the future when businesses have recovered from social distancing.
Personal Trainers, Fitness Instructors, Coaches and Studios (yoga, Pilates, Barre, Cycling, and Fitness)
If you were training regularly with a personal trainer, ask them if they can offer instruction through FaceTime, Skype or Zoom to help you stay motivated and keep up with your workouts.
Offer to pay your trainer for any sessions you had scheduled between March 15-31. This will help them finish this month with income they were counting on prior to social distancing.
Ask your studio if you can pre-pay for a package of sessions that won’t expire. Use these sessions when social distancing is lifted, then resume your normal way of booking and paying for sessions.
Ask your studio if you can buy a gift card now and redeem it for sessions when they re-open.
Purchase training equipment for home directly from your studio or fitness professional. Many studios and fitness professionals sell equipment or have affiliations with fitness brands. Ask them to ship or deliver so you don’t have to leave your home.
If you had photos taken recently by a professional photographer, contact them and order quality prints for your home. Your photographer can help you create a beautiful photo wall. Their expertise in choosing sizes will make a beautiful display in your home.
If you were planning to have family photos, baby photos, or personal branding photos taken between now and April 30, book your session and offer to pay a deposit on the session.
If you had a photo session scheduled between now and April 30, pay for the session in full and re-schedule a date after April 30.
Order food from local restaurants as often as your budget allows.
Support businesses that offer curbside pickup or home delivery. Many restaurants are offering free home delivery with a minimum order purchase.
Purchase gift cards from restaurants that had to close completely and use them when they are able to re-open.
Some restaurants are offering food and supply boxes for pick up. Check your favorites to see if they have this service available for you.
Order wine and beer through your restaurant when you call in food orders. For wine orders, the bottle needs to be opened, then corked, bagged and sealed before they can give it to you. Beer can be distributed in unopened containers.
Music Teachers, Tutors, and Art Studios
Ask if they can offer instruction through FaceTime, Skype, or Zoom during social distancing.
Offer to pay your teacher for any sessions you had scheduled between March 15-30. This will help them finish this month with income they were counting on prior to social distancing.
Interior Designers and Contractors
If you were in the middle of a home project when social distancing hit, reach out to your designer and contractor. Ask them how you can work together to keep the project moving forward during social distancing. Consultations and product selection can be accomplished by phone, email, FaceTime, or Zoom. Products and materials can be ordered now and delivered to your home. Being proactive will allow work to resume when social distancing is lifted.
Pay your designer and contractors for consultation hours and materials to help them continue with cash flow during social distancing.