Apple is reopening a handful of retail stores in the United States, CNBC reports.
Locations in Alabama, Alaska, Idaho, and South Carolina are set to reopen soon. Apple confirmed it’s resuming operations in these areas as early as next week. Customers can visit an Apple Store as normal, but they’re still encouraged to shop online first. Reopened locations are prioritizing repairs above sales, Apple explained. Some parts of the U.S. might be tallying a decrease in COVID-19 infections, but the risk remains far too high to welcome as many guests as possible into an Apple Store and other retail environments.
In an effort to protect staff and shoppers, Apple will rely on several measures. Apple plans to monitor the temperature of all people in its locations, and only a limited number of guests are allowed to enter at one time. Social distancing remains in effect, and Apple’s employees must wear face masks.
“We recommend, where possible, customers buy online for contactless delivery or in-store pickup,” Apple said in a statement.
Apple operates 271 retail stores in the U.S., according to CNBC. It closed both domestic and international locations, totaling 510 retail stores, in mid-March shortly after the coronavirus outbreak gained momentum. Locations outside the U.S. in Australia, Germany, and South Korea reopened already; however, Apple isn’t rushing to get its retail business back to full capacity – the majority of its retail stores remain closed.