The “health” or fitness of a person is IRRELEVANT! Fit or fat, young or old, you can STILL catch, carry or DIE from C-19!! True, people with weaker immune systems (typically the elderly and those with conditions that have already taxed their immunity) are at a greater risk of dying, but the YOUNG AND FIT can still die from C-19 (and have already!!!) There is no “one” set of symptoms for C-19, it can effect everyone differently. Therefore, if REI is going to start doing business in person again, be it “curb-side” or otherwise, accepted social distancing and hygiene standards MUST remain in place WITH mask requirements for both customer AND worker.

NOTE: But please, do NOT use the N-95, or even KN-95 (the Chinese version), masks or surgical masks! They are STRICTLY for front-line healthcare workers!! Besides, maybe 9 out of 10 don’t even know how to PROPERLY put it on, take it off, use it, or dispose of it!!! A cloth mask (Buff, bandana, etc.) is just fine. And as I said before, I suggest lining the inside with a tissue. When you feel it get moist, replace the tissue).

Also, REI has ALWAYS had the ability to do “curbside” service! Like virtually everyone, they simply panicked, having not informed/educated themselves on the FACTS of C-19 (to be fair, it’s unfortunately the nature of virtually everyone to panic and hoard toilet paper, I’m sure the early caveman did the same thing when faced with the “unknown”). However, if REI is going to finally calm down and start doing business at the stores (in line with the Governor's permission), here’s my suggestion how…

First, continue to do business online, but as to any virtual outfitting tool, etc. (via chat, phone, whatever), prominently feature that and other options on your home page.

Second, C-19 is NOT airborne (like the measles and chickenpox viruses or the bacteria that causes tuberculosis), it is spread primarily through droplets (of saliva or mucus from coughing or sneezing) and, to a lesser extent, “aerosolizing” (even smaller “droplets” carried on the breath). It’s the coughing or sneezing that prompted the 6-feet/2-meter social distancing standard, your breath hovers in front of your face for a few moments before wafting to the ground, UNLESS there is a draft/breeze that carries it a little further. So as long as people stay separated at the door, and in line, this should be fine.

Third, you can’t be infected by C-19 from sitting on a toilet seat or otherwise just having it on your hands/skin, it’s when you have it on your hands/fingers AND touch your eyes, nose or mouth that you infect yourself! Yes, they don’t know how long C-19 can live outside the body. On a hard, smooth, non-porous surface (like glass, metal or plastic), it could be hours or days. That said, accepted hygiene standards should suffice, for workers, perhaps gloves as well.

Fourth, NO MASK, NO SERVICE! I doubt anyone will have a problem with that, but please, no N-95 masks (or KN-95, the Chinese version), they are STRICTLY for front-line healthcare workers!! (there is STILL a shortage!!!) As I stated early on, a Buff, bandana, etc. is fine, but I would also suggest lining the front with a tissue, when you feel the tissue getting moist, replace the tissue.

Fifth, at the store, a wide table (or two) at the door (or if you’re still panicky, a makeshift barrier with an opening) should do as a service counter. Customers would pay online with the “pick up at store” option. At the store/table, the customer would show the confirmation number (and ID if you insist), the worker would fetch the bag/box with the order and place it on the table for the customer. Done.

Also, I understand REI not wanting to deal with returns right away, but REI NEEDS to deal with returns right away! I suggest you have an assortment of boxes or plastic bags near the table/door and have the customer drop the item/s in, then the worker can seal it (or, just have the cutomer show the item and toss it in the trash, whatever). Done.