Will the self-serve soda machine and its convenient, unlimited refills become a relic of the past, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic?
For the time being, McDonald’s will scrap customer-operated soda fountains because of concerns about keeping customers safe.
The Wall Street Journal obtained a 59-page memo that said, as part of new procedures for reopening, “beverage bars will remain closed or sectioned off and staffed in restaurants.”
The change applies to 14,000 McDonald’s locations around the U.S.
The memo noted that the beverage machines are difficult to clean; one franchise owner quoted by the newspaper said he would rather shut the machine down than deal with the hassle.
Yahoo Finance reported that McDonald’s planned to make 50 changes in its processes to ensure social distancing and stronger hygiene measures.
Other changes include keeping play areas closed, using contactless payments, adding protective panels on counters and drive-thru and putting up signs to encourage social distancing.