The rules and issues around the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve and information changes consistently. Please take note of when our content was written and always go to the sources we’ve provided for the most current guidance.

With information from the health experts in BC, here are some ways you can make your shopping and paying experience safer.

Cash payments during a pandemic

It’s no secret that money can carry germs and bacteria. But are cash and coins a risk for COVID-19 transmission? The BC Centre for Disease Control says that while there are no documented COVID-19 cases related to cash and coin payment, it’s important to clean your hands frequently if you deal with money.

5 payment tips for shopping safely during COVID-19

  1. Contact the store ahead of time to find out if you can pre-pay (to limit your time in store) and get your receipt via email
  2. Remember to ask about the return and refund policy. Can you return items through the mail?
  3. Pick up your items quickly and maintain physical distancing when interacting with staff. Remember the guidelines around physical distancing.
  4. Try to use touch-free payment methods when possible, such as debit cards, credit cards, or mobile phones.
  5. If you don’t need a receipt, don’t take one.

Did you like this? You might like these posts too!

How to make the most of your trips to the grocery store.
Handling cash payments safely: what we know right now
Do you use a digital wallet? You should read this
COVID-19: returns, refunds, and exchanges

Look through all of our COVID-19 related information on our website.

Where do we fit in?

Yes, we are a provincial regulator. We are responsible for some very specific transactions in BC. We aren’t experts on COVID-19. We won’t – and shouldn’t – ever give medical or legal advice. But we are in a unique circumstance right now and we want to help people navigate the current reality. We don’t have all the answers, but we will do our best to share information from reliable sources, put it in ways that are easy to digest and understand, provide referrals and help you navigate this situation.

About Consumer Protection BC

We are responsible for regulating specific industries and certain consumer transactions in British Columbia. If your concern is captured under the laws we enforce, we will use the tools at our disposal to assist you. If we can’t help you directly, we will be happy to provide you with as much information as possible. Depending on your concern, another organization may be the ones to speak to; other times, court or legal assistance may be the best option. Explore our website at