Just because the COVID-19 situation in Japan has us staying home doesn't mean we don't get hungry. Which means it's time for zero contact drop-off!
It's official: according to Japanese Prime Minister Abe's announcement on April 7th, Tokyo, and other major metropolitan areas around Japan, are going into lockdown. We're staying home, and staying safe, but unfortunately... also staying hungry. So, what's a girl to do when there's nothing much appealing at home, but leaving the house carries its own risks? Well, order pizza of course!
"But Sophia!" you might be thinking, "isn't interacting with a delivery person just as risky?" And while interacting up close with one person probably isn’t as bad as sitting down and eating pizza in a crowded restaurant, that is an understandable demerit to the whole eating pizza idea. Which is why, here at JAPANKURU, we were pretty intrigued when we heard about the latest undertaking from Domino’s Japan.
Allow Me to Present to You: Zero Contact Drop-Off
In response to concerns about the virus spreading even through food delivery services, Domino’s Pizza in Japan has become extra-vigilant about hygiene, and put some new practices into place. The brand new page on their website
explains that they’re minimizing risk through a variety of means, including safety measures like having staff record their temperatures every day. What I was interested in, however, was the most humorously illustrated safety measure of all.
- Image Source: Domino's Official Website
(Honestly, Domino’s, whoever's doing these illustrations of happy delivery people is killing it.)
As the website explains, the Zero Contact Drop-Off service is a new offering from Dominos. At the customer’s request, the delivery person will place the order in front of the door (on top of an empty box), then back up until they’re 2 meters (about 6’) away. The customer can then safely pick up their order and go back inside, without ever coming in close contact with the delivery person.
Well, I couldn’t just hear about this magical new protocol from Domino’s and resist the call of virus-free pizza, could I? So I set about ordering my pizza.
The website tells you to request the new service by simply writing "Zero Contact Drop-Off" in the little box reserved for additional remarks and requests, when you order. Interestingly, when I made my order in Japanese, I was told to write in "手渡しを希望しません," which means "I don’t want it delivered by hand."
Then it was time to wait. With every change of the pizza tracker, my hopes rose another inch. Just what was coming my way?
Finally, a ring at the doorbell. My pizza had arrived. I slowly opened my door and...
The Pizza Was There!
Just as the website explained, the my pizza had been placed on the ground right beside my door, and the cheerful delivery person called over to me from 2 meters down the hallway, "enjoy your order!" For a moment, I felt like I needed to explain how fascinating this new service was, and how much I appreciated the effort. All this extra work, just so that I could eat this deliciously indulgent pizza meal!
In the end, I figured the delivery person couldn't care less, so I made do with a simple but enthusiastic "thank you!!", picked up the plastic bag containing my pizza, and let the poor delivery person continue on their way.
I had my pizza, and I never got close to a single person to get it. Now that's what I call success!
(The face of success.)
Have you been changing things up due to social distancing? Moving your entire life online, just like Japan? The Japankuru team would love to hear what you're up to, and any interesting news you've heard from Japan, on our twitter, instagram, and facebook!