McDonald’s is going to look drastically different when it opens

Floor decals should help space people out in stores.
Floor decals should help space people out in stores. (McDonald's USA)

When McDonald's restaurants reopen their dining rooms, customers should expect stickers on the floor encouraging social distancing and the closure of self-serve beverage bars. Workers wearing masks might check in with a thumbs up, or kindly ask you to move away from others.

The chain, which is preparing to reopen its locations to dine-in customers as some US states loosen stay-at-home orders, recently sent out a detailed instruction manual to franchise operators in the United States. The 59-page document, which was obtained by CNN Business, outlines the minimum sanitation and social-distancing requirements each must meet before opening its dining rooms. The contents of the manual were first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Franchisees, which operate over 90% of all McDonald's world-wide, will have to pay for their own supplies, the document said.

The playbook also details how to keep the restaurants clean — and make sure customers see the efforts. It spells out how to keep customers six feet away from each other, and mandate the use of some personal protective equipment.

Workers must clean and sanitize tables after each use and restrooms every 30 minutes. McDonald's recommends using a tracking sheet to document the cleanings. Employees have to wash their hands every hour. Restaurants don't have to turn on their touch-screen kiosks, but if they do, those screens and key pads have to be cleaned after every use.

The instruction manual outlines ways for restaurant operators to keep customers apart: They must close off some tables and seating areas and use floor stickers to mark out "clearly recognizable paths" that will keep customers six feet away from each other while waiting in line. The stickers should also help keep people six feet away from tables. The restaurants must also keep PlayPlaces closed and disable any interactive games.

They'll also have to close self-serve beverage bars.