Here is the latest list of the businesses that can reopen in Ontario in the midst of COVID-19 and the “new normal” guidelines as laid out by the government.


It should be noted that some of these businesses have already adapted their operations in accordance with public health measures, including garden centres, car washes and auto dealerships. With that in mind, Ontario Premier Doug Ford says that the lifting of these closures will be for the benefit of the “little guys” who may have been especially struggling during this pandemic.

Reopens Allowed:

  • Garden centres and nurseries that offer curbside pick-up and delivery only.
  • Lawn care and landscaping
  • Essential construction projects, including: Shipping and logistics, broadband, telecommunications, and digital infrastructure, any other project that supports the improved delivery of goods and services, municipal projects, colleges and universities, child care centres, schools and site preparation, excavation, and servicing for institutional, commercial, industrial and residential development
  • Automatic and self-serve car washes
  • Auto dealerships, open by appointment only
  • Golf courses are allowed to prepare for their upcoming season but must remain closed to the public
  • Marinas can begin preparing for the recreational season by servicing boats and other watercraft. Boats can be placed in the water, but must be secured to a dock at all times until public access is allowed.

On Thursday, the government laid out more than 60 sector-specific guidelines, in partnership with the province’s health and safety association, to guide businesses in their eventual reopening to ensure the safety of their workers, customers and general public.


Here is a look at some of the advice the province is giving to businesses to adapt to the “new normal.”

Hotels/ Hospitality/ Tourism:

Limit customer contact and consider requiring check-in by phone or online

Eliminate contact greetings such as handshakes

Housekeepers should not shake dirty laundry and should remember to clean and disinfect hampers and other carts

Eliminate non-essential tasks (hotel valet services, face to face meetings)

Replace guest buffets with packaged food stations

Eliminate guest self-service, disposable in-room glassware, and non-essential guest room amenities, and remove in-room tea/coffee machines, offering them only on demand


Provide online ordering, delivery, or curbside pickup

Eliminate at-the-door payment methods for delivery

Provide training on how to keep cash registers, other equipment clean

Control how may customers can enter the store at one time

Manage traffic flow with floor markings and barriers


Discourage sharing of telephones, keyboards, desks or workstations

Develop systems to conduct work away from the office

If direct client contact is essential and cannot be avoided, then staff should consider using personal protective equipment

Provide easy access to soap and water

Postpone non-essential face-to-face appointments or convert to virtual/video appointments

Stagger start times and breaks

Reposition workstations to increase physical distances or install barriers and partitions


Consider eliminating access close to operator/ driver with signage or by forcing passengers to enter or exit buses through rear doors

Place posters or other signage in high passenger traffic areas asking passengers to stay home if sick, to travel only when necessary, and practice good respiratory and hand hygiene

Institute measures to physically separate or impose physical distance of at least two metres between transit operators and passengers using partitions, visual cues or signage

Transit workers should use or wear personal protective equipment that the worker’s employer requires to be used or worn

Emergency services:

Ensure that appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) is being worn to limit exposure during close contact

Conduct active screening at the beginning of an interaction with members of the public when a firefighter is required to be closer than 2 metres

Do not touch personal items without appropriate PPE, such as gloves.

Limit the amount of face-to-face contact during work activities such as station duties and hand-overs and practice physical distancing

Approach patient from rear (if possible) and place a paper surgical mask on them or an O2 mask if required

Disinfect personal issue equipment (e.g. handcuffs) and shared equipment ( radio, keyboard, phone, shared workstation)

Limit the amount of face-to-face contact during planned work activities, investigations, search and arrest activities


Plan for enough tools to be on site so workers don’t have to share

Place work clothes into a bag before taking home to wash

Have appropriate number of toilets and clean-up facilities

Transport drivers:

Clean vehicle cab frequently

During deliveries, limit the amount of face-to-face contact

Wear gloves when handling packages


Limit the transfer of tools

Do not share pens, rubber gloves, or any PPE

Properly disinfect trucks and equipment upon returning to the shop area

Waste Collection:

To ensure physical distancing, stagger start times and breaks

Restrict the number of people on site

Avoid sharing tools

Food Service:

Protect food from contamination by using guards or covering for food and utensils

Food prepared for takeout and delivery should be packaged to protect food from contamination

PPE should be used as appropriate


Put barriers in place between workers as well as workers and the product

Consider job rotation

Have fewer workers doing the same task in the same space

Keep visitors and staff a safe distance apart by using floor markings, installing barriers and partitions, and changing the work layout where possible to increase physical distance

Reschedule unnecessary visits by supply chain partners, vendors, service technicians, or others.

Auto Service:

Limiting services to by-appointment only and limiting the number of appointments per day

If service bays are fairly close together, only use every other service bay

Ensure farm entry is limited to personnel performing essential activities

Pre-authorized visitors to the farm should call ahead and schedule a meeting or drop-off time

Try to limit the number of employees using farm equipment and if possible, assign each employee to their own piece of equipment

Other guidelines:

Handling and receiving packages (at home and at work):

Request contactless delivery

Use your own pen when signing for deliveries

Wash hands immediately after receiving the package

Clean and sanitize table tops, counters and floors where the package was placed

For more on the current updates, please visit the government website HERE.

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