Road-tripping Safely this Summer

Last weekend, I went on a picnic for the first time in what seems like a million years. And as you can imagine, the process for heading out on a simple picnic has changed from the last time I went. I’m used to swinging by my local sandwich shop, picking up a few items, and driving wherever the mood took me. Often down to Peace Arch Provincial Park – which is currently closed. And normally I’d text a bunch of friends – maybe 2 would show up, maybe 20. Not this time. Need to keep that social bubble small.

Social Distanced Picnic

But even in light of restrictions, I still had a great time – it just takes a little planning. If you’re headed out on a road trip this summer - whether a day trip for a picnic, an overnight stay at a campground, or a longer holiday – there are ways to travel safely. And a lot of great resources out there to help!

Plan Your Destination

Since each territory and province has a different re-opening schedule and regulations, you’ll want to check the specifics of your destination. Every province and territory has published their COVID-19 restrictions on their websites, including guidelines for using public spaces like provincial parks.

And if you happen to be road-tripping inter-provincially, you’ll want to make sure you’re actually allowed to visit. The Canadian Travel and Tourism Roundtable has put together a tool that allows you to check what locations you’re permitted to visit based on your residency, including links to that location’s public health guidelines. Handy!

Also, Parks Canada’s website offers some great tips for visiting this summer – whether you’re headed there for a day trip or a longer visit.

Be Self Sufficient

Be aware that if you’re headed up to the cottage or cabin, smaller communities where these are typically located have more limited health care and other resources. Don’t put a strain on these communities – bring the essentials that you need with you. And if you do go out, respect physical distancing protocols and mask regulations. And don’t go out if you’re sick or exhibiting symptoms.

For more information, Destination BC has a comprehensive list of ways to travel safely and responsibly this summer.

Keep Your Car Clean and Organized

When you’re road-tripping, you’ll want to make sure that you keep your car clean and organized. If you’re like me, you may not have been using it a lot lately, but now that I head out for day trips, I’m a lot more aware of all the surfaces I touch in the car.

  • Using disinfectant wipes, regularly wipe down "high touch" surfaces on a regular basis. This includes places like: the steering wheel, volume knob, temperature controls, seat belts, door handles, gear shift, etc. Be careful about using wipes with bleach - they can damage the interior of your vehicle. Always test on a small area first. And it is better to spray a cleaning solution on a rag and use it rather than directly on the surface itself.
  • Don't forget to give your key fob a wipe as well.
  • Air out your vehicle. If you can, occasionally give the AC a rest, open your vehicle’s windows and let the fresh air in.
  • Car seats can harbour crumbs and germs - make sure you're cleaning your children's car seats regularly. You can vacuum out the crumbs, but check your manufacturer's guidelines on what to use to wipe down the seat, belts, etc.

Cleaning Kit in Your Car

Keeping your car organized can also help keep it clean. A few tips:

  • Designate a specific receptacle for trash. If there's one container, you'll be more likely to empty it on a regular basis than if trash is just scattered everywhere. Plus you can give that trash receptacle a regular clean.
  • Put a small caddy together with a box of tissues, disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer and an extra mask. This will save you time instead of having to dig through your purse or bag as well as keeping additional touched surfaces to a minimum.

And don’t forget to wash your hands after you’ve unloaded your car.

It’s so nice to be able to get out and about and enjoy the beauty of Canada. Please stay safe and healthy and continue to be kind to one another as we navigate this next phase of the new normal.

If you want to know what Petro-Canada is doing to support guests and on-site teams at our locations, please check out our COVID-19 response. If you’re looking for more information about preventing the spread of COVID-19, check out Health Canada’s website – there is great information there about proper hygiene and cleaning.

~Rose R.


Update on COVID-19 Safety Protocols at Our Stations

Summer has arrived, some COVID-19 restrictions are easing, and I’ve started going out for more than a weekly grocery trip. I finally got a haircut – exciting times! I also had a new accessory for my trip to the barber – a brightly coloured mask!

But my new accessory isn’t the only thing that is changing. As provinces adapt and update their COVID-19 response, at Petro-Canada, we are also updating our policies and procedures:

  • We continue to support physical distancing measures by encouraging guests to pay for their products electronically and to remind guests to wear masks when they enter the stores. Our Plexiglas shields and floor decals also remain in place.
  • Our gas station attendants are following local regulations for mask use requirements. If municipal or provincial regulations deem mask use mandatory, our GSAs wear them. We would also ask that you understand and follow local regulations as well – for everyone’s safety.
  • We’re reinstating our self-serve beverages, including our slush machines.
  • We’re continuing our cleaning measures with a focus on the frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces.

Our priority is the safety of our associates and our guests – and continuing to reduce the spread of COVID-19. To stay up to date on the continued measures we’re taking, please visit Petro-Canada.ca or check out our Facebook page.

~ Braden H.


Keeping Our Guests and Site Staff Safe During COVID-19

Most of us are driving less. I’ve been working from home for two weeks now and I venture out in the car only for a weekly grocery trip. However, not everyone is like me. There are first responders and essential service workers who need to get to work, truckers making sure those groceries get to the stores, and volunteers who deliver meals and prescriptions to seniors.

For these folks, our business is essential and our Petro-Canada locations remain committed to keeping people and business moving during this time. That’s why we’re taking increased measures to keep our customers and our site staff safe as emphasized by Pat Lizotte, our General Manager of retail sales & site operations:

“We know we’re an important hub for the community, so it was essential that we worked to make sure everyone who comes into our sites feels safe, and that we are taking the right precautions.”

Plexi-glass Shields at Petro-Canada

In our more than 1,800 retail and wholesale locations across the country, we are taking a number of actions, including:

  • increasing the frequency and depth of our cleaning measures. Many surfaces are high touch, so we are making sure all high touchpoints inside and outside are cleaned regularly. Examples include pin pads, door handles, ATM machines, washrooms, pump handles, pump grade buttons, card readers, squeegee handles, vacuums and air pumps.
  • adjusting some of our offerings, including removing self-serve coffee.
  • supporting physical distancing measures by:
    • encouraging guests to pre-pay at the pump
    • placing floor decals two metres from each other in larger sites so guests are aware of where they should be standing
    • installing Plexiglas between our gas station attendants and our customers to eliminate any physical contact.

Steve Duke, our General Manager of wholesale sales & side operations, reinforces the commitment to doing our part to keep everyone safe:

“We know that all of these pieces together are critical to reducing the spread of COVID-19. The hard work and efforts of all of our associates and marketers and their staff allow us to continue to keep our guests safe and business moving during this time.”

To stay up to date on the continued measures we’re taking, please visit our COVID-19 update page or check out our Facebook page.

~ Braden H.