Thousands of businesses throughout the province will have to close their doors on Sunday when Alberta’s newest COVID-19 restrictions take effect.
Announced on Dec. 8, the new public health measures mean some businesses will be required to shut down as of Dec. 13, while others will have to reduce capacity or limit their in-person access.
Barbershops, hair salons and spas throughout the province are among the businesses required to close — right in the midst of the busy holiday season.
As the shutdown deadline approaches, many of them have extended their operating hours to try to see as many clients as possible before they’re forced to cease operations.
In Calgary, Influence Salon owner Wendy Belanger said phones have been ringing off the hook with clients asking to bump up their appointments.
“The phones are definitely blowing up for sure,” Belanger said. “People are getting a lot of private messages like, ‘Please, can you put me in?’ And we’re just putting everyone to our main phone lines to make sure they get in.”
“We have two shifts,” Belanger said. “We have our morning shift and we have our afternoon shift. Morning was 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and (afternoon) was 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., so what we’ve done is we’ve just extended on either side of that.”
“Friday night, it’s a late-night and Saturday, it’s an all-nighter. But you know what? Everybody wants to do it. And we’re going to take it to the very end.”
The province said the new restrictions will be in place for at least four weeks, until Jan. 12, 2021.