The current coronavirus outbreak has sparked a lot of uncertainty around buying and selling, including on marketplace sites like Friday-Ad. We take the health and safety of our community of users very seriously, so we’ve put together some guidance on how you can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19. We’ve done this in unison with the preventative guidance from Public Health England.

 

Buying and Selling Item

We recommend contact-free buying and selling during this time.

Sellers should try to include good photographs, showing the condition of your item, and allowing buyers to see it from different angles (e.g. zoomed in, back, front, etc.). Also make sure you describe features and conditions as well as possible.

Buyers should speak to sellers over the phone and get them to send verified photos (of the item as well as their name and date on a piece of paper with the item). Even better, jump on a video call with the seller and get them to show you the item (WhatsApp, Skype or Facetime work well for this). This way you can avoid any personal contact and still inspect the item you are interested in, which we always recommend, as it helps to avoid disappointment and scams.

 

Picking up items for sale

Like many other delivery services, we now recommend a contact-free delivery/pick-up. This helps to protect both buyers and sellers.

If you are collecting an item, get the seller to leave it somewhere safe (e.g. at the end of the path or in the porch). Alternatively, ring the doorbell and step back (at least a 2 meter distance is recommended), then ask the seller to leave the item in front of their door for you to pick up once they have closed the door.

Similarly, if you are delivering an item, leave the item on the door step or an agreed safe place, ring the doorbell and step back, keeping a safe distance.

You should be particularly mindful of people who are at higher risk, such as the over 70s and pregnant women.

 

Paying for items

To reduce the chances of picking up any germs from surfaces, we would advise you to avoid cash payments if possible.

Sellers can choose to accept Paypal payments, which is by far the safest option. Simply add your Paypal account under ‘Payment Methods’ when placing your ad (step 3 – see below).

For buyers the Paypal payment option offers additional peace of mind and convenience. You should never transfer money directly to a seller’s account. Equally we advise buyers not to pay for items they haven’t seen/inspected, even when paying via Paypal. So make sure you get verified photos or better even a video call with the seller done, before purchasing an item.

If you do have to make a cash payment, ensure that you have the right amount and put it in an envelope or plastic bag, so you can pop the cash through the seller’s letter box or leave it on their doorstep to collect once you are at a safe distance. Remember to thoroughly wash your hands for at least 20 seconds or sanitize them with antibacterial hand gel straight after handling any cash. 

After collecting/receiving items

The COVID-19 virus can survive on different surfaces for up to 72 hours. To protect yourself and other, wash any new items you bring into your home with water and soap or use disinfectant spray or wipes to sanitize them. This includes textiles, which we recommend you pop in the wash before wearing/using them.

Full lock-down

In the event of a full lock-down like we have seen in other European countries in recent week, we would have to advise against any in person collections or deliveries of items bought/sold on Friday-Ad, as only essential journeys (e.g. shopping for food and medication) will likely be permitted. 

If you are confined to your home, you could use the time to have a good clear-out and spring clean. You can still list any items you no longer need on Friday-Ad, ready for when the regulations are relaxed again. It will not only keep you busy, but give you a sense of doing something constructive, help you feel more organised and put extra cash in your pocket in the near future. “Control the controllables” as they say…

Stay safe! 💚

What are you selling?

For more information on the Government’s official guidelines on social distancing and self-isolation take a look at Public Health England’s advice here.

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