COVID-19 is a particularly nasty member of the coronavirus family, because it’s previously unidentified (novel) but easy to transmit. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website on St. Patrick’s Day, the virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person and respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Though still under peer review, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently published findings that novel coronavirus HCoV-19 causing the COVID-19 pandemic can survive for days on plastic and stainless steel and even lasts up to a full day on a cardboard surface.
Since many of us still have to go to the grocery store or go to work, touching germy hotspots like quarters for a payment station, public touch screens, and doorknobs is inevitable. Besides breaking out sanitizer and singing “Happy Birthday” to the water faucet two times while washing your hands, you can limit your exposure by doing one more thing: don’t touch money or surfaces.
We like it, but money is disgusting. It gets handled a lot. Public payment stations made of plastic and metals are touched often and not disinfected. During an outbreak like the current coronavirus trekking around the globe, keeping your hands to yourself isn’t just polite, it’s just plain smart. So break out the sanitizer and don’t touch your face, but also pay for goods and services with your personally disinfected cell phone.
TEZ is the green and purple cheerleader of mobile payments. All of our cloud-based software platforms are built on making payments for service, valet check-in and parking a digital experience that’s fast, easy and convenient. Our fully ticketless SMS Valet and TEXT2PARK parking solutions manage car parking and payment at locations all over the U.S. and Mexico.
With TEXT2PARK, customers text a code they get off the posted sign and pay on their phones using a credit card from the comfort of their cars, maintaining that CDC-recommended six feet distance away from other people, but also avoiding public germ harboring surfaces. They can even extend parking time remotely on their phones, so no second chance to be exposed to any respiratory droplets clinging to a payment station just to avoid getting a ticket. With TEXT2PARK, there’s no app to download, and no need to carry cash or handle coins that might have been used in a hospital vending machine before being fed to a parking meter. Enforcement officials have two-way communication with parkers to remind them that parking is about to expire, which not only is a nice customer service reminder, it reduces generating paper parking tickets. Even if parkers get tickets, they can pay them from a safe distance using an ideal social distancing method: alone with a smartphone.
Like you, the TEZ Client Success Team is closely monitoring the latest news about COVID-19 and is considering its impacts on the businesses and clients we serve. We take some solace in the fact that our mobile platforms have reduced the need for our clients, their employees and parking customers to touch equipment, paper and money. To further enhance our service capacities, our 24/7 call center has been staffed with additional agents to address any/all customer inquiries. Responsiveness is one of our core values at TEZ, and we are committed to being part of the solution as this fluid situation evolves.
Please take steps to reduce your exposure to COVID-19 by going full-on mobile during this pandemic.