Singapore’s circuit breaker has taken a toll on many local businesses as they face falling revenue, putting staff and owners at risk of permanent closure. With the government’s recent announcement of their calibrated approach in easing the circuit breaker measures, businesses are likely to take an even greater hit as they are not able to provide dine-in services until we reach phase two. Although the government has introduced a series of budget initiatives to be provided to these businesses who are struggling to make ends meet, we can certainly do our part as fellow citizens to show them even greater support! Here at CardsPal, we have put together a list of ways in which you can help these business owners tide over this circuit breaker period.
1. Food & Beverage
The F&B industry has been among the most badly affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and it is also one of the easiest ways for you to show your support for local businesses. Regardless of whether you are going for food delivery or going out to takeaway your meals, do make a conscious effort to select local options such as neighbourhood hawkers, independent eateries and boutique cafes as far as possible. These are the businesses who are likely to be in need of more help to stay afloat as compared to larger establishments.
During this circuit breaker period, many F&B owners are turning to delivery apps to maintain their source of income. However, they have to pay commission fees and some smaller F&B outlets simply cannot afford to do so. As such, you should order directly from merchants instead of going through third party delivery apps. If you are unsure of the local eateries who are providing direct delivery services, do check out TheSmartLocal’s collated list here so that you can now support your favourite hawkers and cafes directly.
With the extension of the circuit breaker measures, many home-based bakers have been forced to shut their businesses, causing them to lose their potential source of income. Many of these home bakers are also caregivers who work from their homes so as to take care of their families simultaneously. As the circuit breaker measures start to ease to allow home bakers to reopen for business, this happens to coincide with the holy month of Ramadan which many home bakers rely on for much of their yearly income. Hence, let us show them some support by choosing to buy from them instead of bigger brands.
Alternatively, you can look to support these local F&B restaurants by participating in homegrown lager brand Tiger Beer’s new #SupportOurStreets initiative which aims to raise 1.3 million dollars to support our local F&B community. With a $10 donation through their website, Tiger Beer will gift you with a digital drink voucher for two which you can redeem after the circuit breaker is over. All contributions will go to the F&B community in a bid to help them overcome the loss in revenue over these two months. Do support Tiger Beer in helping these merchants so that we can continue to enjoy our favourite places and flavours that have been part of the memories of generations of Singaporeans.
The circuit breaker has drawn huge crowds in wet markets and supermarkets, heightening risks of COVID-19 transmission given the close proximity of patrons. As such, you should opt for alternative methods of purchasing your groceries by shopping online instead. Besides avoiding the crowds, this will also allow you to show your support for smaller local businesses by getting your fresh produce delivered from them instead of bigger brands such as RedMart and Fairprice Online.
We have curated a list of some local grocery shops where you can obtain some of your kitchen essentials. However, do note that this list is non-exhaustive and there are definitely more local grocers out there who may be in need of help!
3. Online Shopping
With most retail establishments closed due to the circuit breaker measures, what better time to try out online shopping than now? While not all retail stores are in a position to offer online shopping, you can certainly look to existing online stores instead! Many local online businesses are offering attractive discounts during this circuit breaker period for you to indulge in some retail therapy while being stuck at home. It is also important to consider where you want to spend your money on. Instead of the usual large online retailers like ASOS and Taobao, why not purchase from a small local label instead? They will certainly stand to benefit more from your purchase as compared to online retail giants who are unlikely to be struggling to make ends meet.
4. Gift Cards
Purchasing a gift card is an ideal choice for those who do not have anything they may need now but still wish to support local businesses. Local businesses struggle to repay much of their fixed costs currently as circuit breaker measures are keeping customers at home and forcing some retail stores to shut completely. This could potentially force some of these businesses into bankruptcy. Hence, buying a gift card is an effective way to provide them with the immediate cash they require so as to alleviate their lost income arising from COVID-19. It is basically a miniature loan to these businesses as you can use these gift cards to purchase their products at a later date.
ChopeAndSave is a Singapore-based gift card initiative modelled after SaveOurFaves where they provide a directory of online gift cards available for purchase from many businesses around the country. Some local businesses include ice cream parlours such as Sunday Folks and Creamier as well as restaurants like Wee Nam Kee Chicken Rice, Saladstop! and Standing Sushi Bar. Purchasing a gift card will help these businesses with their short-term cash flow while giving you a great excuse to go food hopping after the circuit breaker measures have been lifted.
5. Social Media
If any of the above do not appeal to you but you still wish to support local businesses in some way, do consider taking a moment to increase their exposure. If you have some free time on your hands, take a moment to leave a positive review for a merchant you have patronised or share it on your social media platforms so as to spread the word. This comes at no cost to you but will certainly have a huge impact on these businesses. Business owners will feel encouraged after seeing these posts and social media algorithms will tend to promote these merchants more, thus facilitating customer inflow to sustain their businesses during these difficult times.
Maximize your savings with CardsPal
Beyond supporting local businesses during this circuit breaker, get to know how you can support you and your family by maximising your savings as well! CardsPal is the one stop app where we show you the best deals in town just for you, so you never miss a deal again. Get to know us here! Download the app now on the App Store or the Google Play Store and get the latest deals, tailored according to the cards you own.
Always remember to maintain your social distance even while supporting these local businesses and let us stand united by helping one another out during these challenging times 🙂