What Do Escape Rooms Look Like Post-Corona?
Nobody saw it coming, but it happened. It hit us like a dragonfly on a trucker’s windshield. Obviously, the surprise-of-a-lifetime I’m talking about the Coronavirus pandemic. This unseen force affected millions of businesses and even more people around the world. Which leads us to the subject of this article… how has the coronavirus affected the escape room experience? There is no surprise in saying that the entertainment industry will never be the same again. In this article, we will layout just what to expect in escape rooms moving forward in this oh-so-different world we find ourselves in post-corona.
Normal Escape Room Procedures of the Past Would Now be Considered Blasphemous
What was an escape room like PRE-rona? Obviously, we weren’t the least bit concerned about germs before the big rona struck us. Escape rooms would disinfect their rooms, sure, but it was absolutely nothing like it is now. Games would likely be disinfected 1-2 times per day depending on how many rounds were played that day. That just won’t fly anymore. But above all, what would really be considered Archaic was the pairing system. Here’s how it worked.
If you were to visit an escape room just 6 months ago (based on how Big Escape Rooms works), you could expect about a 35% chance of being paired with strangers. Even further, you could expect close to an 80% chance of getting paired with others on weekends. That’s because of how escape rooms work. There are 6-12 spots available to book for a single game, and as long as the max capacity isn’t reached, people you don’t know could book the remaining spots.
Back before corona, you could only avoid being paired with strangers by doing 1 of 3 things:
- Book only the spots you need, hoping to the escape room gods that nobody books the same time slot as you
- Pay extra to reserve the entire room and guarantee it will just be your group
- Bring the max number of players
It’s pretty obvious why you wouldn’t want to be paired with strangers now-a-days. Keep reading to see what steps escape rooms have taken to prevent this from scaring people away.
The Entertainment Industry will Never be the same
There are some activities that go against the CDC’s guidelines set in place to keep us safe. Some things are just not an option at this point, like crowded night clubs with everyone dancing against each other. But that doesn’t mean all fun activities need to be extinguished for good. Lucky for puzzle lovers everywhere, escape rooms can be played while keeping socially distant, wearing a mask, with gloves, and even while sporting around your very own personal disinfectant or hand sanitizer.
Escape room businesses like Big Escape Rooms are working hard to keep things clean and safe so we can still have some fun in this uncertain world we find ourselves in. All this being said, please avoid any unnecessary outings if you or someone you spend time with is particularly at risk. I am by no means an expert, but I do personally feel escape rooms are a safe way to have fun these days. Please keep that in mind moving forward!
Changes in How Escape Rooms are Run
There is a lot that escape rooms can do to safety-proof our games. At Big Escape Rooms, we are actively taking these steps to do our part in ensuring a safe and fun time when you decide to visit an escape room post-corona.
No more paired groups
You can rest easy after you hit that “Book Now” button because you will no longer be paired up with any other players no matter what. No extra fee, no minimum number of required players, or any of that uncertain mumbo-jumbo.
You can literally book 1 spot and have the whole room to yourself. This is a HUGE deal for escape rooms because before, the only way to ensure a private game was to pay an extra fee. I expect that common escape room practice is a thing of the past and will no longer be the standard practice in escape rooms pos-corona.
So much Sanitization
It almost goes without saying, but escape rooms are cleaner than ever before. It is so important that we heavily sanitize ALL nooks and crannies in the escape room game post-corona. This holds true with every group that comes through our locations.
Also, you can bet your bottom you will find hand sanitizer at check-in. Guides will be encouraging you to use the sanitizer or wash your hands before you go in to further guarantee the safety of the games.
On a busy weekend, you could find as many as 50 people at Big Escape Rooms Atlanta at one time pre-corona. Now that’s a thing of the past. We have taken care to ensure our lobby will have only your group present at the time of check-in. So we can be safe!
Will Corona Eliminate Escape Rooms for Good?
In short, the answer to this is no. Why though?
Unlike many popular activities we enjoyed pre-corona, escape rooms can be done while social distancing. Puzzle lovers can breathe a sigh of relief because escape rooms are here to stay. Thankfully, doing escape rooms is one of those fun activities like a walk in the park that doesn’t require close contact with strangers.
Teamwork makes the dream work
As stated above, escape rooms are working diligently to ensure a clean and sanitized escape room experience. But, on top of all of our actions, you can do more to help protect yourself and others, too. Ironically, escape rooms are all about teamwork. That’s what it is going to take to ensure a safe time for everyone – patrons and game guides alike.
Steps you should take:
To be extra safe, wear a mask to protect others and thoroughly wash your hands before and after the game. Avoid touching parts of your face and even clothing until you have left the game and washed your hands properly. Following these steps can help protect yourself and others while enjoying your escape room experience. I have even seen players bring their own hand sanitizer & disinfectant into the game. Get creative and keep safety in mind!
What to expect when if decide to visit
When you make the decision to visit an escape room post-corona, know that things are not that different when compared to pre-corona escape experiences. When you get there, your party will be the only ones present in the lobby. You must wear a mask when visiting Big Escape Rooms locations.
There are a few items and tools you get to bring with you in the room and these items are sanitized with every use. You will then go through your rules and safety tips while maintaining proper social distancing from your masked game guide. Each player is then encouraged to use the hand sanitizer located in the lobby or wash their hands at this time.
0Your game guide will remain in character once the rules and safety tips are done for that immersive experience you look for in an escape room. Then, you and the players will be taken to the room like normal. Now, it is just you and your party poking around a room for 1 hour in search of clues to help you complete your mission and escape. Be sure to avoid touching your face in the game for your safety and the safety of others.
Once the game is over, you and your team take pictures and the experience is over. You all are free to go and encouraged to wash your hands on your way by the restrooms on your way out.
All in all, escape room experiences look about the same as they always have. Just extra clean and cautious. We hope you will consider these things and think about visiting an escape room near you for some good clean fun! We would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section. Happy escaping!