“We always knew that concession lines weren’t anyone’s idea of a good time but in this COVID-era, lines are now unsafe.” CEO and Co-Founder, Aaron Knape leaned back in his chair and immediately sat up straight. He had an answer. The sEATz mantra, which historically locked in on a better fan experience during games, has also become a beacon for safety as fans re-emerge to stadiums across the nation. We were all made witness, grazing the barrage of internet articles as countless players, coaches, staff, and America at large, tested positive for the dreaded coronavirus.
In short order, calls were made to cancel games, shut down venues, beg everyone to stay home and avoid humanity. For months, you could hear a pin drop in any stadium. The cash register didn’t ring. The fans didn’t cheer and spring turned to summer. The CDC, state governments, and other authorities pushed out protocols just trying to organize the chaos. It felt as if overnight everyone was forced to reimagine how they ought to engage in the stadium (and society entirely) but no one wanted to be made an example of how not to return.
Before summer became fall, the Digital Age had been realized by many and leaders were finding solutions. “Flattening the curve” was all the rage. Then talk of COVID waves took its place. Organizations began spot testing games and fan experiences and sEATz found itself attune to many virtual video calls, talking with concessionaires about how to protect the fan, the staff, coaches, and players. It was all anyone could do watching fans post “#TBT” photos and TimeHop memories from seasons past. “What’s the plan, Stan?” Fans would ask when their stadium would reopen and they wanted to know how new social distancing guidelines would be instituted. The pressure was mounting as the famous words of Queen rang out, “The Show Must Go On!”
As Co-Founder Marshall Law recalls, “Concessionaires have always wanted to have a more contactless and cashless stadium because there is less risk for theft. It allows a higher quality of fan experience and that’s why we got started with this at all. We don’t want dad and son to miss the home run that hit their empty seat while they waited in line for hotdogs and soda.” Now, not only can sEATz continue its original mission, but it can also provide safety measures that protect everyone, the fan, the staff, coaches, and players. Law continued, “Concessionaires expect their staff to remain safe as stadiums reopen and sEATz is already positioned to provide just that.”
For now, Fan COVID-Screening Protocols at Games Generally Include:
- Temperature-take at the door
- COVID-screening survey
- No groups larger than 10 people in a pod
- Stay at least 6’ away from anyone not in your pod
Hand sanitizer stations lay in wait ‘round every corner of the stadium and advocates parade the concourse reminding fans to keep their masks on when walking around, encouraging food and beverage orders through the app as they smile with their eyes behind masks all their own.
What’s more, with the sEATz technology in the back-of-house, concessionaires can get a good look at purchasing behaviors in these smaller crowds, plan for the future. As the nation recovers, working with sEATz promotes a safer environment in the stadium by keeping people from crowding concourses with long concession lines. Fans easily order from an app that integrates with the concessionaire’s existing process and the sEATz team runs the order to the fan-in-seat, or can even provide time-spaced express lanes by way of cell phone notification when a person’s order is ready for pickup.
On a promising note, the sEATz team has seen top-notch participation from fans to protect themselves and others. After all, America just wants its ballgames back.