COVID-19 INFORMATION

IMPORTANT COMMUNICATIONS

June 8, 2020

TheRide is increasing bus service as the community re-opens. However, maintaining social distancing during crowded rush-hours will be challenging. Before the pandemic, transportation infrastructure was often stretched to capacity during peak commute times. Trying to accommodate a return to a pre-pandemic rush-hour while also maintaining social distancing could push buses, roads, and parking far beyond capacity - leading to more gridlock and crowds. This could be especially challenging as students return in the fall.
 
Just as “flattening the curve” helped prevent medical services from being overwhelmed, TheRide is asking for everyone’s help to flatten the rush-hour curve. By spreading out rush-hour travel, the bus service and transportation network in general will be less strained and less crowded. This also helps ensure safer travel for transit riders who must use the bus for essential trips. To help us flatten the rush-hour curve TheRide requests the community, businesses, and educational institutions consider the following steps when re-opening:
 

  • Encourage employees and students to continue to telecommute or work from home as much as possible.
  • When possible, stagger work and class schedules so people are not arriving and leaving at the same time.
  • Schedule start times outside typical rush-hours, especially outside 6:00 a.m. -9:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. -6:00 p.m.
  • Consider rotating staff/students on alternate days.
  • Encourage walking and biking. Carpools and vanpools can also help. Businesses can contact the getDowntown program about resources for alternative commuting options.
  • Supply employees and students with PPE for the commute, such as masks and hand sanitizer.

 
“Safety has always been our number one priority and we are committed to doing our part in this pandemic,” said Matt Carpenter, CEO at TheRide. “As more businesses and schools reopen, we know more people will need to use our service. We are asking for the community’s support in preventing gridlock and crowding during the commute. We have a few months to get ready for fall and the return of students, so let’s coordinate as best we can.”
 
Together, we can reduce the spread of COVID-19 as businesses and schools reopen. TheRide has instituted many preventive measures to keep employees and riders safe, including:  

  • Enhanced cleaning of high-touch areas on buses, shelters and at transit facilities using protocols recommended by the CDC
  • Signs designating physical distancing on each bus, on benches, and at shelters and transit centers
  • Riders if able, are instructed to enter and exit using the rear door
  • Pandemic plexiglass barrier to separate customers from the driver
  • Drivers are required to wear masks and are provided face shields and gloves
  • Providing hand sanitation supplies at transit centers and on buses for riders
  • The Blake and Ypsilanti Transit Centers and TheRide’s front desk at 2700 S. Industrial are temporarily closed
  • Suspended collection of fares until safety measures are in place

 
“We’ve worked closely with TheRide to ensure the public’s safety when using public transportation. We are in support of the guidelines they have laid out should you need to use their service. We urge the public and local businesses to be aware of the risks of crowded spaces during the COVID-19 pandemic and encourage those that must travel to wear face coverings, and to follow guidelines for reopening at https://www.washtenaw.org/3122/Guidance-for-Businesses,” Jimena Loveluck, MSW, Health Officer from the Washtenaw County Health Department said.
 
getDowntown is available to help your business with understanding what options are available for your employees.  We are trying to keep up with the flood of information from businesses that are re-opening, and keeping our updates on getdowntown.org at COVID-19 Updates.  We even have an easily-read flyer that you can use as a cheat sheet for current bus services!  Please contact us at info@getdowntown.org if you need further help so that we can assist you at our first opportunity.
 

April 7, 2020 | Samantha Potter | Community Relations

The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (TheRide) has announced additional social distancing measures in an effort to help stop the spread of COVID-19. To adhere to Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-21 which temporarily suspends activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life, TheRide reminds the community to ride the bus for essential trips only.
 
TheRide’s social distancing measures include:

  • Signs that encourage riders to keep six feet between each other have been placed on seats in each bus, placed on benches, buildings and shelters at the Blake and Ypsilanti Transit Centers
  • Each bus has a yellow line on the floor that marks a 6-foot distance between the driver and riders
  • Each bus is now considered to be full when 15 riders are on board. Once there are 15 riders on board, the driver will contact a dispatcher to send another bus to serve remaining passengers along the route.       
  • Riders, if able, are to board from the rear door, unless they need to use the ramp
  • The Blake Transit Center, Ypsilanti Transit Center and TheRide’s front desk at 2700 S. Industrial are temporarily closed
  • No fares are being collected

 
In addition to the above steps to promote social distancing, TheRide is operating on a reduced schedule. For the most up to date route information, visit TheRide.org or call 734-996-0400.
 
“We remain dedicated to getting essential employees to their jobs and to help our community make essential trips to the grocery store or pharmacy,” Bryan Smith, Deputy CEO of Operations at TheRide said. “We ask that those that do not need to travel for essential reasons to stay home. In addition, we ask those that must travel do so while respecting social distancing guidelines.”
 
In addition to social distancing measures, TheRide is also taking extra precautions for their staff and riders:

  • All vehicles and facilities are being regularly cleaned and high-touch areas disinfected with protocols as recommended by the CDC
  • All staff continue to receive a supply of sanitization supplies and are encouraged to follow the CDC’s hygiene guidelines
  • TheRide has instituted social distancing among employee work environments, with many staff working remotely, all business travel canceled, and in-person meetings discouraged

 
TheRide remains dedicated to the health and safety of its riders and employees and reminds riders and employees of healthy habits from the CDC:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick, if possible. This helps prevent spreading your illness to others
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Wash your hands often to help keep germs away. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces
  • Wear cloth face coverings in public settings

 
The latest information on TheRide’s routes, schedules and detours is available in the Ride Guide, at (734) 996-0400 and on TheRide.org.

Signs Separating Riders Reduces Bus Capacity to 15 Riders
Signs Separating Riders 

 

March 31, 2020 | Samantha Potter | Community Relations

The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (TheRide) will not operate regular fixed-route bus service, ExpressRide, FlexRide, A-Ride, or senior shared-ride services on Sunday, April 12, 2020 in observance of the Easter holiday. In addition, due to reduced schedules because of the COVID-19 crisis, HolidayRide, NightRide and AirRide will also not be operating. 
 
Reduced service schedules due to COVID-19 will resume on Monday, April 13, 2020. The Blake Transit Center, Ypsilanti Transit Center, and TheRide’s main office at 2700 S. Industrial Highway remain temporarily closed until further notice due to the COVID-19 crisis and all schedule information is subject to change.
 
TheRide remains dedicated to the health and safety of its riders and employees and reminds riders and employees to:
 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick, if possible. This helps prevent spreading your illness to others
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Wash your hands often to help keep germs away. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces
  • Maintain social distancing guidelines
  • Reduce travel to essential trips only


The latest information on TheRide’s routes, schedules and detours is available at 734-996-0400 and on TheRide.org.

 

March 25, 2020 | Matt Carpenter | TheRide Chief Executive Officer

ANN ARBOR, MI –  To adhere to Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-21 to temporarily suspend activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life, The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (TheRide) has announced additional temporary reductions to their service schedule. Community members are strongly encouraged to ride the bus for essential trips only. In the Executive Order, Transportation is noted as critical infrastructure, and therefore, TheRide will still operate for essential use only.
 
“TheRide will continue to provide service for essential trips. We understand our community has dedicated workers who must still get to their jobs and we are committed to helping them get there,” Bryan Smith, Deputy CEO of Operations at TheRide said. “However, it’s important for those that do not need to go to work, medical appointments or the grocery store, stay home to help prevent the spread of the virus.”
 
In addition to the below reduced schedules, TheRide is not charging a fare to ride its fixed route service and demand response services and has temporarily closed the Ypsilanti Transit Center, Blake Transit Center and TheRide’s front desk at 2700 S. Industrial Highway. Those riders who can, are requested to board buses using the back door. All of these precautions as well as additional cleaning and disinfecting our buses are being taken to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
 
“We ask that if you must take TheRide, you limit your contact with the driver, and maintain the CDC recommended six-foot social distancing between you and other riders,” Mary Boonin, Manager of Community Relations at TheRide said.
 
Reduced Service Effective Thursday, March 26
The following service reductions are dependent on workforce availability. Schedules may change. Visit TheRide.org or call 734-006-0400 for the most up to date information.
 
Fixed-Route Service: Reduced service is based on regular Sunday schedules with the exception of Route 3.
 
Routes not operating: 33, 41, 60, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 68, 81, 91, 92
Routes with revised schedules: 3, 4, 5, 6, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47

Park & Ride Lot Service 

  • Green Rd. lot will only be served by Route 23 
  • Pioneer High School will only be served by Routes 24 and 25
  • Miller Rd. lot will not be served
  • Plymouth Rd lot will not be served
  • State St. & Tennis Center lots will not be served

 
Demand Response Service: Reduced service is based on regular Sunday schedules. Passengers are requested to limit travel for essential trips only in line with the Governor’s Executive Order 2020-21.

  • A-Ride and GoldRide service will require at least one day advance booking. No same day trip reservations will be offered. 
  • FlexRide service will continue to allow same day reservations.
  • No other demand response services including NightRide, HolidayRide and MyRide will operate.

 
Customer Service
For full maps and schedules of the reduced routes and to stay up to date on our service visit TheRide.org or call 734-996-0400 to talk to an Information Specialist for route information, reservations for A-Ride and other business-related questions during normal business hours.
 
Additional Precautions

  • All vehicles and facilities are being regularly cleaned and high-touch areas disinfected with protocols as recommended by the CDC
  • All staff continue to receive a supply of sanitization supplies and are encouraged to follow the CDC’s hygiene guidelines
  • TheRide has instituted social distancing among employee work environments, with many staff working remotely, all business travel canceled, and in-person meetings discouraged

TheRide remains dedicated to the health and safety of its riders and employees and reminds riders and employees of healthy habits from the CDC:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick, if possible. This helps prevent spreading your illness to others
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Wash your hands often to help keep germs away. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces

The latest information on TheRide’s routes, schedules and detours is available in the Ride Guide, at (734) 996-0400 and on TheRide.org. 

March 18, 2020 | Matt Carpenter | TheRide Chief Executive Officer

Due to the serious situation regarding the spreading of Coronavirus (COVID-19), The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (TheRide) has announced a reduced service schedule.
 
“We understand that people still have to get to work, medical appointments and grocery shopping and it’s important for us to be there for them,” Matt Carpenter, CEO of TheRide said. “However, we want to do our part in helping stop the spread of COVID-19 by reducing our schedules and taking other precautionary methods like closing our transit centers and suspending fare collection. Further service adjustments will be implemented as circumstances demand.”
 
 
Reduced Service

  • Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, TheRide’s service reductions are: 
  • There will be no service on Route 63 (U-M - Pontiac) or Route 41 (EMU College of Business Shuttle)
  • Route 4 (Washtenaw) service will be reduced to every 15-30 minutes mornings/afternoons and every 30 minutes evenings. There will be no 4B service.  Service will operate from 6:08 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.
  • Route 62 (U-M - State) service will be reduced to every 30 minutes with trips leaving Wolverine Tower at :15 and :45 minutes past the hour. Service will operate from 6:45 a.m. to 10:15 p.m.
  • Service on AirRide, direct service to Detroit Metro Airport from the Blake Transit Center has been suspended until further notice

In addition to reduced schedules, TheRide has already temporarily suspended the collection of fares on its fixed-routes and demand response services and temporarily closed to the public the Ypsilanti Transit Center, Blake Transit Center and TheRide’s front desk at 2700 S. Industrial Highway. The above steps will continue for a weekly rolling period and will be reassessed daily.
 
Customer Service
To stay up to date on our service visit TheRide.org or call 734-996-0400 to talk to an Information Specialist for route information, reservations for A-Ride and other business-related questions during normal business hours.

Additional Precautions 

  • All vehicles and facilities have been sanitized and disinfected with protocols as recommended by the CDC
  • All staff continue to receive a supply of sanitization supplies and are encouraged to follow the CDC’s hygiene guidelines
  • TheRide has instituted social distancing among employee work environments, with many staff working remotely, all business travel canceled, and in-person meetings discouraged

TheRide remains dedicated to the health and safety of its riders and employees and reminds riders and employees of healthy habits from the CDC:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick, and if you are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick, if possible. This helps prevent spreading your illness to others
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Wash your hands often to help keep germs away. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces

The latest information on TheRide’s routes, schedules and detours is available in the Ride Guide, at (734) 996-0400, and on TheRide.org.

March 17, 2020 | Matt Carpenter | TheRide Chief Executive Officer

To our valued riders,

As the situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to change daily, we continue to uphold the safety and security of our passengers and employees as one of our highest values. As COVID-19 is impacting our community,we wanted to provide an update to you on how we are addressing this at TheRide.

We are taking numerous steps to prevent the spread of the virus, as we know that our community relies on us to get to work, medical appointments and grocery stores.

Free Fares

Beginning March 18 and until further notice, TheRide will temporarily suspend the collection of fares on all fixed routes and demand response services to limit passenger and driver interaction.

Route Reductions

Due to lower demand for our services, we will be announcing our plans to reduce service levels on March 18. While our service is still running, we urge you to follow the directions of health officials and not travel unless absolutely necessary. Service on AirRide, direct service to Detroit Metro Airport from the Blake Transit Center has been suspended until further notice.

Customer Service

The Ypsilanti Transit Center, Blake Transit Center and our front desk at 2700 S. Industrial Highway will be closed to the public beginning Wednesday, March 18. However, our information specialists will still be available for route information, reservations for A-Ride and other business-related questions during normal business hours. We encourage you to visit TheRide.org to stay up to date on our service.

Additional Precautions

All vehicles and facilities have been sanitized and disinfected with protocols as recommended by the CDC. We continue to supply sanitization supplies to all our staff and encourage them to follow the CDC’s hygiene guidelines.

We are instituting social distancing among employee work environments, with many staff working remotely, canceled business travel, and in-person meetings discouraged.

We remain dedicated to the health and safety of our riders and employees. We will do all we can to keep our community as safe as possible. The above steps will happen for a rolling two-week period and will be reassessed daily.

March 17, 2020 | Chris Simmons | getDowntown Program Director

To Our go!Pass Customers,

As we continue to adjust to the ever changing conditions caused by our community’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are having to create a new version of what the program can do to assist employers and employees to get through this challenging time.  We are also reacting to changes in services from TheRide and other community providers, and trying to make sure that your interests are protected as decisions are made.  As a result of the latest changes from TheRide, we are implementing the following program changes immediately:

  • Since TheRide has suspended collection of all fares, effective March 18, 2020 and until further notice, we will not be taking any go!pass orders. This includes orders for replacement or additional passes. We will also not process any passes for deactivation until fares are again being collected.
  • We will inform go!pass coordinators of how passes will be processed when fares are again collected. Until such time as the Blake Transit Center is again open to the public, there may be limits on how we will be able to help manage orders.
  • We strongly encourage all open businesses to make no changes to their go!pass inventory with their employees at this time.  We will inform all coordinators on how to restart their monitoring at the proper time.
  • We urge all employees who depend on TheRide to get to and from work to sign up at theride.org for MyAlerts that cover their routes.  Those alerts will be sent to you so that you know what is happening with your route.
  • We have created a separate page for COVID-19 updates, available through a link at the top of the page.  Any downtown business that wants to place their contact information for orders or new business hours, or non-profits with services for employees displaced by this health emergency, can contact us at info@getdowntown.org, and we will post it in the section for business and non-profit support.

There will, we are sure, continue to be changes with this fluid situation.  As TheRide stated, service changes are coming and will be reacting to both real-time needs of the community, guidelines from state and local health officials, and the agency’s ability to continue to provide service.  We will continue to provide updates as we have additional information.

Stay safe, follow the recommended guidelines, and be excellent to one another.

March 16, 2020 | Chris Simmons | getDowntown Program Director

Downtown Business Owners/Managers and Employees

First of all, we want you to know that we will continue to be a resource as we deal with this unprecedented public health response to the Covid-19 (Coronavirus).  If we can provide you any assistance with alternative work arrangements or in letting the community know what your business is still providing, please let us know at info@getdowntown.org.

Second, as TheRide is responding to the current guidance on conditions, our office is being moved to have us working from home.  That will have a few impacts on our ability to serve you.  They are:

  • While we will continue to respond to emails and phone calls during our office hours (9am – 5 pm), our office will not be open to drop in for pickups or to handle pass issues through at least April 6th.
  • We cannot fulfill orders for delivery or for an in-person cash payment at this time.  We will accept online credit card payments only at this time.  We will then mail passes to your location or leave them at the Blake Transit Center ticket desk to be picked up.
  • Unless your business is permanently closing, or the employee has permanently separated from your employment, we are encouraging you to keep the go!passes of your employees active.  While we are NOT encouraging all travel, we do want to ensure that your employees are still able to make their necessary work hours or medical appointments as needed.  We do encourage all businesses and employees to follow the directives of the state health department in response to this crisis.

Finally, we are still planning as if the Commuter Challenge this May is going to continue as scheduled.  We are, however, evaluating whether we will postpone the Challenge based on guidance from the CDC and state health officials.  We will let you know when a decision is made.

COMMUNITY SUPPORT

Below is an extensive list of services provided to those in need during this pandemic. To add additional services, please email us and we'll be sure to add the information. Thank you to the Washtenaw County Mutual Aid Resources and others for this information. 

Destination Ann Arbor has created a COVID-19 Business Toolkit full of up to date information for local businesses and employees. Click here for more info.  

The Ann Arbor/Ypsi Regional Chamber has a great website chock full of resources and information for small businesses, employees and consumers. Click here for more info.

Tips

Talk to your bank. Do they have options available that may help with unexpected income disruption such as short-term loans, loan skip-a-payment programs, or something else?

Talk with your landlord. Could you pay part of your rent now and make-up the remainder at a later date?

Unemployment pay offered to Michigan workers off the job due to coronavirus, see article

 

Food Assistance for Kids

Ann Arbor Public Schools Find times and locations of food distribution here.

Dexter Schools Offering free breakfast and lunch to all kids under 18.

Washtenaw ISD COVID-19 resources Tons of food resources, plus free educational subscriptions and other resources.

Ypsilanti Community Schools  Find times and locations of food distribution here.

Conor O'Neills If you're in need of a boxed lunch for a child, please feel free to stop by the pub between 11am-1pm and one of our staff will gladly assist you. Call (734) 665-2968 with questions.

TeaHaus Will be handing out free boxed lunches to any school aged child from 11am-1pm at our sister location EatMoreTea, just around the corner, at 211 E. Ann St. 

 

Food Assistance for Families

 

Community Action Network Washtenaw A list of where and how to access CAN food services, as well which sites are closed currently.

Food Finder app to help you find places serving free food near you (just enter your zip code)

Food Gatherers If you need food, we have a network of food pantries and meal programs that are ready to help, including the Community Kitchen in Ann Arbor. Also, we are working closely with local school districts to address the needs of students who no longer have access to school meals and to develop alternative delivery models to ensure children are being fed. Give.

Muslim Community Association Free grocery and medicine delivery - for high risk populations (over 50 or with any chronic illness)

Peace Neighborhood Center will be distributing lunches at various locations across Ann Arbor.

SOS Community Services Through the resource center, we help stretch tight budgets so community members can stay housed by offering a choice food pantry and walk-in services. Families can get assistance with utilities, transportation, personal care items, and housing resources. The SOS Resource Center also is a MiBridges Navigation site so people can get connected to the benefits offered by the Department of Health and Human Services. Give.

The Pandemic Pantry - Make Do With What's On Hand Grocery stores are going to be nuts for a while, with some basic essentials not available sometimes.Rather than panic, let's see what we can make in our pantries and fridges already. Heck, maybe you've never cooked anything before. Now's a good time to learn!”

United Way of Washtenaw County If you need help Call 2-1-1, our 24/7 hotline that can connect you to services in our community. Donations will be used to help non-profits meet the needs of the vulnerable populations including those needing food, children, families facing loss of income due to business closures, health issues and those experiencing housing crisis. Give.

Washtenaw County Salvation Army offers a wide range of resources including utility assistance, food pantry, counseling, help with housing. Give.

 

Pet Food Assistance

Humane Society of Huron Valley Apply for Pet Food Assistance 

 

Financial Support

Mutual aid for service industry workers - closed Facebook group

Bartender emergency assistance program - emergency grants for bartenders (and/or their spouses and children). They are accepting donations to this fund here

Filing for unemployment  (currently expanded to cover those who cannot work right now)

Michigan.gov resources for employers and workers

 

Utilities and Wifi

Comcast offering free internet to low-income homes, increased speeds, open wifi hot spots to all.

Other free/low-cost internet options (an extensive list)

AT&T won’t terminate service of any wireless, home phone or broadband residential or small business customer due to an inability to pay their bill as a result of the coronavirus pandemic – and we’re waiving late payment fees for those customers.

DTE suspending shutoffs for low income eligible customers

 

Transportation

getDowntown Information regarding transportation, community resources, tips for working from home

TheRide - up to date bus information for the County


Health & Healthcare 

Aim and Intent Debora Collins (734-276-4556) I am a Psychotherapist who specializes in anxiety and crisis management. I have a very flexible schedule and can accommodate unusual time requests, if necessary (to the medical community, perhaps.)  I am also able to provide a deep sliding scale for those most vulnerable financially (perhaps veterans, the elderly, restaurant or gig-economy workers), and can provide services over a secure video chat platform or by phone.  

Hope Clinic  Distributing hot meals in the evenings, providing emergency groceries every day, and have produce/pantry appointments. They also offer free dental and medical services. People who are looking to serve can volunteer at https://thehopeclinic.org/serve-with-hope

12-step recovery - list of public online recovery resources 

Even more online and virtual addiction recovery services

Crisis Text Line 74141 Free, 24-hour mental-health support.

Community Mental Health of Washtenaw County crisis line Call to talk through a crisis, get general information about resources, or to schedule an appointment.

Ozone House (Ann Arbor/Ypsi) Crisis Line (for anyone, anywhere) and other emergency services

Therapy United  online therapy services for individuals, couples, and families. Specialties are depression, anxiety, couples, grief, work/career issues, stress management, addiction & recovery & conflict resolution. Call 734-345-2965: sliding scale fee available based on income reduced rate temporarily for all during the COVID-19 crisis

 

Help for Home Bound Seniors

Ann Arbor Meals on Wheels Meals for home bound Seniors. Get involved/volunteer, donate.

Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels Meals for home bound Seniors. Get involved/volunteer, donate.  

 

Neighbor-to-Neighbor Support

Huron Valley COVID 19 Mutual Aid form Put together by local organizers and activists. Use this form to request or offer aid of all kinds!

 

Here is a helpful link with all restaurants and bars in the Ann Arbor Area that are open for pick-up or delivery.

The Ann Arbor/Ypsi Regional Chamber has a great website chock full of resources and information for small businesses, employees and consumers. Click here for more info.

Downtown Ann Arbor Bars and Restaurants

ORDER MEALS for CURBSIDE PICK-UP. Thanks to the Main Street Area Association and others for helping compile this list. If you have more places to add, drop us an email

AMA BISTRO Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery, Online ordering. Hours: 8:00am–4:00pm. Address: 215 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 780-7202

AMER’S MEDITERRANEAN DELI Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours: Su–Th, 8:00am–8:00pm & Fri–Sa, 8:00am–10:00pm. Address: 314 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 761-6000. More info: Delivery with GrubHub.

AVENTURA Re-opening August 2020. More info at www.AventuraAnnArbor.com

BEN & JERRY’S Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours available on the website. Address: 304 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 665-4440. More info: Delivery through our partners EatStreetDelivery.com, and Uber Eats (coming soon).

Blank Slate Creamery Online orders and walk-up window only. When you arrive to pick up your online order, just call us and we will bring it out to you - we call this Scoop-n-Swoop. We scoop, you swoop! Order now!

Blue LLama Jazz Club Dining in, Patio seating, Delivery, Carry-out, they have it all! Hours available on their website. And don't forget about the livestreams of the great music!

Blue Tractor Open M-F 4-10 PM and S-S 12-10PM for dine-in or patio seating, delivery, and curbside carry-out. Delivery available through Doordash. Reservations available through the website or by calling (734)-222-4095.

Bløm Meadworks  Open Wednesday through Sunday with limited hours and patio seating. Delivery also available for online orders.  See the directions online, or call (734) 548-9729 for details.

Cafe Zola Cafe Zola is open for carry out, curbside pickup, patio dining and limited inside seating daily for lunch and dinner. See menu here. Customers can contact Cafe Zola at 734-769-2020.

Conor O'Neill's Open for in-person dining, patio dining, and to-go orders.  See the website for hours and menu.  To-go available by calling (734) 665-2968.

Dessous Closed through May 28.

Grange Kitchen and Bar Dining room and bar hours now available. Curbside pickup and pantry items available via online order or by calling (734) 995-2107.

Grizzly Peak Open daily with first-come, first served patio seating and online reservations for indoor seating. Offering delivery.

Heidelberg See website for full details.

HopCat HopCat is OPEN for curbside and delivery ($15 minimum) orders daily from 3 to 9 PM! You can easily order online for pick-up and delivery, on your DoorDash app, or by calling (734) 436-2875.

ISALITA Groups of 4 or less only for dining Tuesday through Sunday starting at 3 PM, no reservations available.  Curbside to-go is also still available by ordering here.

Jolly Pumpkin Open daily offering delivery, curbside carry-out, and dining with reservations through their website or by calling 734-913-2730.

KNIGHT’S STEAKHOUSE Bar and kitchen now open 7 days a week. Dine-in available, and curbside pickup orders may be placed through the online form

Le Bon Macron Pre-orders available for selected dates, along with merch, available through the online store.

Neopapalis Curbside pickup & limited seating available. Door Dash provides deliveries. See menu & order. We can be contacted at 734-929-2227

NEW YORK PIZZA DEPOT No-contact delivery and curbside pickup available 7 days a week.

Old Town Tavern Open for carry-out, dine-in, and delivery. Orders can be made online.

Pacific Rim Offering take out with curbside pickup, as well as some delivery options. See menu. Call us @ 734-662-9303.

Palio, The Chop House, & Carson's American Bistro Order from any of these three restaurants from 4pm – 8pm! Carry-Out for The Chop House will be picked up from Palio. Delivery available for Palio & Carson’s American Bistro. (Parking for Palio & The Chop House Carry-Out available in front of Palio or in the lot on side)

Palio: Carry-Out Call (734) 930-6156 / menu & delivery

The Chop House: Carry-Out Call (734) 930-6156 / menu & delivery

Carson’s: Carry-Out Call (734) 622-0537 / menu & delivery

Pretzel Bell Open daily noon - 9pm offering delivery and curbside carry-out by calling 734-994-2773. The Detroit-Style pizza is the perfect meal to feed a group, along with other offerings to meet every need in the house.

PITA KABOB GRILL Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours: M–Sa, 10:30am–12:00am & Sun, 11:00am–10:00pm
Address: 619 East William, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 622-8082. More info: Delivery available on GrubHub, EatStreet, DoorDash, Postmates, and Uber Eats.

POKE POKE SUSHI UNROLLED Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours: Su–Th, 10:30am–9:00pm, Fri–Sa, 10:30am–10:00pm. Address: 312 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 263-2155Rel·ish Open for curbside food, beer and wine (3500 S. State St.). See menu & order.

Ruth's Chris Enjoy steak house favorites from the comfort of your home with Ruth’s Anywhere. Receive 25% off takeout orders more than $75 when you order call (734) 585-5155. View menu.

SAVA’S Dine-out options: Take-out, Curbside pick-up, Delivery, Online ordering.Hours: 9:00am–8:00pm. Address: 216 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 623-2233. More info: Order online at www.SavasAnnArbor.com

Shalimar We will deliver free of charge. See menu and place order here. Call 734-663-1500 to pickup food from back in alley or in front on Main St. (we will bring food bag with maintaining distance and wearing gloves). Delivery drivers follow instructions on your mobile device. Pickup orders at host table inside or we can bring food bags to your car at front or back of restaurant.

SILVIO’S ORGANIC PIZZA Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours: 11:00am–8:00pm. Address: 715 North University, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 214-6666. More info: Free Delivery. Beer and wine included.

SLURPING TURTLE Dine-out options: Take-out, Delivery. Hours: See below. Address: 608 East Liberty, Ann Arbor, MI 48194
Phone: (734) 887-6868. More info: We will have amended hours with online orders closing at 8:30 and call-in orders closing at 9pm every night until further notice. We are currently active on EatStreet and GrubHub

Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea (123 W. Washington) Handcrafted coffee & tea beverages, frozen Ice Dragons, milkshakes, delicious desserts, pastries and light fare. See Menu . Take Out, Curbside Pickup, and 3rd Party Delivery available. Call 734-769-2331 to order. You can also ship our coffee direct to your door Website.

The Earle Call between 5 - 7:30pm to order for curbside pickup. You’ll receive a $25 gift certificate for your next dine in visit. See menu. Call (734) 994-0211.

THE ORIGINAL COTTAGE INN Dine-out options: Curbside pick-up, Delivery. Hours: 11:00am–9:00pm (dine-out only)
Address: 512 East Liberty, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 663-3379. More info: $20 minimum on delivery, 15 mile radius. Call to place order, and pay over the phone or in person. @originalcottageinn

Thrive Juicery Frozen take home smoothie kits! Stock up today on our most popular smoothies & make them right at home whenever you want a superfood meal packed with raw organic produce! Stadium store only. Open 9am-4pm today! See menu.

WILMA'S Dine-out options:  Take-out, Curbside pick-up, Delivery, Online ordering. Hours:  10:00am–4:30pm. Address:  403 East Washington,  Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone:  (734) 669-3552. More info: Order online at www.WilmasAnnArbor.com

Many retailers are open so please check their website for hours. Below are some alternative options for shopping from home. Thanks to the Main Street Area Association and others for helping compile this list. If you have more places to add, drop us an email

The Ann Arbor/Ypsi Regional Chamber has a great website chock full of resources and information for small businesses, employees and consumers. Click here for more info.

Abracadabra Free shipping within Michigan and curbside pick up. One on one appointments are also available 7 days a week so customers do not need to meet other customers in the shop. See website. Shop on etsy site.

BIVOUAC Shop online: www.bivouacannarbor.comAddress: 336 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: 10:00am–4:00pm, Mon–Fri. Phone: (734) 761-6207. More info: Shop Bivouac online- Free shipping! They will be filling orders everyday and will also have free same day delivery within a 5 mile radius. Also offering free returns on all purchases within the continental US, AND free curbside pickup between 10:00am–4:00pm, Mon–Fri.

Bløm Meadworks Shop online for merch, gift cards, mead, and cider! Delivered directly to your door!

Crazy Wisdom You may still support us by shopping for books, ebooks and Libro.fm audio books online.

Downtown Home and Garden We are open for business and still in stride with providing our goods and services in step with safe guidelines. While our store doesn’t quite translate to online sales, we do have systems in place to support drive thru and pick up. Feel free to call (734) 662-8122 with any questions or requests. View website.

ELMO’S LIBERTY T-SHIRTSShop online: www.elmostshirts.imprintableapparel.comAddress: 404 East Liberty (at Divison), Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Open by appointment. Phone: (734) 604-5989. More info: Names, numbers, custom sayings, done mucho pronto!

Fjallraven Shop online!

Literati Bookstore If you want to support us via online orders, it's best to order books that say "ON OUR SHELVES NOW" -- that reflects our current inventory as closely as possible. We can ship out those books much faster than books we'll be ordering, since being closed, we won't be doing much ordering to begin with. Shop online!

MDEN Shop online: www.mden.comAddress: 304 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Closed (online only)
Phone: (734) 686-3002

MIX Shop online:  www.mixthestore.comStore hours:  Closed (online only). Address:  2, 4, & 5 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 961-8704. More info: As our beautiful Spring Summer collection arrives, we continue to add beautiful pieces to Instagram, facebook and our website. We offer free shipping. Please call our Ypsilanti store for assistance, (734) 961-8704.

Moosejaw Shop online!

Om of Medicine We’re offering curbside for orders to protect the safety and health of our patients, staff, and community. Please reach out with any questions and see our menu here!

Real Irish Shop jewelry, home goods, apparel, and barware online!

Rock Paper Scissors Stationary, cards, home goods, send a gift box…shop online! FREE SHIPPING on everything and we’re happy to provide curbside pick up. Call us 734-531-6264.

Roeda Studio Doing our part to keep our staff and community safe, we've closed our stores but look forward to serving you online. Our webstore is open 24-7.

Shinola.com is still open for business, and we will be available on our social channels and through customer support at 1-844-744-6652.

THE GETUP VINTAGE Shop online: www.getupvintage.comAddress: 215 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Closed (online only). Phone: (734) 327-4300. More info: Follow us on Instagram @thegetupvintage! Posting new items on our Instagram Stories daily! All US orders ship free while we’re closed due to COVID-19! We are also offering daily pick up at the store for all orders (we’ll run it to your car).

UNIVERSITY FLOWERS Shop online: uniflowershop.comAddress: 7 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Mon–Sat, 10:00am–5:00pm. Phone: (734) 665-6037. More info: We are open for business with our normal hours Monday - Saturday, 10 - 5 and we also deliver!! If you feel safer staying close to home, please call the shop or place an order online at uniflowershop.com to have fresh flowers or plants delivered.

VAN BOVEN, INC. (CLOTHING) Shop online: www.vanboven.comAddress: 326 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Hours: Closed until March 28th (online store open). Phone: (734) 665-7228. Email: sales@vanboven.com
More info: Shop Van Boven online- we are offering free shipping, 20% off most items, and curbside pickup by appointment between 11:00am–6:00pm, Mon–Fri.

VAN BOVEN SHOES Address: 17 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Mon–Sat, 11:00am–4:00pm. Phone: (734) 665-7240. More info: To all our loyal friends… Thanks for understanding as we will have shortened/intermittent hours during this most certainly trying time. If footwear needs arise we will try to have some store hours: As of now 11:00-4:00 Mon-Sat, Closed Sun but of course that may change. You can always Message us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/vanbovenshoestore or call (734) 665-7240.

VERBENA Shop online: www.verbenaannarbor.comAddress: 309 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Hours: Closed (online only). Phone: (734) 368-9233. More info: New arrivals and endless inspiration! 20% off with code VERBENA20.

WALGREENS Address: 317 South State, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Store hours: 9:00am–9:00pm. Pharmacy hours: 9:00am–8:00pm. Phone: (734) 352-3623

Warby Parker We’ve temporarily closed our stores, but rest assure - we’re committed as ever to helping you receive the products and services that are critical to your vision health. Shop online!

WSG Gallery Shop online!

Local Grocery Stores

Argus Farm StopAddress: 325 W. Liberty St., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Store hours: 8:00am–6:00pm. Retail shopping available.

Argus Farm StopAddress: 1200 Packard Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Online order pick up or delivery only

People's Food Co-op - Address: 216 N. Fourth Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Store hours: 9:00am–7:00pm. Order online, pick up curbside.

Fun things to do downtown. Thanks to the Main Street Area Association and others for helping compile this list. If you have more places to add, drop us an email

Blue LLama Jazz Club

We’re bringing our Love of Food and Love of Music straight to your home! Check here for upcoming events. 

WSG Gallery Even though we are closed, we are posting a series of videos of Connie Cronenwett's solo show just installed in the gallery. Follow on our Facebook page.

Ann Arbor Public Library Live streams, audio books, and music streaming! See website.

Engage Ann Arbor Looking for ways to maintain your networking practices while sheltering in place?  Participate in virtual networking events hosted by Engage.  Virtual membership is available from their membership page, or you can register as a guest with a pay-what-you-can registration.

WORKING FROM HOME 101

March 2020  |  Cathy Colson | Pure Visibility  

Hello fellow telecommuters! Whether you’re newly-minted or an old pro at this, there are definitely more of us today than a few weeks ago. 

If you’re facing this for the first time, you may feel a bit disconnected or distracted, and if you’re used to WFH (working from home/work from home) from time to time, you may wonder if you can make it for the long haul. It will take some adjustment, but the good news is there are technical support systems available for remote collaboration that simply weren’t around even 10 years ago. We have the resources to make this work! In this post we are sharing our best tips and strategies to help you and your team make the adjustment to WFH and keep business running smoothly.

9 Working from Home Tips

  1. Get up at the same time everyday.
  2. Get ready for the day as normal.
  3. Set regular hours (and stick to them).
  4. Create a buffer between “work” and “home.”
  5. Dedicate a work zone in your home.
  6. Limit distractions.
  7. Take frequent breaks.
  8. Talk to people!
  9. Don’t take work “home” with you.

 

Read more about our WFH Tips

 

 

 

 

March, 2020 | LEXIE SACHS | GOOD HOUSEKEEPING INSTITUTE

As more and more companies implement work-from-home policies due to the spread of COVID-19, employees are now tasked with trying to be just as productive without their normal resources and routines. While working from home sounds like a luxury in theory, it's certainly no vacation and being productive is easier said than done.

Every job is different and the amount you're able to achieve will vary between career types, employers, and internal policies, but there are some key strategies to working from home when it comes to getting your tasks done efficiently (not to mention, staying sane and healthy while doing so!). Here are the best tips to working from home according to people who have successfully worked remotely for years and from our own Good Housekeeping editors and product experts who are working from home amid the coronavirus outbreak.

1. Stick with your routine

Just because you're not commuting and going into an office doesn't mean you should skip your weekday morning preparations. Wake up at your normal time, shower, and get dressed in real clothes (not pajamas!). It may sound trivial, but this helps you mentally prepare for the day ahead and get into the "I'm going to work" mindset.

It's also helpful to keep a set schedule. If you typical work nine-to-five hours, keep doing it at home. It's easy to lose track of time and if you can't stick to a typical work-life balance, you may find yourself getting easily burnt out.

2. Create a work space

Although it's tempting to stay in bed or head to your sofa, those who successfully work from home agree that you're best off setting up a station. If you don't have a desk, use your dining room table. Besides making you feel like you're at an "office," this helps you maintian good posture, avoid distractions, and leave your work behind at the end of the day.

3. ...but don't just sit there

Sitting all day isn't healthy even if you're at the office, but working from home means you skip your commute and have fewer reasons to get up from your chair throughout the day. You can invest in a standing desk if you prefer to work on your feet, but otherwise make sure to stand up regularly to stretch or move around.

If you've gained an extra hour or two from not commuting, it's a good opportunity to exercise, either by working out at home or going for a walk outside. A lunchtime walk can also help you feel like you're not stuck inside all day.

4. Get some fresh air

Since experts advise to limit contact with people who may be sick and many companies are urging employees to stay home, you're likely going to spend a lot of time indoors. Open your windows to let in as much natural daylight and fresh air as possible, and take short walks if you live in an unpopulated area — and be sure to wash your hands as soon as you return home.

 How to Wash Your Hands Correctly

5. Stay connected with your colleagues

If you work on a team, make sure to check in regularly just like you would in the office. Create to-do lists to keep yourself organized and focused, and share the status of your lists with your supervisor so they know you're on top of your work. Besides email and messaging programs like Slack, it's a good idea to set up regular check-ins via phone or video conferencing like Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom.

6. Fight the urge to multitask

This may seem like a convenient time to catch up on chores around the house, but it's easier than you'd expect to get distracted. Carolyn Forté, the Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute's Cleaning Lab, says now's not the time to straighten up or start a load of laundry. "There’s nothing wrong with taking a little break, but don’t let chores distract you from being productive. You wouldn’t be doing them if you were at work," Forté advises.

The same goes for other at-home distractions. If you meal prep or pack snacks ahead of time for the office, do the same at home so you don't get preoccupied in the kitchen. Chances are you don't watch TV at work either, so try not to leave it on, even if it's just background noise.

7. If you have kids, prepare for disruptions

It's difficult enough to get work done if you have children at home, but even harder with younger kids like babies and toddlers. Still, it's not impossible if you have plan ahead and have some flexibility. Here are tips from real parents who are mastering the work-from-home challenge:

  • Get help, if you can. It might not be the best choice for your family with the social distancing advisory, but if you have someone that can help out (e.g. a family member that can stay isolated with you), you'll be able to get the most amount of work done. If you co-parent, take turns between watching the kids and working. When you're working, hide in a separate room so your kids don't know you're there.
  • Mix up your hours. If your job allows for it – especially with companies being more lenient around COVID-19 – try to squeeze in work when your baby or toddler is asleep, like early morning, nap times, and at night. It's not ideal, but you'll be more productive if you have quiet time to yourself.
  • Explain the situationIt's a good idea to talk to your kids about coronavirus, especially older ones who can better understand the impact it'll have on your day-to-day life.
  • Try new activities. Fun toys and games that kids haven't played with before will keep them entertained longer. Time-consuming projects, like crafts, stickers, puzzles, and legos, are sure to buy you some time.

March, 2020 | Jill Duffy | PCMag.com

The global spread of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, is keeping people at home. Major conferences, including Mobile World Congress and Google I/O have been canceled to decrease the risk of infection. Some employers are encouraging or requiring people to work from home for an indeterminate amount of time. If you're new to the work-from-home lifestyle, whether due to coronavirus or because you've managed to find a remote-based job, you'll need to change some of your habits and routines to make working from home a success.

I've worked 100 percent remotely for more than five years, and I have some friends and colleagues who've done it, too. We all face unique challenges, not only because we have different personalities, but also due to our various lifestyles and the type of work we do. Still, many of the core issues we face as remote employees are the same.

Everyone who works remotely has to figure out when to work, where to work, and how to create boundaries between work and personal life. What about office equipment, career development, training opportunities, and building relationships with colleagues? Working remotely, especially when working from home most of the time, means figuring out these issues and others. Here are 20 tips for leading a better and more productive remote-working life, based on my experience and what I've learned from others.

1. Maintain Regular Hours

Set a schedule, and stick to it...most of the time. Having clear guidelines for when to work and when to call it a day helps many remote workers maintain work-life balance. That said, one of the benefits of remote work is flexibility, and sometimes you need to extend your day or start early to accommodate someone else's time zone. When you do, be sure to wrap up earlier than usual or sleep in a bit the next morning to make up for it.

Automatic time-tracking apps, such as RescueTime, let you check in on whether you're sticking to your schedule. They can also help you figure out what times of day you're most productive versus when you slack off. You can use that information to your advantage by reserving your hours of high focus for your most important tasks.

2. Create a Morning Routine

Deciding you'll sit down at your desk and start work at a certain time is one thing. Creating a routine that guides you into the chair is another. What in your morning routine indicates you're about to start work? It might be making a cup of coffee. It might be returning home after a jog. It might be getting dressed (wearing pajama pants to work is a perk for some, but a bad strategy for others). A routine can be more powerful than a clock at helping you get started each day.

I say "morning," but not everyone who works from home follows a nine-to-five schedule. Yours might be a "getting started" routine at another time of day.

3. Set Ground Rules With the People in Your Space

Set ground rules with other people in your home or who share your space for when you work. If you have children who come home from school while you're still working, they need clear rules about what they can and cannot do during that time. Additionally, just because you're home and can let service people into the house or take care of pets doesn't mean other family members should assume you will always do it. If that's how you choose to divide up the domestic labor, that's fine, but if you simply take it all on by default because you're home, you may feel taken advantage of, and your productivity may suffer.

4. Schedule Breaks

Know your company's policy on break times and take them. If you're self-employed, give yourself adequate time during the day to walk away from the computer screen and phone. A lunch hour and two 15-minute breaks seems to be the standard for full-time US employees.


5. Take Breaks in Their Entirety

Don't short-change yourself during breaks, especially your lunch hour. You can use an app, such as TimeOut for Mac and Smart Break for Windows, to lock yourself out of your computer for 60 minutes. Or you can just launch a simple clock or timer on the screen when you take a break. If you return to your desk after only 40 minutes, walk away for another 20.

6. Leave Home

You don't have to eat out every day, but try to leave your home or work space regularly. The same advice applies to people who work in traditional office settings, too. Leave the building at least once a day. Your body needs to move. Plus, the fresh air and natural light will do you good.

You don't have to go to crowded public spaces to get away from your solo workspace. Take a walk. Weed the garden. You get the picture.

7. Don't Hesitate to Ask for What You Need

If you're employed by a company or organization that supports your work-from-home setup, request the equipment you need as soon as you start working from home, or within a day or two when you realize you need something new. It's extremely important to set precedents early that you will ask for what you need to get your job done comfortably, including the right monitorkeyboardmouse, chair, printersoftware, and so forth. Organizations that are accustomed to remote employees often have a budget for home office equipment. Ask what it is and how often it's renewed. It also doesn't hurt to ask whether there's a loan agreement or who will pay for return shipping or disposal of outdated equipment.

If you're working from home unexpectedly due to coronavirus, ask for what you need within reason. You could be working from home for weeks on end and you should be comfortable, but ordering a new office chair and desk might be asking too much. Consider a mouse and keyboard, plus a back-supporting cushion instead.

8. Keep a Dedicated Office Space

In an ideal world, remote employees would have not only a dedicated office, but also two computers, one for work and one for personal use. It's more secure for the employer, and it lets you do all your NSFW activities in private. But not everyone has a separate office in their home, and keeping two machines isn't always realistic. Instead, dedicate a desk and some peripherals only for work use. For example, when your laptop is hooked up to the monitor and external keyboard, it's work time. When it's on your lap, that's personal time. You may want to go as far as partitioning your hard drive and creating a separate user account for work.

9. Maintain a Separate Phone Number

Set up a phone number that you only use for calls with colleagues and clients. It doesn't have to be a landline, second mobile phone, or even a SIM card. It can be a free VoIP service, such as Google Voice or a Skype number. Similar to some of the other tips, having a separate phone number helps you manage your work-life balance.

10. Use a VPN

Use a VPN whenever you're connected to a network that you don't control. That includes Wi-Fi at co-working spaces, cafes, libraries, and airports. Some organizations have their own VPNs that off-site employees need to access certain servers or websites that store information meant only for internal use. In those cases, you'll also need to use a VPN at home. In any case, it's a good idea to get into the habit of leaving your VPN connected as often as possible because it's always safer to have it on than not.


11. Socialize With Colleagues

Loneliness, disconnect, and isolation are common problems in remote work life, especially for extroverts. Companies with a remote work culture usually offer ways to socialize. For example, they might have chat channels where remote employees can talk about common interests, meetups for people in the same region, and in-person retreats. It's important to figure out how much interaction you need to feel connected and included. Even if you're highly introverted and don't like socializing, give a few interactive experiences a try so that you're familiar with them if you ever decide you want them. If you're not at a company with a strong remote culture, you may need to be more proactive about nurturing relationships.

12. "Show Up" to Meetings and Be Heard

Certainly, you'll take part in video conferences and conference calls, but it's a good idea to attend optional meetings sometimes, too. Be sure to speak up during the meeting so everyone knows you're on the call. A simple, "Thanks, everyone. Bye!" at the close of a meeting will go a long way toward making your presence known.

13. Get Face Time

If your employer is lax about getting you in a room with other employees, ask to have an annual or semi-annual trip in your contract. It could be for annual planning, training, or team building. Or, tack it onto some other business event, such as a yearly fiscal meeting, nearby conference, or office holiday party. Don't wait around for someone to invite you to the office or an event. Be proactive.

For those unexpectedly working from home who are also trying to reduce face-to-face contact, set up a video call with your colleagues or manager once a week to check in.

14. Take Sick Days

When you're not well, take the sick time you need. If sick days are part of your compensation package, take the time off that you need. Not taking it is like throwing away money. If you're a freelancer who doesn't have paid sick days, it can be very easy to fall into the opposite time-is-money trap and try to power through illnesses. Keep in mind that sometimes it's best to rest and get better so that you can be your most productive self in the long term.

15. Look for Training Opportunities

When you're not in an office with your fellow employees, you might miss out on training and skills development courses that are taught in person. Your company might even forget to add you to its online training courses. It can be tempting to regard this a dodged bullet, but you might be missing out on an opportunity to learn something useful. Speak up and make sure you're included.

In addition to top-down training, you can request online or in-person courses, training, and coaching if you need it. For people who work remotely 100% of the time, look for learning opportunities that are taught at the company's headquarters or your closest office. That way, you get training and face time with colleagues.

16. Overcommunicate

Working remotely requires you to overcommunicate. Tell everyone who needs to know about your schedule and availability often. When you finish a project or important task, say so. Overcommunicating doesn't necessarily mean you have to write a five-paragraph essay to explain your every move, but it does mean repeating yourself. Joke about how you must have mentioned your upcoming vacation six times already, then mention it again.

17. Be Positive

I like succinct and clear messages, but I know that the less face time I have with people, the less they know how to interpret my tone in writing. When you work remotely full-time, you must be positive, to the point where it may feel like you're being overly positive. Otherwise, you risk sounding like a jerk. It's unfortunate, but true. So embrace the exclamation point! Find your favorite emoji :D. You're going to need them.


18. Take Advantage of Your Perks

Every week, I bake a loaf of bread. Why? Because I work from home and I can. Plus, I enjoy it. When I worked in an office full-time, I struggled to find the time to pop something into the oven that often. Working remotely comes with unique perks. Take advantage of them. You deserve it.

19. Don't Be Too Hard on Yourself

The most successful remote employees have a reputation for being extremely disciplined. After all, it takes serious focus to do any full-time office job from an unconventional space. That said, everyone lets their attention drift sometimes. If you find yourself working one minute and booking flights for your upcoming vacation the next, don't reprimand yourself too harshly. Instead, ask yourself whether people in an office setting do the same thing. If the answer is yes, cut yourself some slack, then get back to work.

20. End Your Day With a Routine

Just as you should start your day with a routine, create a habit that signals the close of the workday. It might be a sign off on a business messaging app, an evening dog walk, or a 6 p.m. yoga class. Something as simple as shutting down your computer and turning on a favorite podcast will do. Whatever you choose, do it consistently to mark the end of working hours.

Make It Personal

Above all else, figure out what works best for you. Sometimes the answer is apparent, but other times you might need some inspiration from other people who are in the same boat. A supportive community of remote employees does exist, whether you find them in your organization's Slack channel or online through blogs or Twitter.

The Coalition for Smarter Transportation (CoaST) has posted its own resource page on the best telework resources from around the country, from programs that have provided commuter assistance for many years.  These tend to be from communities with robust telework communities, such as Seattle and Washington, DC.  You can find links for materials from these programs at http://www.smartertransportation.org/resources/telework-resources-page/.