Tech repair shops expect spike in customers, warn of delays and service changes

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TORONTO — Canadian technology shops are warning customers to expect longer wait times and different repair experiences as stores re-open.

Best Buy Canada Ltd. and repair chain Mobile Klinik say they expect demand for computer, phone and device repairs to be high because Canadians are spending more time at home and online, but sometimes putting off fixing items until they can get to a store.

Best Buy says its remote repair options have already seen high volumes of inquiries, so it is bracing customers for longer wait times in-store and adding agents to deal with the influx.

Those agents will now meet customers at the store entrance to retrieve devices from a table designed for physically-distanced hand-offs and call consumers to find out more about their gadget issues and provide cost estimates and troubleshooting plans.

Over at repair chain Mobile Klinik, customers will no longer be allowed to linger at the counter while repairs are being done.

The retailer with about 80 locations across the country has fitted counters with Plexiglas shields, restricted the number of customers in a store at a time, beefed up cleaning procedures and implemented mandatory physical distancing.