Myanmar barber truck cuts virus worries by going door-to-door


YANGON (Reuters) – A Myanmar barbershop business is trimming costs and generating cash amid concerns about the coronavirus, offering a salon on wheels to cautious customers who want their cuts away from crowded places.


Burmese barber Ko Phyo works at his mobile hair salon in Yangon, Myanmar June 17, 2020. Picture taken June 17, 2020. REUTERS/Zaw Naing NO RESALES NO ARCHIVES

The truck was launched a month ago by a group of entrepreneurs in Yangon, Myanmar’s biggest city, who are targeting clients concerned about being indoors or in a public place, where infection risks are higher.

The truck has enough space to fit a sink, mirror, chair and a work surface for equipment and parks up outside the homes of customers who book in advance.

“People are afraid of going outside during this time,” said client Kyaw Zin Htut.

“Even though this cannot ensure complete safety from infection, I am so happy with their home delivery service during this time.”

The stylist works with doors and windows open and two assistants disinfect the truck, clean the equipment and dispose of masks and gloves after each customer.

They have served an average 10-15 clients each day, who pay $3.60 for a cut. On quieter days, they also accept customers off the street.

Supervisor Phyo Kyaw said the idea came from seeing demand from people desperate for a trim with many salons choosing to close amid social restrictions. Myanmar has reported 163 cases of the coronavirus and six deaths.

“We are confident that most people, especially those who don’t dare to go outside like the elderly and children, will need our home delivery service,” said Phyo Kyaw.

“Our business has a lot of potential in the future.”

Reporting by Zaw Naing Oo; Writing by Martin Petty; Editing by Alexandra Hudson

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