A negative COVID-19 test will no longer get you into a restaurant in Philadelphia.
Beginning today, the citywide mandate will require customers to show proof of vaccination at indoor restaurants and bars, sports venues, movie theaters, and other locations that serve food. That includes the Wells Fargo Center, where the Flyers will take on the New York Islanders tonight at 7 p.m.
Children under 5 and people with religious or medical exemptions will be able to continue to show a negative COVID-19 test from the past 24 hours to enter venues of more than 1,000 people. A negative test isn’t required to enter smaller establishments — young children are allowed in, and adults just need to show proof of their exemption.
Businesses can choose not to allow any exemptions, so it might be worth calling ahead if you’re unclear of a restaurant’s specific policy.
By Feb. 3, all staff and children 5 to 11 must be fully vaccinated at locations that fall under the mandate.
“We know the most dangerous situation in the pandemic at this point is when someone is unmasked and around people from other households. This is what happens at indoor establishments that serve food every day,” Health Commissioner Cheryl Bettigole said earlier this month. “Given the case rates we’re seeing, this is an important place to look to help cut our risk.”