Chicago restaurant eyes ‘vaccinated’ and ‘unvaccinated’ dining sections as restrictions lift
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Chicago is allowing bars, restaurants and even dance floors to reopen at normal capacity with no restrictions like mask-wearing or social distancing, as long as everyone present is vaccinated. To make it easier for everyone to continue to dine out, one restaurant has created separate sections for those who are inoculated and those who aren’t.
For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Starting this weekend, Moe’s Cantina will require proof of vaccination in exchange for a pink wristband that will allow access to the area for patrons who have received their shots. Employees working in those areas must be vaccinated, too.
Under the city’s new guidelines, customers who have had their shots will be permitted at the bar and at tables on one side of the restaurant, while anyone who hasn’t been vaccinated — or who doesn’t provide proof — can sit in a special section where masks are required (unless seated) and dividers create partitions between tables.
“That’s the direction we want to go to get back to normal,” Moe’s owner and Illinois Restaurant Association President Sam Sanchez told CBS Chicago.
Throughout the pandemic, the city has held nearly 50 webinars reaching nearly 5,000 attendees in an effort to keep the hospitality sector informed of the latest operating guidelines.
“…for the first time we are providing recommendations instead of formal requirements as it relates to mask wearing,” Chicago‘s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection said in a statement.
As of May 13, (CDC) says vaccinated people can go without masks in most indoor settings. Across the country, states are looking for ways to operate in a less restrictive way, which increasingly involves the relaxation of mandatory mask-wearing policies in public places.
According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), 11 states never had mask mandates in the first place; 18 of the states that did have them have fully lifted them per federal, state and local guidelines.
Texas, for example, removed its mask mandate in March, leaving decisions about masks up to individual restaurants. (Over the weekend, TPG Executive Editor Scott Mayerowitz shared photos, above, from a crowded restaurant in Dallas, no masks required.)
Florida, notorious for its lax COVID-19 rules, never had an official statewide mask mandate. Some counties opted to impose them, but all local requirements were wiped out by an executive order from Governor Ron DeSantis on May 3. Meanwhile, on May 19, New York completely got rid of its mask mandates for anyone who’s vaccinated.
Coming out of more than a year of isolation, people are excited to leave home, whether it’s to travel or simply to enjoy dining out. That, combined with increased vaccination rates and the relaxation of precautions that kept some people away, has led to increased capacity all around — at restaurants, theme parks, shopping malls and even on flights.
Featured photo by Gian Lorenzo Ferretti Photography/Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees