San Francisco, New Orleans Implement Vaccine, COVID Test Mandates for Indoor Dining

In San Francisco, proof of full vaccination will be required to enter places like indoor restaurants, bars, and gyms.

San Francisco and New Orleans each implemented strict COVID-19 protocols to enter places like indoor restaurants, becoming the latest cities to utilize a digital vaccine or testing passport.

In San Francisco, proof of full vaccination will be required to enter places like indoor restaurants, bars, and gyms, and participate in large indoor events starting Aug. 20. The new mandate does not apply to kids under 12.

Employees will be required to show proof of vaccination as well starting Oct. 13.

"We know that for our city to bounce back from the pandemic and thrive, we need to use the best method we have to fight COVID-19 and that's vaccines," San Francisco Mayor London Breed said in a statement. "Many San Francisco businesses are already leading the way by requiring proof of vaccination for their customers because they care about the health of their employees, their customers, and this City. This order builds on their leadership and will help us weather the challenges ahead and keep our businesses open. Vaccines are our way out of the pandemic, and our way back to a life where we can be together safely."

Customers enjoy dining at a restaurant amid the COVID-19 pandemic in New Orleans May 16, 2020.
Lan Wei/Xinhua via Getty

The decision comes as the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus continues to spread. In San Francisco, the test positivity rate is currently 5.6% on a seven-day average, even higher than the peak of the winter surge, according to the city.

Similarly, New Orleans plans to implement strict rules, requiring at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine or proof of a negative PCR test to eat at indoor restaurants, go to indoor bars, indoor fitness classes, and attend indoor activities like sports games, according to the city. Vaccination or a negative test will also be required for large outdoor events.

The order, which goes into effect Aug. 16, applies to people 12 and older.

Additionally, New Orleans has implemented a mask mandate for indoor settings and large outdoor events, regardless of vaccination status.

New Orleans has classified the COVID-19 threat level at "severe" and is currently seeing a 12.2% weekly test positivity rate, according to the city.

The vaccine mandates come after New York City said it would require proof of vaccination for activities like indoor dining. Additionally, France has implemented a digital vaccine passport to access restaurants and popular tourist sites, including the Eiffel Tower.

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

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