NYC Vaccine Mandate

March 7, 2022

New State and City mandates:

As of March 7, 2022

Mayor Adams announced the following:

  • Suspension of the Key to NYC program.  Indoor venues (restaurants, fitness facilities, and entertainment spaces) will no longer be required to check for proof of vaccination before customers enter.
  • The removal of indoor mask mandates in city public schools for K-12 students. Masks will continue to be required for all settings with children under 5 years of age (where none of the population is yet eligible for the vaccine).

Masks are still required for the following:

  • Public transit
  • Broadway shows
  • Healthcare settings such as hospitals or nursing homes


Governor Hochul provided  The following statewide updates:

  • All New Yorkers 5 and older should get fully vaccinated
  • All eligible New Yorkers should get their booster dose
  • All travelers, domestic and international, should continue to follow all CDC travel requirements
  • New Yorkers who don’t feel well should stay home
  • Wear a non-cloth mask and wash hands regularly

For further state guidelines click here.


February 2022
Governor Hochul eased pandemic restrictions on mask mandates, allowing for businesses, local governments and counties to revise mask  mandates as they deem appropriate.    The following still require masks:

  • Transportation including airports,  subways and all MTA facilities
  • Schools and childcare centers
  • State-regulated adult care facilities
  • Shelters including those designated for the homeless and domestic violence
  • Correctional facilities

In NYC proof of vaccination is still required for:

  • Indoor dining
  • Events at arenas
  • Gyms
  • Theaters, museums and other indoor entertainment

Private businesses can still require patrons to wear a mask to enter.


Effective December 13 – January 15, 2022, Governor Hochul announced a mask mandate at all indoor public places unless the venue already requires proof of fully vaccinated status.

Key to NYC Vaccination program expanding December 2021

COVID-19 vaccination proof of requirements will be expanded in the following ways:

  • December 14; children 5-11 will be required to have proof of vaccination for the public indoor activities (indoor dining, entertainment and fitness) as defined below
  • December 27; people 12+ participating in public indoor activities will be required to show proof they have received two vaccine doses, except for those who have received the one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine
  • December 27; all employees at private sector businesses must have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.  This requirement will not be limited to businesses in certain industries or based on company size.  Details will be announced December 15


In August, the City of New York launched a lifesaving mandate in the continuing efforts to keep our City safe from Covid.  As of Monday September 13, the City began its enforcement of this mandate program.

Workers and customer 12 and older, will be required to provide proof of vaccination (at least one dose) to participate in the following indoor activities:

  • Indoor dining
    • Restaurants, catering halls, event spaces, hotel banquet rooms, bars, nightclubs, cafeterias, groceries with indoor dining, coffee shops and fast food or quick service with indoor dining
  • Indoor entertainment
    • movie theaters, music and concert venues, museums and galleries, aquariums and zoos, professional sports arenas, indoor stadiums, convention centers, exhibition halls, performing arts theaters, bowling alleys, arcades, pool and billiard halls, recreational game centers, adult entertainment and indoor play areas
  • Indoor fitness facilities
    • gyms, fitness centers, fitness classes, pools, indoor studios and dance studios

This new requirement called the Key to NYC – includes bars, restaurants, nightclubs, performance venues, gyms, movie and stage theatres, museums and other indoor venues.  Staff at these locations are also required to be vaccinated.  Enforcement began Monday September 13, business that do not comply with this policy will be subject to fines.

Proof of vaccination may include:

  • NYC Covid safe app
  • NYS Excelsior pass
  • CDC Vaccination card (or photo) with matching ID
  • An official immunization record from outside NYC or the U.S.

If your business is included in this requirement, you will be required to check the vaccination status of all staff and customers 12 and older.  You may not permit entry to anyone 12 and older who has not received at least one dose of the Covid vaccine.  Exceptions can be made for customers using the bathroom or for another reason that will take a small amount of time (less than 10 minute).

Prepare for this policy:

  • Place the Vaccination Required Poster in a clearly visible location – prior to them entering your business
  • Become familiar with the accepted proofs of vaccination
  • Develop a written implementation plan that will be available for inspection (include how you will check the vaccination status of staff and customers before they enter or immediately after)  Click here for a template developed by the City
  • Join a webinar – click here and search for “Key to NYC” webinars in multiple languages

Useful links:


Hudson Square

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