Pulling out Centers for Disease Control and Prevention vaccination cards alongside tickets is nothing new for fans of music and theater: Almost all local nightclubs and performing arts venues, ranging from the Kennedy Center to Arena Stage to the 9:30 Club, have been asking for proof of full vaccination since last summer. (Some, such as the Anthem and DC9, also stopped accepting negative test results in lieu of vaccination.) Dozens of bars and restaurants already ask guests to show vaccination cards before being seated — a movement that began last summer but increased in popularity after Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D)'s announcement of the vaccine requirement in late December.
District officials have made clear that they look at these requirements as a way to incentivize residents to get their shots. The top of the mayor’s order lays out the argument: “Vaccine requirements have resulted in more persons who were vaccine hesitant deciding to get vaccinated.”
One other reminder: This rule doesn’t change D.C.'s indoor mask mandate, so even if you’re fully vaccinated and boosted, you must continue wearing a mask when not actively eating or drinking. As the mandate begins, things might operate a little differently at your favorite restaurant or outside Capital One Arena. Here’s what you need to know.