After weeks — and in some cases, nearly two months — of shutdowns, states across the country are beginning to allow non-essential businesses to reopen in multi-phase plans. In Texas, restaurants can reopen their dining rooms at 25 percent capacity, while diners in Alaska and New Hampshire must make reservations in advance of their meals. Some states, like Montana, have put reopening measures in place as they see cases of coronavirus flatten out; others, like Alabama, reopen even as daily case counts climb.
In all, 23 states have allowed restaurants to reopen for dine-in service of some kind, or intend to do so soon. In each state, varying degrees of social distancing measures remain in place for businesses that elect to reopen. These measures, usually described as components of a first or second reopening phase, variously maintain that restaurants must set tables six feet apart, and follow guidelines to cap dining room capacities between 25 and 50 percent. (Bars, meanwhile, are set to reopen in later phases of many state plans, if their reopening has been announced at all.)
Varying guidelines across the country make for a patchwork of reopening measures from state to state and even county to county. (Some major cities might elect to enact separate opening guidelines.) We’ll be updating this list frequently to reflect state and city guidelines allowing restaurants to begin dining room and outdoor service.