What are your concerns?

Hard to understand

Or copy link


Ask Doctor for Free

Be the first to let Hello Doctor know your thoughts!

Safety Tips for COVID-19: Can You Get Infected in Restaurants?

    Safety Tips for COVID-19: Can You Get Infected in Restaurants?

    Other than affecting lives, the rise of COVID-19 also affected a lot of businesses, particularly the ones that involve food services, like restaurants. But since the start of the pandemic, governments around the world have come up with restaurant guidelines and safety tips for COVID-19 to prevent the spread of the virus. Can you get COVID-19 in restaurants? Let’s find out.

    Safety Tips for COVID-19

    Since the start of the pandemic, the Philippine government has encouraged its citizens to stay at home to prevent further transmission of the virus. To make this possible, many establishments halted their operations to discourage everyone from going out.

    One of the industries that were forced to close down during these times is food services or restaurants. After the strict community quarantine, some food businesses began to offer their services again, but with strict regulations. Can you get COVID-19 in restaurants? Yes, so you must be careful.

    Restaurants operate in limited hours and can only provide take-out and delivery services for their customers. Just recently, these establishments are now permitted to accept customers inside their premises at 100% capacity.

    However, a lot of people are still unsure if it’s safe enough for them to eat out.

    6 COVID Vaccine Fears You Shouldn’t Worry About

    Can You Get COVID-19 in Restaurants?

    Even though quarantine guidelines are quite lenient nowadays, there are still people who are still anxious about going outside. What exactly are the best safety tips for COVID-19 to follow?

    Although food businesses are now accepting customers inside their establishment, there are still some who are unsure if this is safe.

    A lot of news has been circulating worldwide about superspreaders who can affect multiple people by just being on the same premises at the same time. This is what concerns these people the most.

    But can you get COVID-19 in restaurants just by “dining in” and sitting outside of the food premises? The answer can be both yes and no.

    Yes, for the fact that the virus is airborne and by just walking outside your home, you’ll most likely get exposed to the virus.

    You can also be in close contact with asymptomatic people who carry the virus without showing any visible symptoms.

    Also, the virus can be present in common surfaces for days, which means when you’re outside, there is a possibility that the surfaces you’re touching are contaminated.

    On the other hand, there is a lesser risk for you to contract the virus if you follow safety tips for COVID-19 strictly whenever you step outside, and once you come home.

    Also, you may reduce your risk of acquiring the virus if the restaurant you’re visiting is implementing COVID-19 prevention practices.

    Do Air Purifier Necklaces Really Work Against COVID-19?

    Safety Tips for COVID-19: Can You Get Infected Through the Food?

    Since the coronavirus is a respiratory disease, it can only be transmissible through respiratory droplets. Thus, it is unlikely for people to get the virus from food and food containers.

    Also, there are still no known cases of respiratory diseases, especially coronaviruses, that can be contracted through food and food packaging.

    Restaurant Guidelines for COVID-19

    When it comes to safety tips for COVID-19, there is indeed a risk when you eat in restaurants. Aside from the no mask, no entry policy, according to the Department of Trade and Industry, here are the guidelines restaurants and food chains must observe now that they’re allowed to offer dine-in services in GCQ (general community quarantine) areas:

    1. Health Evaluation Form and Health Check at the Entrance

    Before entering the food establishment, a service crew or staff must inform the customer to fill out a health evaluation form. The health evaluation form is a way for the restaurant to know if the customer is not showing any symptoms of COVID-19.

    It also makes contact tracing more doable if ever one of the customers or staff have contracted the virus. A crew must also check the customer’s temperature, making sure that it’s no more than 37.5℃.

    Restaurants can refuse to service customers with high body temperature and are showing symptoms of COVID-19. This is one of the most basic safety tips for COVID-19.

    2. Physical Distancing and Contactless Service

    Can you get COVID-19 in restaurants? Yes, that is why you must strictly follow guidelines. Physical distancing is still mandatory in all public places, including food establishments. Customers must follow marking where they can stand and wait for their turn to order.

    The register counter must have a barrier that separates the customer and the staff. Other restaurants will get the customer’s order right away, and some give out numbers and instruct their patrons to wait until its their turn.

    After ordering, the customer must place the payment in a tray near the counter to avoid physical contact. These safety tips for COVID-19 can prevent infection for you and the restaurant staff.

    3. Dining-In Requirements

    Restaurants can offer dine-in services if they observe the following conditions:

    • One meter distance between the chairs and tables.
    • Customers can sit at one table if they observe proper social distancing.
    • Face-to-face dining is possible if there are dividers the separate the customers.

    4. No Self-Service Policy

    To avoid surface contamination, DTI restricts restaurants from putting up self-service corners for condiments and utensils. Also, buffet restaurants still do not have permission to operate at this moment.

    5. Payment

    Although restaurants still accept cash payments, they encourage customers to use cashless payment methods when paying for their meals.

    Restaurant staff must also wear the proper equipment when serving food, such as a face mask, face shield, gloves, and hair cap. Crew members must also undergo COVID testing every now and then to ensure their safety.

    Restaurant staff that shows symptoms of the virus must not come to work and must consult a doctor immediately.

    6. Guidelines for Dine-In Customers

    If you’re dining-in at a restaurant, you must follow safety tips for COVID-19:

    • Always wear your mask when not eating or drinking.
    • Wash or sanitize your hand before entering the premises, before touching any surfaces, before and after eating and drinking, and once you leave the restaurant.
    • Maintain physical distance, especially from people you do not live with. If outside seating is advisable, it is best to eat your meal there, so you can stay away from closed spaces.
    • After eating out, make sure to disinfect yourself right away once you get home.

    Key Takeaways

    If you must eat in restaurants, make sure safety tips for COVID-19 are in place. Although different food establishments are following strict sanitation protocols to ensure the safety of their customers, at the end of the day, the best way to deflect the rising numbers of covid transmission is by staying at home.

    It is okay to go out every once in a while for your sanity. But, as much as possible, stay at home when not doing any essential activities to protect yourself and your family from COVID-19.

    Learn more about COVID-19, here.

    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


    Personal and Social Activities  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/personal-social-activities.html#restaurant Accessed October 13, 2020

    Food and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/food-and-COVID-19.html Accessed October 13, 2020

    Eating Takeout Amid COVID-19: UC Davis Expert Explains Food Safety https://health.ucdavis.edu/good-food/blog/eating-takeout-amid-covid-19.html Accessed October 13, 2020

    Can COVID-19 (coronavirus) Spread Through Food, Water, Surfaces, and Pets? https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/expert-answers/can-coronavirus-spread-food-water/faq-20485479 Accessed October 13, 2020

    COVID-19 and Food Safety: Guidance for Food Businesses https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/331705/WHO-2019-nCoV-Food_Safety-2020. Accessed October 13, 2020

    DTI Issues Guidelines for Dine-in Fast Food Chains, Restaurants https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1104513 Accessed October 13, 2020


    Picture of the authorbadge
    Written by Mayvilyn Cabigao Updated Sep 16, 2021
    Fact Checked by Hello Doctor Medical Panel
    Next article: