Guidance on Closing of Indoor Dining in New York City 


Effective Monday, December 14, 2020 


Pursuant to Executive Order 202.81, effective Monday, December 14, 2020, all licensed establishments in New York City with on premises service privileges (e.g., restaurants, taverns, catering halls, clubs, manufacturers with tasting rooms) must cease all indoor on premises service until further notice.  All outdoor service must cease at 10:00 PM daily. Takeout or Delivery may continue thereafter, but no alcoholic beverages may be purchased for off-premises consumption.


Patrons should not enter the interior of a licensed establishment for any reason apart from ordering/picking up food, use of restrooms, and/or transit to an outdoor licensed space while this guidance is in effect (see FAQ). At and after 10:00 PM daily, patrons may not enter the interior portion of the premises for any reason; at and after 10:00 PM daily, orders should be placed by remote means (phone, internet, etc.), and pick-up should be outdoors curbside, through a window, etc.  

  • Only verifiable employees who are on the clock may be inside the licensed establishment. 
  • Employees and/or owners may not consume alcoholic beverages inside the establishment under any circumstances, or will be considered patrons for purposes of enforcement. 
  • Employees and/or owners may consume meals and non-alcoholic beverages only as a shift meal, and only pursuant to DOH’s Interim Guidance on Indoor Dining.



Only outdoor service that complies with the Department of Health’s Interim Guidance for Food Service may continue, subject to that and all other relevant DOH and SLA guidance.  

  • Pursuant to DOH’s Interim Guidance, a structure may only be considered outdoor if it has two sides which are open air.  A structure with one open side or no open sides is considered inside space and may not be used during the effectiveness of this guidance. 
  • Sides are not considered open if covered with clear plastic or other materials that restrict air flow.    



Q & A Regarding Indoor Dining Closure 


I am a licensee with on premises service privileges and restricted from permitting indoor dining, may patrons and delivery persons use the restrooms? 

Yes, restrooms may of course be used; individuals must wear face coverings, and may not linger or form lines, which would be noncompliant interior use.  


I am a licensee with on premises privileges, may delivery workers for wholesalers and other businesses enter to deliver products to my business?

Yes, so long as the workers are wearing face coverings, and are not lingering.  


I am a licensee with on premises service privileges and with a licensed outdoor area accessible only through my interior space, may patrons access such space?  

Yes, patrons wearing face coverings may transit through the interior of the premises to access the licensed outdoor area.  There should be no lingering, which would be noncompliant interior use.  Separate parties must be distanced properly.   


I am a licensee with on premises service privileges. How may I safely allow indoor order pick-up?

Licensees should utilize timed pick-up or text notifications to the extent possible to avoid crowding for pick-up. Patrons must at all times have a face covering on and may not be served any food or beverage for on-premise consumption while they wait. Six-foot social distancing markers should be utilized to ensure social distancing between patrons/parties. After 10:00 PM daily, patrons cannot enter the premises for pick-up - pickup orders must be placed through remote means (phone, online, etc) and conducted through a window, curbside, or other similar outdoor means.