Many parts of the world are starting to emerge from coronavirus lockdown, with stores opening up and social distancing measures relaxing. But don’t expect to take off your mask to go into an Apple Store — whatever local advice suggests. This seemingly goes for both customers and retail employees.
According to Bloomberg, Apple will keep masks and other safety provisions in place for its stores as the company continues to “evaluate health and safety” measures. This comes shortly after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said vaccinated individuals don’t need to wear a face mask in the majority of public settings.
Retailers saying fully vaccinated shoppers don’t need to wear masks include Walmart, Trader Joe’s and Costco. Apple, however, won’t be among them.
“As vaccinations in the U.S. continue and local governments allow for further reopenings, many major retailers are likely to adjust their procedures,” Bloomberg reported over the weekend. “Apple, though, didn’t tell staff when it anticipates its procedures will change.”
Apple closed all its retail stores outside Greater China in March 2021. Optimistically, at the time it said they would reopen by the end of the month. Apple retail outlets eventually began reopening in May. However, there have been several COVID-related hiccups since then, with small pockets of Apple Stores closing around the year for periods in compliance with local rules or guidance.
To protect customers from COVID-19, Apple instituted various safety measures. These include temperature checks, social distancing and — of course — face masks.