Aug. 11, 2020 — “I’ve been vaccinated for two months. I’ll be there!”
“Such a great call.”
“Discrimination and segregation always worked so well in the past, why not repeat it!”
These are just a few examples of the types of online reactions that restaurants have received after taking the bold move to require vaccines, something that may happen more often now with Yelp’s two new features.
Businesses now have the option to add “Proof of vaccination required” and “All staff fully vaccinated” features to their Yelp pages for free.
City Winery, a live music venue, restaurant, and urban winery with locations across the country, requires that customers either show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of entry.
Customers with neither have the option to take a $15 rapid test or dine on the outdoor patio.
Laura A. Albers, vice president of marketing for City Winery, supports Yelp’s new move.
“I think it’s wonderful,” she says. “I think one of the things we can do is make people aware of our policies in advance so that they’re not shocked or surprised when they come to the door.”
Albers also thinks Yelp’s new features could lead to more businesses following suit and enforcing stronger COVID-19 safety policies, like vaccine requirements or proof of a negative COVID-19 test.
“I think more restaurants and venues will join forces and do the same, the more they see other places doing it,” she says.
Albers says City Winery has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from customers. There has been a little pushback, but the new surge in cases may cause wary customers to see the new safety measures in a different light, she says.