FACE masks will become compulsory in shops from tomorrow – but will you have to wear them in fast food restaurants? We explain.
New rules state people must wear face masks in shops from Friday, July 24 – and anyone who doesn’t will be fined £100.
McDonald’s customers could find that they have to wear face masks from tomorrow, July 24
It’s understood that coverings will also be mandatory in takeaway and sandwich shops, such as McDonald’s and Costa Coffee – but not when sitting down to eat in.
Shoppers can also be turned away at tills if they are not wearing a mask, according to suggestions from several ministers.
But the changes have sparked confusion after different MPs offered varying explanations of how the rules work.
The government is expected to provide further guidance this afternoon.
Here’s what we know so far:
McDonald’s worker seen serving a customer with a face mask
Do you need to wear face masks in restaurants and takeaway shops?
It’s understood that diners will need to wear a face mask if picking up takeaway food, but not when sitting down to eat in.
The guidance will only apply to England, as it’s already mandatory to wear face coverings in Scotland.
What are the rules for McDonald’s, Nando’s KFC and other restaurants?
The government will publish further advice on what this means for fast food and takeaway fans later today.
If the advice is as several ministers have suggested, customers will need to wear a face mask if ordering food for takeaway – but not when eating in.
For example, if you visited McDonald’s or KFC with the intention of taking away your food, ministers say you will need a face covering.
It’s understood that shoppers can be turned away at tills if they are not wearing a mask.
But if you’re choosing to sit down and eat, a face mask will not be mandatory as “it’s not practical”.
Shops have been warned not to challenge customers who fail to wear masks after lockdown violence against retail workers soared by 40 per cent.
Instead, retail staff have been urged by The Association of Convenience Stores to put up signs reminding people to wear a face covering.
HOAR has contacted several high profile chains – including McDonald’s, KFC, Nando’s, Burger King, Subway, Pizza Hut and Domino’s – to get more guidance on how the rules will affect their customers.
We’ll update this article when we get a response.
Will I be fined if I don’t wear a face mask?
Shoppers can be hit with a £100 fine if they fail to wear a mask in shops and other outlets where it’s compulsory.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick told LBC this morning that calling the police should only be “a last resort”.
She added the police will only get involved if shoppers without a mask refuse to leave the store or become “aggressive”.
It’s been mandatory to wear a face mask on public transport – including buses, trains and planes – since June 15.
Face masks are also compulsory on public transport in Northern Ireland and Scotland, but not in Wales.
Where are face masks NOT compulsory?
Face masks are recommended in crowded spaces but are on the whole not compulsory in outdoor spaces.
This includes when walking down the street and sitting in the park.
Official government guidance also exempts the following groups:
- A child under the age of 11
- An employee of the transport operator, when they are working
- A person with breathing difficulties
- Anyone travelling with someone who relies on lip reading
- People with disabilities
- Any other person providing services to the transport operator, under arrangements made with the transport operator
- A constable or police community support officer acting in the course of their duty
- An emergency responder such as a paramedic or fire officer acting in the course of their duty
- An official, for example a border force officer, acting in the course of their duties
- If you are allocated a cabin, berth or other similar accommodation, at any time when you are in that accommodation, either alone, or only with members of your own household or a linked household
- If you are on board public transport but remain in your private vehicle, for example on a car ferry
HOAR has rounded up the cheapest places to buy face masks ahead of the rule change.
Some experts claims that if all Brits wore faces masks then the UK could “return to normal” because they slash the risk of catching coronavirus.
In England, the rules are to try and stay at least 2meters apart, although 1meter is now acceptable if the former isn’t possible.