While New York City is open and vaccinations have been a boon to everyday life and local business, Covid-19 remains a reality for all of us. Below you’ll find the most useful and current information for navigating the five boroughs, plus plenty of resources for planning ahead.
On September 7, 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul lifted the mandate for mask wearing on public transit in New York City, though wearing a mask on the subway, bus and trains remains strongly recommended. In December 2022, the NYC Department of Health put out an advisory that recommends similar masking in indoor spaces and crowded outdoor settings to slow the spread of Covid-19 (as well as other airborne illnesses). Masks, vaccinations, boosters and common-sense precautions among those most at risk remain the most effective way to reduce the risk of transmission.
Earlier in the year, Governor Hochul announced mask wearing would no longer be mandated by the state in indoor public places, and that schools would no longer require masking. Mayor Adams followed by lifting the mask mandate for schools as of March 7 and suspending the Key to NYC initiative—which required patrons ages 5 and older to show proof of vaccination for indoor activities at restaurants, bars, gyms, cultural venues and entertainment facilities. Individual businesses may, however, continue to require masks and proof of vaccination at their own discretion. For more information, visit ny.gov.
Vaccinations are available and recommended for all age groups, including—as of June 22, 2022—children between 6 months and 5 years old; see here for more details and below for where to get vaccines in the City. Boosters, including the new bivalent ones, are encouraged for all who are eligible (see more below). Note that in September 2022, City Hall lifted the vaccine mandate for all private employers in New York City—a policy that had gone into effect in December of the previous year—and left the policy to the discretion of the employers.
Officials at the Centers for Disease Control recommend that everyone 5 and older get a booster shot five months after receiving a two-course dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine and two months after receiving a single dose of Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine. A second booster is also recommended for adults 50 and over; it should be at least four months after the first booster and should be an mRNA (Moderna or Pfizer) vaccine. For more information, visit cdc.gov.
As mentioned above, mask wearing is recommended in indoor spaces and on public transit, though the mandates for each have been lifted. Businesses may still choose to implement the mandate, and the mask requirement remains in effect for health-care facilities.
Broadway shows have resumed their runs. To help consumers, the Broadway League has launched BwayToday.com, featuring updated schedules of all the shows playing on Broadway this season. This resource also provides access to each Broadway show’s website for more information. All listings include the most current information on performance times and reflect any last-minute cancellations.
Almost all Broadway theaters in New York City have stopped checking vaccinations for audience members, as well as for performers, backstage crew and staff (the requirement was officially lifted in May). As of July 1, masks are optional—though still encouraged—for audiences inside theaters. For more information, visit broadway.org.
The NYC subway continues to operate with 24-hour service. As mentioned above, mask-wearing in the system is now optional, though strongly encouraged. For more information, visit mta.info.
As of January 5, 2023, all air passengers 2 years of age and older traveling to the United States from China, Hong Kong or Macau will need to get a Covid-19 viral test no more than two days before their flight and show their negative result, or show proof documentation of having recovered from Covid-19 in the past 90 days, to the airline before boarding. This requirement also applies to passengers who have been in China, Hong Kong or Macau in the previous 10 days and are traveling to the United States from one of the following airports: Incheon International Airport (ICN), in Seoul, South Korea; Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ), in Canada; or Vancouver International Airport (YVR), in Canada. For more information, visit cdc.gov.
International travelers from other destinations may once again enter the country to visit New York City with proof of vaccination. Full vaccination occurs two weeks after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or two weeks after receiving the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Vaccines listed for emergency use by the World Health Organization, such as the AstraZeneca vaccine, as well as FDA- or WHO-approved mixed doses, also qualify.
With the exception of travelers from China, Hong Kong or Macau (listed above) inbound international visitors are no longer required to show proof of a recent negative Covid-19 test result. For more information, visit cdc.gov.
Both essential and nonessential travelers who enter the States by crossing land borders or arriving by port must provide proof of full vaccination. We will continue to update this page as requirements evolve.
For the latest on international travel requirements, visit cdc.gov.
How to Get Vaccinated
Covid-19 vaccines are available in NYC to all US residents who are 6 months and older (boosters are available and recommended), including domestic visitors to the five boroughs.
There are many ways to get vaccinated:
- New York City offers this comprehensive vaccine-finder tool, updated on a rolling basis, which includes links to local vaccination centers and pharmacies.
- You may call 877-VAX-4NYC (877-829-4692) to schedule an appointment and for more information.
- A number of sites across the five boroughs are now offering walk-up appointments. You can see these here.
- New York State operates vaccination centers, including one at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens. Book appointments here (and note that it closes permanently as of June 30, 2022).
- See other appointments nationwide with the CDC’s vaccine-finder tool.
To allow visitors access to the vaccine, the City operates a limited number of pop-up vaccination hubs in areas around the five boroughs, including near parks and transit stops; locations may change from week to week. For a list of walk-up sites and for more information, visit nyc.gov.
How to Get Tested
Covid-19 testing is widely available throughout New York City. A number of resources can assist in scheduling PCR or rapid-antigen tests:
- New York City offers this comprehensive testing website, which includes a searchable map of all testing locations throughout the five boroughs, along with basic information about the tests themselves.
- New York State’s Covid-19 testing page also includes a searchable map of testing locations across the five boroughs.
- NYC Health & Hospitals website includes information about walk-in testing, as well as locations that will allow pre-registration.
- Quest Diagnostics and Labcorp both offer testing options.
- A number of pharmacies offer convenient Covid-testing options, including CVS and Walgreens.