7 Places You Are Still Required to Wear a Mask

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Teen wearing a mask on the bus
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Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that Americans who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can stop wearing masks in most situations.

But “most” is not “all,” and there are exceptions to the rule in which the CDC says a mask is still necessary.

So, you will still need to wear a face covering in the following situations.

Public transportation

The CDC says you are still required to wear a mask when riding public transportation. This includes planes, buses, trains and other forms of public transportation. It applies to all forms of such transportation “traveling into, within, or out of the United States.”

Some businesses

If a business insists you wear a mask, you must follow that rule. It is likely that some businesses will keep such rules in place for a while. However, others — like Walmart and Sam’s Club, Target and Starbucks, and Costco and Trader Joe’s — already are moving away from requiring vaccinated shoppers to wear masks.


If your employer continues to mandate the wearing of masks, you must abide by the rule.

If such a rule rankles you, maybe it is time to join millions of other Americans working from home. FlexJobs.com is a jobs website specializing in work-from-home opportunities. The site vets and posts openings for remote jobs as well as part-time and freelance jobs.

Health care settings

If you visit a doctor’s office, hospital or other medical facility, expect to be required to wear a mask.

Given the potential risk that COVID-19 poses to people with compromised immune systems and other health issues, health care facilities may be among the last places to drop the mask mandate.

Correctional facilities

The CDC says you should wear “a well-fitted mask” in correctional facilities, even if you are fully vaccinated.

Homeless shelters

The same CDC guidance for correctional facilities also applies to homeless shelters.

Other places where laws dictate mask-wearing

If any federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, rules and regulations state that you must wear a mask in a location, you are required to do so.

Planning to get vaccinated soon? Read “7 Things to Avoid After Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine.”

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