Austin COVID Restaurant Rules: Is Indoor/Outdoor Dining Allowed?

Stay up-to-date on COVID-19 restrictions for Austin restaurants and bars.
January 19, 2021, 05:44 PM UTC
Austin COVID Restaurant Rules: Is Indoor/Outdoor Dining Allowed?

On December 28, city officials held a press conference to announce that Austin and Travis County are now in Stage 5 -- the highest "risk-based" COVID-19 level the city has been during the pandemic. The reason behind the move was a surge in cases and hospitalizations following the Thanksgiving holiday. The recommendations under Stage 5 include a slew of new requests including advising restaurants to shut down indoor dining entirely to offer only takeout, pickup and delivery. However, advise is the operative word. All Stage 5 guidelines are "recommendations" as the Texas Supreme Court recently blocked orders to tighten dining and drinking restrictions. To help you stay on top of the latest, the information below reflects the updated dining recommendations from city officials.

>>>RELATED: Check out our state-by-state COVID-19 restaurant policy guide

Is indoor dining allowed in Austin?

Yes. However, officials have heavily advised retaurants to shut down indoor dining and only offer delivery, takeout or curbside pickup.

Is outdoor dining allowed in Austin?

Yes. It is sugested outdoor dining remain open at 50% capacity; additionally, close off bar and counter seating, as well as voluntarily closing from 10:30 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Is indoor bar service allowed in Austin?

Yes. After the governor shut down bars, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commision found ways to permit bars to act as restaurants in order to reamin open; however many have been cited for forgoing COVID guidelines.

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