Face mask rules in supermarkets as Tesco, Lidl, Sainsburys & Aldi issue updates

Mandatory face masks in certain public spaces, work-from-home guidance and use of Covid passes are being be axed as Covid Plan B comes to an end on Thursday January 27.

Boris Johnson confirmed the end of restrictions – brought in at the end of last year to curb Omicron – in a statement in the House of Commons. He said that "once regulations lapse the government will no longer mandate the wearing of face masks anywhere".

Here's what that means for face mask rules in supermarkets including Sainsbury's, Tesco, Aldi, Asda and more.

Do we have to wear face masks in Sainsbury's?

Sainsbury's has issued a face-mask update asking "customers and colleagues in England to continue to wear a face covering in our stores if they are able to".

The supermarket chain confirmed that face coverings remain mandatory across stores in Scotland and Wales, in line with the respective government's latest guidance.

It added that all Sainsbury's stores will continue to have a range of safety measures in place, including screens and sanitising stations.

What are Asda's face mask rules?

There is no confirmation of Asda's face mask policy when restrictions end. However, back in July 2021, the stores encouraged mask wearing in accordance to guidelines, but still left the choice up to shoppers.

It's likely Asda will once again follow the voluntary mask policy when Plan B ends.

Lidl face mask rules

While Lidl hasn't made any official announcement regarding its face mask rules, a spokesperson from British Retail Consortium told Chronicle Live: "Retailers ask customers to be considerate to those around them when choosing whether to wear a face covering and to respect the decision of other customers."

Will we need to wear face masks at Tesco?

  • Four strains of Omicron now circulating worldwide, says WHO in Covid warning

Tesco hasn't updated its website about face mask rules once Plan B ends. But given the trend with other supermarket chains, Tesco is also likely to introduce a voluntary mask policy, with customers encouraged to wear a face covering if they are able to.

Though this in unconfirmed for now, it's what the retailers did last time when the mandatory mask law was withdrawn in July last year.

Face mask rules at Aldi

Aldi has not confirmed what its policy will be on masks. When the mask laws were relaxed in July 2021, Aldi encouraged encouraging customers to continue wearing masks, but left the choice up to them.

It's possible they will follow this route once again – asking customers to wear masks if possible without them forcing them to do so.

What are Morrisons rules on face masks?

A Morrison spokesperson confirmed that the store would be following Government guidelines. This means as of January 27, masks won't be compulsory in any Morrisons store in England, but shoppers will still be asked to make a "considerate" decision on wearing masks while shopping.

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