Costco has already limited the amount of people allowed in their stores in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines, permitting only two guests per member card to shop at a time — and only one per card in Kentucky.
The Kentucky number matches with the executive order Gov. Andy Beshear put into effect on Apil 8, saying only one adult member per household could enter a store to shop at any given time. (Beshear's order does make exceptions for minors and adults who cannot be left "without supervision or care because of their age or a disability or physical or mental impairment.")
And now Costco is requiring members and guests to wear face coverings while shopping in the store.
Costco's mask requirement goes into effect May 4 and makes exceptions for children under the age of 2 and those who cannot wearing facial coverings due to medical conditions.
Here is the full language:
Face Covering Requirements
To protect our members and employees, effective May 4, all Costco members and guests must wear a face covering that covers their mouth and nose at all times while at Costco. This requirement does not apply to children under the age of 2 or to individuals who are unable to wear a face covering due to a medical condition.
The use of a face covering should not be seen as a substitute for social distancing. Please continue to observe rules regarding appropriate distancing while on Costco premises. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
When Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine rolled back his initial order requiring customers shopping at retail businesses to wear cloth facial coverings (it is now a strong recommendation), he did say individual businesses can develop their own policies regarding customers wearing masks.
We aren't mandating that customers wear masks in retail locations, but business owners can require it. The recommendation that masks be worn came from business owners to protect employees. They can make a decision that those coming in the door need to wear a protective covering.— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) April 28, 2020
"As Governor, it is my responsibility to make the tough decisions, but it is also my responsibility to listen and be respectful of the thoughts and ideas of our fellow Ohioans," DeWine said in a press release regarding the use of masks. "Though it is not a mandate, wearing a face covering in retail locations is clearly in the best interest of all Ohioans. This gives added protection to others. When you wear a mask, you are protecting those around you from possibly getting sick."
Also starting May 4, Costco warehouses will reserve the hours of 9-10 a.m. Monday through Friday for members ages 60 and older and those with disabilities. The stores are also allowing healthcare workers and first responders to move to the front of the line to enter the warehouse.
Read more about Costco's COVID-19 response at costco.com/covid-updates.html.