All visitors to Costco will be required to wear face masks starting Monday, the same day Costco stores will be returning to regular store hours.
This return comes after a month-long change in hours, which was made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a post updated Wednesday on the company’s website. Stores also will be expanding and changing their shopping hours for seniors starting Monday, the post says.
According to the post, “effective May 4, all Costco members and guests must wear a mask or face covering that covers the 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 mask or face covering due to a medical condition.”
The masks also should not be seen as a replacement for social distancing practices, the post says.
“We respectfully ask our members to use social distancing guidelines while shopping in our warehouses by allowing at least six feet of space between each person,” the post says, in a separate section on social distancing.
On Tuesday, Gov. Gary Herbert announced that Utah has launched an initiative to provide a mask for every Utahn, offering to mail six free masks to every residential address, according to a press release from the governor’s office.
People lacking masks can request the free masks online at coronavirus.utah.gov/mask, with priority given to essential workers and those who are at higher risk. Some masks are ready now, but “it may take one to two weeks (for the state) to receive new masks, and up to another week to complete shipments to Utah residents,” the governor’s release states.
If residents already have access to a mask, the state asks that they do not request them through this initiative, the release says.
These hours have not yet been updated on store websites, but both stores are regularly open from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, according to the stores’ pages on the Costco website, prior to the change in hours. These hours were also confirmed by the Bountiful location.
In late March, Costco reduced evening hours on weekdays at stores across the country. Local stores’ weekend hours — from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays — have remained the same.
At the Bountiful location, the gas station also will be returning to regular hours, open from 6 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, store staff said. This will reinstate area Costcos’ normal practice of keeping the gas station open one hour after the store closes.
The South Ogden gas station will have the same weekday hours as Bountiful’s, but the weekend hours have not yet been determined. It’s possible that location will open earlier than 7 a.m. on weekends, staff said. Prior to the change in hours caused by the pandemic, that gas station was open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the weekends, according to the Costco website at that time.
Also effective Monday are new and expanded hours for Costco members who are 60 and older and those who have physical disabilities, the website post says.
Stores across the country will be open to these groups from 9-10 a.m. Monday through Friday. Previously, stores held these hours from 8-9 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday. Guests will not be permitted to accompany these shoppers, according to the post.
For the first week of this change, starting Monday, May 4, it is likely that the South Ogden location will hold the new special shopping hours from 9-10 a.m. Monday and Friday, but continue the previous hours from 8-9 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, in order to inform morning shoppers of the change, according to store staff.
The Bountiful store will shift to the new special shopping hours, Monday through Friday, starting on Monday, May 4, according to staff at that location.
During these special hours, store pharmacies will be open, but food courts will not, the website post says.
Other Costco shopping policies include a limit of two people per membership card in stores, according to the same post.
On a temporary basis, stores also are giving first priority to health care workers and first responders, allowing them “to move to the front of any line to enter the warehouse,” the post says. Workers in these categories must present a Costco membership card and official identification of their role.
Current updates on other shopping policies at Costco can be found at https://www.costco.com/covid-updates.html.