Updates as of May 24, 2022:
- Updated language to replace
fully vaccinated with completed primary series to bring outdated terminology up
to date; this does not substantively alter the guidance.
Questions & Answers
What is a Mega Event?
Effective February 16, 2022, Mega Events are planned public or social occasions that include over 1,000 participants or spectators indoors and over 10,000 outdoors. Mega Events may have either assigned or unassigned seating, and may be either general admission or gated, ticketed and permitted events. Mega Events are also characterized by large crowds where participants and spectators may be talking loudly, chanting, cheering, or yelling. Mega Events may draw from beyond the nearby community and will often draw attendees and participants from other states and countries. From a public health consideration, Mega Events are higher-risk settings for transmitting COVID-19.
Mega Events include conventions, shows, nightclubs, concerts, sporting events, theme parks, fairs, festivals, large races, and parades when attended by more than 1,000 participants or spectators indoors, or more than 10,000 participants or spectators outdoors.
Mega Events do not include venues such as shopping malls or museums that are open to public circulation as part of their regular operations, except to the extent that such venues host qualifying events.
Guidance for Mega Events does not apply to school events that are not open to the general public.
How long will these recommendations remain in effect?
These recommendations will continue and be updated as CDPH continues to assess conditions on an ongoing basis.
What makes Mega Events so much riskier than other events or venues?
Large events and gatherings involve several factors that increase the risk of transmission including:
- persons attending often travel from outside the immediate area, and some types of travel may increase the risk of exposure;
- events have prolonged duration;
- persons attending are often in close contact;
- masks are removed for eating and drinking; and
- the larger the number of people gathered, the greater the likelihood that contagious persons are present.
If vaccine verification is implemented by a venue or event operator, what are acceptable forms of identification for attendees ages 18 and over to validate their vaccination record or proof of negative test?
Acceptable identification is any document that includes the name of the person and photograph, for example a driver's license or identification card (DL/ID), passport, school ID or work ID.
Can Californians resume non-essential travel out of state? Internationally?
Californians should follow CDC travel recommendations.
What is the definition of "completed a primary series?"
See current CPDH Vaccine Record Guidelines and Standards for the definition of "completed primary series".
Can venue operators use self-attestation to confirm that an attendee either has tested negative or has completed a primary series as recommended?
No, self-attestation should not be used as a mode of verification when vaccine and testing requirements are being implemented. See current CPDH Vaccine Record Guidelines and Standards for acceptable methods of vaccine verification. See additional information regarding testing resources on CDPH Updated Testing Guidance and CDPH Over-the-Counter Testing Guidance.
Can Over-the-Counter (at-home) tests be used to meet the testing recommendation for those that do not provide proof of vaccination?
Use of Over-the-Counter (at-home) tests are acceptable. However, attendees should not use self-attestation to provide proof of negative test for entry into the facility or venue if implemented by the venue or event operator.
See CDPH Guidance for use of Over-the-counter tests and Over-the-Counter Test Kits Information Sheet for additional information on over-the-counter tests.
Are children who are not eligible for a vaccine still recommended to follow the strong testing recommendation for Indoor Mega Events?
Yes, children and those who are unable to receive a vaccine are strongly recommended to produce a negative test. However, children under the age of 2 are exempt from the testing strong recommendation.
If an attendee is attending an indoor mega event for multiple consecutive days, and they have not completed a primary series (and therefore are strongly recommended to provide proof of negative COVID test prior to entry), are they recommended to provide proof of negative test each day they are in attendance?
Attendees (who have not completed a primary series) participating in an indoor mega event for multiple consecutive days may provide proof of negative test on the first day, and subsequently every third day (meaning testing is strongly recommended on day one, day 4 and day 7, and so on).
What about customers who purchase tickets for a group? If vaccine verification is implemented by a venue or event operator, will they have to provide vaccine verification for the entire group?
It is strongly recommended for any customer purchasing tickets for a group to provide proof that all parties in their group will meet the negative tested or completion of a primary series recommendations for Indoor Mega Events. For Indoor Mega Events, all attendees are strongly recommended to wear masks.
Are there any consequences for falsification of vaccine status or testing results?
Vaccination record cards are intended to provide recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine with information about the type of vaccine they received, and when they may be able to receive a second dose of the vaccine. By misrepresenting yourself as vaccinated, you put yourself and others around you at risk of contracting COVID-19. Additionally, the unauthorized use of an official government agency's seal (such as HHS or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)) is a crime and may be punishable under Title 18 United States Code, Section 1017, and other applicable laws.
Is the event owner required to conduct contact tracing if it is found that people at the event were positive for COVID-19?
No, but event operators should cooperate and work closely with their local health departments to assist in any contact tracing efforts. Additionally, employers are subject to the Cal/OSHA COVID-19 Prevention Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS), if applicable to them, which requires that employees be notified of an exposure.
If vaccine verification is implemented by a venue or event operator, does that event owner have to retain a record of the participants' COVID-19 vaccination status or negative test result?
Any requirements for Mega Events continue to be recommended but not mandatory for places of worship meeting the definition of a Mega Event.