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We just received new warnings on social gatherings and also have seen a massive wave of shut downs around the United States due to the spread of the coronavirus. In this article, I will cover some of the new warnings and talk about some of the major shut downs that we have seen over the past day or so.
The Center for Disease Control has issued a new warning regarding social gatherings.
The CDC is now advising against gatherings of 50 people or more for the next eight weeks. In particular, it is advising that people do not attend events like include “conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings, and other types of assemblies.”
Basically, any type of place where people will be standing close to each other and shaking hands, sharing armrests etc., should be reconsidered for the next two months after this warning.
This makes a lot of sense as the US tries to flatten the curve when it comes to the spread of the disease in an effort to avoid putting insurmountable strain on health services.
By avoiding events like these over the next eight weeks, the rate of transmission of the coronavirus will go down and we might be able to avoid overwhelming the hospitals and doctors’ offices in the meantime.
This warning is stacked on top of the travel advisory that recommends avoiding any nonessential travel right now.
So basically if you are traveling somewhere, your travel should pretty much be necessary and you should be avoiding large gatherings.
It’s worth noting that the warning of gatherings of 50 people or more does not apply to daily operations of organizations schools or businesses.
Still, many schools have shut down or have transitioned into finishing up their semester with online courses or distance-learning. For example, New York just shut down their schools until April 20 – a decision that will affect millions and present challenges like how to feed kids reliant on public school breakfast and lunches.
And now we are starting to see a lot of businesses closed to the public. For example, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker ordered all bars and restaurants to close through March 30 beginning on Monday.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom requested that all senior citizens and those with chronic conditions isolate themselves at home and he also called for the closure of all bars, wineries, nightclubs and breweries.
Los Angeles Mayor Gil Garcetti ordered the city’s restaurants, bars, gyms and entertainment venues closed through March.
Many restaurants are still offering things like takeout and delivery and drive-through’s are remaining open in some cases so people can still find ways to get food. Also many kitchens are still functioning that offer food to the homeless.
Grocery stores are still open although they can be a little chaotic and empty in some locations.
As for booze, you can still find items at grocery stores and liquor stores are still probably going to be open in many locations.
Personally, I think this type of shut down is going to become more prevalent over the next few days around the country. So if you are traveling and planning on trying out restaurants in your travel destination or visiting public places like museums, I would expect those to be closed or at least limited in what they offer.
From what I have heard, it sounds like these shut downs will continue until we reach a point where we see a decline in cases and pass the peak of transmission.
But for now, if you are hungry you are going to probably need to choose a take out or delivery option so those food delivery services like UberEats and GrubHub are even more attractive now. And if you have a credit card like the American Express Gold Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can use your credits to get free deliveries and free food, so there has never been a better time to put those cards to use.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.