The Kansas City Chiefs return to Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday afternoon for a bout with the New England Patriots, and for those making their first trip to a game this season, fans will notice several protocols in place throughout the stadium meant to provide the safest environment possible amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first point of emphasis is that if you're feeling ill, please stay home. The Chiefs have big goals this season as they look to defend their Super Bowl Championship, and by remaining vigilant of your health, you're helping Kansas City's pursuit of another Lombardi Trophy.
It's also important to mention that the stadium operations staff is working around the clock to sanitize the building to the highest possible standard. Arrowhead Stadium has secured Global Biorisk Advisory Council certification, which is the cleaning industry's only outbreak prevention, response and recovery accreditation for facilities. This includes the cleaning and sanitization of high-touch areas before and after each game and regularly throughout the contest with hospital grade disinfectants.
And as fans arrive, there are various policies in place to reduce person-to-person contact and maintain social distancing. That includes a requirement that individuals wear masks at all times during their visit including while in their seated location, a no bag policy (including previously approved clear bags) and dedicated points of entry.
Those specific points of entry will be based on seating location, or "Zone." Guests will have a specific parking and stadium gate to enter to minimize contact and crossover with other guests. Zone locations are fixed, so circumnavigating the stadium isn't possible and a fan's experience during the event is restricted to that zone, including restrooms, retail and food and beverage.
Another key policy change from last season is that all concessions, retail points of sale and parking tollbooths will be operating on a cashless basis in an effort to reduce physical contact with others. There will be a variety of limited contact and contactless concession experiences available, including "Grab N' Go's," self-checkout, order pickup, and kiosk ordering stands throughout the stadium.
These concessions models expedite the speed of service and support social distancing efforts. Additionally, the point of sale ratio-per-fan is improved by greater than 60 percent throughout the stadium, meaning significantly less demand-per-stand during peak periods.
Lastly, tailgating will be allowed, but guests must only use the tailgate area behind their vehicle to maintain proper physical distancing between groups and tailgate only with individuals in their seating pod.
Overall, it boils down to five simple things to keep in mind:
1) Stay home if you're feeling ill.
2) Know your zone and have a game plan.
3) Wear your mask at all times, even while seated.
4) Maintain social distance throughout your visit.
5) Have patience and know we are all in this together.
The Chiefs rely on one another when competing on the field, and the organization is asking the same of fans on game day. By being a good teammate during your visit, you're helping to protect the Kingdom as a whole.
For more on updated stadium policies due to COVID-19, visit Chiefs.com/stadium/covid.