Health and Safety FAQ

Effective October 29, Amherst Cinema returns to full capacity and will require patrons to present proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative PCR test (within 72 hours prior to showtime), along with a valid photo ID. To make your moviegoing experience safe and seamless, here’s what you can expect.


What can I expect when I arrive at the Cinema?
Prior to entering the Cinema, you will be asked to present proof of a full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative PCR test (within 72 hours prior to showtime), along with a valid photo ID. We recommend guests arrive at least 20 minutes before showtime to account for health and safety verifications and to avoid delays.


What forms of proof of vaccination will you accept?
Proof of COVID-19 full vaccination must be Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) approved and/or issued by a national health authority. Proof can be displayed:

  • Through a physical copy
  • Showing a legible photo on your smartphone
  • Using a mobile app. We ask that you download and log in to apps in advance so you have access to your proof before arriving at the Cinema.

What is considered full COVID-19 vaccination?
According to the CDC, people are considered fully vaccinated:

  • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
  • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine

What forms of proof of a negative COVID test will you accept?
Any individuals who are not fully vaccinated, or cannot locate their vaccination record, may instead present documentation from a medical or testing facility (paper or electronic copy) with a name, negative PCR test result and collection date and time stamp within 72 hours of the event. Rapid antigen and self-administered tests will not be accepted.


What is considered a valid photo ID?
Anyone 18 years or older will need to present a valid photo ID such as driver’s license, passport or school ID.


Are face masks required?
All guests (ages 12 and over) are required to wear face masks throughout the building, and may only remove masks while actively eating or drinking in their theater seats. All masks must fit properly and snugly, fully covering nose and mouth. Masks that are not permitted include: face shields, bandanas, and gaiters. Children between the ages 2 to 11 must wear a mask at all times, no exceptions. Face masks are available upon request, at no cost in our lobby.


What about children under the age of 12 who are unable to be vaccinated?
Children under 12 are welcome to attend films and events when accompanied by a fully vaccinated adult and do not need to present proof of a negative COVID-19 test. Please note, children between the ages 2 to 11 must wear a mask at all times—no exceptions for eating or drinking in their theater seats. Face masks are available upon request, at no cost in our lobby.


How early should I arrive to accommodate for health and safety verifications?
We recommend guests arrive at least 20 minutes before showtime to account for health and safety verifications and to avoid delays.


What if I arrive for my movie without valid documentation?
If you have forgotten to bring your proof of vaccination and are unable to present a negative PCR test within 72 hours of your showtime, you will not be permitted into the Cinema and may request a ticket refund. To request a refund, please send an email to us within 24 hours of your showtime. Email info@amherstcinema.org with “refund” in the subject line and be sure to include your name, order number and list the ticket(s) to be refunded. Refunds will be processed within 2-3 business days.


I purchased tickets prior to updated requirements and am unable to comply. What should I do?
If you have already purchased a ticket for a screening on October 29 or later and are unable to comply with the Cinema’s updated health and safety policy, you may request a refund. To request a refund, please send an email to us within 24 hours of your showtime. Email info@amherstcinema.org with “refund” in the subject line and be sure to include your name, order number and list the ticket(s) to be refunded. Refunds will be processed within 2-3 business days.


Will I have to show proof of full vaccination or a negative COVID test every time I visit the theater?
Yes. We require patrons to present proof of full vaccination or a negative PCR test to gain entry to films and events at each visit. Records are not entered or stored in any of our systems.


I’m not yet ready to attend screenings at full capacity. What are my options?
For most shows, patrons have continued opportunities to physically distance while sharing in the filmgoing experience. If you are curious to know how many tickets have been sold for any given show, you are welcome to call the box office for up-to-date information on ticket sales.

To accommodate varying comfort levels within the community, the Cinema offers Masked Mornings on Saturday and Sundays. During these first screenings of the day, face coverings are required for all guests at all times, audience capacity is capped at 25%, and no concessions are sold. To learn more, visit: amherstcinema.org/films-and-events/masked-mornings.

For those not yet ready to return for an in-person experience, the Cinema’s artfully-curated Virtual Cinema platform remains an option. To learn more, visit: amherstcinema.org/virtual-cinema


I feel unwell.
If you feel unwell or believe you have been exposed to someone diagnosed with COVID-19, we ask that you refrain from visiting. A refund will be issued for your ticket. To request a refund, please send an email to us within 24 hours of your showtime. Email info@amherstcinema.org with “refund” in the subject line and be sure to include your name, order number and list the ticket(s) to be refunded. Refunds will be processed within 2-3 business days.


Do you have a list of recommended sites where I can get vaccinated or tested for COVID-19?
Find a site near you by visiting one of the following websites: vaxfinder.mass.gov or mass.gov/covid-19-testing.