Coachella and Stagecoach festival organizer Goldenvoice said today that it is eliminating all COVID-19 safety precautions for this spring’s events.
In a message posted to social media Tuesday, Stagecoach announced: “As we prepare to spend an incredible weekend in the desert together we are announcing that there will be no vaccination, testing or masking requirements at Stagecoach 2022, in accordance with local guidelines.”
The country-oriented Stagecoach festival, with headliners Thomas Rhett, Carrie Underwood and Luke Combs, is scheduled for April 29-May 2.
Coachella, with less fanfare, announced the updated rules in the health, safety and rules section of its site. That fest, headlined by Harry Styles, Billie Eilish and Kanye West (now Ye), is expected to draw 125,000 fans per day over two weekends, April 15-17 and April 22-24.
The Coachella site also posted: “There is no guarantee, express or implied, that those attending the festival will not be exposed to Covid-19.”
Live events giant AEG, which owns Goldenvoice, was among the first large promoters to announce mandatory vaccination policies for its events and staff in August last year. The organizers walked that back in October to allow for recent negative tests.
Representatives for AEG and Goldenvoice did not immediately return requests for comment.
While COVID-19 cases in California, including the ultra-transmissible Omicron variant, have dropped more than 70% in the last two weeks, deaths remain up 18.8% in the same time frame. California is expected to remove its indoor mask mandate Wednesday.
Other festivals, including next month’s South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, have so far maintained a minimum recent-test requirement and indoor masking for credentialed guests and staff in most public indoor areas.