Where to get a Covid-19 test before a Broadway show
Find out how to get tested for Covid-19 before attending a show and what the testing requirements are for theatres.
Though most Broadway and Off-Broadway shows require all audiences to be vaccinated, per guidance from New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and the Broadway League, some theatregoers with vaccine exemptions can still opt to take a test in order to attend a performance.
In addition, cautious theatregoers may want to get tested before attending a show, even if they don't feel sick. But if you get last-minute show tickets and want to get tested, you might not know where to go on short notice. Read below to find out about what kinds of tests are available and where to get tested before attending a show in the Theatre District.
What are the testing requirements for Broadway shows?
Broadway shows and most Off-Broadway shows only allow theatregoers with a legitimate medical or religious exemption from vaccination to get a Covid-19 test instead. Otherwise, Broadway theatres require all audiences to be vaccinated through February 28, 2022. Learn more about the vaccination requirements at New York shows as well as the newest vaccination requirements for kids, which require children ages 5-11 to be at least partially vaccinated.
Certain non-Broadway events may have their own additional rules, including only allowing vaccinated audiences or requiring proof of a recent negative test in addition to vaccination.
What kind of test do I need to take before attending a show?
There are two main types of Covid-19 tests: an antigen test and a PCR test. An antigen test returns results within hours, while a PCR test can take up to a few days for the results to come back. For those with an exemption from vaccination, most shows allow proof of either a negative rapid test from within 6 hours of the show or a negative PCR test from within 72 hours of the show. All Broadway shows and most Off-Broadway shows use this timing.
What if my test comes back positive before a show?
Do not attend the show if you are sick; venues will not allow you inside if you present a positive test result. Most shows offer refunds or exchanges if you cannot attend a show for Covid-related reasons. Contact the New York Theatre Guide guest services team to assist you if you bought your tickets here. Otherwise, contact your respective ticket seller.
Where can I get a Covid-19 test before a Broadway show?
We've compiled a list of testing sites in the Theatre District below. Many Covid-19 tests in New York are offered free of charge whether or not you have insurance. Learn about which types of tests each site offers (rapid antigen tests, PCR tests, or both) and which Broadway theatres are closest to each site.
CTS Mobile Testing
CTS has two mobile testing sites in Times Square: one between West 44th and 45th Streets and one between West 47th and 48th Streets. CTS offers both rapid and PCR tests free of charge. The CTS mobile testing sites are open from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday to Saturday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday. No appointment is needed.
Nearby theatres to 44th and Broadway: Minskoff Theatre, Shubert Theatre, Booth Theatre, Imperial Theatre, Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, Golden Theatre, Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, Music Box Theatre, Majestic Theatre, Lyceum Theatre, St. James Theatre, Broadhurst Theatre
LabQ has three mobile testing sites near Broadway theatres: at Port Authority Bus Terminal on Eighth Avenue and 41st Street, at Broadway and West 49th Street, and at Sixth Avenue and West 43rd Street. LabQ offers both rapid and PCR tests free of charge, and PCR results often come back the next day. No appointment is needed.
The Port Authority location is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. The 49th Street location is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday. The Sixth Avenue location is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday to Friday.
CityMD has an urgent care location at 345 W 42nd St. that offers walk-in Covid-19 testing; no appointment is needed. The site is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday to Sunday. CityMD offers both rapid and PCR testing at all locations. Rapid test results return in 15 minutes and PCR test results return in 3-5 days. Out-of-pocket cost for these tests is determined by each person's insurance coverage.
DocGo is located at 165 West 46th Street on the 14th floor. The site offers antigen tests for $30 and PCR tests for $125. Tests are available by appointment between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. every day. Both types of tests at DocGo provide rapid results via email after 20 minutes.
Photo credit: Annie Spratt via Unsplash
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