Restaurant Reopening Toolkit

Everything You Need to Know Before Resuming On-Premise Service

Our mission at the GRA is to serve as the voice of Georgia's restaurant industry in Advocacy, Education, and Awareness. Restaurants are the heartbeat of their communities and right now, our industry is facing challenges far greater than we could have ever imagined. The GRA is here not only to represent restaurants with elected officials and shape public policy in our industry's best interest, but we are also here as a resource to help you get through this difficult time and hopefully thrive again in the future. We must move forward in thoughtful ways that can create a positive impact for our industry and in our local communities.

The health and well-being of Georgia's restaurant owners, workers and customers is always a top priority of our organization. Restaurants are highly regulated, and we are already utilizing proven methods to prevent the spread of disease. There is no evidence to suggest that COVID-19 can be transferred to humans through food. Continue to follow sanitation procedures outlined in the Georgia Food Code. For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19, please visit the Georgia Department of Public Health or CDC websites.

If you are feeling symptoms, please contact Georgia's COVID-19 hotline, 844-442-2681, or the screening number for your local hospital. If you or an employee tests positive for COVID-19, contact the Georgia Department of Public Health at 1-866-PUB-HLTH (1-866-782-4584).

Please, reach out to us for any additional information or assistance. We are here to help.

GRA Statement on Reopening Restaurants

The Georgia Restaurant Association appreciates Governor Kemp’s support of our restaurant community. The safety, health and well-being of Georgia's restaurant owners, workers and guests has always been the absolute top priority of our organization. We ask that restaurants and diners follow the rules set by the Office of the Governor. During this transitional period we are all in, Georgia's restaurants request respect, patience and understanding with regards to the pace of reopening. Some may be ready to welcome diners back, while many will need additional time to confirm their individual supply chain, initiate new operational standards, and ensure the safety of their staff and guests. Updated July 31, 2020

Reopening Guidelines

Georgia Restaurant Guide to Reopening

July 31, 2020 Governor Kemp Executive Order

Georgia Dept. of Public Health: COVID-19 Guidance for Restaurants (Updated July 31, 2020)

CDC Re-Opening Decision Tree for Restaurants

Reopening Best Practices + Helpful Resources


Best Practices for Retail Food Stores, Restaurants, and Food Pick-Up/Delivery Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Infographic Summary of Best Practices for Retail Food Stores, Restaurants, and Food Pick-Up/Delivery Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic


Considerations for Restaurants and Bars

Reopening Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Public Spaces, Workplaces, Businesses, Schools, and Homes

Frequently Asked Questions

Interim Guidance for Business and Employers

Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfection

Prevention in Communities, Schools, Healthcare Settings and Businesses

"Stop the Spread" Poster in nineteen languages


Restoring Water Quality in Building for Reopening

U.S. Chamber

How to Screen Employees for Coronavirus

Customizable Healthy Workplace Flyer

Georgia Chamber

Background on Unemployment Insurance Under the CARES Act

Reopening Guidance Flyer


Coronavirus Preparation and Response Portal

TriMark Strategic

COVID-19 Operating Essentials

Taylor English

Restaurant Best Practices Checklist



Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) Employee Rights Poster

Front Entrance Sign

Not Required

Business Liability Protection Entrance Ticket (8.5in x 2.75in)

Business Liability Protection Poster (must be printed 18in x 24in)

Employee Training


ServSafe has developed a number of free resources aimed at keeping our workers and the dining public safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

ServSafe Takeout and Delivery: COVID-19 Precautions - Two new, free on-demand training modules that address COVID-19 precautions for takeout and delivery. Available in English and Spanish.

THRIVE Georgia

Atlanta-based tech company MLevel developed a self-service COVID-19 mitigation training platform in partnership with the Georgia Restaurant Association that allows small businesses in the Restaurant Hospitality sector (up to 500 employees) to educate and train their employees on re-entry into the workforce FREE FOR 10 WEEKS. 


Coronavirus: Reducing the Risk of InfectionsUse this video to help educate your employees on ways to help combat the spread of coronavirus.

Practice and Promote Proper Hand WashingHand washing can be one of the most important ways to prevent any kind of viral outbreak.

If an Employee Tests Positive

What to do if an employee tests positive: Guidance from GaDPH and CDC

**Reminder: Restaurants are classified as critical infrastructure**

Documents & Pages referenced

GRA Expert Guidance

Free COVID-19 Guidance: Legal | Financial | Insurance

We are grateful for the support of our Corporate Partners and Allied Members. As a member of the GRA, our experts are lending their support free of charge to help address legal, financial and insurance related issues arising from the pandemic. This offer is only available to all Georgia-based and Georgia-located restaurants, and the only requirement is that your legal, financial or insurance issue be COVID-19-related. Areas of assistance include:

  • Alcohol regulations;

  • CARES Act/SBA Funding (PPP and EIDL loan applications, forgiveness and other issues surrounding the programs);

  • CARES Act Tax Credits

  • Families First Coronavirus Response Act

  • Landlord/Tenant negotiations;

  • Unemployment (employer filing, furloughs, layoffs, etc.);

  • Restaurant and food safety;

  • Vendor negotiations;

  • and more.

To access this assistance, send an email stating your name, restaurant and a description of your issue to We will follow up in the order your email is received.

Government Affairs

Georgia Department of Labor

Information for filing for unemployment, mandatory filing by employers for partial claims, and reemployment services – March 27, 2020

Georgia Department of Labor Expanded Rules and Resources – March 26, 2020

Local Government

Local Government Ordinances, Licenses, Regulation + Waivers


COVID-19 Policy Tracker

White House Guidelines: Opening Up America Again

CDC Resources

Interim Guidance for Business and Employers

Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfection

Prevention in Communities, Schools, Healthcare Settings and Businesses

Additional Resources

Families First Coronavirus Response Act

Georgia Department of Labor | Unemployment – Employer

Georgia Department of Public Health

Restaurant Business Relief Programs

Latest Industry News

COVID-19 Testing

Rehire Letter Template