What is “Open Carry”?
OC is the act of carrying a firearm (mostly handguns however rifles and shotguns may be OC’d) in plain sight on your person while conducting your daily business. This normally means a handgun secured in a holster on the outside of your clothing much the same way a police officer would carry their weapon. Alternative options would be a shoulder holster, “in the waistband” holster (providing your shirt is tucked in exposing the butt of the handgun) and tactical / drop leg holsters. “In the waistband” holsters are not considered “concealed” under VA law since about 1/3 of the firearm (the butt) is exposed
. Just take care not to let your shirt come un-tucked and cover the firearm if you are not in possession of a CHP.
Carrying a firearm in your hands, whether handgun or long gun is not OC! That is considered “brandishing” and it's against the law. The proper way to OC a rifle or shotgun is with a sling, however OC’ing a rifle or shotgun around town is not common and will likely merit you a visit from the police, possibly with guns drawn on you.