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Opening America: State-by-state guide to coronavirus reopening

The Points Guy logo The Points Guy 12/11/2020 Clint Henderson
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Editor’s note: This post was last updated Dec 11, 2020. It will be updated frequently.

Here’s a look at where states are on the reopening curve to help you decide how to plan travel possibilities during these strange times.

For more travel tips and news, sign up for our daily newsletter.

This guide is current as of the time of publication, and we will keep information regularly updated as the situation progresses.

And if you missed it, here’s our country-by-country guide to reopenings and our Africa country-by-country guide.

See how states are reopening

Click on a state for details

In This Post

Alabama to Guam

Alabama

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Everything is open in Alabama and anyone can visit. Some states are requiring visitors from Alabama to quarantine. Cases in the state have been steadily rising and Alabama’s Safer at Home order requires masks in public and in other circumstances including in schools and when interacting within six feet with people from another household. The Safer at Home order was just extended through Jan. 22, 2021.

For more information: Visit the state of Alabama’s COVID-19 information page.

Alaska

a large body of water with a city in the background: (Photo by Blue Poppy/Getty Images) © The Points Guy (Photo by Blue Poppy/Getty Images)

Quarantine required: Yes, unless you have the required proof of negative COVID-19 PCR test.

Conditions: All out-of-state visitors must provide proof of negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival. Visitors must submit test results to the Alaska Travel Portal. For those who have been tested within 72 hours and are awaiting results, you must quarantine until results come back. Travelers can also submit to a COVID-19 test for $250 when arriving in Alaska and quarantine at their own expense until receiving results.

Penalties for violation: Anyone who violates Alaska’s health mandates or breaks quarantine requirements faces a penalty of $1,000 to $25,000 in fines and/or a year in jail. According to reporting out of Alaska, enforcement has not been strict.

Testing guidelines: Visitors and returning residents can get out of the mandatory 14-day quarantine by providing negative COVID-19 PCR test results that were taken within 72 hours of departure. Still, the state is asking people to restrict interactions while in Alaska. Anyone staying more than 7 days will need to get a second coronavirus test 5 to 14 days after arriving in Alaska.

Note that children under the age of 10 are exempt from these requirements. Additionally, all testing must be the PCR (nasal swab) test. Antibody/serology or rapid tests will not be accepted.

Related: How to visit Alaska during coronavirus

Important to know: All visitors and returning residents will be required to complete this health declaration form. Some communities are still not welcoming any outsiders, even fellow Alaskans. Although COVID-19 continues to surge in Alaska, masks are not required statewide, but are recommended. Anchorage has put forth its own policies, however, which now require that face masks be worn in indoor and crowded outdoor public spaces. All travelers must also “inform their hotel, rental lodging host, and/or roommates of their quarantine status or whether they are required to minimize in-person interactions.

For more information: Visit the state of Alaska’s coronavirus information page.

Arizona

a group of palm trees on the side of a mountain: Scottsdale, Arizona (Photo by Thomas Roche / Getty Images) © The Points Guy Scottsdale, Arizona (Photo by Thomas Roche / Getty Images)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Most hotels and resorts in the state have reopened with new social-distancing and cleaning measures. Home sharing is allowed. Face masks are not required statewide, but most counties and many businesses require them. However, masks are required for those traveling through Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX) or Tucson International Airport (TUC). There is no quarantine requirement, but some states require visitors from Arizona to quarantine. There’s a list of what is open and closed here.

For more information: Visit Arizona has more information on Covid-19 in the state.

Arkansas

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Hotels and resorts are open. Home sharing is fine. All parks and pools are also open. Golf courses are open. There is no quarantine, but visitors to Arkansas may face quarantine when they arrive home to states like New York. As cases in the state continue to spike, the Arkansas Department of Health recommends social distancing where possible, hand washing, and avoiding contact with the sick. There is a statewide mask mandate and last month Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson ordered an 11 p.m. curfew for all restaurants and bars that serve alcohol.

For more information: Visit the Arkansas Department of Health’s Guidance for Travelers or the State of Arkansas Tourism website.

 California

a large body of water with a city in the background: San Francisco, March 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy San Francisco, March 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: Now required in Santa Clara County. Recommended since mid-November state-wide.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: Done on a county-by-county basis

Related: Best beaches in California

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: On Dec. 3, Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a Regional Stay Home Order to go into effect when a region’s hospital ICU bed availability falls below 15%. Cases are surging throughout the state and currently three regions (Southern California, San Joaquin Valley and Greater Sacramento) are affected by the order and 54 of California’s 58 counties have widespread risk levels. The order instructs those in the affected regions to stay at home as much as possible, limits retail business to 20% of capacity (35% for grocery stores), requires restaurants to offer take-out or delivery only and closes most recreation and entertainment venues. Once triggered, orders will remain in effect for three weeks. Travelers looking to visit California should know that hotels and lodging in the affected regions cannot honor out-of-state reservations for non-essential travel unless the reservation is for at least the minimum time required for quarantine and that the guest will need to quarantine on site.

Santa Clara County also now requires a 14-day quarantine for those arriving from more than 150 miles away.

Los Angeles County had previously put a Targeted Safer at Home order into effect on Nov. 30 that requires residents to stay at home as much as possible and not gather with those outside of their own household, closes non-essential business, limits capacity at open businesses and restricts restaurants and bars to take-out only through Dec. 20.

Gov. Newsom also joined his fellow governors in Oregon and Washington state in issuing a Travel Advisory on Nov. 13 that urged all visitors entering these three states or returning home from outside these states to self-quarantine for 14 days. The advisory also urged the states’ residents to avoid non-essential travel.

Earlier, Gov. Newsom had unveiled the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for living with COVID-19 in the long term. The plan includes: a uniform framework for the state’s 58 counties with four simple risk categories — widespread, substantial, moderate and minimal; and allowing sectors to be partially opened and progressively add to their operations as disease transmission decreases. Check each county’s website for the most up-to-date information.

Statewide, masks are now required for everyone outside of their residence.

For more information: Visit the state of California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy website and individual county websites for additional guidance.

Colorado

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Colorado encourages visitors to embrace “responsible tourism.” All Colorado state parks, national parks and monuments are open, along with public and private campgrounds. Some states are requiring visitors from Colorado to quarantine. In Colorado, masks are required in all indoor public spaces, and some counties require masks in outdoor spaces when social distancing can’t be maintained.

As of mid-November, with cases in the state rising, counties have been color-coded on the Colorado COVID-19 Dial into five levels, ranging from Blue (Caution) to Purple (Extreme Risk), with increased restrictions on individuals and businesses depending on the case numbers. All but a handful of Colorado’s counties are currently Red (Severe Risk) or Orange (High Risk).

For more information: Visit the state of Colorado’s COVID-19 information page and the Colorado Tourism website.

Connecticut

a bridge over a body of water: Old Lyme, Connecticut, August 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Old Lyme, Connecticut, August 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)  

Quarantine required: As of Dec.1, anyone traveling to Connecticut from a state other than New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island or Hawaii must self-quarantine for 14 days. Check the Connecticut Travel Portal for the latest updates.

Conditions: Some workers are exempt from the 14-day quarantine, and travelers can stay at their home, a hotel or other temporary lodging for their quarantine. A traveler can be exempt from the self-quarantine requirement if they have had a negative COVID-19 test in the 72 hours prior to arrival or at any time following arrival in Connecticut. You must also fill out a Travel Health Form prior to arrival in Connecticut.

Penalties for violation: Failure to self-quarantine or to complete the Travel Health Form may result in a penalty of $500 for each violation.

Testing guidelines: A traveler is exempt from the 14-day quarantine if they have a negative COVID-19 test taken 72 hours prior to arrival in Connecticut and have emailed the negative result to the commissioner. Nucleic acid tests (RT-PCR) tests are the only acceptable testing option. Neither rapid antigen tests nor antibody tests satisfy the testing requirement for quarantine exemption.

Important to know: Connecticut reviews which states and territories are on its quarantine list every Tuesday. Any state with a positive case rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or higher than a 10% test positivity rate over a seven-day rolling average will be added. In Connecticut, masks are required in all public places — indoor and outdoors — when you cannot maintain a distance of six feet from other people.

For more information: Visit the state of Connecticut’s COVID-19 information page.

Delaware

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: People who violate an emergency order — including face masks — can be fined up to $500 or subject to imprisonment for up to six months for each violation.

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Everything is open in Delaware and anyone can visit. Visitors are required to wear a face covering in public settings, including grocery stores, convenience stores and pharmacies, and on public transportation as well as in outdoor settings such as parks, beaches, boardwalks and golf courses where social distancing isn’t possible. Restaurants and other social venues are limited to 30% capacity and restaurant patrons are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings when waitstaff visits a table, and whenever they are not eating or drinking. Bars in Delaware beach communities are open for food service with significant safety precautions. Patrons must maintain six feet social distance from non-household members.

For more information: Visit the state of Delaware’s COVID-19 information page and Visit Delaware’s Travel Advisory.

Florida

a view of a city: Miami, January 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Miami, January 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Florida currently has no restrictions in place for travelers, although some states require those visiting from Florida to quarantine or provide negative COVID-19 test results. The state remains in Phase 3 of its reopening plan after Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a move to Phase 3 on Sept. 25. The executive order (warning: PDF link) allows all businesses across the state — including restaurants, gyms, retail stores and museums — to open at full capacity. However, people 65 years old and older and those with underlying health issues are still being urged to stay home.

Local governments can still implement restrictions on restaurant capacity, but they must “quantify the impact of each limitation or requirement” and justify why such restrictions are in the interest of public health.

Interestingly, the executive order also suspends the collection of fines for violating COVID-19 restrictions imposed by city and county authorities — including those who don’t wear masks where required (despite recently surpassing one million cases, Florida is one of a minority of states with no statewide mask mandate). However, many municipal governments stressed that local mask mandates and ordinances will remain in effect, even though DeSantis has barred them from assessing fines for non-compliance.

For more information: Check Florida’s COVID-19 update for travelers. You can also view this Visit Florida page for details on beach reopenings — though most are now open, including those in the Florida Keys and in the Miami and Fort Lauderdale region — as well as theme park openings and restrictions. Meanwhile, this Florida State Parks page has information on parks that have reopened along with requirements for visitors.

Related: 13 of the best beaches in Florida

Georgia

a tall building in a city: Atlanta, November 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Atlanta, November 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Georgia is largely open, though some states are requiring visitors from Georgia to quarantine. Masks are “strongly encouraged” when outside of your home, except when eating, drinking or exercising outside. Some local governments are now permitted to require the use of masks.

For more information: Visit the state of Georgia’s COVID-19 information page and its travel restrictions update.

Guam

Quarantine required: Yes

Conditions:This Pacific Ocean territory has simple guidelines that remain in effect: All incoming travelers, whether by land or sea, must undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine at a government facility at their own expense before proceeding to their final destination. Transiting travelers will be permitted to pass through Guam as long as they do not leave the airport. The Guam government is considering offering coronavirus PCR tests at the airport as alternative measures to the current quarantine orders.

Penalties for violation: According to published reports in the Pacific Island Times, “The knowing and intentional failure to follow any part of this order constitutes a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000 or imprisonment of not more than one year or both (10 GCA, Chapter 19, §19604 (c) Cooperation.”

Testing guidelines: None at this time

Important to know: The island territory had to scale back its reopening. It’s currently back in Phase 1. The government is allowing many businesses and restaurants to re-open under very strict guidelines. Tourists are not welcome.

For more information: Go to Guam’s COVID-19 information page or Visit Guam’s novel coronavirus safety page.

Hawaii to Maryland

Hawaii

a group of people on a boat in a body of water: Maui, Hawaii February 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Maui, Hawaii February 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: As of Oct. 15, Hawaii’s Safe Travels program allows you to avoid a 14-day quarantine by presenting an approved COVID-19 negative test result by a Trusted Testing and Travel Partner taken no more than 72 hours before taking off on your flight to Hawaii. As of Dec. 2, however, the island of Kauai reverted to requiring a 14-day quarantine for all international and inter-island travelers  even if they have provided the state’s required testing. In addition, the Island of Hawaii (Big Island) will randomly test 25% of inter-island passengers at the airport upon arrival, while Maui offers (and strongly recommends) free secondary tests on a voluntary basis 72 hours after arrival. If your pre-travel test results are not available when you initially arrive in Hawaii, you will need to quarantine at your accommodations until the test results are received.

Conditions: The test must be an FDA-approved nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT), performed using a nasal swab, with results from a CLIA-certified laboratory. (A PCR test is a type of NAAT test.)

Penalties for violation: Violators face a $5,000 fine, a jail time of up to one year, or both.

Testing guidelines: None

Related: What to know about testing to visit Hawaii

Important to know: All travelers must register with state’s Safe Travels program. Some hotels have reopened and some resorts on Kauai will permit visitors to stay in a “resort bubble” with a GPS monitor as an alternative to an in-room only quarantine. Travelers are required to wear a mask when inside businesses and requested to wear a mask at all times in public spaces such as sidewalks, museums, attractions, parks, and even the beach.

United and Hawaiian Airlines have both announced plans to offer testing for some inbound passengers to Hawaii.

Related: Hawaii scheduled to reopen with testing on Oct. 15

For more information: Visit the state of Hawaii’s COVID-19 information page.

Idaho

Quarantine required: A 14-day self-quarantine is encouraged, but not required, for people entering Idaho from another country or from an area outside Idaho with substantial community spread or case rates higher than Idaho.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Idaho’s stay-at-home order expired on April 30, but cases have risen sharply in the fall. Statewide, Idaho is currently back in Stage 2 of the “Idaho Rebound” reopening plan, which limits gatherings to no more than 10 people and allows businesses such as bars and nightclubs to operate with limited capacity and all patrons seated. Visits to nursing homes and senior facilities tare allowed, but face masks are required. Republican Gov. Brad Little hasn’t issued a mask mandate, but has strongly urged Idaho residents to wear masks, and Boise and several counties in the state have mandated masks in all public settings where physical distancing isn’t possible. Note that people traveling to several other states from Idaho must submit negative test results or self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

For more information: Visit Idaho’s coronavirus information page or Visit Idaho’s COVID-19 Travel Information page.

Illinois

a group of people in a large city with Millennium Park in the background: Chicago, August 2014. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Chicago, August 2014. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)  

Quarantine required: Travelers from certain states are required to quarantine if visiting Chicago, which modified its Emergency Order on Nov. 13. for anyone coming into the City of Chicago from designated states with a significant degree of community-wide spread of COVID-19. Anyone traveling from a state on the Red list must quarantine for a 14-day period or the duration of their time in Chicago, whichever is shorter. Anyone traveling from a state on the Orange list is allowed to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours prior to arrival in Chicago (and then follow strict masking, social distancing and avoidance of in-person gatherings) or they too must quarantine for a 14-day period (or the duration of their time in Chicago, whichever is shorter). Those traveling from Yellow states do not require a test or a quarantine, but must maintain strict masking and social distancing. Details can be found here.

Chicago also issued a Stay at Home Advisory limiting social gatherings at home for 30 days and earlier in November had suspended all indoor dining and service.

Additionally, Cook County, which includes many of Chicago’s suburbs, also recommends that visitors and returning residents quarantine and mandated Tier 1 Resurgence Mitigations on Oct. 28 due to dramatically rising case counts.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: Those who violate the city of Chicago’s emergency travel order are subject of fines of $100–$500 per day, up to a maximum of $7,000.

Testing guidelines: Only for travelers to Chicago from certain states

Important to know: If a person lives outside the city of Chicago but commutes to the city for work, they will not be subject to quarantine rules unless traveling in from a state with a high rate of coronavirus infection. If that’s the case, that person will be subject to “essential worker” conditions set out for Chicago residents. You can learn more about the essential-worker guidelines at the “Exceptions” tab on this page.

Illinois has been divided into 11 regions, all of which are in Phase 4 of a five-phase reopening plan, though exact details vary by region and on Nov. 20 Tier 3 Resurgence Mitigations were enacted statewide. Face coverings are required in all public places.

For more information: Visit the Illinois Department of Health’s COVID-19 information and resource page and the Illinois Tourism Office’s Travel Safe page.

Indiana

a large clock tower towering over Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument: Indianapolis, August 2018. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Indianapolis, August 2018. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Indiana began its phased reopening on May 4, and in late September Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb  announced that Indiana would enter Stage 5, to remain in effect through Nov. 14, although public health authorities at the time were concerned that the move came too soon for flattening the curve.

All of the state’s 92 countries have recently reported cases that place them in the two higher-risk levels of coronavirus spread, Holcomb said the state would reinstate some restrictions on crowd sizes: 25 people in counties with the highest (Red) risk level and 50 people in counties with the second-highest (Orange) risk level.

The city of Indianapolis also issued a new health order, effective Nov. 16, limiting capacity in bars, restaurants and other public venues.

A statewide mask mandate was already in place as Holcomb signed an executive order on July 24 requiring the wearing of face masks in public spaces beginning July 27. It was recently extended under Stage 5 guidelines.

Note that travelers visiting several states from Indiana must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test self-quarantine for 14 days upon arriving.

For more information: Check the state of Indiana’s coronavirus information page or the Visit Indiana tourism website.

Iowa

a castle with a clock tower in a city: Sunset over the Iowa capitol in Des Moines (Photo by Getty Images) © The Points Guy Sunset over the Iowa capitol in Des Moines (Photo by Getty Images)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: A statewide stay-at-home order was never issued in Iowa, but there were some restrictions that Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds started to lift on May 1.

As of Sept. 30, cases began to spike again across the state, and health officials worry that winter could leave Iowa in a “vulnerable position” against COVID.

The state government relaxed all restrictions regarding capacity limits for Iowan establishments and is allowing them to operate only with social-distancing measures in effect. This includes restaurants, bars, casinos, racetracks, malls and others. Vulnerable citizens are still encouraged to limit outdoor activities and to limit interactions.

However, Gov. Reynolds issued enhanced public health measures, effective Nov. 17 to Dec. 16, that mandate increased gathering restrictions in social, community, recreational and leisure settings and require bars and restaurants to maintain six feet distancing between groups, who all must be seated and limited to eight people unless everyone lives in the same household.

After scoffing at masks, the governor issued a mask order on Nov. 16 for indoor public spaces and when social distancing cannot be maintained.

Note that travelers visiting New York and several other states from Iowa must provide a negative COVID-19 test or self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

For more information: Visit the state of Iowa’s coronavirus information page and Travel Iowa’s COVID-19 Updates page.

Kansas

a clock tower in front of a building: (Photo by Stephanie A Sellers/Shutterstock) © The Points Guy (Photo by Stephanie A Sellers/Shutterstock)

Quarantine required: Only from limited destinations and certain situations

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Kansas’s stay-at-home order expired on May 3, and the state began its phased reopening the following day. The reopening plan is not a statewide mandate, and local municipalities may have community-specific guidance.

Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly signed an executive order requiring the use of face masks in public spaces, effective July 3.

All activities, venues and establishments are allowed to operate so long as they follow public health guidelines. Nonessential travel has been allowed to resume, but the state is currently mandating a 14-day quarantine for all cruise ship or river cruise passengers, anyone who “Attended/traveled to mass gathering events out-of-state of 500 people or greater where individuals do not socially distance (6 feet) and wear masks,” and anyone who received notification from public health officials (state or local) that they are a close contact of a person with a laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19.

Unfortunately, almost all of Kansas’s counties reported enough new coronavirus cases this fall to “enter the red zone” for COVID-19 infections. Under this guide, schools in these areas are recommended to suspend in-person classes until the infection rate decreases.

Note that travelers visiting New York and several other states from Kansas must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result or self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

For more information: Visit the state of Kansas’s coronavirus information page.

Kentucky

a large clock tower in front of a building: (Photo by Alexey Stiop/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy (Photo by Alexey Stiop/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No, although it is recommended for travelers returning from international destinations and certain states.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Kentucky began its gradual reopening back in May. Currently, a number of businesses are open, but with new protocols in place.

On July 17, the Kentucky Supreme Court kept Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear’s mandatory mask order in place. The Kentucky Department of Public Health issued a travel advisory recommending a 14-day self-quarantine for those who traveled internationally or who are arriving from states with a positivity rate equal to or greater than 15%. As of Dec. 10, the list includes 17 states.

Gov. Beshear also recently issued new restrictions, effective Nov. 20 to Dec. 13, which prohibits indoor dining in restaurants, limits indoor social gatherings to no more than eight people from two households,and limits occupancy in retail stores, gyms and other businesses. Most counties in the state are currently in the “red zone” with infection rates of more than 25 cases per 100,000 people.

Note that travelers visiting New York and several other states from Kentucky must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result or self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

For more information: Visit the state of Kentucky’s coronavirus information page.

Louisiana

a group of people walking in front of a church with St. Louis Cathedral in the background: New Orleans, March 2015. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy New Orleans, March 2015. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Louisiana’s stay-at-home order expired back in May and most of the state entered Phase 3 of its reopening plan in September, but due to rising cases in the state, Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards recently reverted to Phase 2 mitigation, effective Nov. 25 for four weeks. This means that businesses such as restaurants, shopping malls, gyms, salons and movie theaters can remain open with reduced capacity and under additional sanitation and spacing guidelines. Some bars are being allowed to open in areas where cases are not dramatically rising.

Amusement parks, water parks, arcades and other similar businesses are not yet permitted to open. Indoor live entertainment is not allowed either. Hotels are open. Louisiana’s statewide mask mandate remains in effect.

For more information: Visit the state of Louisiana’s coronavirus information page.

Maine

Quarantine required: Yes

Conditions: All visitors must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in Maine, with the exception of visitors arriving from New Hampshire and Vermont. Exemptions for Connecticut, New York and New Jersey ended Nov. 4, 2020. The exemption for Massachusetts ended Nov. 16, 2020.

Penalties for violation: Up to six months in jail, a $1,000 fine and/or civil damages to the state.

Testing guidelines: Visitors who show the results of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival in Maine are exempt from quarantine. They will be asked to show these results at their place of lodging in the state, and will be asked to fill out a Certificate of Compliance form. Tests are also available in Maine, and visitors may quarantine until they receive a negative result, but the state is recommending that travelers get tested before they arrive.

Important to know: 

  • Maine’s tourist sites, including museums, shops and restaurants, are all open and are required to pass a stringent set of hygiene, social distancing and mask wearing requirements. You may encounter timed entry, modified hours or limited capacity at many sites.
  • Maine has a statewide, enforced mandate requiring that masks be worn in public places where social distancing is not possible.

For more information: Visit Keep Maine Healthy.

Maryland

a large body of water with a city in the background: The tall ships of Baltimore. (Photo courtesy of Visit Baltimore) © The Points Guy The tall ships of Baltimore. (Photo courtesy of Visit Baltimore)

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: Anyone who violates state or local COVID-19 orders can face misdemeanor charge, subject to imprisonment for up to a year or a fine of up to $5,000 or both.

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Maryland is in phase three of its reopening plan. Indoor theaters are opened at 50% capacity, or 100 people per auditorium—whichever is less—with health and safety protocols in place. Outdoor venues are open at 50% capacity, or 250 people—whichever is less—with appropriate health and safety protocols in place. Indoor dining capacity is capped at 50%, while the capacity for retail establishments and religious facilities is 75%. An executive order by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan requires everyone over the age of five to wear face coverings in all indoor public spaces as well as outdoors when social distancing isn’t possible. Also limited: Indoor social and family gatherings are capped at 25 people.

The city of Baltimore ordered restaurants to close Dec. 11 for all but take-out, delivery and drive-through service.

While Maryland doesn’t currently restrict travel from other states, Gov. Hogan announced a travel advisory on Nov. 10 that strongly recommends Marylanders avoid non-essential travel out of Maryland to states with high COVID-19 positivity or case rates (above 20 per 100,000 people over the past seven days or a testing positivity rate above 10%).

For more information: Visit the state of Maryland’s COVID-19 information page and Visit Maryland’s COVID-19 guidance for travelers.

Washington, D.C.

a view of a city: Aerial photo of the Washington Monument with the Capitol in the background. (Photo by Andy Dunaway/USAF via Getty Images) © The Points Guy Aerial photo of the Washington Monument with the Capitol in the background. (Photo by Andy Dunaway/USAF via Getty Images)  

Quarantine required: Travelers entering the District from high-risk states must quarantine for 14 days

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know:

Washington, D.C. has been in Phase Two of reopening since June 22, which allowed museums and attractions to open with capacity limitations that were tightened in late November. Restaurants are open for indoor dining at 50% capacity, but that will be reduced to 25% on Dec. 14 and alcohol sales must stop at 10 p.m. Retail stores at restricted to 50% capacity. Indoor gatherings may not exceed 10 people and outdoor gatherings are limited to 25 people.

Mayor Muriel Bowser signed an executive order on July 24 requiring the use of face masks in public, as well as continued social distancing.

Anyone entering Washington, D.C., from a high-risk area not traveling for essential activities has been required to self-quarantine for 14 days. The order excludes Maryland and Virginia, and an updated list can be found every two weeks on the District’s coronavirus website

For more information: Go to Washington D.C.’s coronavirus hub page.

 

Massachusetts to New Jersey

Massachusetts

Quarantine required: Yes, for travelers arriving from high-risk states.

Conditions: Massachusetts’ list of high-risk states can be found here. If you’re arriving from one of these states, you’re required to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

Penalties for violation: Up to $500 per day.

Testing guidelines: A negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arriving in Massachusetts will exempt visitors from quarantine. If the visitor has not taken a test before arriving in the state, they must quarantine until they receive a negative test result.

Important to know:

  • Travelers via land, air and water will be required to fill out a health form on arrival.
  • Most of the state’s tourism sites are open for business, including hotels and other kinds of lodging, and parks and recreation areas. You may encounter reduced capacity or timed entry at many attractions, as well as social distancing, mask requirements and increased disinfection.
  • Massachusetts has a statewide mask mandate in place.

For more information: Visit the State of Massachusetts COVID-19 Travel Order and COVID-19 Updates.

Michigan

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: On Nov. 15, Michigan’s Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced stricter COVID-19 regulations that will be in effect from Nov. 18 through Dec. 20. The new rules during the pause mean that indoor dining is no longer allowed in all restaurants and bars and that the following venues must close: theaters and movie theaters, stadiums and arenas, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks, casinos and arcades. Group fitness classes are also banned. High school and college classes will switch to remote learning and all residents must work remotely unless their job must be done in person.

In late September, Michigan also switched to a new format and coding for regional COVID-19 risk factors, with eight regions and six levels: Low and then A to E. As of Dec. 2, all eight regions were at the highest-risk level, Level E.

An executive order signed by Gov. Whitmer in July reiterated that individuals must wear masks both in indoor public spaces, and outdoor spaces where social distancing is not possibwle. It also requires all businesses open to the public to refuse entry or service to patrons who do not wear a face covering, with limited exceptions. In early October, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued and Emergency Order that maintained the governor’s executive order as much as possible.

State parks and beaches are back open. Overnight residential, travel and troop camps also  reopened.

For more information: Visit the MI Safe Start website, which contains specific information about each region of the state, and Pure Michigan’s Guidelines for Travelers.

Minnesota

a tall building in a city: Minneapolis, June 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Minneapolis, June 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Minnesota’s stay-at-home order expired on May 17, but after cases began to spike this fall, Democratic Gov. Tim Walz extended the state’s peacetime emergency on Nov. 13 to insure flexibility in responding to the pandemic. Minnesota had been in Phase Three of its reopening plan, but Gov. Walz recently announced Dial Back, Minnesota, a four-week pause in most social activities, in-person dining, sports and fitness activity, from Nov. 20 to Dec. 18.

State parks and and campgrounds have reopened. Most casinos and many hotels are open again. Shopping and retail stores are now open at 50% capacity and Mall of America, is open for in-person shopping and dining with significant safety enhancements. Gov. Walz signed an executive order requiring all residents and non-residents to wear a face covering in all indoor public spaces and business, when waiting to get into a business, and when riding on public transportation.

For more information: Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 page.

 

Mississippi

Quarantine required: Mandatory only for people who test positive for COVID-19

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know:  Mississippi residents are encouraged to wear masks and maintain a safe social distance of six feet or more in public spaces, and with cases rising, Republican Gov. Tate Reeves recently ordered that wearing masks is required in 61 of the state’s 82 counties. All retail businesses, gyms, restaurants and bars have reopened, but are limited to 75% capacity. People from different households must be separated by a distance of at least six feet in any direction. Masks and face coverings are strongly encouraged for public-facing employees, and for all employees when social distances cannot be maintained.

For more information: Visit the Mississippi State Department of Health

 

Missouri

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Missouri’s stay-at-home order expired in May, and the state fully reopened on June 18. All statewide health orders and restrictions are lifted, but local authorities are allowed to keep or enact restrictions if needed. St. Louis County, for example, enacted a “safer at home” order for four weeks beginning Nov. 17, calling for residents to leave home only to go to work or school, to exercise, seek medical care or shop for goods or supplies. Gatherings larger than 10 people and indoor dining in bars and restaurants are also prohibited.

Since the state has experienced a rising number of cases this fall, it is still asking all individuals to continue practicing social distancing and proper hygiene. Statewide, masks are recommended but not required, although many counties have enacted requirements.

Attractions such as the Missouri Botanical Garden have also reopened, although with social distancing measures and PPE requirements.

For more information: Visit the Missouri COVID-19 recovery information website.

 

Montana

Butte, Montana, 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Butte, Montana, 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Montana had a mandatory quarantine for out-of-state visitors but it expired early in the summer and was never renewed. The state is in Phase 2 of its reopening and most hotels, bars, restaurants and other businesses are open, but there are crowd limits. Masks are required for those over 5-years-old in public, indoor spaces and outdoor settings where social distancing cannot be maintained in any county with more than four active COVID-19 cases and are encouraged in all other counties.

Related: I visited Glacier and Yellowstone and it was weird

The popular Museum of the Rockies is open, but reservations are encouraged to make sure you get in. Montana is home to both Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park. Beginning in November only the North Entrance to Yellowstone at Gardiner, MT will be open for the winter season. Glacier National Park is open only at its West Glacier entrance. The East entrance borders the Blackfeet Indian Reservation and will remain closed through 2020. Other American Indian reservations may be closed to the public. 

For more information: Check Visit Montana or Montana’s COVID-19 website.

Nebraska

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: There was never any formal stay-at-home order for Nebraska, and it has remained one of the most wide-open states.

Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts moved most of the state into phase 3 in June and all counties are currently in phase 3.1 with reintroduced Directed Health Measures through Dec. 31 to limit social interactions and restrict gatherings. Restaurants and bars are open at full capacity, but all diners must be seated and tables cannot accommodate more than eight people. Large scale indoor gatherings at venues like arenas and stadiums are open at 25% capacity. Wedding receptions and funerals also resumed under new guidelines.

The latest guidelines also require that masks be worn inside business when contact with others lasts for more than 15 minutes, such as at hair salons.

Hotels, golf courses and other tourist attractions are open. The Nebraska National Forest is open and even some campgrounds and RV centers are available.

For more information: Visit Nebraska’s COVID-19 page.

 

Nevada

a sign on the side of a tree: Las Vegas, May 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Las Vegas, May 2016. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)  

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Related: Ways Vegas has changed in age of COVID-19

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: There are no restrictions for travelers, but all individuals are required to wear face masks when out in public. The lights are back on in Las Vegas — somewhat. In September, the Nevada COVID-19 Mitigation & Management Task Force reopened Clark County bars, taverns, wineries and similar businesses that follow COVID-19 guidelines and operate at reduced capacity. 

Throughout Nevada, life was resuming, with a few restrictions. However, the state’s Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak, who himself tested positive for COVOD-19 last month, instituted a three-week Nevada Statewide Pause on Nov. 24 that limits restaurants, bars, wineries, casinos, amusement parks and other venues to 25% of capacity. Retail stores and malls remain at 50% capacity.

Travelers hoping to ski should expect to make reservations in advance at most resorts, and at some venues, food and parking must be pre-arranged as well. While the state is open, individual regions may be closed or have additional restrictions. People are reqquired to maintain safe social distance and wear masks whenever in public spaces, including in outdoor locations such as national and state parks.  

For more information: Visit the Nevada Health Response website and Travel Nevada website.

 

New Hampshire

a view of a city street filled with lots of traffic: New Hampshire, Lake Winnipesaukee Region (Walter Bibikow/Getty Images) © The Points Guy New Hampshire, Lake Winnipesaukee Region (Walter Bibikow/Getty Images)

Quarantine required: For some visitors

Conditions: Travelers from other New England states (Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont) do not need to quarantine, while visitors from non-New England states are required to quarantine for 14 days (only going out for essential items while wearing masks and maintaining social distancing) upon arrival New Hampshire.

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: Out-of-state visitors can opt to take a COVID-19 PCR test on day seven or after and test out of quarantine if they receive a negative result.

Important to know: New Hampshire’s Republican Gov. Chris Sununu has issued a statewide mask mandate for anyone over the age of five when in public places, indoors or outdoors, when they are unable to maintain social distancing. Most tourist infrastructure and activities (campgrounds, beaches, amusement parks, hotels, restaurants) are open, but may be enforcing capacity restrictions. Ski areas are open with enhanced safety precautions in place.

For more information: Visit New Hampshire Safer at Home and the Visit New Hampshire website.

New Jersey

Quarantine required: The state discourages any non-essential travel and those entering New Jersey from any state other than New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Delaware, are requested to quarantine per current CDC guidelines.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: New Jersey characterizes quarantine is voluntary, although compliance is expected.  Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy has said he’s empowering the health department to enforce the rules. Some reporting suggests you could face a “disorderly persons charge,” which could cost you a $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Face masks are required outside the home when social distancing isn’t possible and when entering businesses or certain social gatherings. Most businesses are open with capacity restrictions. Gov. Murphy recently required bars and restaurants to close indoor service by 10pm. He also banned indoor bar seating and required that all casinos stop serving food and drinks between 10pm and 5am.

For more information: Visit the New Jersey coronavirus hub.

New Mexico to South Carolina

New Mexico

a tall building: Santa Fe, New Mexico, November 2014. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Santa Fe, New Mexico, November 2014. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: Out-of-state visitors who arrive by air or car are being required to self-quarantine for 14 days if they are coming from what New Mexico considers high-risk states. The only low-risk state right now is Hawaii.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: According to the state of New Mexico, “Non-compliant individuals are subject to involuntary quarantine by the New Mexico Department of Health under the Public Health Emergency Response Act.”

Testing guidelines: The executive order that people who can provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within the 72 hours before or after entry into New Mexico are exempt from the 14-day quarantine requirement, regardless of the state from which they have traveled, was amended in October to no longer cover people from high-risk states.

Important to know: Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham ordered a two-week lockdown (Nov. 16-30) to control the spread of COVID-19, during which restaurants could operate on a take-out only basis, and gyms, salons, and other “nonessential” businesses had to close their doors. Also closed for two weeks: ski resorts, golf courses, botanical gardens, zoos and state parks. On Dec. 2, the state began using a three-tiered county-by-county system (green, yellow, red) based on positive test rates. Those with rates under 5% for two weeks will have the least restrictions.

Face masks are required throughout the state. People who violate the policy face a $100 fine. Essential businesses remain open with social distancing and capacity restrictions. Most state parks remain closed to non-residents. The state is discouraging tourism.

For more information: Visit Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s COVID-19 information page and Visit New Mexico’s traveler information page.

 

New York

the tower of the city: New York City, March 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy New York City, March 2020. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)  

Quarantine required: Travelers who live outside of New York or who have been outside of the state for more than 24 hours must quarantine for four days if newly required testing is done (see below) and 14 days if testing is not done. This applies to all travelers to New York from any state other than those contiguous to New York (New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania). Prior to November, New York had maintained a list of states required to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Conditions: Arriving passengers are required to fill out a self-declaration form, which is being distributed by airlines to passengers flying to New York State. Travelers who leave the airport without completing the form will be subject to a $10,000 fine and may be brought to a hearing and ordered to complete mandatory quarantine. Travelers coming to New York through other means of transport, including trains and cars, must fill out the form online.

text: New York quarantine traveler health forms. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy New York quarantine traveler health forms. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Penalties for violation: Maximum fine is $10,000.

Testing guidelines: All travelers from states other than New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania must get tested within three days prior to landing in New York, quarantine for at least three days upon arrival and get a test on day four after arrival. If travelers receive a negative test on day four of quarantine, they may exit quarantine. Travelers returning to New York after being out of state for less than 24 hours must fill out the travel form and take a COVID-19 diagnostic test four days after their return.

Important to know: After being the epicenter of the coronavirus this past spring, New York had managed to keep its COVID-19 cases in check, but numbers have risen over the past several weeks. Many businesses and tourist sites are open in New York, but there are capacity and social-distancing restrictions. Previous phases instituted by Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo opened in-person retail, hair salons, barbershops, and outdoor dining at restaurants and bars. Indoor dining is allowed with severe capacity restrictions that differ by region and a recent directive requires closure at 10 p.m. Private indoor gatherings at residences are not also limited to 10 people. Many hotels have re-opened, but Broadway, opera, and ballet will not be allowed to reopen for now. Professional sporting events have resumed without fans, film production started back up, and outdoor attractions such as zoos are open. Ski resorts were allowed to open with 50% indoor capacity and with strict health and safety protocols under state-issued guidance starting Nov. 6.

Related: Here’s what you need to know if planning to visit NYC

Some people have returned to work as office jobs are allowed to return at half capacity. Most beaches in New York state are open with restrictions.

For more information: Visit the New York State Health Department COVID-19 page and Travel Advisory.

 

North Carolina

a large body of water with a city in the background: (Photo by Susanne Neumann / Getty Images) © The Points Guy (Photo by Susanne Neumann / Getty Images)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: North Carolina was paused in Phase 3, but with cases rising and more than 80% of the state’s counties in Red or Orange risk categories, Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper issued a Modified Stay at Home Order beginning Dec. 11 and in effect through at least Jan. 8, 2021. The order requires everyone except essential workers to stay home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. and prohibits the sale of alcohol for onsite consumption after 9 p.m. Restaurants, bars, barbers, salons, casinos and other entertainment venues remain open with capacity restrictions and they must close by 10 p.m.

Face coverings are required at all times while in public, both indoors and outdoors.

For more information: Visit the North Carolina COVID-19 hub.

North Dakota

Quarantine required: None
Conditions: None
Penalties for violation: None
Testing guidelines: None
Important to know: The state that at one time said it was in the moderate to low risk phase, depending on county, saw a huge COVID-19 surge this fall. Masks, which had been encouraged in social situations, became mandatory on Nov. 13 when Republican Gov. Doug Burgum issued a statewide mask requirement through Dec. 13. Restaurants, bars, and salons have been open since May 1. Casinos are open. Keep in mind many Native American lands are closed to outsiders due to coronavirus concerns. Masks are encouraged in social situations but are not mandated.
 

Ohio

a statue in front of a building: Cleveland February 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Cleveland February 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)  

Quarantine required: Visitors and residents arriving from states where coronavirus cases are surging (15% positivity rate or higher), are urged, but not required, to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Most businesses are open. Even large entertainment and leisure venues such as country clubs and movie theaters were given the go ahead to reopen. Some large venues and tourist attractions remain closed. Many of the state’s counties are currently considered high-risk for COVID-19. Residents and visitors are required to wear a mask when at an indoor location that isn’t a residence and outdoors when social distancing isn’t possible.

In addition, the state issued an Ohio Stay at Home Tonight Order, which ordered Ohioans to stay at home between 10pm and 5am for three weeks (Nov. 19 to Dec. 10). Restaurants do not have to close, but must limit services to take-out during those hours.

For more information: Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 page.

 

Oklahoma

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Oklahoma never issued a statewide stay-at-home order, but it did shut down various businesses across the state. Many of those were permitted to reopen beginning in April. The state does not have a statewide mask mandate, but wearing one is recommended. Several cities, such as Oklahoma City and Tulsa, have enacted mask requirements and capacity limitions in public spaces such as restaurants and bars. Furthermore, with the “Safer in Oklahoma” policy, individuals entering the state from an area with substantial community spread, need to wear a face covering in all public spaces and limit participating in indoor gatherings for 10-14 days in accordance with CDC guidelines.

For more information: Oklahoma COVID-19 resources hub.

Oregon

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Democratic Gov. Kate Brown joined her fellow governors in California and Washington state in issuing a Travel Advisory on Nov. 13 that urged all visitors entering these three states or returning home from outside these states to self-quarantine for 14 days. The advisory also urged the state’s residents to avoid non-essential travel.

Gov. Brown also instituted a statewide Two-Week Freeze (Nov. 18 to Dec. 2) that limited restaurants to take-out only, closes zoos, gardens, aquariums, museums and other indoor entertainment venues, and limited social gatherings to no more than six people from two households (indoor or out) and faith-based worship to no more than 25 people indoors and 50 outdoors.

Following the freeze, Gov. Brown on Dec. 3 introduced a new framework that classifies Oregon’s counties as extreme, high, moderate or low risk with health and safety measures enforced based on the risk level and designed to bring cases down. As of Dec. 10, 25 counties, including Portland and Willamette Valley, were classified as “extreme high risk,” with indoor dining not allowed and retail capacity limited to 50%.

Face coverings are required in public indoor spaces in all counties, along with outdoor public spaces where physical distance can’t be maintained.

For more information: Visit the state of Oregon COVID-19 information website.

Pennsylvania

a large building: Philadelphia, September 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Philadelphia, September 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: A14-day quarantine is currently required for travelers over the age of 11 unless they provide a negative COVID-19 test.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: Anyone who visits Pennsylvania from outside the state is required to provide a negative COVID-19 PCR or rapid antigen test taken within 72 hours of arrival to avoid quarantine. Travelers can also take a test while in Pennsylvania to shorten their quarantine.

Important to know: Many restaurants, bars and attractions had reopened, but Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf introduced limited-time mitigation measures on Dec. 11 that ban indoor dining (outdoor, takeout and delivery remain) through Jan. 4, 2021. The order also limits retail stores and other business to 50% of capacity and closes gyms and entertainment venues such as theaters, museums and casinos.

Before the order, restaurants could only can operate at either 25% or 50% of capacity, depending on whether they complete a self-certification process, and bars and restaurants had to stop serving alcohol by 11 p.m. In addition, bar and restaurant patrons couldn’t order alcohol unless they are eating a meal. Some attractions, such as Valley Forge National Historic Park near Philadelphia, have closed all or most indoor areas. Pennsylvania requires masks in all public spaces both indoors and outdoors.

For more information: Visit the state of Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 Information for Travelers page.

Puerto Rico

Quarantine required: Not in all cases. All travelers arriving by air through San Juan International Airport are required to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival and undergo enhanced health screenings; they then may be asked to participate in a mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival until getting a negative test on island.

Conditions: Negative PCR coronavirus test taken within 72 hours of arrival. Health forms must be filled out by all arriving passengers. All visitors must have travel insurance. Many countries are banned from entering (following U.S. rules).

Penalties for violation: Mandatory quarantine without proof of negative test. There are also penalties for not following mask requirements.

Testing guidelines: Negative COVID-19 PCR test taken with three days of arrival and uploaded to the Puerto Rico Health Department’s online portal.

Important to know: Most businesses have reopened at 50% capacity including beaches, nature reserves, museums, restaurants and spas. Larger venue businesses are reopened at 25% capacity. Masks are required when in public places. Malls and retail stores remain open. Personal care facilities are open by appointment only. An island-wide curfew of 10 p.m. is in effect through Dec. 11.

Related: Sorry travelers, Puerto Rico has postponed its reopening plans

For more information: Visit Discover Puerto Rico.

Rhode Island

a large stone building with grass and trees with Marble House in the background: Newport, Rhode Island, December 2012. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Newport, Rhode Island, December 2012. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: A quarantine requirement is still in place for travelers coming from states with high cases of coronavirus.

Conditions: Some travelers do have the option to provide a negative test taken 72 hours before arrival to Rhode Island to escape the quarantine. Travelers can also take a test after they arrive and if they receive a negative result, they can stop quarantining. However, they still need to self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days, wear a mask any time they are near people who aren’t household members, and follow physical distancing guidelines. Rhode Island requires out-of-state visitors to complete a certificate of compliance with out-of-state travel quarantine/testing requirements and out-of-state travel screening form upon arriving in Rhode Island.

Penalties for violation:The R.I. Department of Health is empowered to impose a fine of $100 for a first offense, $250 for a second offense and $500 for a third.

Testing guidelines: PCR test is required to get out of quarantine.

Important to know: Rhode Island is currently in phase 3 of its reopening. However, the state entered a two-week “pause” on Nov. 30 that remains in effect through Dec. 13 and limits social gatherings as well as reduces capacities in some public spaces. Hair salons and barbershops, gyms, malls and outdoor venues are open, but there are some restrictions. State parks and beaches, public gardens, historical sites, zoos and even mini-golf facilities are among the outdoor locations that opened. Restaurants are open with 33% occupancy. Rhode Island beaches are open but some amenities might be closed. Gatherings are limited to 25 people and large venues are limited to 125 people.

For more information: Visit Rhode Island COVID-19 hub.

South Carolina

a large white building: Charleston, August 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Charleston, August 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: South Carolina’s stay-at-home order expired in May, and the state began reopening in April. Currently, most of the state has reopened under new guidelines encouraging social distancing and new sanitary requirements, including mask wearing.

Restrictions on attractions and sports were lifted in late May. That meant that places like waterparks, amusement parks and zoos all reopened. Bowling facilities and retail stores have also had their capacity restraints lifted. Bars have been given an 11 p.m. curfew to try to lessen the outbreak.

For more information: South Carolina health department COVID-19 page.

South Dakota to Wyoming

South Dakota

a close up of a large rock with Mount Rushmore National Memorial in the background: Mount Rushmore, September 2013. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Mount Rushmore, September 2013. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Since September, COVID-19 cases have spiked throughout the state. South Dakota is one of a handful of states that never had a stay-at-home order. Republican Gov. Kristi Noem announced a “back to normal” plan with guidelines for businesses to reopen as normal. She has said shutdowns are “useless.” Restaurants never closed, but guests are asked to maintain social distancing. Hotels and home-sharing are allowed to be open. Mount Rushmore is open. Keep in mind many Native American lands are closed to outsiders due to coronavirus concerns. It’s worth noting that because positivity rates continue to be high, travelers to South Dakota from New York and several other states would need to quarantine for 14 days when they return home.

For more information: Visit the South Dakota Tourism website or South Dakota Department of Health coronavirus page.

 

Tennessee

a tall building in a city: Memphis, April 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Memphis, April 2017. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Tennessee’s stay-at-home order expired on April 30. Republican Gov. Bill Lee announced that restaurants could increase their capacity under updated guidelines, including enforcing social distancing. Bars and restaurants are open depending on the county. Bars in Nashville, for example, are open at 50% capacity but only until 11 p.m. Hotels and home-sharing are open and allowed, but with new safety measures. Masks are recommended but not mandated statewide and Gov. Lee has left requirements up to individual counties. Several counties, including those that are home to Nashville and Memphis, currently have mask mandates in place and Sumner, Wilson and Williamson counties recently extended their mask mandates through Dec. 31.

For more information: Visit the Tennessee governor’s COVID-19 page and and the Tennessee Tourism website.

 Texas

a bridge over a body of water: (Photo by Cody Ash/Getty Images) © The Points Guy (Photo by Cody Ash/Getty Images)

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Texas recently surpassed 1 million coronavirus cases, but state officials have not instituted new restrictions to curb the spread. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott issued a statewide mask mandate on July 2 after cases began to rise in the state, however, mask usage is more common in some parts of Texas than others. Bars have reopened on a county-by-county basis at 50% occupancy with all patrons seated and an 11 p.m. closing time. Restaurant capacity is a maximum of 75%  for business that make less than 51% or more of revenue from alcoholic beverages. Gov. Abbott lifted travel restrictions for travelers to Texas on May 20.

For more information: Visit the state of Texas coronavirus information page and Travel Texas.

Related: Is Texas open for travel?

Utah

a canyon with a mountain in the background: The Watchman at Zion National Park. (Photo by Justin Reznick Photography/Getty Images) © The Points Guy The Watchman at Zion National Park. (Photo by Justin Reznick Photography/Getty Images)

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Utah entered a statewide state of emergency on Nov. 9 after Republican Gov. Gary Herbert acknowledged in a televised address that the state had recorded thousands of new cases over the course of a week and hospitals were nearing capacity. Masks are now mandated statewide, both inside and outside, whenever anyone is less than six feet from someone who is not a member of their household. Almost all counties in Utah are experiencing a high level of transmission. Gov. Herbert declared that social gatherings should be limited to members of a single household, but that expired on Nov. 23, and that the state’s college students should be tested for COVID-19 weekly via the deployment of rapid tests.

For more information: Visit the state of Utah’s COVID Travel Guidance site.

Vermont

Quarantine required: Yes, travelers from all states must now quarantine for 14 days.

Conditions: Per the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing’s website, everyone traveling into Vermont must quarantine for 14 days or opt to quarantine for seven days and then take a COVID-19 PCR test and receive a negative result. If you are traveling directly to Vermont in your personal vehicle, you can complete the 14-day quarantine in your home before you arrive in Vermont (or a seven-day quarantine with a negative PCR test taken in your home state before departing for Vermont) or quarantine for 14 days after you arrive. If you are traveling to Vermont by bus or plane, you must quarantine once you arrive. You can find up-to-date information here.

Penalties for violation: None.

Testing guidelines: A negative PCR test taken after seven days of quarantine in Vermont will end quarantine.

Important to know: Vermonters and visitors are required to wear masks or cloth facial coverings over their nose and mouth in public spaces — indoors or outdoors. Even while wearing a mask, individuals should stay 6 feet apart from others not in their group. All out-of-state travelers are strongly encouraged to register with Sara Alert upon arrival in Vermont to get two weeks of daily reminders to check for common symptoms of COVID-19.

Lodging properties are now operating at 100% capacity. Guests at any commercial lodging property are required to complete a certificate of compliance. Restaurants and bars have reopened, though at a limited capacity. Bar seating is now available. Reservations or call ahead seating is required. Customers are encouraged to wear face coverings when not eating.

Vermont ski areas have announced tentative opening dates and said that skiers will be asked to certify their quarantine requirement prior to making a reservation or buying tickets.

Eight of Vermont’s rest areas are open with limited access to interior restrooms from 10 am – 6 pm, seven days per week. Masks are required when inside the building. Other rest areas that remain closed will have portable toilets available.

Vermont’s state parks have opened for public use with mandatory health and safety guidelines in effect. Day use activity is being managed to ensure social distancing and amenities have been scaled back. State park campgrounds are limited to tent, RV and lean-to camping; a new web-based reservation system is available.

For more information: Visit the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing’s website.

Virgin Islands

a large purple flower is in a body of water: St Thomas US Virgin Islands. (Photo by sorincolac/iStock/Getty Images) © The Points Guy St Thomas US Virgin Islands. (Photo by sorincolac/iStock/Getty Images)

Quarantine required: Only for visitors who do not have the required test results upon arrival.

Conditions: Since Sept. 19, every traveler who enters the U.S. Virgin Islands is required to submit to the U.S. Virgin Islands Travel Screening Portal a negative COVID-19 antigen (molecular/PCR/rapid) test result obtained within five days of commencement of travel to the Territory or a positive COVID-19 antibody test taken an received within four months of the travel date. Visitors must produce both the original test result and the travel certification from the portal upon arrival.

Penalties for violation: According to the government website, travelers unable to produce a test result will be subject to mandatory self-quarantine for 14 days or the duration of the person’s stay in the Territory.

Testing guidelines: COVID-19 antigen (molecular/PCR/rapid) test taken within five days of departure for the islands or a positive antibody test taken within four months of the travel date.

Important to know: The U.S. Virgin Islands began welcoming back tourists on Sept. 19, but restrictions are still in place. Temperature checks and health screenings are being conducted at ports of entry. Restaurants and bars are limited to 50% capacity with all patrons seated and gatherings are permitted with up to 10 people. Hotels are accepting reservations and guidelines are in place when traveling in taxis, limos and safaris. Masks must be worn when entering the country and at all businesses and attractions.

For more information: Visit the U.S. Virgin Islands Travel Portal.

Virginia

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Per the Virginia Department of Health’s website, the state currently does not have any quarantine requirements for people arriving in the Commonwealth from other U.S. or international locations. However, masks are required for any person 10 years or older while inside public buildings and outside when social distancing isn’t possible.

The site says that all travelers should “check with the state, tribal, or local health department where you are, along your route, and where you will be visiting to get the most up to date information, in case there are travel restrictions, stay-at-home orders or quarantine requirements upon arrival, state border closures, or other requirements.” Visitors should also plan to keep checking for updates as they travel.

Virginia’s Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam just announced a modified stay-at-home order, effective Dec. 14, with a 12 a.m. curfew and a requirement that restaurants and bars stop serving alcohol at 10 p.m. The order also limits the number of people in social gatherings to 10.

For more information: Visit the Virginia Department of Health website.

Washington

a sign above a store: Seattle, September 2019. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Seattle, September 2019. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: None

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: On Nov. 15, Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee announced modifications to COVID-19 restrictions that went into effect on Nov. 16 and were recently extended through Jan. 4, 2021. These restrictions now include: no indoor service in restaurants and bars; capacity reduction in offices, retail stores, religious venues and personal care businesses (salons, barber shops, spas, etc.) to 25%; and the closure of indoor services at gyms, bowling alleys, movie theaters, museums, aquariums and zoos. In addition, residential social and family gatherings will be limited to immediate household members indoors and no more than five people outdoors.

Gov. Inslee joined his fellow governors in Oregon and California in issuing a Travel Advisory on Nov. 13 that urged all visitors entering these three states or returning home from outside these states to self-quarantine for 14 days. The advisory also urged the states’ residents to avoid non-essential travel and limit social interactions to members of their immediate households. Currently, most of the state’s counties are in phase two or phase three of  Gov. Inslee’s “Safe Start” approach to reopening, which allows for the use of recreational facilities. Restaurants, bars, museums and retail stores opened under new safety protocols in phase two. 

For more information: Visit the state of Washington’s COVID-19 information page.

West Virginia

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Republican Gov. Jim Justice has issues a statewide indoor face covering requirement for all residents and visitors over age 9 and everyone is encouraged to maintain a safe social distance when traveling the state. Masks must be worn in all public indoor places where social distancing cannot be maintained. The order does not apply to anyone who has trouble breathing or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Restaurants and bars are operating indoors at 50% capacity. All lodging providers including properties such as hotels, motels, rental properties, Airbnb/VRBO style lodging, and cabins are open with limited services and usages. Separate guidance has been issued for campgrounds. Travelers are encouraged to check the status of any upcoming reservation, special event and operations of individual businesses before embarking on their trip.

All West Virginia welcome centers and rest areas remain open to travelers and continue to be maintained and cleaned, with their restrooms open.”

For more information: Visit the West Virginia Tourism page.

Wisconsin

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Wisconsin, which over the past several weeks has had very high case activity across the state, does not currently require visitors to quarantine. That said, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ website recommends that “Wisconsinites cancel or postpone all travel, including travel within the state” and says that “if you must travel, you should prepare for changing travel restrictions.”

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers signed an executive order requiring face coverings indoors and in enclosed spaces, with some exceptions. This order went into effect in August and has been extended into 2021. He also signed another executive order on Nov. 10 advising Wisconsinites to stay home. As of dec. 10, the majority of counties in the state had COVID-19 activity that was Very High or Critically High.

For more information: Visit the Wisconsin Department of Health’s COVID-19 dashboard to see key metrics in specific regions of the state.

Wyoming

a group of clouds in the sky with Old Faithful in the background: Yellowstone National Park, September 2015. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy) © The Points Guy Yellowstone National Park, September 2015. (Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: There are currently no travel restrictions in Wyoming, but a statewide mask mandate is currently in effect.

Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Devils Tower National Monument, Fossil Butte National Monument and Fort Laramie National Historic Site are open with some limitations. State parks are open to everyone for day use and overnight camping. Campsites must be reserved through Wyoming State Parks’ reservation system.

For more information: Visit the Wyoming Office of Tourism’s website.

Related: When will national parks reopen?

Additional reporting by Ariana Arghandewal, Nick Ellis, Nick Ewen, Katherine Fan, Jordyn Fields, Jane Frye, Donna Heiderstadt, Summer Hull, Liz Hund, Brian Kim, Emily McNutt, Laura Motta, Andrea Rotondo, Gene Sloan and Benét J. Wilson. 

Featured photo of Yellowstone by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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