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

The Points Guy logo The Points Guy 3 days ago Clint Henderson
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Editor’s note: This post was last updated Feb. 27, 2021. 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. After a January case surge, the state recorded its highest number of COVID-19 deaths in a single day (309 on Feb. 3, 2021); cases have since dramatically dropped. Some states are requiring visitors from Alabama to quarantine. 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 recently extended to March 5, 2021, by Gov. Kay Ivey.

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

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: No

Conditions: None, although social distancing rules remain in effect

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: Recommended but no longer required. Having a negative COVID-19 PCR test result to avoid quarantine had been required until Feb. 14, 2021, when Alaska’s state of emergency was lifted. Still, the state said people “should consider” getting tested within 72 hours of travel to Alaska and restrict their interactions while in the state. Alaska is now also providing free COVID-19 tests upon arrival in Alaska (they had cost $250 for non-residents). Travelers who opt for arrival testing should follow social distancing guidelines and the state recommends a second test 5-14 days after arrival in Alaska. Note that children under the age of 10 are exempt. Details on the latest recommendations and restrictions can be found here.

Related: How to visit Alaska during coronavirus

Important to know: All visitors and returning residents are still required to complete this health declaration form (where negative test results can still be uploaded). Cases have been declined greatly since early January 2021, although COVID-19 continues to affect Alaska. Masks are not required statewide but are recommended. Anchorage put forth its own policies, however, which require that face masks be worn in indoor and crowded outdoor public spaces. After instituting a “hunker down” emergency policy in December 2020, the city relaxed conditions in late January to allow for indoor dining at 50% capacity.

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: Arizona has implemented few restrictions for visitors, even as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the state spiked throughout January, making it one of the country’s coronavirus hot spots with more than 812,000 total cases since the pandemic’s onset; cases have since declined to pre-holiday levels. Hotels and resorts are open with new social-distancing and cleaning measures. Home sharing is allowed. Face masks are not required statewide, but many counties and businesses require them. Masks are also 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. A list of what is open and closed is here.

For more information: Visit Arizona has details on traveling in the state and the Arizona Department of Health Services has COVID-19 updates.

Arkansas

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Cases and hospitalizations in the state have continued to drop after a post-holiday surge, and hotels and resorts remain open. Home sharing is allowed. All parks and golf courses are open. There is no quarantine, but visitors to Arkansas may face quarantine when they arrive home to their own states. The Arkansas Department of Health recommends social distancing where possible, hand washing and avoiding contact with the sick. There is a statewide mask mandate, which Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson has extended through March 31, 2021. An 11 p.m. curfew for all restaurants and bars that serve alcohol was lifted on Feb. 3, 2021.

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: Required for 10 days in Los Angeles County and Santa Clara County. San Francisco’s quarantine requirement was lifted on Feb. 23, 2021, but anyone traveling from outside of California is still “strongly recommended” to self-quarantine, per the statewide recommendation in effect since November 2020.

Conditions: None

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

Related: Best beaches in California

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: California recently surpassed 3.55 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, including new variants that may have driven a surge in infections in January 2021. Los Angeles County suffered a hospital bed shortage as it topped 1 million cases; more than 50,000 California residents have died, including 5,000 people in L.A. county in January alone. Cases in the state have since dropped dramatically.

On Jan. 25, 2021, Gov. Gavin Newsom lifted a statewide stay-at-home order known as the Regional Stay Home Order, which was issued Dec. 3, 2020, and went into effect when a region’s hospital ICU bed availability fell below 15%. All counties have now reverted to restrictions under the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for living with COVID-19 in the long term. The plan includes a framework for the state’s 58 counties with four risk categories — widespread, substantial, moderate and minimal — and allows sectors to progressively open as disease transmission decreases. A total of 47 counties remain under widespread risk; check each county’s website for the most up-to-date information.

A Jan. 6, 2021 travel advisory telling Californians to avoid non-essential travel “to any part of California more than 120 miles from one’s place of residence, or to other states or countries,” remains in effect.

With the Regional Stay-at-Home order — which had prohibited hotels from accepting reservations from leisure travelers — lifted, Lake Tahoe’s ski resorts have reopened. On Dec. 11, 2020, Lake Tahoe banned leisure travelers from visiting the California side and its ski resorts. A travel advisory discouraging travelers from out of state and urging them to quarantine upon arrival is still in effect.

Quarantine measures in two counties have not yet been lifted. Los Angeles has mandated a 10-day quarantine for anyone traveling to or arriving home to the county. Santa Clara County continues to require a 10-day quarantine for anyone arriving from more than 150 miles away.

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.

Colorado

Quarantine required: Aspen/Snowmass requires an affidavit of a negative test taken within 72 hours or a 10-day quarantine.

Conditions: None


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Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: Aspen/Snowmass requires an affidavit of a negative test taken within 72 hours or a 10-day quarantine.

Important to know: In late December 2020, Colorado reported the first known cases of the new COVID-19 variant that originated in the United Kingdom and cases are still being reported in the state. Overall, statewide cases declined in December 2020, rose again in early January 2021 and have been declining in the weeks since then.

The state continues to encourage 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.

Since mid-November 2020, Colorado’s 64 counties have been color-coded on the Colorado COVID-19 Dial into six levels, ranging from Green (Protect Our Neighbors) and Blue (Caution) to Purple (Extreme Risk), with increased restrictions on individuals and businesses depending on the case numbers. Gov. Jared Polis moved all Level Red counties to Level Orange, with reduced restrictions, on Jan. 4, 2021. Currently, most of Colorado’s counties are Yellow (Concern) or Blue (Caution).

Travelers heading to the state’s mountain resorts to ski should check testing and quarantine requirements for individual resorts. Aspen/Snowmass, for example, is asking skiers to abide by a local Pitkin County mandate that all visitors sign an affidavit that they have tested negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of travel to the county or they are required to quarantine in Aspen until getting a negative test result. Red-Level restrictions that closed indoor dining on Jan. 17, 2021, were lifted on Feb. 2, 2021, and indoor dining resumed. It is currently at 50% capacity.

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.18, 2020 anyone traveling to Connecticut from a state other than New York, New Jersey or Rhode Island or from any international destination must self-quarantine for 10 days. Check the Connecticut Travel Portal for the latest updates.

Conditions: Some workers are exempt from the 10-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 10-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. All COVID-19 tests, other than COVID-19 antibody tests, are accepted.

Important to know: Cases have been steadily decreasing in Connecticut. Masks are required in all public places — indoor and outdoors — when you cannot maintain a distance of six feet from other people. There is currently an 11 p.m. curfew for restaurants, which are open at 50% capacity.

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 — although Gov. John Carney issued a Stay-at-Home Advisory, in effect since Dec. 14, 2020, that requires wearing masks in all indoor public spaces and limits capacity in retail stores and restaurants; he lifted the 10 p.m. curfew for restaurants and bars on Jan. 8, 2021.

Visitors to Delaware 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 are open at 50% capacity and restaurant patrons are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings when waitstaff visits a table, and whenever they are not eating or drinking. Patrons must maintain six feet social distance from non-household members.

Dozens of cases of COVID-19 have been reported at the University of Delaware in Newark since students returned in mid-February for the spring semester.

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: Cases in Florida topped 1.89 million recently after hitting new single-day records in January. The state also has the most U.S. cases of the new COVID-19 variant from the United Kingdom. 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. Florida remains in Phase 3 of its reopening plan after Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a move to Phase 3 on Sept. 25, 2020. 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 (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 — 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. Infections surged throughout January 2021, threatening hospital capacities, and remain relatively high as the state has surpassed 997,000 total cases, including cases of the U.K. variant. Masks are “strongly encouraged” when outside of your home, except when eating, drinking or exercising outside. Local governments are permitted to mandate masks and many cities, including Atlanta, require them.

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. The new CDC requirement, beginning Jan. 26, that all international air passengers show proof of a negative viral COVID-19 test before being allowed to board their flight to the United States, does not apply to U.S. territories such as Guam.

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, 2020, Hawaii’s Safe Travels program allows you to avoid a 10-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 Jan. 5, 2021, the island of Kauai ended its 10-day quarantine requirement for all international and inter-island travelers, allowing those who have been in Hawaii for more than 72 hours (3 days) to take a second test via a Trusted Testing and Travel Partner within 72 hours of travel to Kauai and upload those results to the Safe Travels program while keeping a copy of the results to show at the airport. Those traveling directly to Kauai and staying at one of six “resort bubbles” can take a second test after three days’ stay, which will end quarantine. The Island of Hawaii (Big Island) continues to randomly test at least 25% of inter-island passengers at the airport upon arrival, while Maui requires the same 72-hours-or-less negative test as the state requires 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: Hawaii, which in the past month has maintained a positivity rate of under 1.5%, has done an excellent job at minimizing infection spread via its strict requirements and enforcement. All travelers must register with the state’s Safe Travels program. Everyone is 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 when physical distancing isn’t possible.

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

Hawaii’s Lieutenant Governor Josh Green recently said that travelers arriving in Hawaii who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 might be able to avoid testing and quarantine by spring, but Governor David Ige later indicated he wants to wait until scientists know more about whether vaccinated individuals can still carry and transit the virus. In addition, Hawaii lawmakers are discussing a bill that would standardize testing requirements across all islands.

For more information: Visit the state of Hawaii’s travel requirements for visitors page and COVID-19 information page.

Idaho

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Idaho’s stay-at-home order expired on April 30, 2020, but cases peaked in December 2020 and although they are down 70% since then, some community spread continues. Statewide, Idaho is currently back in Stage 3 of the “Idaho Rebound” reopening plan, which allows businesses such as bars and nightclubs to operate with physical distancing and all patrons seated. 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 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, 2020, for anyone coming into the City of Chicago from designated states with a significant degree of community-wide spread of COVID-19. The order was again modified, effective Jan. 15, 2021, to say that anyone traveling from a state on the Orange list should 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 must quarantine for a 10-day period (or the duration of their time in Chicago, whichever is shorter). As of Feb. 23, 2021, travelers from Orange states who have been fully vaccinated (must be two weeks after the second dose, if they have received a two-dose vaccine or two weeks after a single dose of a one-dose vaccine) and have no symptoms are exempt from testing and quarantine. 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.

Additionally, Cook County, which includes many of Chicago’s suburbs, also recommends that visitors and returning residents quarantine.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: Those who violate the city of Chicago’s emergency travel order are subject to 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, which has reported more than 1.18 million cases, has been divided into 11 regions, all of which are in Phase 4 of a five-phase reopening plan. The state had on Nov. 20, 2020, enacted Tier 3 Resurgence Mitigations statewide, to be gradually reduced by regions as cases declined. On Jan. 31, Chicago moved to Phase 4, which lessened some restrictions and allowed indoor dining at restaurants at 40% of capacity (or a maximum of 50 people). Face coverings are required in all public places and Gov. J.B. Pritzker has extended the mandate for another 150 days through June 3, 2021.

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, 2020, and in late September 2020 Gov. Eric Holcomb announced that Indiana would enter Stage 5, which has remained in effect. Cases surged throughout November and December last year, but have recently dropped considerably. All 92 countries in Indiana are coded by risk levels of coronavirus spread.

In Indianapolis, a health order, effective Nov. 16, 2020, remains in place and limits capacity in bars, restaurants and other public venues — but capacity limits were recently raised to 50% for bars and 75% for restaurants. The new curfew for bars and restaurants is 2 a.m.

A statewide mask mandate was put in place in July 2020 when Holcomb signed an executive order requiring the wearing of face masks in public spaces. It was recently extended until March 31, 2021, along with capacity limitations on social gatherings and events as mandated by a county’s color-coded risk level.

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

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. There were some restrictions, which Gov. Kim Reynolds started to lift on May 1, 2020. Cases began to spike again across the state in the fall, but have leveled off since peaking in November 2020.

The state government has once again 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 other venues.  After scoffing at masks, Gov. Reynolds issued enhanced public health measures, effective Nov. 17, 2020, with requirements that Iowans wear masks and social distance. Those measures were rescinded on Feb. 7, 2021, but people are still encouraged to wear masks and social distance.

Note that travelers visiting New York and several other states from Iowa must provide a negative COVID-19 test or self-quarantine 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, 2020, 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.

Gov. Laura Kelly signed an executive order requiring the use of face masks in public spaces, effective July 3, 2020, but counties are allowed to opt out and only half of the state’s counties are currently enforcing mask requirements.

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.

Note that travelers to several other states from Kansas must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result or self-quarantine 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 2020. Currently, a number of businesses are open, but with new protocols in place. On July 17, 2020, the Kentucky Supreme Court kept Gov. Andy Beshear’s mandatory mask order in place.

On Dec. 14, 2020, the Kentucky Department of Public Health revised its travel advisory to discourage all out-of-state leisure travel and recommend a voluntary 14-day self-quarantine for anyone who has traveled internationally or out of state.

Gov. Beshear had issued new restrictions on Nov. 20, 2020, which prohibited indoor dining in restaurants and limited occupancy in retail stores and other businesses, but they were lifted on Dec. 14, 2020. Restaurant capacity is currently restricted to 50%. Cases have been trending downward, but most counties in the state remain in the red (critical) or orange (accelerated) zone.

Note that travelers visiting several other states from Kentucky must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result or self-quarantine 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 statewide mask mandate remains in effect. Most of the state entered Phase 3 of its reopening plan in September 2020, but due to a “third surge” in the state, Governor John Bel Edwards recently reverted to Phase 2 mitigation, effective Nov. 25, 2020, for four weeks and recently extended through at least March 3. 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. Indoor live entertainment is not allowed. Hotels are open.

The ongoing COVID-19 surge has resulted in the cancellation of Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans and St. Tammany parishes, while other locales have delayed the parades until late May 2021. Recent reports indicate that Mardi Gras 2020, which took place just as the virus was beginning to spread, may have accounted for as many as 50,000 infections.

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

Maine

Quarantine required: Yes

Conditions: All visitors must quarantine for 10 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. Details are here.

Important to know: Maine had been managing its COVID-19 cases well, but it did experience a steady uptick in cases from early December to mid-January The state’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: Yes, in mid-December 2020, Maryland began requiring all visitors and returning residents to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result or to quarantine for 10 days; the order remains in effect.

Conditions: The mandate applies to all states except Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington. D.C. 

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

Testing guidelines: Travelers or returning residents are now required to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result to avoid a 10-day quarantine.

Important to know: Maryland, where cases rose through mid-January 2021 before beginning to decline, is in Phase Three of its reopening plan. 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%. 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 10 people.

The city of Baltimore, which ordered restaurants to close on Dec. 11, 2020, for all but take-out and delivery, is allowing indoor and outdoor dining as of Jan. 22, 2021, but with capacity restrictions.

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: None, but returning residents are required to limit activities and self-monitor for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result taken 3-5 days after their return.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: Travelers entering the District from high-risk states (every state except Hawaii and neighboring exempt states Maryland and Virginia) must get tested within 72 hours prior to travel and if staying in D.C. for more than three days, get tested again 3-5 days after arrival. Visitors may be asked to show results when entering a hotel, restaurant or business.

Important to know: Washington, D.C., which saw a rise in cases through mid-January 2021, has been in Phase Two of reopening since June 22, 2020. Capacity limitations were tightened in late November and indoor dining was banned through Jan. 22, 2021. Restaurants are now open at 25% capacity. Museums have reopened with strict capacity limits and no guided tours. 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, 2020, requiring the use of face masks in public, as well as continued social distancing.

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

Massachusetts to New Jersey

Massachusetts

Quarantine required: Yes, for 10 days for travelers arriving from high-risk states, unless they have the required negative COVID-19 PCR test.

Conditions: Massachusetts’ list of high-risk states can be found here.

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, parks and recreation areas, and restaurants.
  • Massachusetts has a statewide mask mandate in place.
  • On Dec. 16 amid rising cases, Boston moved back into Phase 2, Step 2 of COVID recovery that limited in-person gatherings and restricted certain businesses, such as gyms, theaters and museums, from opening. The city returned to Phase 3 on Feb. 8, subject to state capacities.

Massachusetts’ Gov. Charlie Baker announced the state will move into Phase 3, Step 2 of its reopening plan on March 1, 2021, and then on March 22, 2021 into Phase 4, Step 1, contingent on public health data continuing to get better. This means as of March 1, indoor restaurants have no capacity limits and will be able to host musical performances. Concert halls, theaters and other indoor performance spaces will reopen at 50% capacity (maximum 500 people). Stadiums, arenas and ballparks are slated to reopen March 22 at 12% capacity if case numbers continue to improve.

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, 2020, Michigan’s Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced strict COVID-19 regulations for restaurants and bars that were then extended through Feb. 1, 2021. Restrictions are now relaxed to allow indoor dining at 25% capacity with a 10 p.m. curfew, and there has been reporting that Gov. Whitmer could further ease some restrictions in early March. The original requirement that theaters and movie theaters, stadiums and arenas, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks, casinos and arcades close has already been lifted, with capacity restrictions in place.

In late September 2020, 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 Feb. 26, all eight regions remain at the second highest-risk levels, Level D.

An executive order signed by Gov. Whitmer in July 2020 reiterated that individuals must wear masks both in indoor public spaces, and outdoor spaces where social distancing is not possible. 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 2020, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued an Emergency Order that maintained the governor’s executive order as much as possible.

State parks and beaches are open.

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: Recommended for 14 days, but not required

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Minnesota’s stay-at-home order expired on May 17, 2020, but after cases began to spike last fall, Gov. Tim Walz announced Dial Back, Minnesota, a four-week pause in most social activities, in-person dining, sports and fitness activity through Dec. 18, 2020. The plan was extended through early January 2021 when it transitioned to Stay Safe, Minnesota, Details are here.

As of Jan. 10, 2021 restaurants and bars are open at 50% capacity. State parks and campgrounds have reopened. Most casinos and many hotels are open again. Shopping and retail stores are now open 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 as steadily rose in December and early January, Gov. Tate Reeves ordered that wearing masks is required in most of the state’s counties. Certain counties continue to require masks in social settings. All retail businesses, gyms, restaurants and bars have reopened, but are limited to 50% to 75% capacity, depending in the type of business. 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. Gov. Reeves hinted on Feb. 24, 2021, that some restrictions may begin to be rolled back in early March.

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 2020 and the state fully reopened on June 18, 2020. 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, 2020.  Limited indoor dining resumed Jan. 4, 2021, with new safety protocols in place.

After experiencing a rising number of cases this fall, cases are declining, but Missouri 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. Kansas City recently extended its mask order through May 1, but lifted orders requiring bars and restaurants to close at 10 p.m. St. Louis restaurants and bars are now open at 50% capacity.

Attractions such as the Missouri Botanical Garden are open, although with social distancing measures and mask requirements.

For more information: Visit the Missouri Department of Health’s COVID-19 page.

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 last summer and was never renewed. The state, which saw a surge of cases in the fall but has since stabilized, is in Phase 2 of its reopening and most hotels, bars, restaurants and other businesses are open; capacity restrictions and 10 p.m. closures were lifted in January 2021. Newly elected Governor Greg Gianforte also let the state’s mask requirement expire on Feb. 12, 2021, but several counties are keeping some restrictions in place (check here for local rules). Masks had been required for those over age five 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 were 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. Since November, only the North Entrance to Yellowstone at Gardiner, MT is open for the winter season. Glacier National Park is open only at its West Glacier entrance. The East entrance borders the Blackfeet Indian Reservation remain closed. 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.

Gov. Pete Ricketts moved most of the state into phase 3 in June 2020 and all counties are currently in phase 3.1 with reintroduced Directed Health Measures. As cases declined, all counties in the state were moved into the Green Zone on Jan. 30, 2021, effective through Feb. 28, with eased restrictions.

The latest guidelines also require that masks be worn inside businesses 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 the 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 2020, 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. 

The state’s Gov. Steve Sisolak, who himself tested positive for COVID-19, instituted a Nevada Statewide Pause on Nov. 24, 2020, that limits restaurants, bars, wineries, casinos, amusement parks and other venues to 25% of capacity; capacity was increased to 35% (or 100 people maximum) as of Feb. 15, 2021, and is expected to go up to 50% on March 15, 2021. 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 required 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 10 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 for 10 days per current CDC guidelines.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: New Jersey characterizes quarantine as 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: Travelers who test negative before travel into or a return to New Jersey can quarantine for seven days.

Important to know: Cases in New Jersey surged from the fall into January and total cases have topped 778,000. 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 (now 35%). Gov. Murphy had required bars and restaurants to close indoor service by 10 p.m., but that was lifted on Feb. 5. 2021, while the ban on indoor seating at bars (rather than at tables) remains.

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: None, as of Feb. 11, 2021. Out-of-state visitors had been required to self-quarantine for 14 days if they were coming from what New Mexico considered high-risk states. Now they are strongly advised to self-quarantine or get tested upon arrival.

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None, as of Feb. 11, 2021

Testing guidelines: All visitors to New Mexico are strongly encouraged to get tested for COVID-19 after their arrival.

Important to know: Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham ordered a two-week lockdown (Nov. 16-30, 2020) to control the spread of COVID-19, then as of Dec. 2, 2020, 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. Currently, only 4 of New Mexico’s 32 counties have not moved into the yellow and green zones that allow for a loosening of restrictions.

Face masks are mandated 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.

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 the required testing is done (see below) and 10 days if testing is not done. This applies to all travelers to New York from any state other than New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

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. Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo also formed an agreement with Delta, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic to test all travelers on flights from London to New York after the emergence of the COVID-19 variant in the U.K. The CDC later announced all travelers arriving from the U.K. now require a negative COVID-19 test to board a flight and beginning Jan. 26, all travelers arriving on international flights to the U.S. will need to present a negative test.

Important to know: After being the epicenter of the coronavirus in spring 2020, New York had managed to keep its COVID-19 cases in check, but cases rose steadily from late November, peaking in mid-January 2021 and topping 1.6 million (with more than 47,000 deaths) as case counts began to decline in February 2021. However, health authorities recently identified a troubling new New York City variant that is feared to have a mutation that helps it dodge the immune system.

Many businesses and tourist sites are open in New York, but there are capacity and social-distancing restrictions. Masks are required in all indoor public spaces, mass transit and outdoors when social distancing isn’t possible. Indoor dining is allowed with capacity restrictions that differ by region (New York City restaurants returned to indoor dining at 25% capacity on Feb. 12, 2021). Restaurants and bars are required to close at 11 p.m. Many hotels are open, but Broadway theater, opera and ballet will not be allowed to reopen for now. Professional sporting events originally resumed without fans, but as of Feb. 23, 2021 stadiums and arenas are allowed to welcome fans at 10% capacity with required testing. Film production started back up and outdoor attractions such as zoos are open. Ski resorts were allowed to open on Nov. 6, 2020, with 50% indoor capacity and with strict health and safety protocols under state-issued guidance.

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

For more information: Visit the New York State Health DepartmentCOVID-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, Gov. Roy Cooper issued a Modified Stay at Home Order on Dec. 11, 2020, that was extended through late February. Easing of those restrictions has now begun. As of Feb. 26, 2021, restaurants, gyms and stores can remain open past 10 p.m., and restaurants and bars can sell alcohol until 11 p.m. Capacity for bars, movie theaters and smaller venues is now 30%, while gyms, restaurants, museums, pools and outdoor amusement parks can operate at 50% capacity and big indoor sporting and entertainment venues at 15% capacity.

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 the county, saw a huge COVID-19 surge last fall before cases fell in late December 2020 and early January 2021. Masks, which had been mandatory since Nov. 13, 2020, when Gov. Doug Burgum issued a statewide requirement, are no longer mandated as of Jan. 15, 2021. Mayors in some of the state’s cities said they would enforce mask-wearing through February. 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 high (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.

The state had issued an Ohio Stay at Home Tonight Order, which required that Ohioans stay at home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. for three weeks (Nov. 19–Dec. 10, 2020). As total statewide case counts topped 900,000, the order was extended through Feb. 11, 2021, with an 11 p.m. curfew, before being allowed to expire. Currently, total cases in the state are now more than 962,000.

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: Cases surged in the state through mid-January 2021, threatening to overwhelm hospitals in certain areas. Oklahoma never issued a statewide stay-at-home order, but in early December 2020, Gov. Kevin Stitt did announce statewide limitations on some public and social gatherings and his executive order also extends the social distancing rules for bars and restaurants.

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 limitations 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 participation 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: Gov. Kate Brown joined her fellow governors in California and Washington state in issuing a Travel Advisory on Nov. 13, 2020, 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.

Following a statewide Two-Week Freeze (Nov.–Dec. 2, 2020) that limited restaurants to take-out only and closed zoos, gardens, aquariums, museums and other indoor entertainment venues, Gov. Brown on Dec. 3, 2020, 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 Feb. 20, 2021, 25 counties, including those that are home to Portland and the Willamette Valley, were classified as either “extreme high risk”  or “high risk” with indoor dining not allowed and retail capacity limited to 50%.

Gov. Brown recently extended Oregon’s state of emergency through May 2, 2021.

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: A 10-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 amid rising cases late in 2020, Pennsylvania’s Gov. Tom Wolf introduced limited-time mitigation measures on Dec. 11, 2020, that banned indoor dining through Jan. 4, 2021. The order was lifted in all places except Philadelphia, which resumed indoor dining at a limited capacity on Jan. 16, 2021. Capacities also remain in effect for retail stores and other businesses.

Some attractions, such as Valley Forge National Historical 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 the island.

Conditions: Negative PCR coronavirus test taken within 72 hours of arrival. Online Travel Declaration 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 (72 hours) of arrival and uploaded to the Puerto Rico Health Department’s online portal.

Important to know: Beaches have fully reopened and restaurants are operating at 30% capacity, while casinos, museums and hotel pools are open at 50% capacity. Bars remain closed. Masks are required when in public places. An island-wide curfew of 12 a.m. to 5 a.m. is currently in effect.

Beginning Jan. 26, 2021, the CDC will begin requiring all international air passengers arriving in the United States and its territories to provide negative viral COVID-19 test results taken at least 72 hours prior to travel. But travelers from Puerto Rico to the mainland U.S. will not need to follow the CDC protocols.

For more information: Visit the Travel Safe Puerto Rico portal or 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 14-day 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 saw a case surge and entered a two-week “pause” on Nov. 30, 2020, that was extended through Dec. 20, 2020, but is now lifted. Social gatherings are still limited and there are capacity restrictions on some businesses. Restaurants are open with 50% occupancy and bars have been allowed to re-open, but with social distancing requirements and an 11 p.m. closing time. State parks and beaches, public gardens, historical sites, zoos and even mini-golf facilities are among the outdoor locations that opened. Rhode Island beaches are open, but some amenities might be closed.

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 2020. Currently, most of the state has reopened under new guidelines encouraging social distancing and new sanitary requirements, including mask-wearing. However, rising cases in Charleston since December 2020 caused the city to enact restrictions on social gatherings and to require those who can work from home to do so.

The state reported the first two known cases of the South African COVID-19 variant in the U.S. on Jan. 28, 2021, and it remains a hot spot. Cases are falling as of mid-February, but not as fast as in other states.

Restrictions on attractions and sports were lifted in late May 2020. That meant that places like waterparks, amusement parks and zoos all reopened. Retail stores have also had their capacity restraints lifted. Bars had been given an 11 p.m. curfew to try to lessen the case surge since the beginning of the year, but the restriction will be lifted as of March 1, 2021.

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: COVID-19 cases spiked throughout the state last fall, but numbers have been declining since December. South Dakota is one of a handful of states that never had a stay-at-home order or a statewide mask mandate (although some cities, such as Sioux Falls, do require them in public spaces). 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.

For more information: Visit the South Dakota Tourism website or the 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, 2020, and there are no travel restrictions in the state, although cases spiked from early December to early January. Gov. Bill Lee had allowed restaurants to increase their capacity under updated guidelines, including enforcing social distancing, and bars and restaurants are open with restrictions depending on the county. Bars in Nashville are now allowed to increase guest capacity and stay open until 1 a.m. as of March 1, 2021. 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. About 30 counties, including those that are home to Nashville and Memphis, had mask requirements in place in late January. And Great Smoky Mountains National Park, like all national parks, now requires masks outdoors when social distancing cannot be maintained.

For more information: Visit the Tennessee governor’s COVID-19 page 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 was the second state to surpass 2 million coronavirus cases — as of Feb. 26, 2021, there have been more than 2.6 million confirmed cases and 43,000 deaths — but state officials did not institute new statewide restrictions to curb the spread.  Gov. Greg Abbott issued a mask mandate on July 2, 2020, after cases began to rise in the state, however, mask usage is more common in some parts of Texas than in others. Reports indicate that Gov. Abbott may soon end the mandate and other restrictions.

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 businesses that make less than 51% or more of revenue from alcoholic beverages. Gov. Abbott lifted travel restrictions for visitors to Texas on May 20, 2020.

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, 2020, after 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. About half of all counties in Utah continue to see a high level of transmission.

Utah’s 15 ski resorts are all open with mask requirements and social distancing in place.

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

Vermont

Quarantine required: Yes, travelers from all states —  except for those who have been fully vaccinated and 14 days have passed since their completed vaccination —  must quarantine for 14 days.

Conditions: Per the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing’s website, anyone not yet vaccinated (or traveling for essential business) entering 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 the 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 for travelers who are not already fully vaccinated.

Important to know: Travelers are once again restricted to members of a single household in a rental house or hotel room unless one party has been fully vaccinated. 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 six 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 are open and said that skiers will be asked to certify their quarantine requirement prior to making a reservation or buying tickets.

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, 2020, every traveler age 5 or older who enters the U.S. Virgin Islands is required to submit to the U.S. Virgin Islands Travel Screening Portal a negative COVID-19 molecular PCR or rapid Antigen test result obtained within five days of commencement of travel to the Territory or a positive COVID-19 antibody test taken and 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 molecular PCR or rapid Antigen 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, 2020, 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. Important to note: The new CDC requirement that all international air travelers entering the U.S. must present a negative viral COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of travel isn’t required to return the mainland U.S. from the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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.

Cases had surged between late November and late January and Virginia’s Gov. Ralph Northam announced a modified stay-at-home order, in effect Dec. 14, 2020, to Feb. 28, 2021. The curfew has been lifted as of March 1, 2021, and bars can now sell alcohol until 12 a.m.

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: Only for travelers from the United Kingdom and South Africa. Quarantine is recommended for travelers from all other areas. 

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Gov. Jay Inslee announced COVID-19 restrictions that went into effect on Nov. 16, 2020, and were extended through early January. They have now been lifted and Gov. Inslee has introduced Healthy Washington, a new region-based re-opening plan with every region in Phase 1 as of Jan. 11, 2021. All regions moved to Phase 2 on Feb. 14, 2021, with indoor dining now allowed at 25% capacity in restaurants and bars. Capacity is also 25% in most retail stores and entertainment venues. Details can be found here.

Gov. Inslee also joined his fellow governors in Oregon and California in issuing a Travel Advisory on Nov. 13, 2020, 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. The advisory remains in effect.

On Dec. 21, 2021, Gov. Inslee also issued a 14-day quarantine requirement for anyone arriving in Washington state after having visited the United Kingdom, South Africa and other countries where a new COVID-19 variant has been circulating.

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: Cases in the state spiked in late December and early January, but have since leveled off. Gov. Jim Justice has issued a statewide indoor face-covering requirement for all residents and visitors over age nine 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 now allowed to operate indoors at 75% 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 Department of Health website or the West Virginia Tourism page.

Wisconsin

Quarantine required: No

Conditions: None

Penalties for violation: None

Testing guidelines: None

Important to know: Wisconsin, which saw a surge in cases in November and early December and has had a total of 615,000 cases since the pandemic began, 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.”

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 2020 and had been extended into 2021— although the state Senate voted to repeal the mask mandate on Feb. 4, 2021. Gov. Evers immediately issued another order. As of Feb. 26, 2021, most counties in the state still had High COVID-19 activity.

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 remains 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 stays.

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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