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U.S. State by State Quarantine and Testing Rules

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Yes, there are many U.S. states that are requiring both visitors or residents returning home to quarantine or fulfill testing requirements. Yes, they seem to change the rules every time you blink. No, you’re not alone in feeling utterly lost and confused by all the regulations.

We’ve created this easy guide to state-by-state quarantine and testing rules in the U.S. that doesn’t require a law degree to decipher or brain surgery to understand.

U.S. State by State Covid Travel Rules

Below you will see a complete list of U.S. states, what types of entry requirements or restrictions they have, and everything you need to know before you travel there as a tourist or return home there as a resident.

So that we don’t constantly repeat ourselves, almost every state that does require a test and/or quarantine for persons entering has exemptions for essential travel, like cross border workers, healthcare professionals, education, etc. If you are an essential worker or traveler, research the individual state you want to enter to find out your exemption details (all states below are linked to their official government pages)

Note: While we do our best to only use official government sources and keep this article as accurate as possible, changes and modifications are constant. It’s your responsibility to research the rules and regulations pertaining to your own travel itinerary and the below list should just be used as a helpful guide to point you in the right direction. Please adhere to all government advisories and recommendations.

U.S. States with Quarantines or Testing Requirements  

Alaska

14-Day Quarantine and/or Molecular Test Required

All travelers (both residents and tourists) arriving in Alaska must submit a travel declaration and self-isolation plan on the Alaska Travel Portal.

There is a choice: Arrivals can either complete a 14-day quarantine, arrive with proof of a negative result of a Covid-19 test (taken within 72 hours of arrival), or pay $250 in Alaska to take Covid test within 72 hours of arriving into the state, self-quarantine until results are available, and upload the negative results into the Portal to leave quarantine early.

Travelers are also being asked to take another test 7-14 days after arriving, but it is not mandatory at this time.

Alaska Source

alaska travel rules during covid

Colorado

Testing Required For Ski Resort Areas

While the state of Colorado does not have any specific travel rules, ski towns like Aspen have made their own requirements for visitors. 

Tourists will need to bring a negative PCR test, taken no long than 72 hours from arrival, in order to check into their accommodation.

Pitkin County Source

Kansas

14-Day Quarantine Required

Kansas is requiring a 14-day quarantine for travelers or residents coming from certain states, all cruise or river boat travel, and certain international countries.

Currently the U.S. states include: North Dakota & South Dakota

International: Belgium, Andorra, Czech Republic

They have also added a way to shorten the 14-day quarantine down to 7-days, with a negative PCR test on the 7th day. 

Kansas Source

New Mexico

14-Day Quarantine Required

Any individual traveling to New Mexico from states deemed high-risk based on COVID-positivity rates will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of their entry into New Mexico or for the duration of their stay in the state, whichever is shorter.

Currently (as of Jan 11, 2021), there are no states determined to be low risk  The list of states is updated weekly and can be found here

New Mexico Source

Hawaii

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Hawaii has been one of the strictest states when it comes to entry requirements.

All arrivals must fill out a Hawaii Safe Travels Form online, preferably before 24 hours to departure. 

No matter if the traveler is a resident or a tourist, they are required to quarantine for 10-days, but now have an option for pre-arrival testing to circumvent the quarantine requirement.

The type of test required is a Nucleic Acid Covid-19 test and it can only be performed by a list of approved testing partners, listed on Hawaii’s state site. The test must be performed, with results available, within 72 hours of departure into Hawaii. 

Travel between most islands is still restricted with the same 10-day quarantine or 72-hour nucleic acid test requirements in place.

Hawaii Source

hawaii quarantine and testing rules

Kentucky

14-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

All international arrivals or returns, no matter the country, entering into Kentucky are being asked to quarantine for 14 days.

As for out of state travel, the health department of Kentucky is asking all passengers, both residents and tourists, to quarantine for 14 days.

On December 14, 2020, the Kentucky Department for Public Health (KDPH) revised its travel guidance to discourage all out-of-state leisure travel until further notice.

Kentucky Source

Ohio

14-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

Ohio is advising all passengers arriving, both tourists and residents, to quarantine for 14-days if they are coming from a state with a rolling 7-day average infection rate over 15%. The list is updated weekly and currently has 12 states listed.

Ohio’s department of health site states the advisory is “intended as guidance and is not a mandate.”

Ohio Source

New York

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Travelers and residents entering New York from out of state or from a country designated by the CDC as level 2 (moderate risk) or 3 (high-risk) must fill out the New York State Traveler Health Form and quarantine for 10-days.

(Note: Almost every country in the world is a level 2 or 3)

New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maine and Vermont are exempt from the form and the quarantine.

Testing To End Quarantine Early:  As of November 4th, there is a double testing protocol in order to leave quarantine early.

Here is how it works: The traveler must take a test within three days of departing for New York.  Once arriving in New York, the traveler will quarantine for 3 days. Then, the traveler can take a 2nd Covid test on day 4, and after receiving negative results from the 2nd test, can leave quarantine early.

New York Source

New york covid testing and quarantine requirements

Maryland

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

All visitors or residents returning to Maryland that are coming from out of state or abroad are required to quarantine for 10-days.

For residents: Testing after arrival into Maryland is permitted in order to end quarantine early.

For tourists: To not overwhelm the local health care, tourists arriving into Maryland are being asked to bring a negative Covid-19 test, taken no longer than 72 hours before arrival.

Maryland Source

Pennsylvania 

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Both visitors to Pennsylvania and residents returning home from select high-risk states are now required to quarantine for 10-days. 

Both residents and tourists can bypass the 10-day quarantine if they either bring a 72-hour negative PCR with them upon arrival or perform a PCR test after arriving, of which the negative results will end quarantine. 

Pennsylvania is also asking all visitors and residents to download the Covid Alert PA app

Pennsylvania Source

New Jersey

10-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

New Jersey is asking visitors or residents returning from all states to quarantine for 10-days upon arrival. 

  • If travel is unavoidable, travelers should consider getting tested with a viral test (not an antibody test) 1-3 days before the trip and again 3-5 days after the trip.
  • If travelers test positive, they should self-isolate for at least 10 days and should postpone travel during that time.
  • If travelers test negative, they should quarantine for a full 7 days after travel.

While no forms are mandatory, the state of New Jersey is asking for a voluntary survey to be filled out

New Jersey Source

New Jersey quarantine rules

Connecticut

10-Day Quarantine Required

Travelers entering or returning to Connecticut from another state or country will be required to quarantine for 10-days.

Completing the Connecticut Travel Health Form is also a mandatory requirement.

Arrivals from New York, New Jersey, or Rhode Island are exempt from the form and the 10-day quarantine.

Connecticut Source

Massachusetts

10-Day Quarantine and /or Testing Required

All arrivals into Massachusetts must fill out the Massachusetts Travel Form prior to entering the state.

Then, passengers have two choices. They can either quarantine for 10 days, or provide proof of a negative PCR test, taken no longer than 72 hours before arrival.

The following states are currently exempt from the form and the quarantine/testing requirements: Hawaii

Massachusetts Source

New Hampshire

10-Day Quarantine Required

Residents returning home or visitors entering New Hampshire from out of state or abroad are expected to self-quarantine for 10-days upon arrival.

If the person is asymptomatic and has a negative PCR test on or after day 7 of quarantining, they may shorten or end their quarantine at that time.

Passengers from Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island are exempt from the quarantine requirement.

New Hampshire Source

new hampshire travel rules

Vermont

14-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Vermont is requiring all visitors and residents returning to complete a 14-day quarantine. If the traveler in quarantine still has no symptoms on day 7, they are allowed to take a PCR test, and upon a negative result, leave quarantine early. The test cannot be performed earlier than 7 full days of quarantine.

All out of state travelers are strongly encouraged to register with Sara Alert upon arrival to Vermont to get two weeks of daily reminders to check for common symptoms of COVID-19.

Travelers may not stay with a Vermont host or stay in a Vermont lodging establishment or short-term rental with another household.

Vermont Source

Maine

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Maine requires all visitors or residents returning home complete a 10-day quarantine unless they can show proof of a negative PCR or Antigen test, taken within 72 hours of arrival.

All arrivals into the state will have to fill out the certificate of compliance, which will also be needed in order to check into any hotel or accommodation. 

Maine does have a few neighboring states who are exempt from the quarantine and/or testing requirements. Currently, they are: New Hampshire and Vermont.

Maine Source

California

10-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

Persons arriving in California from other states or countries, including returning California residents, should quarantine for 10 days. 

However, California’s ‘stay at home’ order does change how hotels and AirBnB’s will accept bookings. The order specifies that “no hotel or lodging entity in California shall accept or honor out of state reservations for non-essential travel” unless the reservation is made for a stay of at least 10 days, during which guests will quarantine in their accommodations.

Californians are encouraged to stay home or in their region and avoid non-essential travel to other states or countries at this time. 

California Source

California quarantine rules

Oregon

14-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

As of November 13th, Oregon is asking residents to avoid non-essential travel out of state and is strongly advising all visitors or residents returning to complete a 14-day quarantine.

Oregon Source

Rhode Island

14-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required

Rhode Island has a few steps travelers to complete.

Forms: Out-of-state visitors are to complete this certificate of compliance with out-of-state travel quarantine/testing requirements and out-of-state travel screening form upon arriving in Rhode Island. If staying in a hotel, the completed certificate of compliance is required to show the front desk at check-in.

14-Day Quarantine: If you are traveling to Rhode Island from a U.S. state with a positivity rate of higher than 5%, you must quarantine for 14 days and self-monitor for symptoms.

Testing To End Quarantine Early: Arrivals also have the option of bringing a negative PCR test taken no longer than 72 hours before arrival to circumvent quarantine completely – or – Have a test done during quarantine, in which a negative result will end quarantine early.

Rhode Island Source

Illinois

10-Day Quarantine and/or Testing Required (for Chicago Only)

State-wide there are no restrictions, but Chicago has implemented their own rules.

They have developed a color-coded map with all states listed under yellow, orange, or red level of risk. Travel from yellow states requires NO quarantine and/or testing. Orange is a choice between a 10-day quarantine or bringing a negative Covid test taken within 72 hours before arrival. Red is a blanket 10-day quarantine.

Currently, there are only a handful of yellow states: Hawaii and Vermont. The list is expected to be updated weekly.

Illinois Source

Chicago quarantine and testing rules

Washington

14-Day Quarantine Strongly Recommended

As of November 13, 2020, Washington State strongly recommends people arriving in Washington from other states or countries, including returning Washington residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival.

Washington Source

Washington DC

Testing Strongly Recommended

Washington DC is asking all visitors or residents who have been out of state or the country to get tested within 3-5 of arrival.

The state site says “Private institutions such as universities, employers, hotels, hospitals, congregate care facilities, and houses of worship may ask visitors about their recent travel and may require a record of a negative COVID-19 test before allowing admittance to their facility.”

Residents returning from out of state or abroad should self-isolate for 14-days, or take a PCR test 3 days after return, of which a negative result will end isolation early. 

Visitors from Maryland and Virginia are exempt

Washington DC Source

Washington DC testing rules for travelers

States Without Quarantines or Testing Requirements (at this time!)

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming 

Sources: all sources are linked in each state section

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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.  Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories

Article originally published November 16, 2020, with updates


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David Russell

Sunday 24th of January 2021

If I get negative COVID-19 test can I enter Florida

Ella Ikana

Monday 11th of January 2021

Hi Kashlee,

What if we drive from florida all the way to Toronto ( home ) through buffalo?

Kashlee Kucheran

Monday 11th of January 2021

I believe all states allow people in transit, but for over-night stays, you will have to plan ahead to make sure you will be sleeping in a state that will allow it.

Liberty

Monday 11th of January 2021

"The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States."

-Article IV, U.S. Constitution

Joseph Frank

Thursday 19th of November 2020

Hi Kashlee: Thanks for all your work. Are these rules for the quarantine/testing sates for any form of travel? Car, train, airplane?

Kashlee Kucheran

Thursday 19th of November 2020

Yes, I believe so!