Over the past 2 weeks, the demand for travel has increased, which forced different states to tighten their travel restrictions until the end of the year. Flight bookings during the Christmas season are expected to be much bigger than Thanksgiving, so while these COVID-19 protocols may change on a weekly basis, a guide to restrictions per state for the whole month of December is provided by the authorities.

Travel restrictions are hardened across the United States

As the case of coronavirus continues to rise across the country, the patchwork of travel regulations in every state has evolved over the last two months. This December, the highlights of the new protocols are listed below:

  • From 18 to 22, the number of states with tightened travel regulations has increased. The recent states on the list include Oregon, Washington State, Minnesota, and California.
  • Some states, 28 to be exact, still don’t enforce travel restrictions, even with the states with the highest COVID-19 cases in the United States. For instance, Dakota.
  • The number of positive cases continue to increase as days go by. As a result, a lot of low-risk states are being placed onto the list of high-risk areas. Travelers that came from Hawaii are the only people who can go into any state without restrictions.
  • Most of the states included on the high-risk list or those with travel restrictions already have hardened their protocols from November to December. They changed a few rules, such as transforming voluntary to mandatory quarantine, and asking for a negative PCR test from travelers.
  • The enforced travel restrictions are still not uniform. Some quarantine protocols are mandatory, while others are voluntary. Some states ask for a full 14-day self quarantine rules, while others require a negative PCR test result to release travelers from doing self quarantine.
  • A few states did not enact travel restrictions, enforce mandatory wearing of face masks in public places, and prohibit social gatherings.

States with travel restrictions from November to December

These states include Kansas, Alaska, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Kentucky, Maine, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, New Mexico, New Jersey, Ohio, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Oregon, Wisconsin, Washington State, Vermont, and Washington D.C.

States without travel restrictions from November to December

These states include Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana,, Nevada, North Carolina,, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wyoming, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas.

Here are more key takeaways about the travel restrictions of some of the states listed above: 

  • Alaska and California require all travelers, as well as residents, to isolate themselves for 14 days.
  • Connecticut and Hawaii require people to present a negative PCR test result or do a 14-day quarantine.
  • Idaho travelers are encouraged to do self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Illinois uses color-coding for travelers. It has  three colors, which are all based on the infection rates of the state where they came from.
  • Kansas has some of the most specific travel restrictions. For instance, a mandatory 14-day self quarantine.