COVID vaccinations and falling case rates are beginning to loosen up the pandemic-related travel restrictions for interstate travel throughout New England, many of which have been in place since last spring.
Most of these restrictions have required a negative test or 10-14 day quarantine to cross most state borders in the region.
The recent lifting of restrictions signals to a potentially bustling spring and summertime – and is good news for local businesses and industries supported by tourism. But for some states, strict rules still remain in place
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Here are the current travel orders in each New England state:
Maine COVID travel restrictions
Residents from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Vermont are all allowed to visit the Pine Tree State – which has the most vacation homes in the country – without a COVID-19 test or quarantine, as newly announced by Gov. Janet Mills last week.
Anyone who has either recently recovered from COVID-19 or is fully vaccinated is also exempt, regardless of their state of origin.
Federal requirements related to international travel, however, remain in effect.
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Effective May 1, Maine will move to an “all states exempt, unless included” model, which means travelers from all U.S. states are automatically exempt unless otherwise determined by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Maine CDC will identify states that have a “high prevalence of highly contagious COVID-19 variants.” If one or more states see a spike in variant cases, Maine will apply its test or quarantine requirement to travelers to and from that state.
Massachusetts COVID travel restrictions
Fully vaccinated individuals are now exempt from the Bay State’s travel order, but they’re some of the only ones.
Anyone traveling from any other New England state who is not fully vaccinated will still need either a negative test or quarantine.
Only travelers from Hawaii, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico and Washington, all identified as “low-risk,” are allowed in Massachusetts without a negative test or quarantine.
Also exempt from the travel order are individuals passing through the state in transitory travel, people who commute for work or school, those receiving medical treatment, military personnel and workers providing critical infrastructure services.
That exemption does not include anyone traveling for day trip or vacation.
All visitors entering Massachusetts, including returning residents, who do not meet an exemption, are required to complete a form prior to arrival, and quarantine for 10 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered no more than 72-hours prior. If not obtained before entry to Massachusetts, a test may be obtained after arrival.
The state says failure to comply with this order may result in a $500 fine per day.
New Hampshire COVID travel restrictions
New Hampshire has been welcoming to its New England neighbors during the pandemic, and continues to be.
Visitors and residents previously needed to self-quarantine for 10 days only following travel outside of the New England states, but on Thursday, Gov. Chris Sununu announced he would lift the mandatory quarantine for all out-of-state-visitors, but not for international visitors.
Those who are fully-vaccinated were previously permitted to travel to New Hampshire.
Rhode Island COVID travel restrictions
As of March 8, visitors to Rhode Island from all New England states may come and go as they please without a negative test or quarantine.
Fully vaccinated individuals from any state are also exempt from travel restrictions.
The state keeps an updated list of places with a positivity rate greater than 5%, and travelers from those states are required to quarantine for 10 days upon arrival or produce a negative test.
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Connecticut COVID travel restrictions
New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island are the only states currently exempt from Connecticut’s travel order, but Gov. Ned Lamont has said the restrictions will become recommendations later this month.
At present, all other visitors outside of the three aforementioned states are directed to self-quarantine for 10 days.
Vermont COVID travel restrictions
Who is allowed in Vermont? Only Vermonters, pretty much.
Vermont’s travel order remains the strictest in New England. Those who are fully vaccinated may travel to the state, but anyone else traveling to Vermont from out-of-state must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.
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Those without COVID-19 symptoms can end their quarantine with a negative test result on day seven.
People traveling for essential purposes – like healthcare, food, beverage or medicine, and school or work-related daily commutes – do not need to quarantine, the state says.
Those who live near the Vermont border and regularly travel to and from a neighboring state may make day trips to Vermont for work, health care, and other essential needs, as well.
But that exemption does not extent to those traveling for day trips or vacations.