Governor Andrew Cuomo issued a statement Oct. 31 updating New York State's coronavirus disease (COVID-19)-related travel restrictions. The new measures, which replace the previous requirements for travelers from most US states to quarantine for 14 days, come into effect Nov. 4.
- Travelers who were in another state for more than 24 hours must obtain a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departure from that state and, on arrival, enter three days of quarantine. On day four of quarantine, the traveler must obtain another test. If both tests are negative, the traveler may exit quarantine upon receipt of the second test. Persons who do not take the test or test positive will be required to remain in quarantine for 14 days.
- Travelers who were in another state for less than 24 hours before arrival in New York State will not need a test and do not need to quarantine on arrival. However, said travelers must take a test 96 hours after they arrive in New York.
- All travelers to the state are required to fill out a Traveler Health Form. Persons who do not fill out the form are subject to a fine and possible quarantine. All travelers, except those traveling via air, fill out an online form. Air travelers fill out a form at the airport.
- Travelers from states that are contiguous with New York State and essential workers are exempt from the new requirements.
Travelers from abroad are largely required to enter mandatory quarantine upon arrival. Only 31 countries, including American Samoa, Anguilla, Bonaire, Brunei, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Falkland Islands, Fiji, Greenland, Grenada, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Laos, Macau SAR, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia, Montserrat, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Saba, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Sint Eustatius, Taiwan, Thailand, and Timor-Leste, are exempt.
There have been no additional updates to business and other instate restrictions and health measures as of Nov. 1.
- Business restrictions mostly remain unchanged. All regions in New York are on Phase 4 of the state's economic recovery plan, enabling some arts and entertainment businesses to open and permitting social gatherings of up to 50 people. However, in New York City, indoor malls remain closed and cultural events remain prohibited; indoor dining is allowed at 25-percent capacity, and indoor pools may open at 33-percent capacity. Movie theaters may operate at 25-percent capacity or a maximum of 50 people in most areas of the state, except for New York City and several other counties, such as Rockland and Orange. Ski resorts will be allowed to reopen at 50-percent indoor capacity starting Nov. 6.
- Stricter measures are in place to address COVID-19 clusters in areas of Brooklyn and Queens in New York City, and Broome, Orange, and Rockland counties. The tighter measures include restrictions on mass gatherings, businesses, and school operations.
- Previous reopening phases in New York had lifted restrictions on businesses and services, such as landscaping, gardening, drive-in movie theaters, tennis courts, public pools, recreational vehicle parks, campgrounds, veterinarian offices, and dental practices. Graduation ceremonies with up to 150 attendants in outdoor locations are allowed.
- Essential businesses have not been subject to mandatory COVID-19-related closures.
- Authorities require all persons, including essential workers, to wear facemasks when in public and whenever they cannot adhere to social distancing guidelines.
Transport and business disruptions remain likely. Authorities could reimpose, extend, further ease, or otherwise amend any restrictions with little-to-no notice depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.
All persons traveling to or from New York State should reconfirm entry and departure requirements before travel. Ensure that all required documentation has been completed to ensure ease of travel. Heed the directives of the local authorities. Plan for delays at entry points.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.