Eager to travel outside Vermont? Here’s what you can expect in neighboring states

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A PSA done by the Ohio Department of Health used mousetraps and ping-pong balls to illustrate the importance of social distancing has gone viral. Wochit

With Memorial Day Weekend fast approaching, travel restrictions remain in place throughout much of the United States due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The situation leaves few clear options for Vermonters stung by the travel bug. 

But for those curious about satisfying their wanderlust itch in the coming weeks, here’s a roundup of guidelines in neighboring states and provinces as of May 20. (New information will be added when it becomes available.)

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It’s also worth noting that anyone crossing into Vermont for reasons other than day traffic or authorized work is subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival. Quarantine means people cannot go outside for walks, bike rides or hikes, or shop for groceries or other essential items, according to the state. 

More: Traveling to Vermont? Here’s what you should know during the coronavirus pandemic

New Hampshire

New Hampshire continues to discourage out-of-state visitors — anyone traveling to and staying in the Granite State for an extended period of time is required to quarantine for two weeks.

Interior state parks and campgrounds, as well as golf courses, are open to residents only. Coastal recreation areas remain off limits.

Lodging operations are only open to essential workers. The state has not publicized a phased reopening schedule.

More: Vermont will allow hotels to resume business in late May: Here’s what we know.

New York

New York has not asked hotels and motels to close — they have been deemed essential infrastructure.

Beaches will open with certain restrictions on May 22, according to the state’s Department of Economic Development. Marinas and outdoor, low-risk recreational activities — such as parks, drive-in theaters, tennis, golf and non-motorized watercraft rentals — are permitted so long as social distancing and sanitary measures are in place.

Horse racing tracks statewide and Watkins Glen International Racetrack will be allowed to open without fans as of June 1. The Belmont Stakes, traditionally the last leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown, will be the first to be contested on June 20, two weeks later than originally planned.

Maine

A state of emergency order remains in effect through June 11.

Wilderness camps and sporting camps in rural Maine counties opened May 18. Campgrounds and RV parks will open to Maine residents only on May 22 and lodging operations will follow on June 1.

Out-of-state travelers coming into Maine must complete a 14-day quarantine upon arrival. Non-residents can access lodging, campgrounds and RV parks beginning June 1 if they have quarantined for 14 days.

Gov. Janet Mills’ administration is developing guidelines for a broader reopening — for residents and visitors — on July 1.

More: Further details are available here.

Massachusetts

On Vermont’s southern border, Massachusetts is slated to begin the first phase of its four-step reopening plan on May 25. Each phase will last at least three weeks before advancing to the next.

All travelers to Massachusetts will be “urged to self-quarantine for 14 days” until at least Phase 3. Business and recreational travel is also discouraged until that time.

Lodging will be restricted to all but essential workers until Phase 2, which begin as early as June 15.

Quebec

Travelers seeking to cross the border into Quebec will have to wait until at least June 22, the Department of Homeland Security announced May 19.

That standing order exists for all but non-essential traffic across the U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico, which have been under restrictions since mid-March. Cross-border travel has been limited to health care workers, airline crews and truck drivers, the latter deemed critical to supply grocery stores and medical goods in both directions.

Before the pandemic an average of 200,000 people crossed the U.S.-Canada border each day.

More: Trump administration extends border closures to Canada, Mexico until June 22

Contact Austin Danforth at 651-4851 or edanforth@freepressmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @eadanforth.

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