FAQ: COVID-19 in Oregon

April 1, 2020 (Updated December 3, 2020)

Travel Oregon’s mission remains the same throughout these challenging times — to provide informationresources and content that inspires travel to and within Oregon. The health and safety of our visitors has always been our top priority in Oregon — now, more than everDuring these unparalleled times, Travel Oregon is urging all travelers to take protective measures against the coronavirus and make informed travel decisions. We hope you are inspired to visit Oregon in the future, when it is time to do so. We’ll be here, ready to welcome all visitors when that time comes. 

Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about COVID-19 in Oregon.

What are Oregon’s new COVID-19 guidelines?

Starting Dec. 3, Oregon will be operating under a new “Risk and Safety Framework that measures risk of COVID-19 county-by-county, based on cases per 100,000 residents. There are four levels of risk in this framework – Extreme, High, Moderate and Lower Risk – and each level has health and safety guidance for individuals and businesses to follow. Counties will be assessed on a two-week cadence, and risk levels we be updated based on data collected in that period. 

There is no Zero Risk category, and it is critical that Oregonians and visitors continue to wear face coverings (they’re required indoors and in public outdoor spaces), maintain physical distance, wash hands frequently and stay home when sick. Find the most up-to-date information at coronavirus.oregon.gov and weekly reports at Oregon Health Authority. 

What travel advisories are in effect?

Oregon, California and Washington have issued a travel advisory which includes the following recommendations: 

  • Persons arriving in Oregon from other states or countries, including returning Oregon residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival. These persons should limit their interactions to their immediate household. This recommendation does not apply to individuals who cross state or country borders for essential travel. 
  • Non-essential travel includes travel that is considered tourism or recreational in nature. 
  • Essential travelincludes: work and study, critical infrastructure support, economic services and supply chains, health, immediate medical care, and safety and security. 

Do I need to wear a face covering?

Yes. It is required to wear face coverings at all times in Oregon, including in all public indoor and outdoor spaces. The only exceptions are while eating and drinking; children 5 and older and people with medical conditions or disabilities that prevent them from wearing face coverings are exempt. 

  • Indoor examples include (but are not limited to): restaurants, hotels, grocery/retail stores, museums, public restrooms, public transit. 
  • Outdoor examples include (but are not limited to): trailheads, trails when passing other groups, boat ramps, outdoor dining/wine tasting, outdoor recreation groups. 

How many cases of coronavirus are in Oregon right now?

The best resource for the latest information on COVID-19 in Oregon is the Oregon Health Authoritywebsite. 

Can we travel?

Right now, it’s important for Oregonians to stay local, avoiding non-essential travel. If you’re arriving to Oregon from out of state, or you’re an Oregonian returning home, a 14-day self-quarantine advisory is in place. Face coverings are required statewide, both indoors and outdoors. 

A masked florist passes a bouquet to a masked customer.
It is required to wear face coverings at all times in Oregon, including in all public indoor and outdoor spaces. (Photo by Andrea Johnson)

I’m planning a trip from out of state. Do I need to quarantine when I arrive?

Oregon, California and Washington have issued a travel advisory which recommends persons arriving to Oregon from other states or countries, including Oregonians returning home, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival. These persons should limit their interactions to their immediate household. This recommendation does not apply to individuals who cross state or country borders for essential travel. 

Are COVID-19 tests being administered at the Oregon border?

No. COVID-19 tests are not being given at the Oregon border. 

What is the latest executive order from the governor’s office?

The state is currently under Executive Order 20-27 (“Safe and Strong Oregon Phase II”), which supersedes the governor’s March 23 Executive Order 20-12 (Stay Home, Save Lives). The stay-at-home orders are not in place but limiting non-essential travel is recommended. Executive Order 20-27 mainly focuses on updates to incorporate counties moving to Phase 2, but also lifts additional restrictions in Phase 1 and Baseline counties.

From November 18 to December 2, Oregon will be in a statewide Two-Week Freeze to stop the rapid spread of COVID-19 across Oregon. This applies to all counties, regardless of phase. Learn more here.

Which counties are open? What restrictions remain in place?

Starting Dec. 3, 25 Oregon counties will be in the “Extreme Risk” category of Oregon’s Risk and Protection Framework. Five counties will be “High Risk,” two counties will be “Moderate Risk,” and four counties will be considered “Lower Risk.” See the state guidance by activity hereFind the most up-to-date information at coronavirus.oregon.gov and weekly reports at Oregon Health Authority. 

The next assignment of county risk levels will take effect December 18, 2020.  

Masked friends enjoy the covered patio of Will Leather Goods.
Oregon stores are open for business and many of them offer curbside pickup. (Photo by Andrea Johnson)

Are hotels open? Are vacation rentals open?

Hotels and lodging properties are open. It’s always best to check directly with the property. Here’s what to expect at Oregon hotels during COVID-19

Here is a list of county risk levels, which may affect business operations. Remember face coverings are required in all indoor/public spaces in Oregon – this includes hotels and other lodging properties.  

Are restaurants, bars or attractions open?

Yes, but specific business operations depend on a county’s risk level. Here is a map of Oregon’s Risk Levels by county. See the state guidance by activity hereIt’s always a good idea to check directly with a business/attraction you’d like to visit to confirm hours of operation and if reservations are required. Always have a back up option. 

What guidelines do I need to follow while I travel through Oregon?

On Dec. 3, Oregon counties will begin following a new framework of measures based on risk level associated with COVID-19. There are four levels in this framework  Extreme, High, Moderate and Lower RiskEach risk level has health and safety guidance for individuals and businesses based on activities. See the state guidance by activity here.   

The state has also enacted a travel advisory that includes a 14-day self-quarantine for visitors and Oregonians who are arriving from another state or country. 

There aregeneral guidelines public should follow regardless of where they live or their county’s risk level 

  • Stay close to home.   
  • Stay home if you are sick.  
  • Use cloth, paper, or disposable face coverings in all public indoor and outdoor spaces (retail stores, hotels, grocery stores, parks, trailheads, boat ramps, etc.). 
  • Practice physical distancing of at least six (6) feet between you and people who you do not live with.   
  • People who are at risk for severe complications (over age 60 or have underlying medical conditions) should stay home even if they feel well.   
  • If you become symptomatic (cough, fever, shortness of breath) while in public, please return home and self-isolate immediately.   
  • Practice good hand hygiene with frequent handwashing for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer (60-95% alcohol content).   
  • Cover coughs/sneezes with elbow or tissue. If you use a tissue, immediately discard tissue in garbage and your wash hands.   
  • Avoid touching your face.   

I’m planning a road trip through Oregon, can I make overnight stops as I drive through the state?

Yes. Please check directly with any hotel or lodging property you might visit. Depending on which county you’re in, there may be different limitations on businesses based on county risk level. Here is a list of Oregon county risk levels and state guidance by activity 

Can I visit Oregon wineries?

Yes. However, starting Dec. 3, tasting room operations may be affected by a county’s risk level. Please check directly with the business before you go to confirm hours of operation, capacity limitations and to make reservations 

Will ski resorts be open this winter?

In order to operate safely this winter, ski areas are following guidelines by the Oregon Health Authority and operational guidelines developed in partnership with the National Ski Areas Association’s Ski Well, Be Well Program. These guidelines include physical distancing, face coverings, regular sanitizing and individual responsibility and accountability to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 to ensure a safe winter season. These new operational systems in may require advance purchase of lift tickets and parking reservations. Plan ahead and learn about what to expect before you go. 

Can I go camping?

Yes. Federal land managers and local city and county parks may have different rules around camping. Please make sure to check with the site you want to visit to confirm it’s open and learn its current rules.  

Travel Oregon has compiled resources for outdoor recreation experiences here. Read specific FAQs from the governor’s office around outdoor recreation here. And don’t forget your face covering, they are required at public outdoor spaces (campgrounds, trailheads, boat ramps, etc.) where physical distance cannot be maintained. 

Three friends appear to smile behind their face coverings.
It is required to wear face coverings in public indoor spaces in all counties. (Photo by Timothy Sofranko / Visit McMinnville)
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What do I need to know before visiting a state park or other outdoor recreation site?

It’s important to only visit open sites that are close to home, avoiding popular areas and peak hours. It’s not the right time to travel far to get outside. Visiting a distant park can put a community’s limited resources at risk and make you less prepared for unexpected closures. Help share messaging on how to be safe and responsible in Oregon’s outdoors.   

  • Please be prepared and flexible with your plans. If a park appears crowded, leave and come back at another time.  
  • Stay home if you’re sick.  
  • If you visit, stay local and close to home– meaning less than 50 miles in urban areas.  
  • Only visit the park with members of your household.  
  • Bring all supplies—food, water, hand cleanser—needed for a short trip.   

If there’s space at the park, please:

  • Wear a face covering, especially at the trailhead and parking lot where it may be crowded. Homemade is fine. 
  • Stay at least six feet away from people who aren’t from your household. Further apart is better. 
  • Cover your cough with a tissue (then throw it away), or the inside of your elbow. 
  • Leave no trace: Pack out everything you bring with you. 
  • Stick to low-risk activities to reduce stress on local emergency response and health care systems. 
  • Keep your visit short. Restrooms and other buildings may be closed. 
  • Watch for signs at the park for more information.  

I have a guided trip planned in Oregon. Should I cancel?

Make sure you work with the tour guide or operator you made your plans with. Tour guides and operators are working to comply with the state’s reopening guidelines. If it is not possible to travel, consider postponing instead of canceling your trip. Oregon guides and outfitters depend on reservation deposits to sustain their businesses – and the local economy. By maintaining these investments, you will make an important impact and have a lot to look forward to once physical distancing is no longer needed. When it’s time to explore, Oregon will be ready for you. 

For more information on outdoor recreation, visit the Travel Oregon’s outdoor recreation resource page here or OPRD’s question/answer page here. 

Is Travel Oregon marketing right now?

Travel Oregon is focusing its communication and marketing work towards supporting the governor’s statewide message of first staying home and second staying local and supporting local businesses. We are also working with partners like Oregon State Parks on developing consumer-facingresponsible recreation messaging as public lands began to reopen.  

About The
Author

Jaime Eder
Jaime is on the Communications team at Travel Oregon. When she’s not spending time at home with her family and sweet pup, you can find her soaking up the sunshine in Central Oregon while sipping a local IPA.

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