Florida orders visitors from New York, two other states to self-quarantine upon landing

Mar 24, 2020

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Miami may not have the same appeal to New York snowbirds these days.

During a Monday press conference, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a new executive order mandating that visitors coming to his state by air from New York, New Jersey or Connecticut observe a 14-day quarantine upon arrival. The governor said he’s singling out those states because they are the current epicenter of the pandemic in the U.S. and many people travel from between the Northeast and South Florida.

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DeSantis said the order, which takes effect Tuesday, is meant to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in Florida. Disobeying the order, which local and state law enforcement officials have been tasked with enforcing, can result in 60 days in prison and a $500 fine.

The move has generally been poorly received by travel industry watchers, and was widely mocked online after it was announced.

Because the order does not apply to arrivals by land, it’s still possible for visitors to drive to the state and not have to quarantine. It’s unclear how effective the order will be in stopping the spread of COVID-19 in Florida, since the state is still not under a general lockdown order.

That also means a visitor to Florida, in theory, could fly to a neighboring state and then rent a car to drive across the state line as a way of avoiding the quarantine. Florida has faced particular media scrutiny lately, as images of crowded beaches emerged even as other states began to go on lockdown.

Read more: Coronavirus-related waivers and schedule changes in place at U.S. airlines.

Featured photo courtesy of Jim McKinley/Getty Images.

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