3 things you need to know about Miami’s June 1 reopening plan

May 22, 2020

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Remember that trip to Miami you had to cancel back in April? You may be able to reschedule it for this summer.

This news comes on the heels of the Florida Keys’ announcement it would reopen to tourists next week. While there are still a lot of details to be worked out, here’s what we know so far about Miami’s reopening.

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When is Miami Beach reopening?

The Miami Beach commission just voted to reopen hotels and beaches on June 1, the Miami Herald reported. The mayor of Miami-Dade County, Carlos Giménez, said the county will follow suit, adding that it’s a “target date.”

Restaurants in the city will begin to reopen on May 27, the Herald added.

Tourism is a significant part of Miami’s economy — so it’s no surprise people are eager to see it reopen. In 2018 alone, 23 million tourists brought in $18 billion to the local economy, according to the South Florida Business Journal.

Related: Miami Airport 101: Where to sleep near MIA

Restrictions in Miami Beach

The decision to reopen does not come without headaches.

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said, “We have to exercise some measure of caution because there is a natural tension between crowds and physical distancing,” according to the Herald.

While it’s not exactly clear what guidelines will be in place to ensure safety at beaches and hotels, a group of medical experts will be meeting with Giménez on Tuesday to solidify a plan. City manager Jimmy Morales noted that masks probably won’t be required, but beachgoers may be asked to respect social distancing guidelines and avoid groups.

If there’s any indication from tourist hotspots that are planning to open up soon, such as Greece and Italy, expect limited capacity at beaches, restaurants, hotels and more.

For example, managers at the Boucher Brothers beach concession stands will place chairs and umbrellas six feet apart, and “Beach Ambassadors” will tell beachgoers when they’re too close, or have too many people in a group, the Herald reported.

To limit capacity and foot traffic, many small bars and restaurants around the world are insisting that customers make reservations in advance.

Related: Why you’ll need to prebook all your fun this summer

Also, Florida still technically requires travelers from areas hard-hit by the virus, such as New York and New Jersey, to self-quarantine for 14 days, USA Today confirmed. Travelers from certain high-risk areas are supposed to complete a form with the traveler’s history, contact information and trip details. There could be consequences for not completing the form or abiding by the quarantine.

Hotel and flight availability

While the results of reopening countries and economies remain to be seen, optimistic travelers have found themselves cautiously looking at the prospect of booking future travel. Many, of course, are still opting to err on the side of caution and avoid travel.

Philip Goldfarb, the CEO of Fontainebleau Development, which owns the famed hotel in Miami Beach, for example, is only expecting “a fraction” of the visitors he’d usually see this time of year, according to the Herald.

Unsurprisingly, hotel availability is plentiful at many of the city’s popular points hotels. For example, at the Cadillac Hotel and Beach Club, a Category 6 Marriott Autograph Collection property, rates start at $156, or just 35,000 points thanks to Marriott’s PointSaver promotion, throughout the month of June.

The Miami Beach Edition is also available starting June 12. In fact, some June dates are pricing lower than normal: only 65,000 points per night again with the PointSaver promotion, or from $322.

And at the aforementioned Fontainebleau Miami Beach, travelers can expect to pay about $150 per night in June — rates that are just about average.

At the Confidante Miami Beach, rooms are available starting June 1 for 15,000 Hyatt points per night (or a Category 1 to 4 certificate). Cash rates start at $139 per night. Keep in mind that Hyatt is a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards and you can transfer your Chase points to Hyatt at 1:1 ratio.

Related: The best ways to use your hotel points in Miami

Nonstop flights are extremely limited though, especially from New York City. In fact, on June 1, there are only three one-way nonstop itineraries from the New York area to Miami International (MIA). New York, of course, is a global hotspot for the virus, leading many airlines to slash flight capacity and frequency in the last few weeks.

The JFK to MIA route, occasionally operated with a Boeing 767 or Boeing 777, is now operating with a Boeing 737 instead — meaning no-lie flat seats if you’re looking to travel in business class.

(Screenshot courtesy of Google Flights.)

Saver award availability was also fairly limited, based on an ExpertFlyer search (also owned by TPG’s parent company, Red Ventures), although there’s solid availability on June 7. That said, we’d recommend saving your points for a better redemption down the line, especially if you’re planning to fly in business class.

(Screenshot courtesy of ExpertFlyer.)

If you’re flying in from Los Angeles (LAX), flight options are similarly limited, although one-way flight prices are solid. Notably, all of the options are on American Airlines, as other airlines have dramatically reduced their schedules.

(Screenshot courtesy of Google Flights.)
(Screenshot courtesy of Google Flights.)

Bottom line

Only you can make the extremely personal decision to travel as states and countries begin to open up. But before you book your trip to Miami — or anywhere, for that matter — we recommend you talk to your doctor, follow the guidance of health and government officials and research local travel restrictions. Also, the CDC is still recommending against all nonessential travel.

If you do decide to book, you’ll want to be mindful of hotel and airline cancellation and rebooking policies. Many airlines will temporarily allow you to book new flights now and cancel for a refund or credit later. You’ll also often have the ability to make changes throughout the year and even into next.

As always, make your summer plans with a credit card that earns you bonus points on travel, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x) the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x) and, if you prefer Membership Rewards points, the American Express® Green Card (3x).

The information for the Amex Green Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

ExpertFlyer is owned by TPG’s parent company, Red Ventures.

Featured image courtesy of Nearmap/Getty Images.

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