Your summer vacation to Maine might be on thin ice

May 4, 2020

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Have big plans to vacation in Maine this summer? We hate to be the bearer of bad news here but things aren’t looking too promising.

Janet Mills, the governor of Maine, issued an executive order in early April ordering all out-of-state visitors to self-quarantine for 14 days. That is now extended, in various stages, through the summer, essentially barring all tourists from visiting. If you’re found in violation of the order, you’ll be faced with paying up to a $1,000 fine or spending six months in jail, Bangor Daily News reports.

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In a statement, the governor noted that “With this plan, we are inventing a new normal — a different way of doing business, shopping, traveling and enjoying the Maine outdoors in ways that keep us all safe.”

Here’s how it’s going to work.

As of May 1, gatherings of 10 or more people are prohibited, and all people entering or returning to Maine must quarantine for 14 days. This constitutes Stage 1.

For Stage 2, tentatively beginning June 1, only gatherings with less than 50 people are allowed, and maintains the aforementioned 14-day quarantine for those entering or returning to the state. There would also be some degree of reopening for restaurants, retail stores, lodging and campgrounds (for those who have met the 14-day requirement) and more.

In Stage 3, tentatively beginning July 1, gatherings with less than 50 people will continue to be allowed but the 14-day quarantine for visitors continues. Also, there would be some degree of reopening for lodging, hotels, summer camps and RV parks for both Maine residents and visitors.

There is also a Stage 4, although the timeline is undetermined, that would allow for businesses and activities to resume with the appropriate safety precautions and lifting the previous restrictions.

The order mirrors Hawaii’s strict quarantine rules, which require all visitors — including mainland U.S. citizens — and residents returning to the state, to self-isolate for 14 days.

Conversely, officials in Greece announced that they’re planning on somewhat reopening to tourists this summer.

While visitors aren’t banned in Maine outright, this could put a huge damper on the summer tourism season. If you’re planning on going to Maine this season, you’ll likely want to plan to stay there for quite some time to get the most out of your mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Related: How hotels can prove to guests they’re safe after coronavirus

Maine dubs itself as “Vacationland” and has emerged as a tourist hot spot in recent years, The Guardian notes. In fact, more than 37 million out-of-state visitors enjoyed its gorgeous lakes and sandy beaches last year, bringing in $6.5 billion in tourist dollars.

Featured image courtesy of Photography by Deb Snelson/Getty Images.

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