Beginning on Monday, March 22, Massachusetts will relax some of its COVID travel rules, turning its current travel order into an advisory.
The new advisory means you won’t have to quarantine upon returning to Massachusetts if you’re out of state for under 24 hours, get a negative COVID test within 72 hours, or are a critical worker or someone who is fully vaccinated.
“I think these are all ways towards opening, towards re-opening and re-starting travel,” said Dr. Lin Chen, the director of the Travel Medicine Center at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge. “I think we want to take it slowly and cautiously.”
As more people are looking to plan trips, it’s important to remember not to let your guard down, Chen said. If you plan to fly, there are ways for people to stay safe.
“They should still keep the physical distance from others, they should still wear masks, they should try to avoid crowded areas,” Chen said.
Needham-based TripAdvisor said they are seeing a correlation between the vaccine rollout and pent up demand for travel.
“This month, we have seen an astounding 95% increase year-over-year in travel searches among Massachusetts residents,” said Brian Hoyt, head of global communications for TripAdvisor.
As people are starting to search the website for vacation destinations, Hoyt said, safety remains top of mind.
“They’ll be looking for things like, is a hotel still requiring guests to wear masks, is there a sanitizer readily available in the hotel, what are the policies of a business,” he said.