Travel Advisory

As part of the island’s responsible four-phased reopening plan, Puerto Rico will formally reopen for in-bound tourism on July 15, at which point, travelers with a negative molecular COVID-19 test will be welcomed to the island.

In the meantime, measures are gradually lifting. Sunbathing and other recreational activities on beaches and in some nature reserves are allowed, but limiting group gatherings to only those within the same household. Restaurants, spas, museums, theaters, and casinos are open and operating at 75% capacity. A curfew on the island is in effect from 10:00 PM – 5:00 AM, except for emergencies.

Residents and visitors are required to wear face masks when in public, and subject to a fine, if not. Social distancing is enforced with floor plans and capacities adjusted island-wide, as the health and safety of visitors and residents remain a top priority. Recognizing the importance of hygiene and disinfection, the Island of Puerto Rico is applying locally enforced measures, developed by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), alongside U.S. Travel Association (USTA) guidelines, to safeguard the wellbeing of residents and visitors.

Island Arrival

  • The Puerto Rico National Guard is assisting with enhanced health screenings of all arriving passengers at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan Airport, where all passenger flights are currently being diverted. Face masks are mandatory and thermographic cameras remain operating to monitor temperatures. 
  • Beginning July 15, arriving passengers must complete a travel declaration form from the Puerto Rico Health Department, as well as demonstrate a negative molecular COVID-19 test from the 72 hours prior. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here
    • If travelers arrive on the island without the requested documentation, they will be offered a rapid COVID-19 test at the airport. Even if the test result is negative, it will be mandatory for the traveler to quarantine and cover their own medical expenses/possible extended stay. The quarantine is mandated until the traveler provides proof of a negative molecular test result on the island; a list of testing sites in Puerto Rico will be available on-site and online
    • If a negative molecular test is not provided, the traveler will be required to quarantine for 14 days or the length of their stay. 
    • Puerto Rico’s curfew is in effect from 10:00 PM – 5:00 AM through July 22; exceptions are for emergencies.

Experiences

  • El Yunque is partially open with limited capacity in the main recreation areas; all other areas are open with distancing enforced. Reservations are required in the main recreation areas and can be made online via Recreation.gov, or the mobile app.
  • Public beaches and natural reserves are accessible for sunbathing and other recreational activities are permitted with those in the same household. Hotel pools are open within curfew hours.
  • Limited ferry service to Vieques and Culebra is available. Tickets must be purchased online through www.PorFerry.com
  • Venues will reopen in phases, with face masks and social distancing enforced, and in accordance with the CDC’s guidance for large events and mass gatherings. Drive-in and open-air events are held with limited capacity, and indoor space venues such as the Puerto Rico Convention Center are open. 
  • Tour operators are currently available for internal tourism needs and will resume fully once the island reopens for outside tourism on July 15.
  • Individual/team sports and recreational training has resumed. Professional league sporting events may continue as of July 15, except for contact sports such as boxing.

Businesses

  • Restaurants are operating at 75% capacity and temperature checks are being performed before entering; those with temperatures over 100.3 will be denied entry. 
  • Supermarkets, agricultural markets, pharmacies, and gas stations are open, with supermarket delivery services available through midnight. 
  • Malls and other retail stores remain open, with no leisure strolling permitted.
  • Hair salons, barbershops, and individual spas are open via appointment, with the exception of saunas.
  • Casinos have reopened at 75% capacity. 
  • Other non-essential businesses that are open include movie theaters, gyms, film industry support and ad/government agencies.

Transport

  • Taxis are accessible from 5:00 AM - 10:00 PM, except for airport service.
  • The Puerto Rico Metropolitan Bus Authority (AMA) and the Tren Urbano subway system are operating. 

 Education

  • Universities are open, complying with CDC/OSHA guidelines, while public and private schools will remain closed until July 22.

Q&A 

Is it safe to travel to Puerto Rico? Should I / should travelers cancel their trips?

If you are sick, an older adult, or someone with chronic medical conditions, leading health authorities recommend delaying or avoiding travel. 

As part of the island’s responsible four-phased reopening plan, Puerto Rico will formally reopen for in-bound tourism on July 15, at which point, travelers with a negative molecular COVID-19 test will be welcomed to the Island.

As the safety and security of residents and visitors is the top priority, the Puerto Rico National Guard is assisting with enhanced health screenings of all arriving passengers at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, where all passenger flights are currently being diverted. Face masks are mandatory and thermographic cameras monitor temperatures. 

Beginning July 15, arriving passengers must complete a travel declaration form from the Puerto Rico Health Department, and present a negative molecular COVID-19 test result (which consists of a nasal or throat swab), taken no more than 72 hours prior. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here.

If travelers arrive on the Island without the requested documentation, they will be offered a rapid COVID-19 test at the airport (which consists of a finger prick blood test). Even if the rapid test result is negative, it will be mandatory for the traveler to quarantine and cover their own medical expenses/possible extended stay as rapid COVID-19 tests can sometimes yield false results. The quarantine is mandated until the traveler provides proof of a negative molecular test result on Island. A list of testing sites in Puerto Rico will be available on-site and online. If a negative molecular test is not provided, the traveler will be required to quarantine for 14 days, or the length of their stay. 

Puerto Rico’s curfew is in effect from 10:00 PM – 5:00 AM through July 22; exceptions are for emergencies.

What is the airport doing to ensure health & safety?

  • The use of face masks by everyone who transits and work at the airport
  • Only passengers are allowed to enter the terminals
  • All screens throughout the airport emphasize COVID-19 prevention guidelines
  • About 100 hand sanitizer stations have been installed
  • The addition of a third layer of disinfection with new fogger-type equipment that allows for more thorough sanitation, in less time
  • A double and high-efficiency air conditioning filter system in compliance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Touchless hand dryers have been installed in bathrooms
  • An increase in the frequency and intensity of bathroom cleanings, which are performed every 30 to 60 minutes, based on traffic
  • Installation of acrylic barriers at airline check-in counters
  • Increasing the frequency of cleaning boarding pass printing and registration kiosks, in addition to promoting online registration to minimize contact

What type of testing do I need to do prior my visit to Puerto Rico?

Travelers need to take a molecular COVID-19 test, which consists of a nasal or throat swab, taken no more than 72 hours prior to their trip. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here.

If I take the test a week before, would those results be accepted?

No. Travelers need to take a molecular COVID-19 test, which consists of a nasal or throat swab, no more than 72 hours prior to their trip. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here.

If I arrive in Puerto Rico without a negative molecular COVID-19 test result, can I get tested upon arrival?

Upon arrival, passengers without a negative molecular COVID-19 test will be offered a rapid COVID-19 test at the airport, which consists of a finger prick blood test. However, even if the test result is negative, it will be mandatory for the traveler to quarantine and cover their own medical expenses/possible extended stay as rapid COVID-19 tests can sometimes yield false results. The 14-day quarantine is mandated until the traveler provides proof of a negative molecular test result on Island, which consists of a nasal or throat swab. A list of testing sites in Puerto Rico will be available on site and online.

Do children need to get tested for COVID-19?

According to the US. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), children do not seem to be at higher risk for getting COVID-19. However, some people, including children with special health care needs, may be, and it is required for all arriving passengers to show proof of a negative molecular COVID-19 test. We recommend travelers talk to their pediatrician to learn about proper testing prior to their trip. 

How are children tested at the airport? 

Upon arrival, passengers without a negative molecular COVID-19 test result will be required to take a rapid COVID-19 test onsite, which consists of a finger prick blood test. The procedure of the test will be the same for adults and children. 

Do travelers arriving before July 15 need to show test results as well?

No. The new airport protocol is in effect starting July 15. Nonetheless, we recommend all travelers get tested prior to visiting the island. 

Is Puerto Rico accepting travelers from U.S. states with a high number of positive COVID-19 cases?

Puerto Rico is welcoming visitors from all states in the U.S. as well as international countries.  

Is Puerto Rico a hotspot for COVID-19?

No. Puerto Rico has exercised an abundance of caution from the onset of COVID-19, which has led to a responsible and safe reopening.  We are eager to welcome back visitors while protecting the health and safety of residents and visitors

If I’m in Puerto Rico or going to Puerto Rico, are things open or operating normally?

To protect your health and safety, travelers should note there are measures in place that are being strictly enforced, including social distancing and face masks. Those who do not wear face masks in public are subject to a fine. The island has implemented an island-wide curfew for everyone, including tourists through July 22 from 10:00 PM - 5:00 AM. The only exceptions are for those who are working or in cases of emergency.

Restaurants, small businesses, shopping centers, beaches, and hotel pools are open with restrictions, including social distancing and face coverings required in public areas.

  • Airports:  the Puerto Rico National Guard is assisting with enhanced health screenings of all arriving passengers at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, where all passenger flights are currently being diverted. Face masks are mandatory and thermographic cameras remain operating to monitor temperatures. 
    • Beginning July 15, arriving passengers must complete a travel declaration form from the Puerto Rico Health Department, as well as demonstrate a negative molecular COVID-19 test result,(which consists of a nasal or throat swab), taken no more than 72 hours prior. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here.
    • If travelers arrive on the Island without the requested documentation, they will be offered a rapid COVID-19 test at the airport (which consists of a finger prick blood test). Even if the test result is negative, it will be mandatory for the traveler to quarantine and cover their own medical expenses/possible extended stay as rapid COVID-19 tests can sometimes yield false results. The quarantine is mandated until the traveler provides proof of a negative molecular test result on Island; a list of testing sites in Puerto Rico will be available on site and online. If a negative molecular test is not provided, the traveler will be required to quarantine for 14 days, or the length of their stay. 
    • As of July 6, both the Rafael Hernández Airport in Aguadilla (BQN) and the Mercedita International Airport in Ponce (PSE) will be accessible for cargo purposes only. 
  • Cruise operations: All ports are currently closed for cruise ship vessels.
  • Hotels: Most hotels remain open, with distancing measures and face coverings mandatory in public areas. Hotel pool facilities and fitness centers/spas (except for saunas) are open within the hours of 5:00 AM and 10:00 PM, maintaining the proper locally enforced measures including social distancing. Restaurants inside hotels are open and can welcome guests at 75% capacity at present but are otherwise limited to carry out or delivery services. Room service will remain available for guests. 
  • Restaurants + Supermarkets: Restaurants are open at 75% capacity, with temperature checks performed before entering; those with temperatures over 100.3 will be denied entry. Delivery for restaurants and supermarkets is available until midnight.
  • Small Businesses + Shopping Centers: Currently operating at 75% capacity. Clothing stores will not permit try-ons in store.
  • Salons + Spas: Hair salons, barbershops, and individual spas are open via appointment, with the exception of saunas. Guests will not be permitted to wait in waiting areas.
  • Casinos: Are open at 75% capacity, with ongoing sanitation at gaming stations and proper local measures in place including distancing and face coverings. Gloves will be used by casino personnel and guests at gaming tables.
  • Beaches + Nature Reserves + Golf Courses: Currently accessible for sunbathing and other recreational activities, with those in the same household.
  • Museums + Theaters: Open at 75% capacity, with the proper local measures enforced.
  • Tours: Tour operators are currently available for internal tourism needs and will resume fully once the Island reopens for tourism on July 15.
  • Transportation: Taxis are accessible from 5:00 AM - 10:00 PM, except for airport service. The Puerto Rico Metropolitan Bus Authority (AMA) and the Tren Urbano subway system are operating through 8:00 PM. 
  • Education: Universities are open, complying with CDC/OSHA guidelines, while public and private schools will remain closed until July 22. 
  • Sports: Individual/team sports and recreational training have resumed. Professional league sporting events may continue as of July 15, except for contact sports such as boxing.
  • Other Non-essential Businesses: Those open include those related to film industry support and ad/government agencies. 

How can travelers protect themselves?

We urge travelers to adhere to the measures put in place by the government of Puerto Rico, which includes abiding by the curfew, social distancing and face coverings, or be subject to a fine. 

Additionally, travelers should adhere to healthy travel practices to help protect themselves and prevent the spread of disease. These are the same personal best practices that are standard for a typical flu season and include avoiding close contact with people who show signs of illness, avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands, and washing your hands often with soap or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available. For more information, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) coronavirus (COVID-19) webpage.

What should travelers do if they begin experiencing COVID-19 symptoms? What immediate steps should they take?

Travelers experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should stay in their hotel rooms and contact their hotel front desk to get support. If travelers are not staying at a hotel, contact the nearest hospital directly. It’s important that travelers and hotel staff call hospitals first before visiting, so that appropriate transportation, screening and care can be arranged, to protect those feeling ill and others.

Puerto Rico hospitals adhere to the same federally mandated health safety guidelines as those on the mainland. Common mainland franchises like Walgreens and CVS pharmacies are available island-wide and are enforcing high standards of health safety throughout the Island.

What actions is the island taking to prevent the spread of coronavirus?

Puerto Rico was the first U.S. destination to use thermographic cameras in their airport and implement a curfew, effective for everyone including tourists, from 10:00 PM – 5:00 AM through July 22. The only exceptions to the curfew are for those who are working or in cases of emergency. Strict social distancing measures are in place island-wide, with face coverings mandatory in public.

The Puerto Rico National Guard is assisting with enhanced health screenings of all arriving passengers at the island’s airports, where face masks are mandatory and thermographic cameras remain operating to monitor temperatures. All flights, to-date, have been diverted to the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan (SJU). 

Upon formally opening for tourism on July 15, arriving passengers must complete a travel declaration form from the Puerto Rico Health Department, as well as demonstrate a negative molecular COVID-19 test (which consists of a nasal or throat swab), taken no more than 72 hours prior. Testing sites on the mainland U.S. can be found here.

If travelers arrive on the island without the requested documentation, they will be offered a rapid COVID-19 test at the airport (which consists of a finger prick blood test). Even if the test result is negative, it will be mandatory for the traveler to quarantine and cover their own medical expenses/possible extended stay as rapid COVID-19 tests can sometimes yield false results. The quarantine is mandated until the traveler provides proof of a negative molecular test result on the island; a list of testing sites in Puerto Rico will be available on site and online. If a negative molecular test is not provided, the traveler will be required to quarantine for 14 days, or the length of their stay. 

The tourism industry in Puerto Rico has also taken specific steps to ensure that partners on the Island and their teams have the latest information on COVID-19, including prevention measures on the island, personal prevention tips to use themselves and to share with travelers, cleaning and disinfecting protocols, and guidance for what to do if they or their guests begin experiencing symptoms.

What health & safety protocols does the Island have in place?

High standards of health and safety have been implemented throughout the island, which include locally enforced measures developed by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), alongside U.S. Travel Association (USTA) guidelines, to safeguard the wellbeing of residents and visitors.

Transportation: Certified transportation carriers will properly disinfect vehicles and have hand sanitizer available. Drivers will wear gloves when handling doors and luggage. Face coverings will be mandatory for drivers and passengers. Ridesharing options like Uber have released regulations that also mandate face coverings for drivers and passengers, with no front seat passengers permitted.

Dining: Options within the lodging section will ensure floor plans maintain distancing protocols, with buffets, salad bars, and self-serve options eliminated, and reusable menus prohibited. Employees will be required to use face coverings and if serving guests, gloves.

Lodging: Thoroughly sanitized properties that follow PRTC standards will be certified with island-specific health certification seals. Guests will receive a Health & Safety guide detailing the specialized measures implemented by each property individually. We recommend visitors connect with their hotels/hosts directly for additional information.

  • Hotels/Resorts: Will conduct temperature checks, screen symptoms and disinfect luggage in reception areas upon entry, while following high standards of cleanliness and housekeeping procedures in accordance with CDC and EPA guidelines. Hotel pool facilities and fitness centers/spas (except for saunas) are open within the hours of 5:00 AM and 10:00 PM at 25% capacity, maintaining the proper locally enforced measures including social distancing. Face coverings will be required in public areas, with limited capacity encouraged in elevators. Furniture, chairs, tables, and surfaces will be sanitized continuously. 
  • Short-Term Rentals: Will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, following the health and safety protocol enforced by the Government and the PRTC, including the proper sanitation of kitchenware, glassware, and utensils. Each will be equipped with hand soap, hand sanitizer, and sanitizing wipes for guest convenience. Guests are required to complete a Travel Declaration Form from the Puerto Rico Tourism Company.

Attractions: Public beaches, golf courses and natural reserves are open for sunbathing and other recreational activities for those in the same household.  Malls, shopping centers, theaters and museums are enforcing social distancing and may require appointments. 

  • Hand sanitizing stations will be set up in targeted areas like entryways, elevator banks and high-traffic spots. Cleaning and disinfection of surfaces will be augmented, while employees will be screened daily for symptoms.

Casinos & Gaming: When casinos reopen, there will be wellness checkpoints at points of entry which will consist of temperature checks and hand sanitation. Gaming stations (slot machines, chairs, and tables) will be properly cleaned and disinfected every hour, after each guest, or upon guest request. Social distancing and face coverings will be required, and gloves will be used by casino personnel and guests at gaming tables.

Are island hospitals equipped to address coronavirus?

All hospitals on the island have established protocols for admitting, treating and collecting samples from patients who are experiencing symptoms, and hospital staff will work with the Department of Health if testing is needed. Funds have been made available on the island to help hospitals prepare facilities, purchase materials, and train nurses and paramedic staff.

Puerto Rico also has epidemiologists throughout the island, who specialize in disease control and prevention, to advise on transportation, testing, and care for individuals who think they may have COVID-19.

Where will people be housed if they need to be quarantined?

If cases arise, these decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis with local health authorities. Hospitals have prepared facilities for potential patients. If hotel guests are directed to self-isolate by the CDC, CBP or PRDH, there are protocols for management to follow to keep staff safe.

What will hotels, restaurants and tour operators do if a staff member tests positive?

The CDC has outlined specific guidance for businesses and employers, with information on what to do if employees are sick, cleaning advice, and contingency planning.

Along with the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), we have also provided guidance and information to all tourism partners. The industry has specific measures in place to ensure hotel management, businesses, and other partners within the industry have the latest information on COVID-19, including prevention measures on the island, personal prevention tips for their teams and travelers, cleaning and disinfecting protocols, and guidance for what to do if their staff or guests begin experiencing symptoms.

It is critical to seek medical advice from a regional epidemiologist if you are concerned your guests or staff may have COVID-19. Symptoms include, but are not limited to, fever, cough, sore throat, fatigue, and shortness of breath. The Puerto Rico Health Department has specific protocols in place with state epidemiologists to screen and test patients.  More information on specific steps can be found in the latest industry guidance from the Puerto Rico Tourism Company.

What will hotels, restaurants and tour operators do if a tourist who has recently visited them tests positive?

Along with the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), we have provided guidance and information to all tourism partners. The industry has specific measures in place to ensure hotel management, businesses, and other partners have the latest information on COVID-19, including prevention measures on the Island, personal prevention tips for their teams and travelers, cleaning and disinfecting protocols, and guidance for what to do if their staff or guests begin experiencing symptoms. More information on specific steps can be found in the latest industry guidance from the Puerto Rico Tourism Company. This guidance is consistent with what the CDC has outlined for businesses and employers.

Given the curfew issued by the Governor of Puerto Rico, do tourists have to stay in their rooms?

From 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM, yes, tourists are not permitted to go out unless it’s an emergency. The Governor of Puerto Rico gradually reopened public beaches, natural reserves, and golf courses which are now accessible for sunbathing and other recreational activities for those in the same household, as part of the island’s responsible, four-phased reopening plan. Face masks are mandatory when in public. Shopping centers and restaurants have reopened but enforce social distancing, with floor plans and capacities adjusted, as the health and safety of visitors and residents remain a top priority.

Can tourists staying at hotels use the pool and/or go to the beach?

Public beaches are accessible for sunbathing and other recreational activities for those in the same household, while hotel pool facilities are open, both within curfew hours while maintaining the proper locally enforced measures including social distancing. We recommend travelers reach out to their respective hotel property or short-term rental host for further guidance on protocols. All measures in place are to protect the health and safety of residents and guests.

Can I go to Vieques & Culebra?

Limited ferry service to Vieques and Culebra is available. Tickets must be purchased online through www.PorFerry.com. There is currently one round trip available daily to each island, with the following schedule:

  • Vieques 
    • Monday – Friday
      • Departing to Vieques – 9:30 am
      • Departing from Vieques – 9:30 pm
    • Saturday – Sunday
      • Departing to Vieques – 11:00 am
      • Departing from Vieques – 6:30 pm
  • Culebra
    • Monday – Friday
      • Departing to Culebra – 10:00 am
      • Departing from Culebra – 5:00 pm
    • Saturday – Sunday
      • Departing to Culebra – 11:00 am
      • Departing from Culebra – 8:00 pm 

Can I hang out in the lobby of my hotel when I’m in Puerto Rico?

If in a public area of a hotel or resort, social distancing and face coverings are mandatory, or individuals will be subject to a fine. Please consult with your specific property for other policies in place.

Are the beaches OK to go to if I keep my distance from people?

Public beaches are accessible for enjoyment, including sunbathing and other activities, with those in the same household upholding distancing measures.