17th December 2020

In San Francisco, people traveling to San Francisco from outside the Bay Area must be quarantined for 10 days

San Francisco, CA – Mayor of London N. Breed and Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax today announced a public health ordinance that provides for a mandatory 10-day quarantine for all individuals traveling, relocating or returning to San Francisco from outside the Bay Area. Limited exemptions apply to people traveling for certain critical activities. The new ordinance also strongly advises against non-essential travel within the 10-county area of ​​the Bay Area.

“COVID-19 cases are increasing in San Francisco and across the country. Hospitals in the Bay Area are almost overwhelmed,” said San Francisco Mayor, London N. Breed. “We must do everything we can to contain the virus and stop its spread in our community. This is not the time to travel and risk, be exposed or expose others. We must do the right thing for ourselves, our neighbors and others.” To protect our loved ones and make sure we can celebrate together when this is over. ”

The travel quarantine order strongly advises against non-essential travel of any type and distance, including from one location to another within the Bay Area. In addition, anyone coming to San Francisco must be quarantined for 10 days if they have stayed outside of the following 9 Bay Area districts: San Mateo, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa, Solano, Sonoma, Napa, Marin and Santa Cruz. This includes returning residents, people moving to San Francisco, those working in San Francisco, and visitors, unless specifically exempted from regulation.

The travel quarantine order allows exemptions for healthcare professionals, first responders, official government business, essential infrastructure work, and other activities, including travel to receive medical care or travel required by a court order, such as transferring custody of a child. People who fly through San Francisco International Airport on connecting flights and are not staying in San Francisco are not required to be quarantined. A full list of exceptions can be found at www.sfcdcp.org/travel.

Individuals in need of quarantine must stay at home without physical interaction with anyone outside of their household, except in emergency situations or in healthcare. They are not allowed to go to work, school, or any other location outside of their home for 10 days. For more support during quarantine, see sf.gov/quarantining-covid-19

Restricting unnecessary travel and mandatory quarantine are required due to rapid and widespread COVID-19 infections and hospital stays, which threaten our region’s ability to provide intensive care to critically ill patients. On Wednesday, December 16, the Bay Area’s intensive capacity had fallen below 15%, triggering the California state’s regional Stay Home order. Infection rates outside the Bay Area remain. Traveling outside of the Bay Area increases the likelihood that one person will become infected and spread the virus to others on their return, especially since the nature of travel usually involves interactions with many people. In order to protect the Franciscans, this health ordinance aims to quarantine those who are at risk of infection due to their travels so that they cannot pass COVID-19 on to others in the community.

“This virus spreads through human interaction and social gatherings, including people with no symptoms. We must take action now to control the spread of the virus and save lives,” said Dr. Grant Colfax, Director of Health, City and County of San Francisco. “Quarantining people who have traveled and been in contact with others is one way of managing the spread of COVID-19.”

The travel order will take effect on December 18, 2020 at 00:01 a.m. and will remain in effect until January 4, 2021 at 00:01 a.m. It can be extended if necessary if the rise continues. The complete health policy and answers to frequently asked questions about the health policy can be found at www.sfcdcp.org/travel. For information about how to safely celebrate the holidays at home, visit www.sf.gov/HolidaysAtHome.