Updated November 16, 2020
It is legal and possible to travel to Montana during the pandemic. However, it is incumbent on travelers to make sure they remain safe themselves and keep others safe. And it is incumbent on us to take the proper safety precautions.
Montana, with its wide open spaces and low population, is a great place to visit. But the situation is more complex than that and we do not currently recommend non-essential travel to Montana through at least January 15. We will not be running any tours during that time period. Starting January 16, we will start running tours again unless the situation has not improved.
Current Pandemic Situation in Montana
As of this writing, the current situation in Montana (as with most of the United States) is not good. The Montana state government has a map that lists active cases by county, which we use in part to judge whether our individual vacation offerings are safe. At the moment, COVID infection is widely spread and uncontrolled.
We believe you can safely travel to Montana and safely find lodging there. However, with the advent of cold weather (which drives many activities indoors) and the holidays (which induces people to gather), we do not recommend non-essential travel at this time. We are not currently running tours anywhere in Montana but hope to begin again in 2021.
Governor’s Reopening Plan
The governor has a three-phase reopening plan that details exactly what individuals and businesses need to do. As of June 1, 2020 Montana entered Phase 2 and, as of this writing, has not moved from that. You can find the current phase on the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force page.
In Phase 2, there is a specific section that addresses tourism and which eliminated the travel quarantine in place prior to June 1 for non-work related visitors. Therefore, it is allowed to visit Montana for tourism.
State Travel Quarantines
However, even though there is no restriction on or quarantine required of those visiting Montana, other states and even cities do have quarantines in place on residents visiting certain states, including Montana. Make sure to check your local rules before you go.
As of August 1, Governor Bullock issued a face mask requirement for all outdoor situations where social distancing cannot or is not being observed as well as all indoor settings. This applies only to those counties with four or more active cases. There are exceptions such as when consuming food or drink and for children under age five.
Please be aware there are locations in Montana where some people are not in favor of masks and compliance might be spotty. We suggest you wear a mask regardless.
Keeping Yourself and Others Safe
It is not rocket science. We just need to listen to the scientists, who have been telling us over and over to wear a mask and social distance.
You can safely travel to Montana during the pandemic. Wear a face mask and keep social distance, for your own protection and that of others. Limit time spent indoors; it is better to eat on a restaurant patio than inside and to not linger in a shop or museum. Avoid crowds at events or in bars. In fact, now is a great time to explore the great outdoors, which is what makes Montana so appealing in the first place.
Safety With Travel Montana
If you are traveling with us, please make sure to check out our pandemic safety guidelines.
Main Image Credit: Montana Office of Tourism and Business Development