Resources & Latest News
Last Updated: May 4, 2020
Texas Governor's Orders
During this unprecedented time, the health and well-being of our local community and our visitors is vital. Travelers to Austin – and all destinations – should continue to observe the health recommendations of national and local public health officials, as they plan to travel, when they travel, and when they are visiting any destination.
The State of Texas Governor Greg Abbott, along with recommendations from the Texas Strike Force, the White House Coronavirus Task Force and the CDC issued a new executive order on April 27, 2020 to start a strategic plan to ‘Open Texas’ in the response to COVID-19 disaster. Under Governor Abbott’s new executive order, Phase I of the plan includes guidelines to reopen certain businesses and services with minimum occupancy restrictions starting May 1, 2020. Additional outlines of the order can be found on the Office of the Texas Governor website. The Governor's new and preexisting orders can be found here.
City of Austin Orders
Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt extended a Stay Home – Work Safe Order through May 8, 2020. The Order requires residents to stay at home, except for essential activities and essential businesses, to prevent further spread of COVID-19.
The Order prohibits non-essential businesses and non-essential activities including social gatherings regardless of the number of people together.
Examples of Essential Activities include:
- Health and safety: obtaining healthcare, emergency services, medical supplies, or medications
- Necessary supplies and services: obtaining groceries and prepared take-out food, liquor stores, pet food, and supplies necessary for staying at home
- Outdoor activity and exercise: engaging in outdoor activity, such as walking, hiking, biking or running provided that individuals maintain at least six feet of social distancing
- Essential work and services: performing work at an essential business, which includes all services needed to ensure the continuing operation of critical infrastructure to maintain the health, safety and welfare of the public
- Care for others: caring for a family member, the elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons in another household
Visit Austin is in close contact with regional public health officials and elected officials, as well as with national travel associations, and is actively communicating with you as the situation changes. The City of Austin’s Public Health department is actively involved in the response to COVID-19. For the latest information, visit www.austintexas.gov/COVID19
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Travel and Meetings Industry Resources
Does Visit Austin have a message for travelers?
Travelers to Austin – and all destinations – should continue to observe the health recommendations of national and local public health officials, as they plan to travel, when they travel, and when they are visiting any destination. Travelers to Austin should know that Visit Austin is in close contact with regional public health officials and elected officials, as well as with national travel associations, and will actively communicate with visitors if the situation changes.
Are there any closures of note for visitors to Austin, such as attractions, hotels, restaurants or meeting venues?
The State of Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a new executive order on April 27, 2020 to start a strategic plan to ‘Open Texas’ in the response to COVID-19 disaster. Phase I of the plan includes guidelines to reopen certain businesses and services with minimum occupancy restrictions starting May 1, 2020. Additional outlines of the order can be found on the Office of the Texas Governor website.
Visit Austin is working hard to maintain current information about popular attractions, museums, tours, restaurants and hotels on our website. Please check individual websites and social channels to confirm operating hours. The Austin Visitor Center is currently closed.
Public officials recommend visiting open businesses with the COVID-19 health recommendations in mind: washing your hands; refraining from touching your face; and staying home if you’re sick, among others.
What actions are being undertaken in Austin, following news of the positive cases?
Austin Public Health is closely monitoring the rapidly evolving situation in coordination with the Texas Department of State Health Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and local and regional public health and healthcare agencies. APH has developed a five-phase plan to coordinate COVID-19 response activities. We are currently in Phase 5:
- Phase 1: Persons Under Monitoring
- Phase 2: Persons Under Investigation (Testing in Progress)
- Phase 3: Confirmed Case(s) (No Person-to-Person spread)
- Phase 4: Limited Person-to-Person Spread (Close/Household Contacts)
- Phase 5: Sustained Person-to-Person Spread in the Community
Community spread means people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected.
APH has also activated our Department Operations Center to allow for enhanced response coordination, provided symptom monitoring for residents returning to Austin/Travis County from travel abroad, and provided prevention messaging to health care professionals, businesses, schools, and the general public. Additionally, the Austin-Travis County Emergency Operations Center (ATCEOC) has been activated.
What actions is Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) taking to ensure the safety of passengers and guests?
Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) coordinates closely with Austin Public Health, the CDC, and other federal partners to ensure the safety and health of passengers. At this time, the CDC has not identified AUS as an airport that will conduct additional checkpoint screenings and operations are not anticipated to be impacted pending new developments. When accounting for inbound and outbound passengers, March is also not the busiest month for international travel or travel generally to AUS. Additionally, AUS does not fly directly to any of the countries that are currently listed as a Warning Level 2 or Warning Level 3. AUS has provided hand sanitizer stations in high-traffic areas, such as after TSA checkpoints, and signage communicating general hygiene best practices. The airport will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments as necessary. Learn More
What actions is the Austin Convention Center taking to ensure the safety of its meeting attendees?
The Austin Convention Center Department (ACCD) has increased cleaning activity with the national news of the coronavirus. Visitor and employee safety is a primary concern and assuring a healthy place to convene and work is their goal. The department has placed more hand sanitizers and hand cleaning stations around the facility. ACCD has increased frequency of cleanliness for restrooms, escalators, door handles and other primary places of contact that are frequently touched. Signage has been posted encouraging visitors and staff to continue following health suggestions. ACCD is in contact with Austin Public Health who is monitoring the situation in coordination with the Texas Department of State Health Services, CDC, local and regional public health and healthcare agencies. Learn More
Where can I go with urgent questions related to COVID-19?
If you think you are sick with COVID‑19, read more here about what to do. Should you have urgent questions for Austin Public Health about coronavirus information which haven’t already been addressed online or through regional updates, please call or email their team at 512-974-2000 / email@example.com.