Texas Will Quarantine Travelers Flying Into The State From New York Area, New Orleans

Hawaii and Alaska moved to quarantine arriving passengers for 14 days and Florida announced much weaker rules for passengers taking non-stop flights into the state from New York or New Jersey.

Now Texas has become the latest state to impose restrictions on arriving airline passengers.

  • Applies to passengers flying to Texas from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut or New Orleans
  • Goes into effect Noon central time on Saturday
  • Requires mandatory 14 day self-quarantine
  • Military, emergency, health and critical infrastructure travel “determined by the Texas Division of Emergency Management” will be exempt

When passengers arrive off of a flight from one of these locations they will be required to fill out a form with their identifying information and where they will quarantine. (Presumably the state will not ‘catch’ people arriving into the state on connecting flights from – say – Atlanta, Charlotte, or Phoenix.)

Texas Governor Greg Abbot said that the state’s “Department of Public Safety troopers will conduct visits to those designated quarantine locations to verify compliance with this executive order” and that failure to comply is a criminal offense subject to a $1000 fine, 180 days in jail, or both.

During the 14 day quarantine – “or the length of the person’s trip if shorter” suggesting someone deemed necessary to quarantine would be permitted to freely return to the airport — passengers could be visited only by health care providers.

The Governor said the order could be expanded, and would likely then include California and Washington State. I’m expecting to see more states impose similar orders, and to have those orders lifted at various times as the severity of the virus in any given location ebbs and flows. Once a state recovers from the virus they’ll be strongly incentivized to impose limits on inbound passenger traffic as well.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. IANAL (actually I am) but this does raise some interstate commerce and right to travel issues I would like to hear some experts discuss

  2. I expect we’ll see more of these.

    @David I believe they can probably legally do this provided that both Texas residents and non-residents are treated equally.

  3. Not sure how this actually works. If an airline customer from one New York city, for instance, connects in Chicago, they wouldn’t seem to be covered by the rule which, obviously wouldn’t serve the public health purpose.

  4. Seems crazy that it excludes driving especially given how close New Orleans is to parts of Texas.

  5. Funny that this comes out right after their Lt. Gov being shown to be a clown over the weekend

  6. Too many loopholes for this to be effective. Doesn’t seem to cover connecting flights, as mentioned. Plus, anyone can go to an airport in a neighboring state (like BOS, PHL, BWI, etc). Or fly to Oklahoma or New Mexico and drive into Texas. Or even drive from NY/NJ/CT/New Orleans to Texas.

  7. Love that poster…………………
    I wish the AZ governor would put such a ban in place for visitors from CA and WA. And, close the State borders. With a two-week stay-at-home quarantine (a la UK), I for one think we would have this thing beaten down.
    I speak as an older person with two significant risk factors. Yes, I am biased.
    As for shutting down aviation for a week or two nationwide? Why not. We did it after 9/11 and, most likely, covid19 will kill far more Americans than the mad muzlims did that evil day.

  8. And after NY is through this and Texas is having an outbreak because their state didn’t take it seriously enough I hope they are all barred from coming to New York and reinfecting people here. Such a stupid policy. Its all over the country and everyone needs to shelter in place.

  9. No mention of Florida or California? Its clear that the Texan government doesn’t have a clue what is happening if they think this is going to be effective. Like seriously how many people from the northeast are looking to go to Texas in the first place?

  10. Hey, maybe Mexico will pay for a wall after all. BBC reporting that Mexican protestors have shut a US southern border crossing amid fears that untested AMERICAN travellers will spread the coronavirus. The are demanding crackdown on Americans trying to cross the border.

    Only a stable genius like Trump could have done it…

  11. This is exactly what President Trump did — close the border to other States (he did it with Countries, China, but it’s the same thing). According to him, that worked.

  12. The “American virus” is a concern in various parts of the world. Trump may want to peddle this novel coronavirus as the “Chinese virus” or some other “foreign”-sounding virus, but for others it’s an “American virus” since that is where the new cases were connected before and after travel bans were being put in place.

    I am wondering what some of the xenophobia-peddling elements in Scandinavia will try to call this virus since the main source of the virus in the bulk of Scandinavia has been Scandinavians who went skiing in Austria or Italy (or both) and then returned home and spread it. Maybe they will try to blame it on Iranians, Iraqis, Somalis or Afghans or some other people with ethnic roots in a Muslim-majority country. Or more likely ride with Trump to point the finger at China ….. even as China was a drop in the bucket for the source of spread into and in the Scandinavian countries.

  13. New York is the biggest hotspot right now because of an influx of people who visited Iran and Italy which did not shut travel from China quick enough and didn’t take the virus seriously. So far it is mainly a coastal virus with NYC, parts of California, parts of Washington State and New Orleans most affected. Every other state has a chance to come out ok by following the 15 day guidelines and continuing to prevent gatherings including school for months (but to a lesser degree than the hotspots and with more people going back to work).

    Those states with a lot less cases don’t have a good chance if travel from New York is not stopped. Not just air travel but this includes vehicle traffic on the bridges and tunnels aside from medical personnel and delivery trucks. I am in the Bronx and won’t be leaving Bronx, Manhattan and Westchester for all of 2020. It’s irresponsible to be traveling from New York now. Stay home and governors should shut travel completely from New York.

  14. @ John — The free movement of Americans around the country right now is a tricky game. The country as a whole is obviously better if people stay put. The good news is that these proclamations are mostly “ceremonial”: people are NOT moving around the country. Just look at the TSA numbers. USA air travel is 90% below normal and dropping. It’s really hard to travel right now: where are you going to stay and what are you going to do? In times of crisis, people naturally want to stay home. There won’t be thousands of New Yorkers streaming to the airport looking to fly some place “safer.” If you have a second home or family that will take you or a billionaire, you are in a position to relocate. No one else really is.

  15. We are all hoping our fellow countrymen/women get better, and we have a further uphill battle due to the lack of solid coordination (to say nothing of mistruths and lies) at the Federal level in the WH.

    But Other Just Saying, you are a truly sickening person, and if there is one single US citizen I hope gets CV-19, it would be you.

  16. @UA-NYC. Getting a little bit unhinged there?

    Hmm. Maybe Unhinged Anti-American Lunatic would be a good AKA for UA-NYC. Naw, that is a little long. No worries, I will come up with a good AKA.

    MAGA and save the nation from these anti-American lunatics.

  17. @GUWonder. Maybe the root cause was the virus from China, but given the bungling by our country I think the right word now is the Trump Pandemic.

  18. OJS you are truly the lowest of the low, the most despicable of the despicable.

    It’s fine to have different political beliefs, those will always exist, but (just ignoring your low grade racism for a bit) when you go around accusing people of CELEBRATING fellow citizens DYING, you show what a scummy piece of trash you are.

    Piss off you alt right twat.

  19. I continue to be suspicious of the amount of executive power assumed by executives (The President and Governors) after an emergency declaration. In law school I studied the Youngstown Sheet and Tube Co. v. Sawyer case, where Truman’s nationalization of the steel companies during the Korean War was held unconstitutional. See, 363 U.S. 579 (1952). To the best of my knowledge, the case is still good law. Mere promulgation of an declaration of emergency is not enough. Even Lincoln’s suspension of the writ of Habeas corpus during the Civil War was done under a specific grant of authority by Congress. And, the Constitution continues to be in force and governs, despite any emergency declaration.

    Whether the governors can interfere with interstate commerce by restricting travel from other states is also problematic under Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. See, e.g., https://www.politico.com/states/florida/story/2020/03/25/floridas-move-to-pull-in-its-welcome-mat-may-draw-court-challenge-1268970.

  20. These ineffective travel bans take their lead from false claims by Trump. It is unfortunate that the POTUS frequently lies or gives false information to satisfy his need to look good and be praised. It makes everything he says untrustworthy. For example, Trump makes the claim repeatedly that the US was the first country to ban travel from China and that US health officials opposed the ban. The facts as I understand them are: a) Italy banned all flights from China on January 31; b) Trump announced a ban (actually not a ban just restrictions with huge loopholes) on foreigners who had been to China; c)and c) Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said Trump made the decision in late January after accepting the “uniform recommendation of the career public health officials here at HHS.” We all have a natural desire to want to believe what a President says. With this POTUS experience has shown that to avoid being misled, we should start with the opposite assumption.

    He also claims credit for saving thousands of lives with the ban. By now we know or should know he just says things he thinks will sound good regardless of the truth because he must be praised at all times. At the same time as he credits himself for saving thousands of lives, he denies any responsibility for testing and supply chain failures.

    He wants to open the country and resurrect the economy by Easter. Praise Trump!

    Re the Texas travel ban: It is a joke. The ban has so many holes it would cast a polka dot shadow.

  21. Trump announced China restrictions on January 31 but the State Department put those restriction into effect on Feb. 4 when it issued a Level Four travel advisory. The Italian ban on all China travel went into effect on Jan. 31.

  22. This is more than just Texas vs. NY bull$h*t.

    Incorrect stereotypes of Texas aside, lots of people here in Austin are originally from New York. In fact, it is probably the state with the largest source of new Texans aside from California. I live downtown and half of my parking garage is NY plates. It isn’t unreasonable to assume that one of my neighbors might need to return to New York to aid a loved one during their crisis. This now complicates their return.

    I don’t necessarily disagree with the order, but it’s a legitimate concern for many.

  23. The governor of Texas is off his rocker to qurarantine places with a lower corona count than Texas.He is being nasty and unreasonable.There are places whose count is lower than Texas.He is stupid.

  24. I need to get to Texas from California. My mom is in Houston and I need to get there ASAP. Any suggestions I’m from the Valley not the Bay Area

  25. Do we know for sure if those taking connecting flights are not getting stopped? Has anyone tried this?

  26. Texas doesnt need to quarantine anyone who flies here.Except New York Texas has more cases than most states.That is against the constitution.Texas governor is off of the track
    Even Trump didnt say that.Governor Abbot thinks he is Predsident of the United States.

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