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Infectious Disease
COVID-19

Health guidance for Alaska travelers

Beginning Tuesday, August 11, 2020 at 12:01am travelers arriving into Alaska from another state or country must follow new protocols. Read the new rules at the Health Mandate Information Page and PDFAugust 11 Travel Update FAQ.

Travel update

Alaska’s new travel protocols take effect Tuesday, Aug. 11. All non-residents must arrive with a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to departure or proof of a pending test result from a test taken within 72 hours prior to departure. This new strategy will allow us to focus resources on travel within the state. More details of the plan will be posted as information becomes available.

Non-Residents

  • Test 72 hours before departure, and upload negative result into the Alaska Travel Portal (link will be available soon)

  • If tested 72 hours before departure and awaiting results, travelers will need to upload proof of test taken into the Alaska Travel Portal and quarantine while waiting.

  • If a non-resident arrives without a pre-test, testing is available for $250 per test. The traveler will be required to quarantine while waiting on results.

Alaska Residents

  • Testing remains available at no cost to Alaska residents.

  • 14 day quarantine is still available to Alaska residents.

  • Alaska residents traveling back to home communities in rural Alaska will now have the option of testing at the airport sites, to prevent bringing the virus into our small communities.

Read the detailed requirements and information at: Health Mandates Information

Keep COVID out of Alaska 

Please note that the following information is subject to change once the August 11 travel protocol goes into effect. Conditions across Alaska are dynamic and may change with little notice as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Always plan ahead and be prepared for changes. Enjoy your travels, but we ask that you stay home if you feel sick, even if you have mild symptoms.

Traveling to Alaska through August 10, 2020

Alaska has removed the quarantine requirement for travelers who can show proof of a negative pre-travel molecular-based COVID-19 test result. Travelers who can show proof of a negative test result taken within 72 hours before departure will not have to quarantine. Travelers who can show proof of a negative test result taken within 5 days of departure will not have to quarantine, but will be retested at the airport.

Travelers who have pre-tested in these windows do not need to have results by arrival, but must quarantine until they receive and submit their results.

Other travelers have the option to be tested at arrival (subject to test availability).

All travelers who choose a test-based option must minimize interactions until they receive a negative result from another test taken between 7-14 days after arrival in Alaska.

Any traveler may choose to quarantine for 14 days rather than test.

Critical infrastructure workers may continue to travel under the guidelines of their company’s workforce protective plan on file with the State of Alaska.

Traveling through Canada to Alaska

Canada announced has announced that effective July 31 travelers going through Canada to Alaska for non-discretionary purposes must enter through one of five ports of entry. Those entering Canada from Alaska at the northern border are not subject to entry at one of those five ports, however, additional protective measures may be imposed at the time of entry by border officials.

Critical infrastructure travel

Under Alaska's new interstate travel protocols that take effect Aug. 11, 2020, critical infrastructure companies will continue to operate under their existing plans as before. But a few key changes will take place for critical infrastructure workers:

  • Critical infrastructure workers traveling to Alaska will no longer be able to use state-funded testing at airports.

  • Critical infrastructure companies and organizations will be asked to provide employees with a letter on company letterhead that states they are a critical infrastructure worker traveling for work purposes. These letters will need to include detailed instructions on how the employee will travel, as well as the company’s isolation or quarantine plans in accordance with their Community/Workforce Protective Plan. A template/example letter will be provided for company use.

Travel that is deemed essential or for critical personal needs, as previously defined in Health Mandate 10, will continue as it has under existing guidance. This includes, but is not limited to, child custody exchanges or visitation, and military families relocating under orders. Additional guidance and FAQs regarding these changes will be provided prior to Aug. 11.

Announcements related to traveling to Alaska

Testing before take-off

If you're coming to Alaska this summer, you need to get a COVID-19 test 72 hours prior to your departure. This is the best option for you and your fellow travelers and it also allows you the most freedom with the best chance of a hassle-free trip. Travelers who obtain a negative COVID19 test result within 72 hours of travel do not need to self-quarantine, but are asked to “watch their window” and minimize social interactions. This includes limiting time indoors with others until the traveler leaves or gets a second test seven days after arrival, whichever is shorter.

Where can I find a test site? What are my options for testing?

You must receive a negative result from a molecular-based test such as a PCR test. Alaska does not accept serology/antibody tests.

Alaska does not endorse or suggest any particular testing site or company, but the following information is provided to assist in your research:

There are four FDA-approved home-collection COVID tests:

Health considerations while traveling

Travelers are welcome to come to Alaska and don’t have to quarantine after they arrive – as long as they can show they have had a recent negative PCR test for COVID-19. Alaska has some of the lowest numbers of COVID-19 cases in the country, and we’d like to keep it that way.

Watch your window

Know before you go! Plan ahead and get tested before you travel

Advance planning is the best way to ensure a successful trip. Here are a few key steps you can take to protect yourself and avoid unnecessary quarantine upon arrival in Alaska:

  • Test for COVID-19 before you go
    Bring printed proof of a negative PCR test taken no more than 5 days prior to travel. Both the results and a completed Travel Declaration Form need to be provided upon arrival in Alaska.

  • Protect your trip
    Unexpected events can cause conditions to quickly change. Medical, evacuation and travel insurance are recommended.

  • Prepare for your trip
    Minimize your exposure in public settings in the weeks before you travel.

  • Check local restrictions
    Different communities have different rules. Check with each community you are traveling to before you go.

  • Plan to minimize public interactions on your trip
    Take advantage of the space and great outdoors Alaska has to offer and plan to limit time in public indoor spaces.

  • Cloth face coverings, social distancing and good hygiene strongly encouraged
    Some places may require the use of a face covering. Stay six feet away from others and wash your hands often.

  • Stay home if you’re sick
    If you’re ill or been exposed to a person with COVID-19 in the past 14 days, postpone your trip.

Welcome to Alaska! When you arrive …

When you arrive, look for greeters who will assist you through the process and be prepared with the proper documentation:

  • Travel Declaration Form
    Have a printed copy of your completed declaration form. Anchorage-bound travelers should fill out the Mandatory Declaration Form for Interstate Travelers at app.kelvin.care. Test results will also be returned electronically through this private and confidential website.

  • Provide proof of negative COVID-19 test
    If you were tested before you traveled – which is your best bet to avoid delays or quarantine – have a printed copy of your negative test results attached to your declaration form.

  • Testing in Alaska
    If you didn’t get a test before you traveled, Alaska has some testing available for interstate travelers, but cannot guarantee availability. If you do get tested here, you are required to go directly to your quarantine location until you receive negative results or for 14-days. The test you need to get is a PCR swab test. Depending on the location and available resources, some test results may return relatively quickly or within a few days while others may take up to five days or longer. Children under the age of two do not need to receive a test to avoid quarantine.

  • Testing is not guaranteed
    Although the state continues to expand testing capacity, testing for travelers coming from outside of Alaska is subject to availability. For this reason, travelers are strongly encouraged to obtain a test prior to travel and/or have a contingency plan that includes completing a 14-day quarantine if the state is unable to provide a test at arrival.

  • In the event of a positive COVID-19 test
    If you test positive in Alaska, you must isolate at your own expense for 14 days or until a public health official clears you for traveling.

  • Lodging expenses
    Each traveler is responsible for their own expenses while in quarantine or isolation, including lodging.

  • If no one is there to greet you
    If no one is there to greet you when you arrive in Alaska, please email covidquestions@alaska.gov for directions on how to comply with the requirements of Health Mandate 10.

While you’re here, watch your window!

Be a COVID-conscious traveler:

  • Limit exposure for 14 days
    A PCR test isn’t the same as quarantine. A negative test doesn’t mean you won’t develop symptoms or test positive later, so we respectfully ask you to limit your social interactions during your trip to protect yourself and others.

  • Avoid indoor spaces
    Use take-out and delivery options for food. Enjoy the great outdoors and Alaska’s wide open spaces. Avoid unnecessary shopping.

  • Avoid large gatherings
    Now isn’t the time to be in a big crowd. If your travel or business in Alaska requires you to be part of a gathering, or anytime you are out in public, we ask that you stay at least 6 feet away from others.

  • Check local restrictions
    Different communities may have different rules. Check before you go.

  • Get a second test
    Use the voucher you receive on your arrival for a free second test between 7-14 days later to make sure you’re in the clear. If you misplaced your travel voucher, email covidquestions@alaska.gov.

  • If you’re a critical infrastructure worker
    Follow your employer’s workforce protect plan on file with the State of Alaska.

Traveling from Alaska

If you are an Alaska resident traveling out of state, you do not need to test before departure. Upon returning to Alaska, Alaska residents must follow the same rules as other visitors coming into the state. If you have had an extended stay outside of Alaska, we recommend you get tested before you travel. If your trip is very short, please know that you will receive a voucher to get tested in Alaska upon your return.

Traveling within Alaska

All statewide restrictions have been removed for traveling to communities on the road system or marine highway system within the state. Travel only to communities located on the road system or marine highway system. Travel to remote communities is limited to essential travel only. Travel to or from remote communities off the road system is prohibited except for critical personal needs or to conduct critical infrastructure services. For definitions of the “road system” in Alaska and other details, please read Health Mandate 18 on Intrastate Travel and the frequently asked questions.  

Be aware that local jurisdictions may have their own requirements for traveling into their communities. It’s the responsibility of every traveler to educate themselves and contact the communities they are traveling to ahead of time to understand local conditions.

Critical infrastructure guidance

Are you a worker who is traveling into Alaska or to a smaller community within Alaska off the highway or Alaska Marine Highway systems? A webpage is now available to help explain what is expected of you and your employer:

The webpage explains who needs to submit a Community/Workplace Protective Plan (CWPP) to the State of Alaska for review. It also explains quarantine and/or testing requirements for the following groups: seafood processing workers, commercial fishing vessel crew members, independent commercial fishing harvesters, fishing charter operations and lodges, all other critical infrastructure businesses and government employees. Finally, the webpage covers important testing information for workers arriving into Anchorage.

Employers are strongly encouraged to provide a letter to their employees in their native language indicating their status as a critical infrastructure worker along with instructions detailing protective measures they must take in transit, including whether they are to be tested at the airport and where they should report after clearing the screening station.

Questions?

Please have a safe and healthy trip. If you need more information, visit the sites below or contact covidquestions@alaska.gov.