Travel Update

Safe practices, requirements, and status of tourism businesses in New Mexico.  

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Tips for Healthy & Safe Travel In New Mexico

During this time, the New Mexico business community is implementing additional COVID-Safe Practices at their establishments to help ensure the health and safety of their customers. Below are some of the additional safety measures you can expect and plan ahead for when visiting New Mexico’s businesses, restaurants, and attractions.

For more information on the status of COVID-19 in New Mexico, please visit the New Mexico Department of Health.

red alert NOTICE FOR ALL TRAVELERS: Effective September 4, any individual traveling to New Mexico from states deemed high-risk based on COVID-positivity rates will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of their entry into New Mexico or for the duration of their stay in the state, whichever is shorter. To see the states and territories deemed high-risk and still required to quarantine, view the map down below. For more information regarding high- and low-risk criteria, click here. For more information for drive-through travelers and exemptions that may apply to the travel quarantine, click here.


mask icon NOTICE FOR ALL TRAVELERS: Face coverings are required for all visitors and residents in New Mexico. The only exceptions are when drinking, eating, or under medical instruction. Any individual found in violation may face a $100 fine.


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Guidelines for Travel in New Mexico

If you are traveling to New Mexico, please follow all safety guidelines and restrictions. Local governments may impose more restrictive guidelines so be sure to check local instructions before traveling. Please be mindful of the following general guidelines for travel to and within the state of New Mexico:

  • Effective December 2, guidelines and restrictions in New Mexico have moved to a county-by-county basis. Please consult the county map from the New Mexico Department of Health to learn more about specific county restrictions
  • Effective September 4, New Mexico has amended the requirements for the mandatory quarantine for individuals traveling to the state of New Mexico, exempting travelers arriving from low-risk states. The quarantine exemption is in effect for the states listed below:


low + high risk states


  • The current Public Health Order provides for the following exemptions to the 14-day self-quarantine requirement:
    • airline employees on travel for work
    • individuals performing public safety or public health functions
    • emergency first responders
    • health care workers
    • military personnel
    • individuals employed by a federal agency or a national defense contractor
    • individuals arriving to New Mexico pursuant to a court order
    • individuals employed or contracted by an essential business traveling into the state to conduct business activities
  • Everyone is required to wear a face covering in public in the state of New Mexico. The only exceptions to wearing a face covering are eating, drinking, or medical requirements.
  • Food and drink establishments are to provide curbside pickup and delivery services only. On-site dining is prohibited. 
  • Non-essential retailers are not permitted to operate at this time
  • Close-contact businesses such as salons, gyms and spas are not permitted to operate
  • All outdoor recreational facilities, including golf courses, tennis courts, and the ABQ Bio Park are not permitted to operate
  • Drive-in events may operate in accordance with COVID-Safe Practices.
  • Casinos are not permitted to operate (please note: some tribal-owned casinos may be operating in limited fashion, as the state does not have jurisdiction over tribal-owned casino properties).
  • Horse racing facilities may operate without spectators.
  • All events and gatherings of more than 5 people are prohibited and 6 feet of physical distance from others must be maintained.


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COVID-Safe New Practices at Hotels, Resorts & Lodging

Please note that guidelines and restrictions in New Mexico have moved to a county-by-county basis. Please consult the county map from the New Mexico Department of Health to learn more about lodging operations for specific counties. Please note these changes to hotel and lodging operations:

  • Lodging establishments will adhere to the enhanced cleaning procedures outlined by the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Stay Safe Enhanced Industry-Wide Hotel Cleaning Standards.
  • Comfort items and appliances such as coffee machines, irons, hair dryers, extra blankets, etc. may be provided upon request.
  • Housekeeping shall only provide cleaning service during a guest’s stay upon request by the guest.
  • Multiple guests per room are to be limited to “same households” only (individuals who live within the same place of residence).
  • If food service is provided onsite, room service is encouraged as a first option for guests who would like food service with food carts being left at guest’s door to minimize contact.
  • Self-serve food bars and refreshments such as water, coffee, ice, etc. will be closed or removed. Hotel staff can provide these services upon request.
  • Valet service will be suspended.


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Safe Dining

Please note that guidelines and restrictions in New Mexico have moved to a county-by-county basis. Please consult the county map from the New Mexico Department of Health to learn more about restaurant operating procedures for specific counties. Here are some of the COVID-Safe Practices and enhanced health and safety practices recommended by the Food and Drug Administration and the CDC that you can expect to be in place to keep customers safe while dining at New Mexico’s restaurants:

  • In an effort to support contact tracing, restaurants will be required to retain a daily log of all customers and employees who enter their establishment.
  • All customers are required to be screened for COVID-19 symptoms through a questionnaire upon entry of the premises.
  • Reservations, dining parties and private events may not exceed the mass gathering definition.
  • Reusable items such as menus and condiment containers left on tables will be cleaned and sanitized after each use. Items that cannot be cleaned and sanitized after each use will be replaced with single-use items.
  • Animals and pets, excluding service animals, will not be permitted inside the establishment, onto patios, into stores, or other such areas.


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Responsible Outdoor Recreation

Starting May 1, 2020, New Mexico State Parks began slowly reopening of state parks for day use only. While many parks are reopening, services, activities, and hours of operations are limited so please consult the current Conditions and Alerts page for each park.

The current public health order permits usage of New Mexico State Parks only to New Mexico residents. Individuals who visit a state park must demonstrate proof of residency, such as a state ID or state-issued license plate. Overnight camping at New Mexico State Parks is permitted.

Please be aware of the following safety and health guidelines currently in place:

  • No more than 5 people per group
  • Maintain a 6-foot distance between people
  • Visitors are strongly encouraged to carry their own sanitizing supplies and PPE
  • Comfort Stations and restrooms are closed to reduce close contact
  • Vault toilets at some State Parks will be available

Check with the National Park Service website for more information on openings, amenity availability, and best practices.



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Safe Retail Shopping

Please note that guidelines and restrictions in New Mexico have moved to a county-by-county basis. Please consult the county map from the New Mexico Department of Health to learn more about retail operations for specific counties. Here are some of the safety guidelines required from New Mexico’s retailers to keep customers safe:

  • High-touch items such as doors, fitting rooms, and credit card terminals will be cleaned and disinfected once every two hours (or more frequently).
  • Safety protocols that allow for contactless curbside pickup and home delivery whenever possible will be established.
  • Signs, stanchions, and/or floor decals will be utilized wherever possible to support 6-foot social distancing, including one-way aisle traffic, and separate entry/exit.


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Safe Travel Recommendations

Outside of the modified 14-day self-quarantine requirement on certain travel to New Mexico (see above), there are currently no domestic travel restrictions to the state of New Mexico. However, visitors to New Mexico should continue to follow the protective measures outlined by the CDC:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Put a distance of at least six feet between you and other people
  • Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care
  • Stay up to date on the latest travel advisories from the CDC, WHO, and the U.S. Department of State


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Additional Resources

Center for Disease Control

New Mexico Department of Health

World Health Organization