CA health officials ease travel restrictions in updated advisory

Big Sur, CA, Wednesday, February 10, 2021 - Crews continue to dig out debris from a washed out section of Highway 1 at Rat Creek. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

State of California health officials on Thursday dropped its COVID guideline recommendation that residents not travel more than 120 miles from home during the pandemic. 

The advisory was in place to mitigate the spread of the disease, but the updated information reiterates that postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.

"Californians should continue to avoid non-essential travel outside of California," the CA Department of Public Health news release says. 

California has administered more than 18 million vaccine doses as of Thursday, and 6.7 million people are fully vaccinated, state health officials said. They said the 7-day positivity rate is 1.9%.

This updated advisory comes the same day eligibility expanded to state residents who are 50 years and older. But it also came as word broke out of Santa Clara County that every variant of concern has now been detected there

Depending on your comfort level and your vaccine status, you could now have a potentially guilt-free trip from San Francisco beyond Monterey which is about 120 miles south. Or if you headed north; 120 miles kept you in Sonoma County, just south of Gualala. And if the coast isn’t your thing, maybe you’d like to explore inland beyond the Folsom city limits. 

More information from CA DPH: 

  • All travelers arriving in or returning to California from other states or countries should follow CDC travel guidance.
  • All travelers should get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before travel.
  • All travelers who test positive or develop symptoms of COVID-19 should isolate and follow public health recommendations.