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Safe & Responsible Travel in California

Tourism industry businesses have implemented responsible travel measures and strict cleaning protocols to keep people safe and California open. The below offerings are just a sample of the programs destinations and businesses are putting into place throughout the state to ensure that visitors feel safe and comfortable.

Visit California launched its Responsible Travel Hub over the summer, featuring its new Responsible Travel Code that serves as a resource for travelers on how to stay safe and be respectful of others and the environment when visiting the Golden State. Destinations across California have implemented similar know-before-you-go resources and safe travel guides, and taken steps to make their communities safer. For example, several destinations have closed streets to open up temporary pedestrian promenades, allowing restaurants and businesses to expand operations outside.

Responsible / Safe Travel Guides:

  • The San Francisco Safe Travel Pledge invites visitors to show their commitment to traveling responsibly by pledging to observe 10 safe travel practices.
  • The Sonoma County SAFE Travel Promise asks visitors to be conscious travelers, encouraging them to be smart, be kind, be safe and stay healthy.
  • Greater Palm Springs launched a Safer Together, Greater Together pledge to help ensure that the area remains a healthy, positive and inclusive destination for visitors and locals.
  • Cambria’s new Safe Travels Guide helps visitors follow CDC guidelines with tips, updates and answers to frequently asked questions. Cambria has also created a packing checklist.
  • The #SafeMendocino Visitor Guide features safety, cultural and environmental tips that instruct visitors on how to be mindful and responsible tourists.
  • With winter around the corner, snow destinations like North Lake Tahoe, South Lake Tahoe, Mammoth Lakes and Big Bear have added safe and responsible travel pages to their websites, and developed helpful resources for visitors.

Pedestrian Promenades:

  • In June, restaurants and shops took over five blocks of Ventura’s downtown Main Street and the city added hand sanitation stations, makeshift picket fences and tables for lounging. The City Council recently voted to extend the popular Main Street Moves into next year.
  • Santa Barbara’s temporary nine-block State Street pedestrian promenade is tentatively open through March 8, 2021. Roaming downtown ambassadors and posted signs provide reminders about masks, spacing and speed limits for bikes. 

  • San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter is now an even livelier eating and shopping destination. Fifth Avenue is closed to traffic Thursday through Sunday evenings for the rest of the year for street shopping and dining.

  • Some roads have closed to cars near San Jose's Santana Row, creating a walkable shopping and dining district. The San Jose Al Fresco program allows restaurants to use adjacent sidewalks or parking lots to create more outdoor eating space.

  • Copenhagen Drive, located in the center of the Danish village of Solvang, is closed to vehicular traffic through October of 2021.

  • Carmel-by-the-Sea has shifted its 17 wine tasting rooms outdoors for a safer and more relaxing walkable experience. 

California’s hotels have implemented safety protocols such as limiting the number of people per elevator, providing in-room fitness options, creating new alternatives to buffet-style meals, ensuring employees are outfitted with proper protective equipment, and increased sanitation - with several receiving accreditations from the California Hotel & Lodging Association (CHLA) and/or the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC). Some hotels have gone above and beyond, introducing innovative new measures to provide both guests and employees with a safe environment:

  • Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur is the first hotel in the United States to introduce ACT.Global’s Premium Purity eco-friendly Danish cleaning solution to its resort, and has also partnered with Hayward Score to measure the indoor health of its buildings.
  • Pendry San Diego and Montage Laguna Beach follow Montage International's new Peace of Mind Commitment, which ensures that each guest is provided with hand sanitizer, a mask and complimentary 30-day membership to One Medical's digital health services.
  • Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills utilizes Xenex LightStrike Robots - the standard of care in more than 500 hospitals - to disinfect guest rooms, public spaces, kitchens and luggage. The hotel also uses Emist disinfectant electrostatic sprayers and environmentally responsible cleaning products.
  • The Ranch at Laguna Beach created a Sani-Czar team to deliver masks and small batch hand sanitizer to guests, ensure the sanitization stations around the resort are functioning, clean high-touch areas, and guide guests in following safety and distancing protocols.
  • Catalina Island Company developed a KeepWellTM Commitment for guest and employee well-being at the six hotels it manages. Elements include UV light sterilization of guest rooms, electrostatic spray in guest rooms, and reduced capacity on most tours and activities.
  • Monarch Beach Resort partnered with The University of California, Irvine in August to elevate the resort’s existing StaySafe Program. The new protocols are informed by the university’s public health and epidemiology experts.
  • All Four Sisters Inns in California have started using Whistle, a contactless hotel guest messaging platform. Guests can use the platform before, during and after their stay, for check-in/out, breakfast delivery, and special requests.
  • Hyatt Regency Westlake in Conejo Valley launched a safe meetings program that provides meeting planners with ownership of guest rooms and meeting space floors to create a safe meeting bubble. 


Transportation and rental car companies have implemented strict cleaning protocols and measures to keep guests safe, requiring employees to wear masks and gloves and undergo regular temperature checks. Additional new measures include:

  • Pure Luxury Transportation implemented a “Hospital Grade Decontamination” policy, including the use of Professional Lysol IC Quaternary Disinfectant in its offices and vehicles after every passenger has exited. In addition, the company is using TRANSFORM Hospital Grade Disinfectant during daily decontamination procedures. 
  • Strack Ground introduced new standard operating procedures including HEPA filters in sedans and SUVs, electrostatic spray in all vehicles, and plexiglass barriers.
  • Enterprise’s Complete Clean Pledge and the Hertz Gold Standard Clean program are examples of how rental car companies are enhancing customer confidence alongside cleaning and sanitization protocols.

Note: As communities re-open after COVID-19-related closures, some parks, businesses and attractions may still be closed or have new protocols in place. Please verify local guidelines and regulations for all destinations and hours and availability of individual businesses before publishing. Check out Visit California’s Responsible Travel Hub for guidance on how visitors can travel within California safely.