The Florida Keys continue to be closed to visitors and do not anticipate opening to non-residents during the month of May, and potentially longer. Monroe County amended Emergency Directive 20-02 to provide Florida Keys lodging businesses (motel, vacation rental, marina, RV park, and timeshare) authorization to begin accepting reservations, contingent that the reservations can only be honored if the current state of emergency is lifted.
The amended directive reads:
“No lodging establishment shall accept reservations, including extensions to current reservations, except for reservations that are expressly contingent upon the state of emergency being lifted or this Directive being rescinded by subsequent order. So long as the state of emergency continues or this Directive is in effect, contingent reservations shall be cancellable under the sole discretion of the lodging establishment or property guest/renter, and shall provide for a full refund to the guest of any payments made by the guest/renter or credit for a future stay should the time period reserved be prohibited under this Directive or any subsequent Directive or Executive Order. When making an advanced reservation, the lodging establishment’s reservationist should communicate the above information to the potential visitor so there is a clear understanding of the situation and procedures that will follow.”
The amended directive authorizes lodging and vacation rentals to take reservations for any time period, but the vacation stays cannot be fulfilled unless the local state of emergency is no longer in effect, which would also result in discontinuing the two informational checkpoints on the 18-mile stretch and State Road 905 and screenings at Key West and Marathon airports.
Monroe County has not announced a date to reopen to visitors but has been relaxing internal protective measures in conjunction with the Governor’s orders. Emergency Management continues to closely monitor infection rates in Monroe County, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties and other hot spots that frequently travel to the Florida Keys.