COVID-19 Communication Response and Resources

COVID-19 UPDATE Check out the latest Glacier Country Tourism information on communication response and resources.

Now’s not the time to visit Montana, but that doesn’t mean you can’t love us from afar. #LoveNowExploreLater

UPDATED: May 27, 2020

Status of COVID-19 in Montana

On April 22 Montana's Governor Bullock shared his plan to gradually reopen Montana businesses in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. Phase 1 of the Governor's plan begins April 26, there are three total phases. On May 19 the Governor announced the state will move into Phase Two of the reopening plan on June 1. There is not currently a timeline for moving to Phase 3. Local jurisdictions may enact guidelines that are more restrictive than the State guidelines.

Phase 1 includes:

 + April 26: The Governor's stay-at-home directive will be lifted. Vulnerable individuals should continue to follow the stay home guidance. Members of households with vulnerable residents should be aware that by returning to work or other environments where distancing is not practical, they could carry the virus back home.
 + April 26: Places of worship may reopen with limited capacities and under measures to ensure physical distancing. 
 + April 27: Main Street/retail stores will be able to reopen with reduced capacity and under measures to ensure physical distancing.
 + April 27: Personal care businesses, like salons and tattoo parlors, will open but customers must be screened for symptoms.
 + April 27: Outdoor recreation is allowed if sites adhere to strict physical distancing guidelines between groups, and exercise frequent sanitation protocols.
 + May 4: Bars, restaurants, casinos, and breweries can start on-site service with reduced seating capacity and a mandatory closing time of 11:30 p.m. at the latest. All will have to comply with a variety of social distancing and sanitation requirements.
 + May 7: All schools have the option to return to in-classroom teaching, dependent on the directions given by local school boards.

+ May 15: Gyms and gym/hotel pools, fitness studios, movie theaters and non-tactile museums may reopen with strict guidelines limiting capacity, requiring social distancing and implementing thorough sanitation.

No changes during Phase 1:
 + Performance theaters, concert halls, bowling alleys, bingo halls, music halls and pools that are not in gyms or at a licensed public accommodation shall remain closed.
+ The 14-day self-quarantine will remain in place for travelers and residents arriving to Montana from another state or country for non-work related purposes. 
 +  Avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people in circumstances that do not readily allow for appropriate physical distancing.
 + Minimize non-essential travel. 

Read the Reopening Montana Phased Approach, Montana Reopening Guidelines, Governor Bullock's Full Directive and the State of Montana Coronavirus Phase One Reopening FAQ.

Employers who are reopening:
+ Continue to encourage telework whenever possible and feasible with business operations.
 + When telework is not feasible it is encouraged to accommodate alternate work schedules such as shift work and staggered scheduling in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines.
+ Close common areas where personnel are likely to congregate and interact; or enforce strict social distancing protocols.
 + Minimize non-essential work travel.
 + Make special accommodations for members of a vulnerable population or those with vulnerable household members. 

Phase Two begins on June 1 and includes:  


 + All Phase One guidelines continue except where modified in Phase Two Directive
 + Increase in permissible group size to groups of 50, social distancing is recommended for any group size. Groups larger than 50 can take place if adequate social distancing can be maintained. 
 + All businesses may operate, provided they adhere to physical distancing and the conditions in the Phase Two Directive. 
 + Restaurants, bars, breweries, distilleries and casinos remain in the same operational status as Phase One, but with an increase to 75% capacity.
 + Gyms, indoor group fitness classes, pools, and hot tubs can operate at 75% capacity and only if they can adhere to strict physical distancing and they exercise frequent sanitation protocols.
 + Concert halls, bowling alleys, and other places of assembly may operate with reduced capacity and must adhere to strict physical distancing guidelines set forth for group gatherings and follow CDC sanitation protocols.
 + Child-care facilities can increase capacity consistent with the guidelines and FAQs' contained in the April 1 Directive on childcare and if physical distancing guidelines can be implemented, however the 24-person cap per facility no longer applies effective June 1.
 + Senior living or assisted living facilities must continue to follow the guidelines of Phase
One.
 + Outdoor recreation remains in the same operational status as Phase One.

Travel Quarantine to Expire June 1:
Effective June 1, the provisions of the March 30 Directive requiring quarantine for nonwork-related arrivals in Montana will no longer be in effect. The State will execute a robust public health plan in communities most impacted by tourism, including:
 + Surveillance testing of employees.
 + Enhanced contact tracing resources deployed to these areas as requested by local
authorities.
 + Ability to surge personal protective equipment to impacted health care systems.
 + Guidelines for operation for businesses that see high-tourist activity.

Read the Governor's Phase Two Directive with Appendices + Reopening Montana Phased Approach

Employers who are reopening:
 Develop and implement appropriate policies, in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations and guidance, and informed by industry best practices, regarding:
 + Social distancing and protective equipment.
 + Temperature checks and/or symptom screening.
 + Testing, isolating, and contact tracing, in collaboration with public health
authorities.
 + Sanitation.
 + Use and disinfection of common and high-traffic areas.
 + Monitor workforce for indicative symptoms. Do not allow people with symptoms of COVID-19 to work.
 + Collaborate with public health officials when implementing policies and procedures for workforce contact tracing following an employee’s COVID-19 positive test result.
 + Encourage voluntary participation of employees in any surveillance testing designed to provide community-wide early warning by local public health officials.
 + Employers should continue to permit telework as much as possible and where feasible, but refer to guidelines for Phase One where telework is not possible.


Montana News and Updates

May 22: Glacier National Park releases Reopening plan.

May 19: Governor Bullock announces Phase Two reopening plan for June 1.

May 13: Tribal Nations in Montana have extended stay-at-home orders indefinitely and continue to exercise caution to protect their elders and other vulnerable populations from the spread of COVID-19. At this time, all tribal lands are closed to visitors.

April 27: Montana State Parks campgrounds open May 1. Read their press release for details on what services will be available to campers and day use visitors. Visit their website for all current closures.

April 22: Governor Bullock outlines gradual reopening of Montana

April 10: Non-resident Recreation Temporarily Suspended on the Flathead Indian Reservation

National Bison Range April 9: The National Bison Range is temporarily suspending public visitation and use in response to the coronavirus outbreak. The refuge's status will be reassessed after Governor Bullock lifts the state's stay-at-home order.

March 30: Governor Bullock Directs 14 day quarantine for travelers arriving in Montana from another state or country

Glacier National Park March 27: Glacier National Park is closed to all park visitors until further notice. The NPS encourages people to take advantage of the many digital tools already available to explore Glacier National Park, including: Glacier online via webcams, audio toursphoto galleries, and videos.


Guidance For Travelers

Travel from another state or country is a common source of COVID-19 infection in Montana. Any travelers, residents or non-residents, arriving in Montana for non-work related purposes from another state or country are required to self-quarantine for 14 days, until June 1. Read the Directive here.

+ Any visitor from another state or country traveling to Montana for non-work-related purposes, must self-quarantine for 14-days or the duration of their stay.

+ Self-quarantine means that the visitor or resident must stay within the boundaries of the property they are residing in while in Montana, and cannot leave those boundaries or interact with other people. This includes the visitor or resident being prohibited from grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations/convenience stores, places of worship/churches, schools, and gatherings.

+ If you are self-quarantining you cannot leave for groceries, public outdoor recreation, to go to work or any other activity. You must remain at your place of quarantine for the duration of the quarantine period. Exceptions will only be made in the event of a medical emergency, fire, natural disaster or other act of God preventing the ongoing healthful habitation of a residence.

+ Any person who has already arrived in Montana from another state or country for a non-work related purpose before the date of this Directive must immediately self-quarantine for the remainder of a 14-day period beginning on the date of their arrival in Montana, or until their departure from Montana—whichever is sooner.

+ Exclusions to this directive include public safety, public health, healthcare works, travelers passing through on their way to another destination, and travelers visiting for work purposes.

+ Directive is mandatory, not optional. It can be enforced by DPHHS, the Attorney General, county attorney or other local authorities at the direction of a county attorney.

+ Montana Department of Commerce has at tourism informational line: 1-800-847-4868

If you are a hotel or lodging property, it is your responsibly to post a notice of the 14-day self-quarantine. For information regarding COVID-19 and the meetings and events industry, visit meetingsmeanbusiness.com/coronavirus-resources.

The U.S. Government has domestic travel recommendations. For detailed information, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html.


A Message From Glacier Country Tourism on COVID-19

Before I share with you what we are doing at Glacier Country Tourism, I want to take a moment to share with you an optimistic thought.

The challenge that this outbreak represents to you, and to your family, friends and community is unlike anything we have seen before. We find ourselves having to process our way through uncertainty, understandable anxiety and heightened risk. At some point though, hopefully sooner rather than later, the world will return to normal. Throughout history, people have always risen to meet whatever challenges have been thrown their way — usually emerging stronger than ever.

What is most important now is that you stay safe and healthy. To that end, here is what Glacier Country Tourism is doing to help share messaging about how to ensure the safety and health of our communities and industry.

Glacier Country Tourism is monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation closely. Montana public health agencies, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Travel Association and many other trusted agencies and associations are providing regular updates regarding the current status and its impact on the travel and tourism industry. We will be making every effort to help share current information about ongoing developments.

We are reviewing our current management and marketing efforts in order to be responsive to changes as well as prepare to assist our communities and industry.

We are doing our best to keep our communities healthy and safe, which means incorporating a social distancing into our operations including our staff working from home. Our team and on-line visitor resources are fully operational and can be reached during normal business hours.

For more information and health guidance regarding COVID-19, please visit the CDC or WHO websites.

The travel industry has always been one of the first sectors of our economy to recover after a crisis and we will be here to ensure that happens as responsively as able.

Thank you for your flexibility and understanding as we face these challenging times together.

Racene Friede l President CEO

Glacier Country Tourism Press Release

April 9, 2020: Glacier Country Tourism Releases Visitor-focused Video: Love Now, Explore Later

March 18, 2020 - Glacier Country Tourism Responds to the COVID-19 Crisis and Support of Travel Related Businesses


We Want to Hear From You

In order to track the impacts of COVID-19 on our businesses and communities, we have a short survey we will keep open as a tool for you to communication with us.  

As part of the survey, we want to know what you’re are doing now to help your business through this uncertain time. We also want to know how Glacier Country Tourism can help negate the negative impact of COVID-19 to your business. Information exchange may help stem the tide and together we can get through this difficult period.

Take Survey

Montana Partner and Community Resources


May 26: The Latest on Coronavirus

May 21: COVID-19 Travel Data

May 19: The Latest on Coronavirus

May 12: House Unveils Next Relief Bill


Additional Resources

For up-to-date information:

For how to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

For how to protect yourself from scams related to COVID-19:

For information about the CARES Act:

For information from specific federal agencies and departments: 

The success of new air service at Missoula International Airport is due in large part to the partnership that the airport has with Glacier Country Tourism. Through marketing opportunities, events and online, the airport has received the constant benefit of the dedicated staff and members of Glacier Country Tourism.

- Cris Jensen, Missoula International Airport