Editor’s note: On Tuesday, July 28, Gov. Jay Inslee announced a pause on counties moving to the next phase indefinitely. On Thursday, July 23, Inslee announced several restrictions on bars, restaurants and fitness centers. See the respective sections for each below for more information. Effective Monday, July 20, Inslee announced a 10-person limit on social gatherings for counties that are in the third phase of the four-part coronavirus reopening plan. On Tuesday, June 23, Inslee announced a statewide mandate requiring facial coverings in public to slow the spread of the new coronavirus, as cases again begin to rise in Washington.
Slowly but surely, Gov. Jay Inslee’s four-phase Safe Start plan to reopen Washington is taking effect throughout the state. As of Friday, June 19, almost all of Washington’s 39 counties had advanced at least somewhat beyond the first phase.
Each county can apply to State Secretary of Health John Wiesman for advancement through the different phases on a case-by-case basis, and Wiesman can modify the Safe Start plan to address the needs of different counties.
Counties can also apply to enter a “modified Phase 1,” which eases some restrictions in counties that don’t yet qualify for Phase 2. King County was approved for modified Phase 1 on June 5, then was approved for Phase 2 on June 19.
Below is an interactive map that shows the progression of each county through the various phases in real time. This will be updated as more information comes out.
As counties move through the various phases, here’s a breakdown of some of the services and activities Washington residents can expect to participate in, some of the rules various industries have to abide by to reopen and an estimate of when you might realistically be able to do these things according to the state’s four-phase plan. Note that the answers depend on the phase your county is in, and dates are subject to change.
When can I …
DAILY NEEDS AND PERSONAL SERVICES
Go to the dentist and doctor?
Dentists and family medical practitioners were given the green light to reopen on May 18. Doctors’ offices and dental practices are required to have enough personal protective equipment (PPE) for their staffers, maintain social-distancing policies, and check visitors and patients for symptoms of COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus. If appropriate, practitioners are urged to use telemedicine. Find the full list of requirements here.
Get a haircut, manicure or other personal services?
Reopen allowed in: modified Phase 1, Phase 2
Under modified Phase 1, barbers, salons and tattoo studios can open at at 25% capacity. The governor’s office released regulations for personal services on May 13. To reopen, hairstylists, barbers, nail salon workers and other personal service providers have to maintain six feet distance when possible and use PPE. If keeping distance is not feasible for a specific task, other prevention measures like barriers or limiting the number of employees or clients allowed in a space at once are required. Frequent and adequate hand washing, along with cleaning and sanitizing is also required. Find the full list of requirements here.
Get my house cleaned/hire a nanny?
Reopen allowed in: Phase 2
In-home/domestic services such as housecleaning and nannies may resume in Phase 2. Find the full list of requirements here.
Shop at malls and other retail outlets?
Reopen allowed in: modified Phase 1, Phase 2
On Aug. 20 Inslee announced agritourism such as U-Pick and tree farms can operate in Phase 2 under certain guidelines. Under modified Phase 1, in-store retail can operate at 15% capacity. The governor’s office released reopening regulations for retail on May 12. In-store purchases will be allowed in Phase 2 with restrictions. Stores must arrange no-contact pay options and pickup/and or delivery when possible. Store occupancy must be 30% of maximum building occupancy or lower as determined by the fire code. Distance markers, signage on use of face coverings and arranging the flow of customers to reduce crowding and choke points is also required. Find the full list of requirements here.
Get my pet groomed?
Reopen allowed in: Phase 2
The governor’s office released regulations for pet grooming on May 18. Pet grooming will be allowed in Phase 2 with restrictions. Client occupancy should be kept at 50% or lower, primary access to the building should be through the front door, while other access points should be kept closed and all linens, towels, drapes, etc. must be laundered in accordance with WAC 208-20-110 if applicable. Find the full list of requirements here.
Play individual sports such as golf or tennis?
Reopen allowed in: Gradual ramp-up over Phases 2-4
In Phase 1, non-related foursomes are permitted in golf. In Phase 2, golf groups are unrestricted. Restrictions on tennis were lifted on May 14. However, only singles tennis is permitted in Phase 1, though, doubles is permitted in Phase 1 if all four players are from the same household. In Phase 2 there are no restrictions on doubles participation. Tennis facilities must take stringent sanitization measures, and tennis players are required to bring their own balls.
Hang out with people outside my household/play group recreational sports?
Reopen allowed in: modified Phase 1, Gradual ramp-up over Phases 2-4
On Aug. 20, Inslee announced bowling leagues can practice and play in Phases 2 and 3 under certain guidelines. Inslee also announced updated guidance on non-spectator motor sports in Phases 1 and 2 that go into effect Aug. 24. Under modified Phase 1, outdoor gatherings of five people or fewer are permitted. Some outdoor recreation such as golf, hunting, hiking and fishing is currently permitted. Starting in Phase 2, more outdoor recreation (camping, beaches, etc.) involving fewer than five people outside your household will be allowed. On May 26, the governor’s office released updated guidance for outdoor recreation in Phase 2, including gondolas/lift chairs. Any gondola or lift chair operation must regularly sanitize gondolas, cabins and other high touch surfaces, install signage to discourage group congregation and ask visitors to leave the facility immediately after they are done to eliminate congestion. Find the full updated list here. Gatherings with no more than five people outside your household per week can also take place. In Phase 3, outdoor group recreational sports activities can occur with five to 50 people. Gatherings with no more than 50 people will also be permitted. In Phase 4, all recreational activities and gatherings of more than 50 people may occur. Staffed facilities such as tennis courts and go-cart tracks must enforce social distancing, personal protective equipment and frequent hand washing/cleaning. Find the full list of requirements here.
Attend a religious or spiritual service?
Reopen allowed in: Gradual ramp-up throughout all phases.
On June 18, Inslee announced updated guidelines for faith-based services. Indoor services of 50% capacity or 400 people, whichever is less, will be permitted in Phase 3. Indoor services of 25% or 200 people, whichever is less, is permitted in modified Phase 1 and Phase 2. Only outdoor gatherings of up to 100 people are allowed in Phase 1. Find the full list of requirements here.
Attend a wedding or funeral?
On Sept. 16, Inslee announced wedding and funeral ceremonies are allowed, but are restricted in all counties to an indoor occupancy of 25% capacity or capped at 30 people, whichever is less. Additionally all tables at the reception must be seated by household, with table sizes capped at five people. Facial coverings are required and social distancing must be maintained. Find the full list of requirements here.
Work out at the gym or take an instructor-led fitness class?
Allowed in: Phase 2 and beyond
The number of people allowed in a gym or fitness class depends on the size of the space; occupancy in facilities and gyms that are larger than 12,000 square feet is capped at 25%. Patrons must keep at least 300 square feet (about 17 feet on all sides) of space around themselves and must bring their own towels.
Fitness training, group fitness classes and indoor sports facilities such as basketball or volleyball courts may have no more than five people, and everyone must stay at least six feet apart.
Showers, hot tubs, saunas, steam rooms, tanning beds, squash courts and racquetball courts are closed. Locker rooms are for restrooms and hand-washing only, or as required for use of a pool.
Patrons don’t have to wear facial coverings while engaged in strenuous exercise, though they must wear them immediately before and immediately after exercise and at all other times while inside fitness facilities. The state’s guidance encourages outdoor locations for fitness training and team sports.
Find the full list of requirements here.
EATING OUT AND TRAVEL
Start non-essential travel?
Reopen allowed in: Gradual ramp-up throughout all phases.
Essential travel and limited non-essential travel for Phase 1 permissible activities is currently in place. This will continue in Phase 2 along with non-essential travel for Phase 2 permissible activities. Other non-essential travel can resume in Phase 3. Specific guidelines have not yet been released.
Eat and drink at a restaurant or bar?
Reopen allowed in: modified Phase 1, Phase 2, 3 and 4
On July 23, Inslee announced indoor dining at restaurants is only permitted for members of the same household. People meeting from different households can still dine outdoors. Additionally, no indoor service is allowed at any bar, brewery, tavern, winery or distillery. Counties in the third phase must reduce restaurant table sizes to five people, and indoor occupancy to 50%. Restaurants must also close game areas (pool, darts, etc.) until their county has reached the fourth phase.
ENTERTAINMENT AND BIG EVENTS
Reopen allowed in: Gradual ramp-up over Phases 2-3
On Aug. 20, Inslee announced museums can reopen in Phase 2 under certain guidelines. On June 2 Inslee announced libraries can offer curbside service in Phase 2. Indoor operations should be limited to those employees who are responsible for the tasks required to facilitate mail or curbside delivery, and Libraries must develop or modify ‘no contact’ return policies to establish procedures for processing, handling, and disinfecting returned items. Find the full list of requirements here. On May 26, the governor’s office released updated guidance for outdoor recreation in Phase 2, including zoos. Zoos must utilize on-line or phone reservation systems to pre-pay and limit interactions, and restrict payments to credit cards only to eliminate the handling of cash. Zoos also must only operate outdoor exhibits, and total zoo capacity is limited to 25 percent. Find the full updated list here. Beginning in Phase 3, residents can visit libraries. Specific reopening guidelines have not yet been released.
See a movie in the theater?
Reopen allowed in: Phase 2, Phase 3, Phase 4
On July 23, Inslee announced indoor movie occupancy for counties in the third phase is now limited to 25% capacity. On June 2, Inslee announced Drive-in theaters can operate in Phase 2 so long as customers stay in their vehicles except when getting concessions or using the bathrooms, 10 feet of clearance is provided between vehicles and proper sanitation guidelines are followed. Find the full list of requirements here. Full capacity can resume in Phase 4. Specific reopening guidelines have not yet been released.
Attend a live sporting event?
Reopen allowed in: Phase 3, Phase 4
On June 5, Inslee issued guidance for sporting activities in Phase 2 and 3. All professional sporting activities, full team practices and spectator-less games and competitions, can resume on June 5, regardless of phase if: The organization follows both the league-wide and team-specific “return to play” safety plans; The league-wide plan is approved by the player’s association or union representing players of the team; The team must report in advance to its respective county health department the dates when full team practices and spectator-less pre-season games will occur. Outdoor youth team sports and outdoor adult recreational team sports can resume in Phase 2 if proper separation is put in place. In Phase 3 teams can resume playing games. Find the full list of requirements for sporting activities here. In phase 4, recreational facilities can open at full capacity and large sporting events will be allowed to resume.
Go to a nightclub/concert?
Reopen allowed in: Phase 4
On Thursday, July 16, Inslee announced a 10-person limit on social gatherings for counties that are in the third phase of the four-part coronavirus reopening plan, therefore drive-in concerts are no longer allowed. Nightclubs and concert venues can continue to operate in Phase 4. Specific reopening guidelines have not been released.