Healthy Business Travel & Safety Information
As the No. 1 travel destination in the U.S., Orlando is home to the world’s most trusted brands, which take safety extremely seriously. Refer to the following information to learn more about healthy business travel in Orlando and safety resources for you and your attendees.
Healthy Business Travel
Orlando’s meeting venues, transportation providers, hotels, restaurants, theme parks, attractions and other businesses are hard at work developing new ways for meeting attendees to once again enjoy the unique experiences they’ve grown to know and love in Orlando, while ensuring the implementation of new safety measures to ease concerns.
Following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, Orlando and the surrounding Orange County, Florida, are following several enhanced safety protocols, including:
- Orange County requires the use of face masks in public places, with select exceptions. Additionally, social distancing is strongly encouraged per CDC recommendations.
- Follow guidelines from the CDC and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for health screenings, temperature checks, sanitizing and washing hands frequently.
- At businesses, employees and patrons must practice social distancing of 6 feet. (If individuals are required to be closer than 6 feet, they must wear a face covering.)
- In staging/check-out areas at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) and many other meeting venues, floors are marked to help guide social distancing, and also physically separate and increase distance between employees and patrons.
- Any person who is exhibiting symptoms of or been diagnosed with COVID-19, or who has interacted with someone who has, should stay home.
For additional information, visit OCFL.net/coronavirus. We encourage you to check back with OrlandoMeeting.com for additional updates as they become available. You can also sign up for our free webinars that focus on the impact of coronavirus on the meetings and tourism industry, as well as email updates from Orlando. Still have questions? Email us directly.
Looking for details about Orlando's theme parks, attractions, restaurants and other things for meeting attendees to do while they're in town? Visit the Healthy Travel & What's Open page on VisitOrlando.com.
At present time, the Orange County Convention Center is accepting reservations for events. If you need assistance with rescheduling a convention or booking a future event, submit your question here or call +1 (407) 541-4251.
The Orange County Convention Center has also enacted its Recovery and Resiliency Plan, which uses a three-pronged strategy to safeguard clients, attendees and employees:
- Implementing the OCCC's Recovery and Resiliency Guidelines,
- GBAC Star Accreditation, and
- In partnership with Visit Orlando, collaborating with Orlando Health — a premier, established healthcare system — to create a groundbreaking medical concierge program.
The OCCC and Visit Orlando's collaboration with Orlando Health is the first of its kind in the convention and trade show industry. Through it, Orlando Health will provide personalized medical services and resources to all meetings and conventions held at the convention center through 2020, giving convention groups direct access to medical collaboration, planning and support.
Services for conventions will include customized medical plan guidance, an on-site medical expert, 24/7 medical concierge services through Orlando Health’s Virtual Visit, direct access to PPE for attendees, medical advisory services to the event’s host hotels and transportation vendors, and medically certified communication materials. It’s the latest example of the extraordinary regional collaborations the OCCC has in Orange County with medical partners and leisure and hospitality sectors.
The OCCC’s GBAC STAR accreditation provides third-party validation to ensure the implementation of rigorous sanitation protocols. In short, it is recognized as the gold standard of safe venues.
The plan was developed in accordance with policy recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Orange County government, and state and federal mandates. Relying on the best available data, science and research, it will provide an excellent road map to ramping up operations at one of our county's biggest economic engines.
As part of the Recovery and Resiliency plan, the following guidelines now pertain to all OCCC employees and Service Partners:
The OCCC Event Manager will work with the Event Planner on the guidelines for specific event participants, trade shows and conventions. In public areas, practice physical distancing by standing at least 6 feet away from other groups of people while standing in lines, using elevators or moving around the property. Table rounds, chairs, seating areas and other physical layouts will be arranged to ensure appropriate distancing. Employees will be reminded not to touch their faces and to practice physical distancing by standing at least 6 feet away from guests and other employees whenever possible. All meeting rooms will comply with, or exceed, local or state mandated occupancy limits. Non-contracted spaces will be monitored by security. No handshakes.
Hand sanitizer dispensers, touchless whenever possible, will be placed at key guest and employee entrances and contact areas such as reception areas, entrances, stairs, and elevator and escalator landings in OCCC public spaces.
Public Spaces and Communal Front-of-the-House Areas
The OCCC Environmental Services staff conducts daily cleaning of all door handles throughout the campus. The frequency of cleaning and sanitizing has been increased in all public spaces with an emphasis on frequent contact surfaces including countertops, escalators, elevators and elevator buttons, vending machines, door handles, public bathrooms, ATMs, stair and escalator handrails, dining surfaces, all seating areas, and tables.
Health and hygiene reminders will be placed throughout the property including the proper way to wear, handle and dispose of masks. Table cards and electronic signs will also be used for messaging and communication.
The frequency of cleaning and sanitizing will be increased in high-traffic, back-of-house areas, with an emphasis on the employee break rooms, employee entrances, control rooms, employee restrooms, loading docks, offices, kitchens, service desks and training classrooms.
Signage will be posted throughout the property reminding employees of the proper way to wear, handle and dispose of masks, appropriate use of gloves (in positions deemed appropriate by medical experts), hand-washing guidance, appropriate sneezing and coughing protocols, and reminders to not touch their face.
If we are alerted to a presumptive case of COVID-19 at the OCCC, we will work with the Florida Department of Health to follow the appropriate actions recommended.
Refer to the following resources for additional information:
- The Orange County Convention Center coronavirus measures: Orange County Convention Center COVID-19 Information
OCCC Recovery and Resiliency Plan: OCCC.net/Guidelines
OCCC Event Updates for Canceled/Rebooked Events: OCCC.net/Updates
Orange County hotels and resorts are permitted to operate. We advise you to check with specific properties to determine which are open, or visit our Meetings & Convention Hotels page.
Additionally, hotel companies are employing robust health and safety protocols, including the following initiatives and programs:
- Accor: ALLSAFE Cleanliness & Prevention Label
- American Hotel & Lodging Association: Safe Stay
- B Hotels & Resorts: Committed to Cleanliness
- Best Western: We Care Clean
- Extended Stay America: STAY Confident
- Choice Hotels (including Comfort, Clarion Hotels, Econo Lodge and more): Commitment to Clean Initiative
- Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts: Safe and Clean Meetings
- Drury Hotels: Travel Happy® Again — Clean + Safe
- Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts: Lead With Care
- Hilton Worldwide (including Waldorf Astoria, Embassy Suites, DoubleTree by Hilton, Hampton by Hilton, and more): Hilton EventReady and Hilton CleanStay With Lysol Protection
- Hyatt: Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment
- IHG (including Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Staybridge Suites and more): IHG Clean Promise
- Loews Hotels & Co.: Safety & Well-Being Protocols
- Marriott International (including JW Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, SpringHill Suites and more): Commitment to Clean
- Meliá Hotels International: Stay Safe With Meliá
- Omni Hotels & Resorts: Omni Safe & Clean
- Rosen Hotels & Resorts: Rosen’s Total Commitment
- Sonesta Hotels and Resorts: Stay Safe With Sonesta
- Universal Orlando Resort Hotels: Meetings & Events Hotel Safety Guidelines
- Walt Disney World® Resort Hotels: Know Before You Go
- Westgate Resorts: WestgateCARES
- Wyndham Hotels & Resorts: Count on Us Health & Safety Protocols
All modes of transportation are open in Orange County and throughout the State of Florida, including air travel at Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), rental cars, taxis, ride-share services, buses and commuter rail. (Please note that effective Jan. 26, 2021, all air travelers entering the U.S. are required to produce a negative COVID-19 test prior to admittance. A negative viral test, required to be taken up-to three calendar days before arrival to the United States, is required for everyone 2 years or older. Get complete details from the CDC. In Orange County, visitors and locals alike can take advantage of COVID-19 testing at the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando International Airport, many walk-in medical centers and other locations throughout the destination.)
Public-transportation providers such as SunRail and Lynx are operating with modified service schedules. The International Drive area’s I-Ride Trolley will temporarily suspend operations as of 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, until summer 2021. Additionally, public-transportation providers must employ appropriate social distancing and sanitation measures and are operating with reduced fleet availability.
Orlando International Airport has created a safety video with information about what you can expect when you visit. Orlando International Airport has also taken steps to further enhance the safety of travelers and airport employees by requiring that all 22,000 badged airport employees wear facial coverings inside airport public areas. Badged personnel will also maintain social distancing, as directed by the CDC, wherever practicable. Additionally, MCO has added personal protective equipment (PPE) vending machines that give the traveling public easy access to a variety of face masks, hand sanitizers and similar equipment. Learn more.
Beginning in December 2020, MCO will also offer access to an on-site COVID-19 testing clinic for travelers, the airport employee base, and the Central Florida community. The testing clinic will be located at the west end of the Main Terminal and is scheduled to be available through the end of July 2021.
For additional operational information from Orlando’s transportation providers, including details about enhanced cleaning and safety measures, reference the links below:
- Orlando International Airport: Operational Update
- Orlando Sanford International Airport: COVID-19 Monitoring
- Mears Transportation: COVID-19 Safety Update
- Destination MCO Transportation: Ride Safely With Us
- SunRail: Safety Measures
- Lynx: COVID-19 Information
- Enterprise: Complete Clean Pledge
- Hertz: Gold Standard Clean
- Alamo: Complete Clean Pledge
- Avis: Safety Pledge
- Uber: Coronavirus Health and Safety Guidance
- Lyft: Latest on COVID-19
All Florida highways are open, and toll transponders such as E-Pass and SunPass are being accepted.
- CDC Travel FAQs: FAQ for Travelers
- CDC latest situation summary: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
- For Florida-specific information, the Florida Department of Health update: Important Update on COVID-19 cases in Florida The department has a dedicated COVID-19 Call Center at +1 866-779-6121 or you can email COVIDemail@example.com.
- For local information, the Orange County health update: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information and Resources
What preventative measures should I take?
The CDC encourages travelers to practice the same healthy measures on vacation that they do at home, including:
- Wash your hands often, with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds.
- If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Clean or disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.
- If you are feeling sick, limit contact with others as much as possible and contact a health provider.
- Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze.
- Avoid close contact with those that are sick.
- Rely on trusted, credible sources such as the Florida Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for information.
- Vulnerable individuals should avoid close contact with people outside the home.
- All individuals, when in public, should maximize physical distance from others.
- Avoid socializing in groups of more than 10 people in circumstances that do not readily allow for physical distancing.
- Face masks are recommended for all those in face-to-face interactions and where you can’t social distance.
Where can I find information about the Orange County Convention Center?
Orange County Convention Center measures: Orange County Convention Center COVID-19 Information
How can I find information on flights at Orlando International Airport?
- Orlando International Airport posted current measures being used to maintain the safety, health and well-being of employees and passengers. Watch new safety video.
- Airlines such as American, Delta and Southwest have posted information regarding sanitation and disinfection measures.
Is airport screening and isolation in effect for visitors from highly affected COVID-19 areas?
Yes, this order extends Executive Order 20-80, Airport Screening and Isolation, and Executive Order 20-82, Isolation of Individuals traveling to Florida, with exceptions for military, emergency, health, infrastructure or commercial related activity.
What if I feel like I may be experiencing symptoms?
If you feel that you may be ill, for assistance and instructions please immediately call the Florida Department of Health's Coronavirus hotline at +1 866-779-6121 (now open 24 hours), or our Orange County Florida Department of Health Coronavirus Call Center at +1 407-723-5004.
If you are instructed, or decide, to go directly to a health care facility, please call the location in advance so they can coordinate receiving arrangements for the protection of you as well as others.
- Wash your hands often, with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds.
Orlando Safety & Security Resources
Local authorities and Orlando’s meetings industry have a collaborative approach to maintaining a safe, secure environment, based on the expertise of hosting millions of visitors every year. Furthermore, these measures continuously evolve, including an ongoing focus on enhanced prevention, technological advances and information-sharing capabilities.
For example, within the International Drive convention district, there exists a model of collaboration between law enforcement and meeting-industry partners that has been recognized across the country for its effectiveness. Examples of the Orlando region’s collaborative safety infrastructure include:
- Shared Intelligence: Regular meetings bring together Orlando’s law enforcement agencies, meetings-industry partners and private business security directors for intelligence briefings and educational sessions on crime trends, regulations and technology. Information from these meetings is then used to inform security protocols as needed.
- Crime Alert Technology: Using proprietary technology, Orlando’s convention businesses receive up-to-date alerts, recent developments and security tips.
- Visible and Discreet Measures: While many Orlando security protocols are visible, others are intentionally discreet. For instance, while you might see visible on-duty law enforcement officers at any given moment, numerous off-duty officers are also providing added security at private businesses.
- Tourist-Oriented Policing Sectors (TOPS): Orlando’s most popular tourism and convention corridor — a 78-square-mile (202-square-kilometer) area that encompasses the overall International Drive and Lake Buena Vista areas — is home to a well-established, dedicated law enforcement unit focused specifically on safety.
- This unit provides a proactive, visible, law enforcement presence through a force of 150 deputies and officers from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) and the Orlando Police Department.
- Member officers provide high visibility to deter crime, conduct routine security checks, patrol the area, and offer friendly assistance to Orlando visitors.
- The program has been in place for decades and has been replicated in other communities.
- For more information on the TOPS program, click here.
- Additional Information: Click here for details from the OCSO about frequently asked questions regarding attendee safety and security.