Latest Phase 2 Re-Opening Guidelines

June 5, 2020

On Wednesday, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-139, which became effective today.

Executive Order 20-139 adopts recommendations by the Task Force to Re-Open Florida, putting the state in Phase 2 of re-opening, with the exceptions of Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties, which may seek state approval.

Executive Order 20-139 states that the Governor’s orders are in concert with the President, and guidance provided by the White House, Centers for Disease Control, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and Florida State Health Officer and State Surgeon General.

Regardless of businesses now allowed to operate and activities now permitted to occur, physical distancing is still recommended and individuals are encouraged to avoid congregating in groups larger than 50 persons.

Under the Governor’s orders the only businesses that cannot operate are nightclubs.

The following may operate with the noted restrictions:

Please see below for Phase 2 reopening guidance. All businesses should adhere to physical distancing guidelines.

  • Restaurants, bars and other establishments licensed to sell alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises:
    • May operate at 50% of their indoor capacity, excluding employees
    • Bar areas may open with seated service
    • Outdoor seating is permitted with appropriate physical distancing
    • Nightclubs remain closed
  • Entertainment businesses
    • Includes but not limited to: movie theaters, concert halls, auditoriums, playhouses, bowling alleys and arcades
    • May operate at 50% of building capacity with appropriate physical distancing between groups and appropriate sanitation.
    • Pari-mutuel facilities with written request for approval through the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
  • Retail sales
    • May operate up to building capacity with physical distancing and proper sanitation protocols
  • Museums/Libraries
    • May operate up to building capacity with physical distancing and proper sanitation protocols
  • Gyms, dance studios, yoga, and other fitness classes or similar activities
    • May operate up to building capacity with physical distancing and proper sanitation protocols
  • Personal services businesses, such as body piercing, tanning, acupuncture, nail salons, barber shops, hair salons, cosmetology specialty salons, tattoo services, massage services, and other one-on-one services.
    • May operate with appropriate safety guidelines as outlined by the Department of Health. 
  • Vacation Rentals
    • Pinellas County received approval from the State of Florida on its Short-Term Rentals Re-Opening Plan on May 20, 2020. Please see the plan for more information.

Guidance for beaches, pools and playgrounds

On May 28, 2020, the Pinellas County Commission approved the following:

Beaches: Effective May 28, physical distancing restrictions removed, but visitors strongly encouraged to continue spreading out and acting safely when visiting the beaches. Signage will remain at the beaches to remind visitors of best practices. 

Pools: Effective 3 p.m. on May 28, hotel and motel pools could return to operating up to maximum load capacity. HOA, apartment, condominium and all other pool operators could resume full capacity starting Monday, June 1. 

Childcare facility playgrounds: Effective May 28, the facilities could resume their regular playground capacity and operations. 

Public playgrounds: Effective June 1, public playgrounds could reopen with strong physical distancing and safety reminders. Caregivers visiting public playgrounds with children are also strongly encouraged to practice increased hand sanitation and consider bringing hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes with them. 


Small business owners with a commercial location in Pinellas County now have until June 30 to complete an online application to be considered for a one-time $5,000 grant to cover COVID-19-related expenses, such as employee wages, vendor bills and mortgage or rent costs. Read the FAQs before applying to ensure you have the details of how to submit a complete application for review, and then apply here.


Didn’t catch Visit St. Pete/Clearwater’s two webinars this week? Click here to watch the recording of “Checking the Pulse of the Meetings Market,” which features the latest meeting planner research and a panel of planners, and click here to watch “Sports Tourism Rebound,” which dives in to guidelines and what to expect around reopening facilities and hosting events.


The Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday accepted an $8.7 million federal CARES Act grant for St. Pete/Clearwater International Airport to offset economic damages resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Title XII of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides about $10 billion to support U.S. airports experiencing severe economic disruption. Pinellas County’s main airport estimates it has lost $4.7 million to date. The funding must be expended within four years.


In an effort to stay top-of-mind with partners in Brazil, VSPC’s Latin America team has participated in a number of digital efforts, including partnering with Visit Florida reaching small and medium-sized travel agencies in the Northeast part of the country. In addition, VSPC worked with Orinter Tour & Travel, an elite tour operator, for a destination presentation for its digital sales platform.

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