Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

UP-TO-DATE INFORMATION FROM RENT KEY WEST VACATIONS
REGARDING THE CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK

 

KEY WEST IS OPEN!

We are very excited to be able to welcome our tourists back to Key West. However, things are still evolving as they are around the county (and world!) so please don't expect everything to be completely normal in Key West.  We pride ourselves on the quirkiness of our town and that will still be true as you come back to Key West now. So pack your hand sanitizer and your mask!

The goal for all of this to ease back into our daily lives, welcoming others into our island community as neighbors. The same island community where we have been secluded from most of outside world.  It will be an adjustment for all of us.  The biggest concern island residents have, that the virus will spread quickly in our island ecosystem. We have a small hospital/healthcare capacity here in the Keys.  We don't want to overwhelm our healthcare system so that those who need care, can't get it here.  

 

So help us all, by doing the same thing we have been doing for 3 months.  Enjoy the outdoors, stay socially distant and put a mask on when you are going into a business or not able to socially distance.  It's a simple expectation.  We thank you for doing your part to keep our island community open and safe for residents and visitors.

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED Q&A

Q.  Are there any restaurants & bars open in Key West?

 

A.  Restaurants are open for dine-in with limited capacity & social distancing or many are maintaining their take-out or delivery order service. Just like shirts and shoes, masks are required for entry into a restaurant. They are also required to take your temperature when you enter. Bars have temporarily been closed down across the State of Florida due to higher Covid cases. Some bars are open for package sales (to go beverages).

Q.  Are the beaches open for visitors?

 

A.  Yes, all beaches are open. Social distancing guidelines are to be followed. Beaches closed over July 4th weekend in order to deter crowds of people and especially day trippers from the mainland.

Q.  What businesses are open in Key West?

 

A.  Businesses such as grocery stores, retail stores, fitness centers, spas, hair salons, and barbershops are open at limited capacity.  These businesses are required to meet the State’s social distancing standards.  Please be prepared to have your temperature taken at restaurants, bars, salons and other personal care establishments.

Q. Have many businesses in Key West closed down for good due to the virus?

 

A: The best answer is some have closed.  We typically see a few businesses close at the end of high season every year. We have heard several restaurants that had lease issues and have closed. Most prominently, Lucy’s Retired Surfers Bar & Restaurant has closed it’s Duval Street location. Some may be delaying their re-opening until we have more tourists back in town and others are closing brick and mortar businesses and going online, such as Peppers of Key West.

Q: What are your cleaning and sanitizing protocols?

 

A.   We have always followed a strict policy of cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting for our vacation homes and we will continue to uphold our cleaning standards with the guidance of the CDC and AHLA.  We will be enhancing our cleaning procedures by taking extra care in each home especially frequently touched items such as doorknobs, remotes, arm rests, and all linens in the homes. Our highly skilled housekeepers will ensure that every vacation rental is clean and ready for your family to enjoy safely.

Q.  Will there be cleaning supplies available in the rental?

 

A.  We will be providing a starter cleaning kit for our guest to use during their stay*. Disinfectant sprays for high touch areas are provided. Guests are encouraged to make arrangements to maintain an adequate amount of safety products (masks and hand santizer) to last them through their stay.

Q.  Public areas at Condos and HOAs.

 

A.  Guests should be at least six feet apart from others at all times and wear a mask when in common areas, however take the mask off at pool.  When using the pool, do not congregate in groups of more than 10.  We do not control the common areas of these properties, use caution when touching frequently touched areas or bring your wipes. All condos in Key West are also full time residents of many people. This is a reminder that while you are on vacation, your neighbors have to get up and go to work tomorrow. Be courteous and respectful of your neighbors.

Q.  Will there be maintenance person available when needed?

 

A.  We will be accepting service calls should you encounter an issue during your stay.  In order to alleviate transmission of the virus, please be prepared to wear a mask or step out of property when our team member is working in the home.

Q.  What should I bring with me?

 

A.  Essentials such as masks, gloves, toilet paper, sanitizing wipes and sprays. Every rental will be equipped with the minimum number of paper products as there is a national shortage for these items.  Guests are encouraged to bring extra essential supplies for their stay.

Q.  When should I wear a mask/ facial covering?

 

A.  As of July 13th, City of Key West has enacted stricter masking requirements: “Effective immediately, every person over the age of six, while physically located in the City of Key West and who is away from their residence, is required to wear a mask, regardless of whether social distancing is maintained,” the new directive states.

“This amendment to Emergency Directive 2020-13 also directs operators and employees of business establishments to ensure that every individual in the establishment complies with this directive. It continues to allow restaurant patrons to remove their mask only when seated at a table and eating or drinking. 

“Individuals violating this directive are subject to a second-degree misdemeanor charge, which carries fines up to $500 and potential prison terms of up to 60 days, with higher penalties for repeated offenses."

Q.  Why do we care about this?

 

A.  Since the closing of U.S. 1, we have been diligent as a community to flatten the curve. COVID-19 cases have been climbing very slowly and we would like to work together to keep it that way and not overwhelm our local healthcare system.  As with the rest of the state, we are now seeing higher case numbers and it is causing a great deal of stress to the locals. Nothing is out of control yet with healthcare facilities, but not enough precautions are being taken. Let's home you get a tan on vacation and not Covid. So, blend in with the locals, wash your hands frequently, wear your mask and enjoy your Keys vacation safely!

Q.  Is Covid covered by travel insurance?

 

A.  Travel restrictions that cause a cancellation of the trip are not covered. Someone contracting the virus and becoming ill is covered during the policy period.

Earlier Covid Statement:

 

We would like to assure you that the health and safety of our guests, team and island community remains Rent Key West Vacation’s top priority.  As a trusted vacation rental management company, we are committed to doing what is best for all concerned - our guests, our homeowners, our team and our company itself - during this time of uncertainty.

 

According to our rental agreement, guests may cancel for any reason more than 60 days prior to arrival and receive a refund.  Because of the Coronavirus outbreak, we are willing to waive change fees for those who decide to reschedule stay dates.  

 

For those needing to cancel within the 60 days prior to arrival, our standard cancellation policy states the rental is technically nonrefundable.  Our traditional advice/ fail safe for necessary cancellations within this period is travel insurance, however our travel insurance provider, CSA-Generali, does not consider the “fear of travel” as a covered event unless you have purchased separate “cancel for any reason” insurance. Therefore, guests are left without many options during this time period unless they themselves do contract the Coronavirus and prove it with medical records.  

 

Knowing this, we are choosing to work alongside our concerned guests and guests traveling from impacted areas on a reasonable solution.  Though their funds paid will not be refundable, Guests scheduled to arrive within 60 days who request a cancellation due to the Coronavirus outbreak will be offered the option to defer their stay at the same property within 12 months. We are not charging a deferment fee.  If a guest chooses to travel during a higher rate period, they can expect to pay the difference, however, no rate adjustments will be made during lower rate times. 

 

If you are an incoming guest needing to cancel due to the Coronavirus pandemic, please send an email to info@rentkeywest.com with your Reservation #, your reservation dates, and cancellation request.  If you are choosing to defer the stay, please refer to the calendar on the listing page on www.rentkeywest.com for future stay dates that are available.

 

Rent Key West Vacations wants everyone to feel reassured during this uncertain time, however, our island economy needs you and our visitors to come back and support our team, our homeowners and our Key West island community as we rebound from this potential pandemic.

Things to consider when coming to Key West:

  • "Safer At Home" Gov. DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-91, which places the entire state of Florida under the "safer at home" initiative. This order, which has been implemented in Monroe, Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties since Monday, March 30, states that all persons within the state of Florida shall limit the time spent outside their home to only essential activities.  This order still allows people to take care of pets and engage in outdoor recreational activities, as long as social distancing is observed. Senior citizens and individuals with a significant underlying medical condition shall stay at home and take all measures to limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Any business capable of providing delivery, or curbside service is encouraged to do so.
     
  • Following an executive order by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, the City of Key West is directing all bars and nightclubs to remain closed.  This includes bars operating ancillary to any hotel, guest house, or bed and breakfast.
  • Businesses such as grocery stores, retail stores, fitness centers, spas, hair salons and barbershops are open at limited capacity.  These businesses are required to meet the State's social distancing standards.  Please be prepared to have your temperature taken at restaurants, bars, salons and other personal care establishments.
  • The decisions for responses to this fluid situation are being made in the interest of public safety. This follows the decision by the President of the United States to discourage gathering of more than 10 people.
  • Key West International Airport and Marathon Florida Keys Airport are open and operational.  Anyone flying in must self quarantine in place for 14 days and will be monitored by the Florida Department of Health. 
  • Several condominium associations are closing common areas where more than 10 people may gather.

For up-to-date information on the status of Monroe County and COVID-19, go to www.Monroecountyem.comwww.floridahealth.gov, or www.CDC.gov. In addition, The Florida Department of Health has put up a 24/7 information hotline: 1-866-779-6121.

 

*Closures are reevaluated on a daily basis.

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