Some Florida vacation rental owners cancel reservations from Louisiana ahead of Memorial Day weekend

Short term rental owners asked not to rent to those from high-risk areas.
Short term rental owners asked not to rent to those from high-risk areas.(FOX 8)
Updated: May. 19, 2020 at 9:59 PM CDT
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DESTIN, Fl. (WVUE) - Some in Louisiana could be looking to spend their Memorial Day weekend social distancing on a Florida beach.

Panhandle counties can now reopen for vacation rentals, but those from Louisiana may not be welcome.

"It's a very happy time to get away and breathe and hopefully we can walk the beach. I don't know what the restrictions are going to be, but I'm really looking forward to it," Cathy Cashman said.

However, Florida Governor Ron Desantis says travelers from high-risk areas, including Louisiana, must adhere to quarantine restrictions.

One Metairie resident who traveled to Florida over the weekend says she was stopped at the state line.

"Everyone had to get off the interstate and there were two lines, and when you stop, we were asked have you been to in the last 14 days to New York, New Jersey, Conneticut, or Louisiana?" Georgianna Dupont said.

Dupont said she proceeded to fill out paperwork of her personal information and rules to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

"If I violated that ordinance, that I could serve 60 days in jail and up to $500 fines, or both," Dupont said.

One vacation rental owner with properties in Okaloosa and Walton counties says she's been inundated with reservations.

“It has been like an onslought. Constant emails, phone calls, texts, and we have guests that have hung in there and kept reservations, but now all the empty days are filling up,” Your Friend at the Beach Owner Nancy Fox said.

However, due to the governor's recommendation, she says she will not be renting to those from hotspot areas for the next 45 days.

"I wouldn't say most of them are from Louisiana, but I would say I've had three or four calls already today. We're a very small company, we only have 30 condos," Fox said.

She says she's had to cancel with those who booked from Louisiana.

Those heading over this weekend say they're prepared to quarantine if necessary.

"It sounds really delightful if I have to quarantine for quite some time in Florida that would be wonderful, but I don't know why I don't feel very concerned. I'm going to be super careful and make wise decisions," Cashman said.

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