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4:13 PM, Feb 27, 2020

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Michigan travel industry prepares for the end of COVID-19 restrictions on Tuesday

Posted at 5:42 AM, Jun 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-21 05:42:22-04

(WXYZ) — On Tuesday, a majority of the state's COVID-19 restrictions go away. From indoor capacity limits to broad risk management, Michiganders are returning to some for of normalcy.

Restaurants will be allowed to open at 100% capacity as the face masks and gatherings order is lifted, one of several orders that are going away Tuesday.

"it's kind of like everybody's got this pent-up demand for everything," Michael Bagley said. "It's not over yet, and i think people still need to maintain their safety and be careful."

After Tuesday, some COVID-19-related orders will remain in effect in Michigan. Those include testing protocols and other orders that protect people in long-term care facilities, prisons and jails.

Schools and correctional facilities will still be required to report COVID-19 cases.

More guidance is expected to be released later this week.

When it comes to travel in the U.S., optimism is on an upward trajectory. New data shows that 87% of people have plans to travel in the next six months. That's up from 57% back in mid-December.

David Lorenz, the vice president of Travel Michigan, said his team is focused on making Detroit, Grand Rapids and Lansing the draw for in-state travelers.

"It's all about the regions of the state and the sectors of the travel industry, how they will come back? Basically, Northern Michigan did very well last year," he said.

Lorenz adds that state park and campground reservations are already filling up, as people are looking for activities where they can social distance.

"Leisure travel, especially up north, is rebounding right now," he said. "City's leisure experience travel, that's going to be rebounding by the third or fourth quarter, maybe even into early next year."

Only 1 in 5 people said COVID-19 would have an influence on their travel plans. In April 2020, it was more than three times that.

Lorenz said the state's travel industry is impacted by the worker shortage and will also have an impact on Michigan's ability to bring in more tourism dollars. He said business travel may not rebound until 2022.

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