Frequently Asked Questions

What is the coronavirus/COVID-19?

A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. The virus causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold.

A diagnosis with coronavirus 229E, NL63, OC43, or HKU1 is not the same as a COVID-19 diagnosis. Patients with COVID-19 will be evaluated and cared for differently than patients with common coronavirus diagnosis.

El Dorado County has issued reopening guidelines and the City of South Lake Tahoe has decided to work in lockstep with the county to do this safely. Click here to learn more. 

How can I protect myself from the coronavirus/COVID-19?

Stay home at this time it is important to avoid gatherings of 10 or more people and stay home unless you need to travel for essential services (eg: food, medical care, etc). Hold virtual meetings & gatherings. If you have to leave your home, maintain social distancing and stay 6 feet away from others.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

What can I do? What’s open?

Essential services will remain open, such as:

Gas stations


Food: Grocery stores, farmers markets, food banks, convenience stores, take-out, delivery restaurants, and outdoor dining


Laundromats/laundry services

Essential state and local government functions will also remain open, including law enforcement and offices that provide government programs and services.

What’s closed?

Dine-in restaurants

Bars and nightclubs

Entertainment venues

Public events and gatherings

Convention Centers

What about restaurants providing takeout or delivery?

Restaurants providing takeout or delivery are considered an essential service. They are allowed to continue operating at this time. However, restaurants are not allowed to serve people while they wait for their food, this includes alcohol.

I have a wedding or other event planned in South Lake Tahoe, can I still have it?

The City is not permitting any large events on City property, this includes our parks and beaches. Wedding ceremonies are permitted in places of worship and other private indoor venues at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer. Proper social distancing and mask-wearing are required. Outdoor venues are limited by their natural limits depending on the size of the space that permits the distancing required in the guidance and approved by the local health officer.

Can I still get my mail and deliveries? 

Yes. You will still be able to get mail and other deliveries at your home.

Can I still order the things I need online and have them delivered to my residence? 

Yes, the Order identifies businesses that deliver goods or services directly to residences as “essential businesses” that may continue to operate.

What is the City doing to help?

City employees and City Council have been working around the clock with our partner agencies to keep the public and our employees safe. We are following the direction of our public health experts of the County, Barton Health, as well as the state and federal governments.

Our front counters are open on a limited basis, we have encouraged our employees to work from home if they can, and requesting that all people and businesses continue to comply with county, state and federal guidelines.

What is the City doing about hotels, VHR’s, and tourists?

We are sending out information to all VHR owners and local hotels requesting their cooperation in gaining compliance with the non-essential travel ban currently in place state-wide. We strongly encourage these businesses to comply with the county and the governor’s orders and ensure they’re doing everything in their power to maintain the health and safety of our community. However, lodging is open in South Lake Tahoe. If you intend to come to the City bring a mask, they're required. Also, wash your hands and stay 6 feet apart from anyone outside of your household at all times. 

How can small businesses get help?

There are multiple resources for small businesses to get assistance during the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

City Council recently approved two programs to help people in our community in their time of need, but the deadline to use those programs are approaching fast.

The COVID Complance Grant Reimbursement program pays local businesses for purchasing personal protective equipment, or PPE. All a business has to do is submit receipts to the city and a picture of the PPE purchased and the City will pay them back for 50% of their costs up to $2,500.

The Locals EatSLT Restaurant voucher program was designed to help community members in need and local restaurants affected by the pandemic. People are eligible to get one $25 voucher able to be used at local restaurants. The vouchers are being distributed through local charities including food banks, Christmas Cheer, and the Family Resource Center. 

Below are more links to help business owners and employees get the help they need. 

Chamber of Commerce:

Tahoe Chamber ; South Tahoe Chamber of Commerce

Local Non-Profit Help:

Tahoe Prosperity Center

State Resources:

State of California Employment and Taxes Resource Center

Federal Resources: 

Small Business Administration