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Hilton Head Island Coronavirus FAQs

We have received a number of questions from Hilton Head Island residents and guests about restaurants, parks, visiting the Island and Town operations. We took some time to respond to them providing the latest information we have. Check out the responses.

Is the Fire Department going into homes that belong to potential COVID-19 patients?
As part of screening procedures, questions are asked of the caller to determine if the patient is experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19. On all medical calls, only the treating paramedic or first arriving supervisor makes initial contact with the patient to assess them, wearing the appropriate protective equipment based on the call screening process. Whenever possible, we are asking the patient to come or be brought to the front door. This is to limit contact to the Town's Fire Rescue responders and the Town's at risk population. If the patient is unable to come to the front door Fire Rescue will certainly enter the home to treat the patient.
What should I do if I am showing symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath?
First, call your personal doctor or healthcare provider for information/instructions. If you don't have a primary care physician there are multiple options for telehealth.
  • MUSC Health is providing free telehealth screening. Anyone experiencing symptoms can visit MUSC.care and use the promo code COVID19 and be screened without having to leave your home. You can also call 843-261-5940 with any questions.

  • Prisma Health is offering a free virtual visit at www.prismahealth.org/virtual-visit/. Use with promo code COVID19. You can also call 1-888-921-0348.

  • Beaufort Memorial is offering virtual visits to be screened by a provider who can refer them to a higher level of care, if needed. BMH Care Anywhere is available in the App Store and Google Play, and via www.bmhsc.org/services/immediate-care-options/video-visits/ (may have a fee).
Is the Island still allowing visitors to come?
In compliance with State and Federal recommendations the Town of Hilton Head Island is discouraging non-essential travel to the Town.

Questions about rental refunds should be directed to your rental company or the S.C. Attorney General's Office via email pricegouging@scag.gov or 803-737-3953.
What is the order regarding Out of State Visitors Quarantining?
Any individual who enters the State of South Carolina from an area with substantial community spread, to include the Tri-State Area (consisting of the States of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut) and the City of New Orleans, Louisiana, shall isolate or self-quarantine for a period of fourteen (14) days from the time of entry into the State of South Carolina or the duration of the individual's presence in South Carolina, whichever period is shorter.

Learn more about the Out of State Visitors Quaranting...
How do I Report a Violation of the Out of State Visitors Quarantining Order?
Any potential violations of this order can be reported to the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office non-emergency line at 843-524-2777.
I have tried to cancel my reservations, but I am unable to get a refund. What can I do?
Questions about rental refunds should be directed to your rental company or the S.C. Attorney General's Office via email pricegouging@scag.gov or 803-737-3953.
Is there a limit on gatherings?
Governor McMaster issued an order giving local law enforcement the authority to prohibit or disperse any gatherings of three or more persons. This order applies to the beach also.

Local law enforcement officers are monitoring our beaches and educating the public on regulations for social distancing.
Are there plans to close the bridge?
The bridges to Hilton Head Island are not closed and nor are they scheduled to be closed.
Is the Beach Open?
SC Governor McMaster issued an executive order closing all SC public beaches. All of the Town's public beaching parking areas, to include restrooms and other public facilities, will be closed until further notice.

Governor McMaster also issued an executive order giving law enforcement the authority to prohibit or disperse any gatherings of three or more people. This order applies to the beach also.
Are restaurants and bars open?
The Governor has issued an executive order requiring all restaurants and bars in SC to close dine-in services. Restaurants may continue to operate their kitchens for drive-thru, delivery, take-out, and exterior pick-up food services.
How do I know if my business is considered "Non-essential" for the Governor's order to close non-essential businesses?
"Non-essential" businesses, venues, facilities, services, and activities will be closed to non-employees and will not be open for access or use by the public or shall not take place. This includes businesses where access is limited and based on membership.
View the list of Non-Essential Businesses as defined by the Governor
Is Town Hall open?
Town Hall, Fire Rescue Headquarters and Fire Stations will be closed to the public until further notice. Town staff will be available to respond to public requests by phone or email. (View our Staff Directory) The public is also encouraged to access some services online through the Town's website.

We are working diligently to respond to your requests, but you may experience a slight increase in turnaround times. Thank you in advance for your patience. Learn more...
How will Town Council conduct meetings if Town Hall is closed?
Town Council will host virtual meetings using video and teleconferencing. Our meetings will be live-streamed on our website and through Facebook Live.
All Town Council meeting agendas can be found at https://hiltonheadislandsc.gov/council/tcagendas.cfm
Are my business license renewal and tax payment due now?
Deadlines have been extended for local taxes:
  • Penalties will be waived for 1st quarter 2020 Hospitality Tax payments received no later than June 20, 2020.
  • Penalties will be waived for 1st quarter 2020 Accommodations Tax and Beach Preservation Fees received no later than June 20, 2020.
  • Penalties will be waived for the Town of Hilton Head Island 2020 business license renewal payments received no later than June 20, 2020.
*Please note, June 20th falls on a Saturday. Penalties will be waived through Monday, June 22, 2020.
How can I get a beach pass?
To protect the community and help slow the spread of the coronavirus, the Town is accepting the application for Beach Parking Passes via US mail only. Upon approval the beach pass will be mailed to you as staffing and operational priorities permit us to do so.

Access the Beach Pass Application and instructions at https://hiltonheadislandsc.gov/ourisland/beachparkpass.cfm
Where can I get assistance with food, rent or utilities?
Agencies in our community like Deep Well and United Way have compiled information on where families and individuals can find help with food, rent or utilities. View community resources on our website at https://hiltonheadislandsc.gov/publicsafety/coronavirus/communityresources.cfm
Are we still able to fly within the state? Or will that be restricted?
As of right now, there are no restrictions on travel. However, we advise you to contact airlines regarding flight schedules and restrictions.
Is the Cross Island Parkway toll booth open?
The tolls to access the Cross Island Parkway (Hilton Head Island) have been temporarily suspended.
Why is the Airport open?
The Town does not have the authority to close the airport. That decision has to be made by the Fedaral Aviation Administration (FAA).
Why can't we close the bridge?
In South Carolina only the Governor can authorize the closing of bridges. The Town does not the authority to do to close or restrict access to the bridges.
Is the Breeze Trolley Service running?
The Breeze Trolley Service on Hilton Head Island, which was scheduled to begin service on April 1, has been postponed temporarily.
Now that we are getting warm weather, is there any evidence that the Coronavirus can be spread by mosquito bites?
At this time information from the CDC indicates the following on how COVID-19 is spread.

  • The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
  • These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.