two people walking down a staircase to the beach on a gray day

Up-to-date COVID-19 guidance

The health and well-being of our guests, our guides and the communities we visit is always our top priority. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we've enhanced health and safety precautions for every REI class, tour and event.
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Updated January 4, 2023

Our policies are based on guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Based on current CDC masking guidance, REI employees are recommended—and customers are encouraged—to wear masks while indoors in counties designated as high COVID-19 Community Level by the CDC.

Health & Safety Protocols

Health assessment

Our guests and guides are asked to perform a self-screening of their health to evaluate any possible COVID-19 symptoms or exposure. Please follow CDC guidance and do not travel or join an REI program if sick.

Face coverings recommended

We will continue to recommend our guests and guides wear masks when in transportation, in alignment with CDC transportation recommendations. All face coverings should be worn to fully cover the nose and mouth.

Clean vehicles and equipment

Our vehicles are cleaned regularly and between groups. Gear and equipment intended to be used by one person for the duration of the event will be issued on an individual basis. Everything gets cleaned and disinfected after each event.


For overnight trips, tents will be assigned for the duration of each trip and cleaned upon their return.

Contact tracing

If REI is notified that a member of a program tested positive for COVID-19 during or after an event, we will follow CDC guidelines and contact all participants.


To receive a full refund, you must cancel at least 7 days prior to your scheduled event. If you cancel within 7 days of your event you will not be eligible for a refund. No-shows on the day of the event are also not eligible for a refund. Review our cancelation policy.

Our knowledgeable guides offer field-tested backpacking advice and introduce you to the history, flora and fauna of the Smokies.