The information below pertains to the public events throughout Inauguration Week.
- Be ready to walk long distances.
- Expect long lines at security checkpoints.
- Crowds will be large - be prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder.
- A vast majority of attendees will be in standing room sections and should be prepared to be on their feet for several hours. Extra consideration should be taken when planning to bring infants, young children, the elderly, or anyone with a weakened immune system.
- People who are on medications should bring enough medicine for the duration of the visit. Visitors likely will be away from their hotels and accommodations for many hours and should carry any necessary medications with them. People also are encouraged to talk with their doctors about how best to access their medical records when away from home in case an emergency occurs and the records are needed for treatment.
- If you are traveling with a group, select a prearranged meeting spot in case members of your group are separated.
- Charge your cell phone and consider bringing an external battery charger. Cell phone coverage may be spotty due to high demand, use text messages to send critical messages.
- Locate bathrooms, first aid tents, and a place to get warm.
- Call 911 in an emergency.
- Viewing the Inaugural ceremonies from the National Mall does not require tickets. However, bags will be checked. The non-ticketed area of the National Mall begins at 4th St. NW, and extends past the Washington Monument to 17th St. NW. The Washington Monument viewing area will be restricted to the grounds between 17th St. NW and 15th St. NW.
- Weather forecasts are available from the National Weather Service.
- Inauguration day is typically cold - normally 37°F at noon and occasionally wet.
- Winter weather in Washington, DC can be variable. Wearing several layers of loose fitting, lightweight, warm clothing is better than wearing one layer of heavy clothing.
- Cold weather can put an extra strain on the heart and lungs, so attendees with heart disease, high blood pressure or lung conditions should talk with their doctors about exerting themselves in the cold.
- Consider wearing weather proof shoes if precipitation is forecasted.
Safety and Security
Attendees are subject to a thorough security screening before entering any of the public events during Inauguration Week. Please allow for additional time.
The following items, subject to change, are prohibited by the US Secret Service at public events during Inauguration Week:
- Animals other than service/guide animals
- Backpacks and bags exceeding size restrictions (18” by 13” by 7”)
- Drones and other unmanned aircraft systems
- Glass, thermal, or metal containers
- Laser pointers
- Mace / Pepper spray
- Selfie Sticks
- Signs exceeding the size restrictions (20’ x 3’ x 1/4”)
- Supports for signs and placards
- Toy guns
- Weapons of any kind
- Any other items determined to be potential safety hazards
Firearms in DC
The open carrying of firearms is prohibited in the District of Columbia. To carry a concealed firearm within Washington, DC, you must have a Washington, DC issued concealed carry permit, and be in compliance with all applicable requirements, restrictions, and prohibitions under the law. There is no reciprocity with other validly issued out of District permits. Even with a valid Washington, DC issued permit, a permit holder is still prohibited from carrying in certain designated areas, to include, but not limited to, demonstrations, federal buildings, the National Mall, the White House complex, the US Capitol grounds, and gatherings or special events open to the public such as the Presidential Inauguration.
- Service dogs are permitted at the inaugural events.