Nasopharyngeal flocked swabs placed in viral transport media (VTM) are the preferred collection methodology for respiratory virus testing . Due to the rapid depletion of available reagents and swabs, we have validated an alternative swab placed in phosphate buffered saline (PBS) for use in respiratory virus testing in a SARS-CoV-2 real-time PCR assay and a multiplexed respiratory virus panel . We collected nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs and oropharyngeal (OP) swabs from ten healthy volunteers . Flocked swabs were placed in VTM and alternative swabs in PBS . In this feasibility study, we show that NP collection is better for detection of human material than OP collection, as measured by significantly lower RNase P gene cycle threshold values, and that a dacron polyester swab in PBS shows equivalent detection of SARS-CoV-2 and RSV to a flocked swab in VTM in contrived specimens . Diluted SARS-CoV-2 positive patient specimens are detectable for up to 72 hours at 4 °C.