Travel is a fundamental part of life! From camping to road trips to weekend getaways or elaborate vacations abroad – we all look forward to time off to relax and enjoy the splendor of our world. Most countries have been on lock down, on and off since 2020, in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. Travel bans were established and citizens were asked to remain in their homes as much as possible. As the curves begin to flatten, some places are cautiously opening their doors again. Right now it is still essential to be hyper aware and safe while traveling, whether you are traveling domestically or internationally.
With that in mind, here are a few things you should do or know before planning and booking your next vacation during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Travel research used to simply involve finding flights, hotels, rental cars, and things of that nature. In the time of COVID-19 research now also includes understanding the COVID situation on the area you wish to visit. Is your intended destination a COVID hot-spot? Will you be required to show your COVID vaccination card? Do you need a negative COVID test before arrival? Are the hotels accepting tourists? Will you need to quarantine upon arrival? Will that negatively affect your vacation plans?
2.) Know the rules and regulations
Every place will have different rules and regulations for dealing with COVID. Some countries still have travel bans in place, while others may require special self-quarantine, and more. Make sure to check before you start to plan and purchase anything. You may find that some locations are simply not worth visiting at the moment, be prepared with alternative destinations.
3.) Consider all of the risks
Before you begin to plan your next trip, carefully consider the risk factors for yourself and those who will be traveling with you. Is anyone in your group high risk (any underlying health conditions or older adults)? Will you be traveling with children? What do the COVID numbers look like in the place you wish to visit? Keep your travel party in mind when selecting a location and transportation.
4.) Transportation safety
Transportation method to, from, and out and about on vacation is extremely important right now. Which method you choose comes with its own risks. How do you plan to get to your destination? How do you plan to travel home again? How do you plan to get around while you are visiting? Plane travel requires exposure to a large group of people and confinement inside of an aircraft for a length of time. Road trips become more likely for your party to come into contact with COVID with each stop planned on the drive.
Here are a few other helpful tips to stay safe:
- Pack your own personal protective gear (N95 masks, hand sanitizer, etc)
- Make sure to pack your own soap
- Avoid large gatherings where possible – particularly indoors
- Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet
- Stay away from anyone who appears sick
Also, if you or someone you are traveling with starts to feel ill, seek nearby medical facilities immediately for testing and any possible treatment needed. Better yet, research the medical facilities in advance, before you head out on your trip, and take a list with you with all pertinent contact information so you will know exactly what to do if necessary.
Are you ready to get back out and travel? Are you still waiting?
Let us know in the comments below!