Is it the right time to travel again? COVID-19 has had a serious impact on the world economy and the travel industry. However, after being stuck at home for months, more and more people are eager to travel again. But, is it the right time to travel again? Let’s try to answer that question here and now.
Preparation is crucial
Whenever you need to travel, you know that it’s important to get everything ready including your vehicle. But in these times, it’s even more important to be truly prepared, since the consequences could be more serious than before. For starters, your car needs to be ready for the whole trip. Next, you need to have masks, disinfectants, and gloves with you at all times. Also, carry some soap with you, so that you can wash your hands every once in a while. Remember that it’s better to follow the safety measures than to have your travel ruined by COVID-19 symptoms.
Choosing Travel Insurance
Now that Covid-19 is a part of our everyday lives, ConsumersAdvocate.org wanted to better comprehend how travel insurance works with this new “normal”. Their in-depth guide on the best travel insurance features a side by side comparison of multiple companies voted “best for” in different categories. The insurances were researched based on types of coverage, financial strength, pricing, reputation, and extra benefits like support lines and mobile apps (a must for future adventures!).
It’s important to highlight that with Covid-19 the Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) add-on is considered a must for cancellation coverage. As the name itself suggests, it functions as one of the extra add on’s that allows you to cancel for any reason. It is always important to consider your travel insurance alternatives so you can travel worry-free and focus on the fun.
Is it wiser to travel to a domestic location?
The USA has many great locations that you could visit, from the best beaches in America, to amazing and awe-inspiring national parks. But, since the cases of the coronavirus have been reported in every state, you should know that even domestic travel increases the chances of spreading the virus. While experts agree that traveling close to home to a less-crowded place poses a lower risk, keep in mind that even state-mandated travel restrictions vary, so you should check the official state travel website for more information. Here’s some of the latest information:
- Hawaii is opening up for tourists with COVID-19 testing
- In Florida, a two-week-long quarantine is necessary for visitors from certain states
- In Maine, visitors with a negative COVID-19 test aren’t required to self-isolate
Different sets of rules
Every country has its own set of rules right now. So, you have to know exactly the country you’re traveling to and follow the most current guidelines. Here aresome of the rules that are in force at the moment:
- Some European countries that are major travel destinations are still off-limits to U.S. tourists, so it’s not the right time to travel to Greece, France or Italy
- Visitors to the UK are required to self-isolate for two weeks
- Iceland is extending the restrictions for the US tourists
- Non-essential travelers are banned from entering Canada, but permanent residents or citizens of Canada are allowed entry with a two-week-long quarantine
- The Bahamas has reopened. Visitors must possess a negative COVID-19 nasal swab test within 5 days of arrival along with a Bahamas visa and COVID-19 health insurance.
PHOTO: A man undergoing a COVID-19 test. (photo via zoranm/E+)❮❯
PHOTO: A man undergoing a COVID-19 test. (photo via zoranm/E+)❮❯
Hotels in the U.S.
Hotels have been deemed essential businesses since the beginning of the pandemic. However, in some states, there were certain restrictions for hotels. For example, they weren’t permitted to welcome regular guests, but only pandemic-related guests, like medical staff, or non-critical patients. Now that hotels are returning back to normal, even with enhanced cleaning practices, it’s important to protect yourself as much as possible. Be sure to clean the surfaces like doorknobs, tables, and light switches.
Renting a car
Renting a car is a low-risk way to travel, compared to using public transport that puts the passengers at risk. However, while person-to-person contact poses a greater risk, you should remember that the virus can remain on certain surfaces for days. Also, research also shows that it can remain in the air for an hour or so. For this reason, while car rental companies are carefully cleaning vehicles, you should also remember to wipe down all surfaces and increase ventilation, just in case.
What about flying?
The CDC and other health authorities are saying that flying is a good option, as there is no high risk of infection on airplanes. With the drop in air travel, it’s much easier to keep the suggested six feet between passengers, or in other words, maintain social distancing. Additionally, almost all international planes have HEPA filters that clean the air. Of course, you should still clean your hands and the surfaces that you touch frequently, and wear a mask.
Is wearing a mask mandatory?
Most airports and airlines require people to wear a mask. The CDC advises everyone to wear masks and to keep the proper distance. While masks might not provide full protection, wearing masks can significantly help reduce transmission of the virus. Research shows that wearing a mask prevents the infection from spreading person to person. Regardless of whether this is the right time to travel, the right way to do it is with a mask.
Should you avoid cruises?
There were many reported and confirmed cases among passengers on cruise ships. For that reason, the CDC has issued a warning that advises travelers to avoid cruises for a period of time, especially for high-risk groups. Besides, most cruise lines seem to be waiting until the middle of September to start with their voyages again.
Is it the right time to travel if you want to avoid any inconvenience?
During the pandemic, some people were stuck in foreign countries unable to get back home, cruise ships were unable to dock, flights were canceled by the hundreds, etc. After all, these are peculiar andchallenging times, and no one knows what to expect in the near future. So, if you want to avoid any potential inconvenience, it might be smart to avoid any traveling for now if you can.
If you don’t have to travel, but still want to, choose a safer alternative. You can go visit a national park with people you’re already in contact with, such as your family members. As long as you stay out of contact with other people and frequently-touched surfaces, your trip should be characterized as lower-risk.
So is it the right time to travel again? Well, it’s not the best time to travel, that’s for sure. But in case your trip is urgent or you’ve decided to return home after living abroad, it’s still doable. Just follow all the safety measures, as their purpose is to protect you as well as other people.
30 thoughts on “Is it the right time to travel again?”
I think it will be a while before I am ready to travel. I had a trip to Hawaii booked for November, including a cruise. I just don’t see it happening.
Great post with a lot of informative information!
We have started travelling in Malaysia to support the local tourism who gets affected badly due to pandemic. But Covid-19 in Malaysia is under control so I feel safe travelling as long as everyone wears a mask and follow the SOP created by the government.
Great to hear. I flew from Toronto to Montreal on Thursday. No issues or doubts for me with all the new clean protocols in place.
A lot good information on here, I feel less sketched out about flying now
Really good information. I recently had to travel back home, as I go to uni in a different country, and found the whole experience so strange. Would definitely just recommend taking a face mask and hand gel everywhere like you mention! Great tips, thanks for sharing.
Thanks for the comments. I flew last Thursday and felt very comfortable with the precautions in place.
A lot if interesting information in here. I will consider these tips when planning my traveling. Thank you for sharing!
This is such a great and informative post! Traveling is definitely different right now unfortunately. We have a camper and have just been doing a lot of that and it seems to be working for us right now. Thanks for sharing this!
My pleasure, thanks for the comments
Excellent article, Mark. Your questions and answers have been top of mind for so many of us travelers. As you mentioned, I’ve had several friends caught in foreign destinations because the lockdown happened so quickly – and a few who just didn’t believe it would get this serious. We were nearly on a month-long trip to Africa when the lockdown commenced. As much as we hated missing the trip, I’m glad we weren’t stranded abroad. I like your conclusions and think your advise is great. Thanks for starting an engaging conversation. ~Terri
Thank you very much. I appreciate your comments and the feedback.
I was meant to go to Spain at the end of this month, luckily and gladly it got cancelled, I am disappointed but happy at the same time as I don’t really feel safe for travelling abroad just yet!
Yes, a bit soon for travelling abroad but it will return. Thanks for the comments.
This post is filled with lots of brilliant information. I would love to go on holiday but I’m just not sure yet, travelling will be so different for a while yet from temperature checks at airports to wearing masks on flights.
I flew from Toronto to Montreal last Thursday and it was all of those things. But I felt safer than going out for groceries. It will take awhile for most to feel comfortable. Thanks for the comments.
Hi Mark. That’s a great summary of the current holiday travel position, thanks. From a personal perspective, I still think that travelling abroad is a higher risk than domestic travel – even with masks on, you are often still crammed together in relatively confined spaces. I don’t need a holiday in the sun so badly that it negates the increased risk.
Appreciate your thoughts and comments, thanks
You touched on many important things to consider if traveling these days. We have been camping and hiking in the woods a lot which is safe but still feels like a nice break from normal life.
Thanks. And yes, we all need a break from the current norm. Cheers!
Mark, If you’re not sick, I don’t see the problem with traveling wherever you can, safely and taking precautionary measure. Being a travel enthused, I’m at my wits end sitting at home for the last four months. I’m planning a hiking trip right now actually for early September!
I agree. I flew to Montreal a couple of weeks ago. I’m planning on a trip to Jamaica in the next couple of months as well. I need to get out there!
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I think for now I will only be going on staycations if possible. I am too worried to go abroad at the moment. Thank you for the tips and information though.
Lauren | http://www.bournemouthgirl.com
We will travel again it’s a matter of when. I completely understand the desire to wait, it’s perfectly normal at this time. Thanks as always for the comments.
You are welcome.
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