The days are growing longer and colder, and most of us have started making plans for visiting our old parents or friends living in different parts of the globe. Travelling has never been risk-free; there’s always a chance of getting sick because of the underlying travel stress, contacting frequently touched surfaces in public places, and changes in environment and climate. But this year, traveling feels even more, riskier because of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19 has considerably decreased the number of people traveling this year to different states or countries than in the past year. However, in the past several months, we have seen a substantial rise in travel. Still, most people prefer staying home this year to keep themselves and their loved ones protected from the COVID-19 infection.
Are you planning to travel to the COVID-19 pandemic? What safety measures are you considering? Are they enough to prevent the infection? Read on this blog to know some of the most essential safety tips to travel safely in COVID-19.
Tips To Travel Safely In COVID-19
Here are some tips to consider to travel safely during COVID-19 pandemic:
Be aware of the COVID-19 rate in your locality
No matter where you live and how many precautions you take, traveling while the COVID-19 infection is still circulating carries some risk. In the United States, the infection has spread very rapidly in the past several months and is still continuing to do so. Also, many COVID-19 cases are symptomatic nowadays - that means you can have the virus and still be unaware of it because of no apparent symptoms. That’s the reason why we recommend knowing the local infection rate.
For example, if you are planning to travel by plane from an area with a high COVID-19 rate, naturally, the chances will be higher than a person traveling with you who has the disease. This will elevate your chances of getting the infection and also to infect any family members you’re planning to visit.
Moreover, some states require people from high COVID-19 rates to quarantine for 14 days after arrival and require submission of proof of a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours before.
If you are needed to quarantine, make sure you are prepared for it, such as bringing any groceries or medications. You will not be permitted to step out of your home for 14 days, and so these preparations are vital.
Evaluate COVID-19 rates at your destination
Knowing the COVID-19 rate of the place where you live isn’t enough; you should also evaluate the infection rate at your destination. If you are heading towards a highly infectious zone, your risk of becoming ill with the virus is higher. As we know, various hospitals are also running out of bed; you are less likely to receive adequate care if you get infected. Knowing the infection rate at your destination helps you make a calculated risk analysis.
Assess the health situation of you and your host
A critical question to reckon with is how risky it can be traveling for you. In fact, everything associated with COVID-19 needs to be personalized. For example, older people and those with a chronic illness are more likely to get infected with the novel coronavirus and also for developing complications from the disease. What factors increase your risk of getting infected and developing serious complications? It includes obesity, cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease.
If one or more factors apply to you, traveling on any public transport or going to a crowded place can be specifically risky for you. In such a case, we would recommend using your personal vehicle only for moving to different places. This would help reduce the risk of infection as you are not near others. Just make sure to wear a mask and use hand sanitizers each time you step out of your vehicle and get in.
Also Read: How To Get Rid Of Lockdown Weight Gain
Test, test, test (Before, during, and after your trip)
Some airports may want you to get tested for coronavirus in the days before you travel. Getting a negative test result helps them to minimize the odds you will carry and transmit infection at your destination. Remember, it can take a couple of days to get results from a PCR test, so you need to plan your trip accordingly.
It's significant to know that a negative test result doesn’t make you immune from the infection; you can still get infected during or after the trip. If you experience any COVID-19 symptoms, consult your doctor to confirm the diagnosis.
As an additional precaution, you can self-quarantine 14 days before starting your journey.
Choose your mode of travel
Health experts consider driving to be one of the safest modes of travel nowadays. If you wish to go to a place that can be reached within a day, always prefer going by your own vehicle to minimize your interaction with others.
The second mode of travel you can choose in COVID-19 pandemic times is flight. Flying can be essentially safe as long as all precautions are taken.
Plan where you’ll stay
Several hotels are nowadays paying special importance to sanitize common areas and guest rooms. Some are even buffering rooms, which means they keep their rooms unoccupied for a couple of days before the next guests arrive. It is done to allow any virus in the air enough time to diminish. Health experts suggest calling beforehand to know what special measures they are following in their hotel.
No matter how clean or disinfected a room may appear, make an effort to disinfect all the high-touch objects and surfaces yourself, specifically doorknobs, light switches, remote controls, sink faucet handles, etc. If the room has a kitchen, wash all the cups, plates, and silverware before using.
What about your meals?
One major challenge you will face while traveling is deciding on the restaurant you will have your meals. Cooking your own food or getting takeout while traveling is considered to be the safest.
Know if your selected restaurant follows all the general guidelines of COVID-19 prevention, such as wearing a mask, disinfecting surfaces often, social distancing, etc.
Be smart about choosing the activities to do
There may be many different activities you love to do on a trip, but rethink whether doing those activities now would be safe. Theme parks with internal rides, karaoke cafes, and bars can increase your risk of getting infected, so it's better to avoid them.
Rather find some activities that you can do outside while maintaining social distancing from others.
Traveling in COVID-19 can be risky. Ensure you wash or sanitize your hands often, keep a safe distance from others, and disinfect high-touch surfaces. The tips mentioned in this post will minimize your risk of developing an infection, and enjoy your trip to the fullest.