In 2019, Australians took more than 11,300,000 million trips from May through November. But this year, the pandemic has redefined vacation travel. While corona cases continue to rise and fall worldwide, we are all forced to reconsider our vacation trips. The new variants of the virus have caused many countries to close their borders again. While a full-blown vacation is a long time away, there’s no reason not to plan a short break to some place close. But make sure you follow these essential tips to protect yourself and the people around you:
Take a coronavirus test one week before leaving for your vacation. In fact, pre-entry testing is mandatory in several countries. It can take a few days to get the results from a PCR test, so you must plan ahead.
Remember that you are not immune to the coronavirus just because you have tested negative. If you come in contact with an infected person after the test, you can be infected easily. Also, there are chances for testing inaccuracies. Therefore, you must self-isolate for one or two weeks before starting your journey.
Older adults above 60 years of age, and people with underlying health conditions, including kidney disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, heart disease, and obesity, are more likely to become seriously ill if they catch the coronavirus. If any of your travellers fall into one of these categories, it is good that you ask them to stay at home and not risk their lives during this pandemic.
Experts consider travelling by car to be the safest transportation mode, especially if you can reach the destination within a day. Flying can also be safe, as long as proper precautions are taken. If you need to fly, choose a nonstop flight, as the one with layovers can increase the chances of being exposed to the coronavirus. Check if your airline practices social distancing enforces face mask use, and provides ample access to sanitizers or hand washing. Travelling by bus is not recommended because of poor ventilation.
Ensure the hotel follows all public health guidelines, including wearing masks, installing plexiglasses, ensuring a 24 to 72-hour vacancy period between guests, and disinfecting the place frequently. Even if the place looks spotless, disinfect things before you touch them. Use your own essentials, including soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, Turkish towels, blankets, disposable cutlery, etc., even if the hotel provides you.
There can be many activities you’d love to do on your vacation. Theme parks, cafés, restaurants, DJs, live music parties, bars, and other indoor activities can put you at an increased risk of getting sick. Be wise to choose activities that keep you at a safe distance from others. Drive-in movies, ice skating, snowboarding, skiing, biking, sledding, ice climbing, etc., are some of the low-risk outdoor activities during the pandemic. Avoid crowded sidewalks, and choose routes that make it easy to keep your distance.
With the right information, make thoughtful choices and bring normalcy and joy to your life during the COVID-19 pandemic.