Holiday Travel Tips during the Pandemic

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Aarna Pal-Yadav

It has been almost 2 years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and since then, we’ve been quite confined. After so many past trips were necessarily canceled, it would be undeniably exciting to travel, either to visit relatives or simply see the world. If you and your loved ones are planning to travel this holiday season, it is imperative that you take precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recently announced that people who are fully vaccinated may safely travel within the United States, but be sure to check individual state guidelines before traveling: some states require proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test before entering. If you are traveling abroad, besides the usual identification, remember to bring a vaccination card to prevent any holdups at your destination. A few days before your flight, check your destination’s COVID-19 rate to understand the level of precautions you must take. 

It is also important to consider your mode of transportation. For those at high risk, driving is the safest option because it limits interaction with other people. When driving is not feasible, flying is relatively safe because most airlines have mandated masks and taken numerous measures to ensure their facilities are clean. Traveling by public bus or train is not recommended because their ventilation systems are not as effective as those of planes. 

Before, during, or after your holiday, consider taking a COVID-19 test to ensure that you are not unknowingly bringing the virus to your destination or back home. If you test positive before your flight, most airlines will offer refunds if you call them. 

Once you arrive at your destination, take the same precautions that you normally would: wear your mask indoors, wash your hands regularly, remain 6 feet away from other people, stay clear of crowded areas, etc. These measures will ensure the safety of you and your loved ones. Above all, enjoy your vacation! While it may be a strange holiday season, I hope you can safely enjoy this opportunity to relax with your loved ones.