As vaccinations are rolling out and the weather is getting better, many Americans are choosing to travel. In fact, many people were beginning to travel again throughout winter. However, how can you ensure you stay safe while traveling?
Many states recommend getting a Covid-19 test several days before you leave on your trip, no matter where you are choosing to go. The same is recommended for when you return. The CDC also recommends no nonessential activities for 7 days once you return to ensure no symptoms appear. When planning your trip, ensure that you have allowed for these recommendations where possible. This may mean working from home for the first week back after your vacation.
You should ensure you follow the recommended daily steps to stay safe and healthy no matter where you are. This includes washing your hands with soap and water regularly and using hand sanitizer when out and about. You should also maintain social distancing requirements, and wear a mask indoors.
In past years, the majority of travelers would opt to fly to their destination. However with the virus, and lack of social distancing options of flights, and limited vaccinations in some locations, more people are choosing other transit options. Just be aware in the US, masks are required on public transit. This includes planes, trains, and busses. If you do choose to travel by air, some TSA rules have changed. Be aware that you may be asked to scan your own boarding pass, and be asked to hold your ID up next to your face for identification purposes.
Due to the restrictions on public transit, many travelers are opting for road trips. On a road trip, you have the flexibility of where to stop, how often you stop, and where you want to eat. Just be sure to follow the health best practices whenever you are out of your vehicle.
With different states having varying levels of restrictions and rules, you should research your destination before booking your hotel, flights, or planning your road trip. Some states, such as Hawaii and Alaska require a negative Covid-19 test within 72 hours of arrival. Additionally in Hawaii, you must stay within your resort for 3 days after arriving. Other states only allow takeout or outdoor dining at restaurants – so ensure you pack layers in case the weather changes.
With the added restrictions and risk of the virus, it is recommended that you book a self-sustained property where possible. This could be an AirBnb, or you could even consider renting an RV for your trip. If there are no AirBnb options available within your budget or at your destination, check hotel websites for their coronavirus requirements and practices. Many hotels have paused breakfast buffets, and may not have all facilities open. If amenities are crucial to your stay, ensure you check they will be available before booking.
Wherever you choose to travel to, ensure you follow the mandated guidelines in place for that state, county, or city. As these are frequently changing, you should regularly check for any updates. Plan for changes that could happen during your trip. If the area you are traveling to does not currently have a mask mandate, you should pack one anyway in case it changes while you are there.
As the world slowly works towards returning to normal, more people will begin traveling again. Follow the guide above to ensure you and your family stay safe while traveling this year. Do your part to keep yourself healthy and follow the mandates that are in place.