When the world felt the effects of the pandemic, everything seemed to stop. Travel outside of our homes was severely restricted, and overseas travel was nonexistent. It didn’t just feel like our travel bucket list would have to be put on hold, it felt like we were trapped. We went from easy international travel, to unable to leave our own homes in just a few short weeks.
However, things are getting better. More and more countries are opening up, and those that still have covid cases are taking the strictest measures in modern history to make sure it doesn’t spread further. Travel is becoming increasingly possible. Sure, we still have a few bumpy months ahead of us – maybe even a whole year, but travel will inevitably go back to normal. It’s inevitable.
Therefore, in anticipation of a (hopefully near) future when travel is finally possible, we’ve compiled a few safety tips to accompany you. Because although we might be flying to another country soon enough, it doesn’t mean that we’re going to leave our safety practices behind. If there’s one thing that the covid pandemic has taught us, it’s that it’s better to be safe – always.
- Do your research
With the memory of uncertainty still very near our minds, knowledge is power. Pick where you’re traveling wisely, and know everything there is to know about the location. Things such as how to get there, the safety inspections in place on the road, the establishment’s protocols, medical documents that you might need, and whether or not they accept walk-ins or you have to make a reservation are things that would make or break a normal vacation – much less one that comes right on the heels of a major pandemic.
First and foremost, check the venue itself. Rules change daily, and there’s no one more updated than the place’s staff. You can also check the rules and regulations on the road through your state’s tourism board or your local government.
- Always bring a mask
Things wouldn’t go back to normal with the snap of a finger, and even though travel bans might be lifted general safety policies would likely still linger for some time to come. Thus, never forget to bring masks wherever you go and make sure everyone you’re with gets one. Even if you’re going to camp out in the wild, you’re still bound to interact with people when you come back down when you stock up on food on the way there if you need to gas up, etc.
Speaking of masks, you might as well just bring general sanitation stuff, like hand sanitizer, disinfectant spray, sanitizing wipes, and even UV pouches if you want.
- Be wary of public transport
The less time you spend on crowded public transportation, the better. Although public transportation like trains, busses, and airlines have placed measures to reduce the risk of exposure like plexiglass screens, reduced seatings, and temperature checks, it’s still better to be safe by sorry. Always travel using the quickest, most direct route, and when you can, it might be worth it to pass up on that nearly-full bus.
- Flexibility is king
Flexibility is important in any traveling situation, but it became all the more crucial after the shock that covid brought to the world. Rules and policies are always in flux, and you don’t know when an outbreak would occur in any area. This might sound like hell for the careful, rigid travel planners – but don’t worry, you can plan around that. Always choose the refundable option, even if it might cost more. Don’t pay for anything before you’ve had your hands on it, and read up on your travel insurance (and go get it if you still don’t have one).
- Always be kind
Yes, the pandemic delayed your overseas trip by several months and you’re likely unhappy about it, but always remember that these past few months have been hard on everyone.
Travelling requires that you interact with a lot of servicemen and women – so be kind to them. Keep in mind that they were likely affected by the virus just as much as, and perhaps even more than, you. Don’t make their job be harder than it needs to be. Always abide by rules and regulations, and support small, local businesses wherever you go.
Just because restrictions are slowly being lifted doesn’t mean that it’s completely safe. It just means that the authorities are feeling more comfortable trusting you with your safety and protection. Now that travel is steadily becoming more possible, we still need to be vigilant while we enjoy it. You can do this by gathering information, packing essentials, being wary of public transport, being flexible in your plans, and always being kind.