Let’s keep in mind that the travel tips experts don’t always know what’s right, few admit when they are wrong, and recommendations are changing often. My goal here isn’t to convince you to travel. My goal here is to show you how we are traveling and give you suggestions on safe ways to travel if you feel so inclined to do so. Since we are in unchartered territories I feel like its only fair to explain where I come from so you can better understand my point of view, before you judge me behind your keep board.
So I did some digging around to come up with a plan we feel comfortable with. But keep in mind I am team, no fear. That is because we are very low risk as is our immediate friends, family, and we haven’t seen co-workers in months. And we are responsible travelers with a passion for local businesses and seeing them succeed. I am very conscientious of others as well, but me traveling via car and stopping to fill up and touching a gas handle, then you grabbing a pump and deciding to pick your nose before washing your hands is on you, not me. I can’t lose sleep over that.
COVD-19 TRAVEL TIPS
Consider the following risks depending on how you travel:
Air travel requires spending time in security lines and airport terminals, which can bring you in close contact with other people and frequently touched surfaces. Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes. However, social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and you may have to sit near others (within 6 feet), sometimes for hours. This may increase your risk for exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19. But masks are required on most commercial flights, and as of date of publishing, no traces have been traced back to a commercial flight.
Making stops along the way for gas, food, or bathroom breaks.
You may have to stop less often for food or bathroom breaks, but RV travel typically means staying at RV parks overnight and getting gas and supplies at other public places.
If you are TEAM TRAVEL
We started traveling on May first when short term rentals opened up in certain in places. I kept things quiet after seeing how many people would lose their shit over someone else on the internet traveling. People on house arrest have so much time on their hands to let everyone else know what they are doing is wrong. But when we first started traveling we were very conscientious of others. Hotels for the most part have always been opened but we were being very conservative and wanted private amenities and we wanted to be able to socially distance from other people. So we hopped in the car, packed our food, and stopped minimally. Once we arrived we had private pool and beach access. That along with UberEats delivered to the door, we came into less contact with people on vacay then we did back at home in the neighborhood.
But come June, our travel changed drastically as new information became available. No longer were people wiping off their groceries after new information came out, so I stopped wiping down every hard surface in our AirBnbs and fogging their air with possible carcinogens to make the air sterile. We also ate out more often on vacation following city guidelines and but still preferred meals outside. Its a personal preference, I’d rather just be outside. If you have kids on vacay you know how much better this is. Drinks taste just as good outside as they do inside.
How to Protect yourself and others during your trip:
- Wash hands often
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth, or face in general. Never realized how much I did this until being told not to.
- Avoid close contact with others outside of your family
- Wear a cloth face covering in public. This isn’t a lack freedom discussion. The way I looked at it while traveling is that it does me no harm to wear one. If I’m traveling into your town/state/etc I respect you enough to keep one on. Plus when I booked my travel I knew it was a possibility and I’m a rule follower. Just as much as I would prefer to not wear pants, I do because they are required at most establishments my family frequent.
- Cough and sneeze using elbows but I would avoid it all together If I were you because death stares come from all directions.
How to clean and disinfect
Our first trip, I went through the AirBnb knowing it hadn’t been rented for months, and emptied a can of Lysol into it. Wiping down every door knob, handle, remote, light switch etc. I brought pillowcases and blankets for the bed. hahah. If you can’t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at? A month later, I did none of this. Because things changed. And in July I am flying and staying in hotels. Babysteps. All the while personal hygiene hasn’t changed. Personal space and hand washing. But then again, I did this before all this began. My travel destinations and research usually started with “least busy time to visit…”
State and Local Travel Restrictions
Make sure you check the state or local health department where you are, your route, and your planned destination. While you are traveling, it’s possible a state or local government may put into place travel restrictions, such as stay-at-home or shelter-in-place orders, mandated quarantines upon arrival, or even state border closures. Also now is not the time to be strict with your plans. We had an AirBnb cancel the day before we were supposed to leave, because city restrictions go pushed out. (we also didn’t get back all of our money, but that’s a story for another day).Now is the time to be flexible. So book through trusted partners that have refund policies.
Things to Consider When Choosing Overnight Accommodations
Check the prevention practices before you go (check often as they change often)
- Use as many options for contactless options such as reservation, check-in, payment, key.
- Ask what the updated policies about cleaning and disinfecting
- Wear a cloth face covering in common areas. Check the cities as they have a lot have mandatory requirements now.
- Avoid areas that may lead to close contact with other people as much as possible.
- Take the stairs or use elevator when you can ride only with people from your household.
My advice has always been to “just take the trip” and now its more important than ever, because you never know what tomorrow holds.
Do you have any extra travel tips? Let me know in a comment below!