Practical Tips for Planning Your First Post-pandemic Trip

COVID-19 has transformed the world. And as countries begin to emerge from lockdown, we are looking towards the new normal. Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, many of us are now beginning to dream of a post-pandemic trip.

For those who are fully vaccinated, many activities are now safer. In fact, some countries that are now open to quarantine-free travel for fully vaccinated people traveling from medium-risk countries. That said, traveling is now possible. However, it doesn’t mean that traveling is completely risk-free.

If you plan to travel – whether you’re fully vaccinated or not- here are a few tips for planning your post-pandemic trip.

Before Planning Your Post-Pandemic Trip, Understand Your Risk

If you’re fully vaccinated, you now have added protection against COVID-19. However, this doesn’t mean that you are completely immune to the virus. So take necessary precautions, especially if you’re flying or traveling to a high-risk city or country where COVID-19 community spread is still high.

If you’re not fully vaccinated, the Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC) advises delaying travel plans. This is for both your and other people’s safety. This advice also applies to people who have comorbidities since they have a higher risk of contracting the virus.

Credits to @jeshoots via unsplash

Additionally, most cities and countries have more stringent safety protocols for those who are unvaccinated. For instance, you may have to spend a long time in quarantine which can eat up your vacation time.

So talk to your primary care doctor. They will help you understand the risk and make recommendations to help keep you and your family safe. Lastly, they can help you understand the benefits of getting vaccinated.

Tips for Planning Your Post-Pandemic Trip

Decide Where You’re Going

As with any trip, you first need to decide where you’re going. This is especially important in the new normal since you can’t be sure whether the city or country has opened its borders. Plus, you need to be aware of the entry requirements and restrictions of your destination.

Here are some of the most common requirements:

  • A negative COVID-19 test result three days prior to your international travel
  • Or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 regardless of vaccination status
  • Some cities or countries may require that you present a valid vaccination certificate

Entry requirements and restrictions will vary per destination. In fact, some countries may also require an Air Travel Pass and other applications before you can travel.

Know Your Local COVID-19 Departure and Re-Entry Requirements

Aside from the requirements and protocols of your destination, you must also be aware of your local COVID-19-related requirements.

Most cities have dropped their quarantine and testing requirements for residents upon returning. However, some cities may still require a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival, plus a mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Research on the Community Spread of Your Destination

It’s also a good idea to research the number of COVID-19 cases in your destination. Even if the community spread is low in your City, other cities or countries are still experiencing high levels of community spread.

If you’re vaccinated, you can make the personal decision to follow through with your post-pandemic trip but still be cautious. However, it’s best to avoid traveling somewhere with a high community spread.

Credits to @rparmly via unsplash

Travel Safely

Whether you’re riding an airplane or a bus or a private car, be sure to practice basic safety precautions. This is crucial whether you’re vaccinated or not.

  • Wear a mask at all times when you’re on public transportation.
  • Bring extra masks if you’re staying for a few days or weeks.
  • Use disinfecting wipes to disinfect surfaces – this is especially useful when soap and water are not readily available.
  • Keep a safe distance and practice proper hand hygiene.
  • Do not travel if you’re sick or are starting to feel sick.

Take necessary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while traveling. Practice these safety measures while stopping for gas, stopping for food, or staying in hotels.

Have Fun!

Lastly, get out there and have fun! However, make sure to follow the recommended guidelines.

Remember, it’s still safer being outdoors than staying in a crowded indoor place. If you’re visiting museums and other enclosed spaces, follow any mask guidelines.

If you’re going to the beach, then it’s safer to be socially distant from other beach-goers. As long as you’re socially distanced from others, you may also feel comfortable not wearing your masks.

Conclusion

As cities and countries begin to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, borders will start opening up. We may start dreaming of going on vacation and finally seeing family and friends.

But this doesn’t mean that COVID-19 has been eradicated and gone. That said, we still need to take necessary precautions and stay safe so as not to spread the virus.

Lastly, as you plan your post-pandemic trip, consider scheduling an online or on-call appointment with a primary care doctor before hitting the road.

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