A woman practicing social distancing and wearing a face mask at the airport.
Healthy Living

How to Prepare for Travel During the Pandemic

Apr 16 2021

Traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic can be tricky. But with a little preparation, it’s possible to travel safely. Follow these guidelines so you can enjoy your next trip.

Considerations before planning a trip

Different countries, states and cities currently have specific COVID-19 travel guidelines in place that govern who can visit and what travelers need to do prior to visiting. Before planning a trip, find out about local travel guidelines in your destination so you can follow these rules.

Additionally, realize that any travel increases the chances of you spreading and being exposed to germs. Anyone you come into direct contact with will increase your risk for getting COVID-19. Additionally, if you have been in close contact with people outside of your household in the two weeks prior to traveling, you have a higher risk of exposure to the virus and potentially passing it to others during your trip.

Basic protection measures

Anyone who is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine should be fully vaccinated prior to travel whenever possible. For most domestic travel, fully vaccinated travelers do not need to get tested before travel and do not need to self-quarantine upon arrival. This guidance is also true for anyone who has recovered from COVID-19 in the past three months.

If you have not yet been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, get tested one to three days prior to your trip so you know that you are virus-free. When you get back, get tested three to five days after and self-quarantine for seven days regardless of your results. If you decide to not get tested, self-quarantine for 10 days.

Regardless of your vaccination status, you should continue to wear a face mask in public, stay six feet away from others, avoid crowds and wash your hands often during travel. Also, be sure to self-monitor for symptoms throughout your trip.

Decide what type of travel is best

Traveling by air involves spending time in crowded airports and on airplanes too. Social distancing can be difficult, especially on airplanes. Traveling on trains and buses also involves crowded terminals and sitting close to strangers.

Traveling by car is safer for social distancing. However, be sure to continue to keep your distance from others at gas stations, rest areas and hotels.

Make a list of what to bring

When traveling, pack your vaccination card so you can show proof of your vaccinated status. Also, pack your negative test results so you can prove that you’ve tested negative prior to your trip.

Bring enough reusable or disposable masks for everyone in your party to wear a fresh mask every day. Having hand sanitizer is important too, so you can clean your hands when you don’t have access to soap and water.

Stay updated on what Bon Secours is doing related to COVID-19.

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