The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world as we know it within a matter of months. From stay-at-home quarantine orders to global travel bans, the onslaught of life-altering measures taken to slow the spread of the virus has impacted everyone across all nations. Though the future of the virus’ spread is still up in the air and hope for a vaccine dangles in limbo, we all must be patient and soldier on the best we can.
If you’re in a unique situation that requires you to travel amid the pandemic, you’re likely biting your nails with anxiety wondering how you can get from destination A to destination B without contracting the virus. Fortunately, there are a number of protective measures you can take ahead of your travels to safeguard yourself from exposure.
Using this guide, we’ll walk you through 4 COVID-19 pandemic travel tips you need to know to stay safe and stay healthy.
Tip #1: Stay up to date on travel warnings
Staying in the loop about travel warnings is an essential piece to your travel puzzle. Conditions change every single day, and it’s important to know if your travel plans have any risk attached to them. Check out these three resources before you set off.
- World Health Organization (WHO) Global Tracking
- CDC Travel Advisories
- COVID-19 Flight Waivers and Refund Policies by Airline by AirfareWatchdog
Tip #2: Pack and wear face coverings
Many cities across the globe are requiring citizens to wear face coverings when in public. This is an especially crucial tip to keep in mind when traveling. Physical distancing can be a challenge when traveling, so a facemask serves as the best protective measure.
By sporting a face mask, you can protect yourself from airborne virus particles that could otherwise make contact. While surgical masks are reserved for medical first responders, you can achieve the same protection from a cloth mask.
If you’re planning on being away from home for a few days or weeks, it may make more sense to purchase bulk face coverings. Cloth face masks need to be washed frequently to protect you best, and if you’re unable to access a washing machine while traveling, having a few masks packed away can better ensure your safety.
Tip #3: Wash your hands frequently
Washing your hands is the number one way to fight any virus. Your hands come in contact with a myriad of surfacesto minimize the risk of contact with the COVID-19 strain infecting your system, be sure to wash your hands frequently and thoroughly.
According to the CDC, the key times to wash your hands include:
- Before, during, and after prepping food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After touching garbage
- After handling pet food or pet treats
- After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
If you’re unable to access soap and water during these crucial hand-washing times, hand sanitizer will suffice. Hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol content will do the best job.
The CDC also recommends following the five-step hand-washing procedure to ensure your hands are squeaky clean:
- Wet your hands with running water and apply soap to your palms
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Make sure to get the backs of your hands, in between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.
- Rinse your hands under running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Tip #4: Disinfect everything
Whether you’re traveling by bus, train, car, or airplane, disinfect everything you come into contact with. Carrying a package of disinfectant wipes makes doing so a breeze. When cleansing your area, be sure to wipe down armrests, seat trays, television screens, sound controls, and anything else that may be subject to frequent human contact.
These are strange times we’re living in and it’s more important now than ever to keep your health and safety at the forefront of your mind. Stay clean out there!