Returning to Travel Safely
As travel restrictions ease and countries begin opening their doors to tourists, many people are starting to plan their long-awaited getaways. Countries that rely on tourism were hard hit when the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, and the return to travel can begin to generate socioeconomic growth in countries that rely so heavily on tourism.
Travel is not as simple these days as purchasing a ticket online and heading to the airport the next day. Travelling during the COVID-19 pandemic can be difficult to navigate as travel requirements differ among countries and are frequently changing. While travelling may take some extra planning, it’s also important to keep in mind the impact travel can have on the communities that we are visiting abroad.
While COVID-19 vaccination rates are high in many regions in Canada, and cases of COVID-19 are decreasing in many parts of the world, it’s important to remember that COVID-19 is not yet behind us. As we return to travel we must be mindful of how our travel plans might impact the communities that we visit. Travel increases the risk of getting and spreading COVID-19, even if fully vaccinated. It is our responsibility to keep the communities safe that we are visiting.
How can we travel responsibly? Below are some things we can do to help protect the wellbeing of communities that we travel to:
Don’t travel if you are sick
Protect others by staying home when you’re sick. Expect the unexpected and purchase travel medical insurance with cancellation in the event of an illness that requires you to reschedule your trip. If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 on your trip you should self-isolate and stay away from other people.
Follow the rules of your destination country
Check if there are quarantine requirements or travel restrictions in your destination country. Depending on where you’re going you may need to quarantine on arrival for up to 14 days. If there are restrictions to some regions, respect the community’s decision whether they are ready to welcome visitors.
Ensure your vaccines are up to date
Visit a travel clinic for a pre-travel consultation to learn which vaccines are recommended for your destination country. Prevent the spread of disease by ensuring all your routine vaccines are up to date, including a flu shot.
Avoid getting sick
Take precautions to avoid getting sick with COVID-19 or other contagious diseases while travelling:
- Washing your hands frequently is one of the best things you can do to prevent the spread of disease. Washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds is the most effective way to kill germs. Have an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with you for when soap and water are not available. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
- Practice physical distancing by avoiding crowded places like markets and public transportation, staying more than 2 meters apart from others whenever possible.
- Wear a well-fitted mask when indoors in public spaces or in close contact with others. Avoid indoor areas with poor ventilation. Consider travelling to destinations where you will spend more time outside.
Enjoy your long-awaited travels knowing you are keeping yourself and others safe. Contact TravelSafe Clinic to find out more about the health risks and recommended vaccines in your destination country. Travel safe!