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It has been more than a year since we saw the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, and most of us have been practicing social distancing ever since. Many travel enthusiasts are thinking of using the coming spring and summer to travel somewhere away from such an isolated existence. If you are one of those considering traveling again soon, be sure to pay heed to safety measures and health advisories to protect yourself and those around you. So, besides having your Covid-19 test, here are five air travel health tips for how to travel safely during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

1. Take Required Safety Measures Before Your Flight

Covid-19 has hardly left any part of the world unscathed. So your destination might have new scenery, but you need to follow the same fundamentals when it comes to your health.

  • First and foremost, get vaccinated if you can. It is your best security in the present circumstance.
  • Even after you and your co-travelers have gotten vaccinated, if any of you are sick or show common Covid-19 symptoms, do not travel.
  • Before you plan your trip, check the travel restrictions in your destination as well as the areas through which you might be passing.
  • When you are at the airport and on your flight, follow the social distancing norms issued by the airline. Whenever you touch something, remember to clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitizer.

2. Pack All Your Travel Essentials

One of the key aspects of traveling during a health emergency is packing all your essential items and being prepared for any situation. You never know how the situation changes in your destination, and therefore, pack the following things:

  • Carry separate sanitizing solutions like travel-sized hand sanitizer, alcohol sanitizing wipes, disinfectants, and liquid soaps for all your family members. Note that air travel has stricter liquid carrying limits as compared to ground transportation.
  • Carry well-packaged high-protein snacks and chocolate bars. If you feel hungry on your way, you can eat these snacks without needing to find them on the go.
Bring medicines from home to travel safely during Covid

Bring medicines and a first aid kit from home to avoid pharmacy visits when you travel

  • Take essential medications with you so you don’t have to find them at your destination. If you can, carry antiviral drugs and supplements to help yourself in case of an emergency.
  • Take a strong moisturizer like shea butter lotion to apply on your hands that will be quite dry after repeated sanitization.
  • Put important items like medicines, sanitizers, and headphones in a small carry-on bag for easy access.

3. Use a Face Mask And Sanitizer Throughout Your Air Travel

Even if you have gotten vaccinated, you shouldn’t let your guard down while COVID-19 is still a threat. Flying safely during COVID-19 requires you to consider the following points:

  • Wear your mask throughout the entire journey
  • Carry travel-sized hand sanitizer so that you can frequently sanitize your hands after you touch things
  • If you have to touch your face, clean your hands with alcohol sanitizing wipes beforehand
  • For extra protection, bring a face shield to protect your entire face from particles from your co-passengers
  • When you need to take the mask off, do not touch the inner surface area. And if you accidentally touch it, put on a new one immediately
  • Keep spare masks and sanitizer bottles in your handbag, so that you can access them in seconds

4. Eat And Sleep Properly Before Boarding Your Flight

Flying safely during Covid requires a strong immune system which means you’ll want to feel your best despite the tense times. The air pressure at 4,00,000ft is much lower than normal, and it can upset your stomach. Couple that with being in close contact with so many passengers in the cabin, and you know why your immune system might become susceptible. So, prepare in advance to remain in good shape during your air travel.

  • The gas in your body can increase significantly on a flight. Therefore, opt for easy and light meals before you board.
  • The meal you take just before the flight should not have sugar and be rich in complex carbohydrates and protein.
  • Fruits are great options for eating before you board a plane. Potassium-rich fruits like bananas can regulate your blood pressure and ease your muscle cramps during your air travel. Consider Vitamin C-rich oranges to boost your immunity.
  • A good night’s sleep is very crucial before you board the plane since may not get proper sleep on the flight.
  • Avoid drinking too much alcohol on the night before the journey, as it may leave you feeling ill during the journey.

5. Fly Airlines That Maintain Safety Norms

The airlines have a big role in ensuring their passengers are able to travel safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Check whether your airline offers the following services.

  • Your airline must sanitize all the interiors after each flight. This includes spraying disinfectants and clean-wiping all the seats, lavatories, doors, overhead nozzles, and every other touchpoint.
  • The airline should block the middle seat of every row to maintain a safe distance among passengers.
  • The airline crew should have done their Covid-19 tests and must have negative results.
  • Many international airlines are equipping themselves with High-Efficiency Particulate Air Filters (HEPA) to suck in 99% of harmful particles. Make sure your airline has the system installed.

Final Words

During these turbulent times, flying safely during COVID requires you to be conscious of all kinds of dangers. But with all the hygiene measures in place, you can complete a successful trip without compromising your health and happiness.

Even the biggest homebodies have started to get cabin fever after a year of this pandemic, in which global travel seems like a thing of the past. If you’re suffering from a serious case of wanderlust, trying out virtual travel experiences during quarantine might be the best thing to do right now. Although flights are canceled and borders are closed, you can still see the world through your computer screen. Here are some of the best virtual travel experiences to help scratch your travel itch during quarantine.

1. Explore The World Through Webcam

With a near-endless supply of live stream webcams throughout the world, you can virtually travel just about anywhere. Sites such as SkylineWebCams offer hundreds of incredible viewing experiences, so just pick where you want to go.

Webcams can be an incredible way to explore far-flung reaches of the earth that you might never get a chance to visit, such as the Lofoten Islands in Northern Norway, where you can live stream the Aurora Borealis. These cameras reveal magnificent landscapes and stunning night skies – you can almost feel the chill from here.

Live stream the Northern Lights over Lofoten Islands in Norway

Live stream the Northern Lights over Lofoten Islands in Norway

2. Embark on a Virtual Roadtrip with Google Maps

If you’re an engine nut then travel restrictions may have seriously ground your gears. Road tripping is a timeless travel experience. From the highways of America to the back roads of Scotland, exploring a country by vehicle is a great way to get off the beaten track.

Thanks to Google’s incredible efforts mapping the world through “street view” you can take a virtual road trip. Drop the pin anywhere from Siberia to South Dakota to explore the streets.

3. Take An Immersive Jungle Tour

Take a deep dive into the natural world through audio-visual virtual travel experiences during quarantine. Travel Colombia has created a wonderfully rich and sensational jungle journey, exploring the birdlife of their deep forests through sight and sound. “By downloading the accompanying list, you can test your ornithological know-how and see which species you can spot,” says Dominick Cavazos, a travel writer at Last Minute Writing and Draft Beyond. “The wildlife on offer is astounding.”

Virtual travel in the Colombian Jungles during quarantine

Travel virtually in the jungles of Colombia during quarantine

4. Hit The Club

If virtual bird watching doesn’t get your heart rate jumping, maybe you’d rather explore the underground club scene of cities across the world. Berlin has been the home of hard-hitting techno for decades, and night owls all over the world are missing their dose of dancing.

Fortunately, virtual club experiences can bring the latest DJs into your living room. You can even experience the coming-of-age experience, getting rejected from superclub Berghain in virtual reality for a dose of realism.

5. Catch a Virtual Tour of World-Famous Museums

“Museums and art galleries have responded with appropriate creativity to the unfolding pandemic and many are now offering valuable virtual experiences of their collections,” says Alanna Morey, a lifestyle blogger at Writinity and Researchpapersuk. Traditionally, you might have queued for an hour or more to get into the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, but now a virtual tour can be loaded up in seconds.

Virtual travel and visiting museums during quarantine

Take a virtual tour of the Van Gogh Museum during quarantine

6. Embrace Yellowstone’s Force of Nature

Exploring America’s national parks could take a lifetime, but fortunately, the pandemic has brought us a few shortcuts. Virtual tours of these parks have been made available free online and can bring you up close and personal with the natural wonders they contain. Yellowstone National Park, for example, provides POV virtual travel experience videos through many of its most famous sights – without the crowds!

7. Explore Architectural Wonders

Step inside some of the world’s most fantastic buildings, without even taking a stride. These virtual architectural tours offer viewers immersive experiences filled with facts and jaw-dropping sights, proving a real insight into the history and cultural impact of these architectural creations. One of the great joys of travel is walking through a new city gazing at centuries’ worth of culture accumulated in the architecture – now you can embrace this experience in the virtual age.

The Future of Virtual Travel Experiences During Quarantine

Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, you can explore the world from the comfort of your own home. Whether you’re missing the hustle and bustle of underground clubs or the vast quiet of a National Park, virtual tours can take you anywhere you can imagine – and beyond. A virtual travel experience during quarantine might quench your thirst for travel in surprising ways!

We are living in unprecedented times. Travel planning is normally our favorite pastime, but the pandemic has made things very complicated! Nowadays the planning phase includes checking and double-checking travel requirements, trying to predict how things will look in a few months based on ever-changing infection rates, and debating back and forth on whether it’s even the right thing to travel or go backpacking during the Covid-19 pandemic.

There is no clear answer on when it will be completely safe to travel again, but there are some things to consider if you’re really thinking about traveling in 2022. And if you must travel for an essential reason, follow our guidelines to travel as safely as possible.

Things to Consider Before Traveling for Leisure in 2022

Before you can even think about travel during the Covid-19 pandemic, it’s very important to sit down and do plenty of research. Even if a place is technically ‘open for travel’ you should take time to inform yourself about the following issues.

Understand How the Situation is Developing in Your Destination

You should understand the current rate of infection and the trends in the past few months. Even if your dream destination has a low infection rate, this can be misleading.

Try and understand the trend, and why the numbers are moving in that direction. Is it because of vaccinations? A recent lockdown? A low testing rate, which can hide the true number of cases? 

Consider the Risk You Bring to the Local Population

Remember that safe travel does not mean just safe for you. If you have decided to take the risk and travel or go backpacking during the Covid-19 pandemic, it’s important to think about how you might impact a more vulnerable location.

If you’re going to a place with low infection numbers, you might become the source of a new outbreak. This is especially irresponsible if you’re coming from a country where there is a more dangerous strain.

Research the Healthcare System of Your Destination

Should the worst-case scenario happen while away from home, you want to make sure you understand exactly how the healthcare system works in your destination.

Research the Healthcare System before you travel during Covid-19

If you get sick during your trip, make sure there would be a place for you in a hospital with sufficient health care. Check whether local hospitals have ventilators and other medical supplies to handle Coronavirus cases.

Find out if there is a reputable hospital near your destination, or whether you would have to travel to one in another city. If so, how would you get there? Find out how much it would cost for a hospital stay, and whether your travel insurance would cover the cost of medical and transport costs.

If you do bring Covid-19 to your destination, think about whether the local community would have access to high-quality health care. Do workers in tourism receive health benefits? Are there enough hospitals and hospital beds available to the local community? 

Check the Latest Covid-19 Travel Restrictions

It goes without saying that you should research whether your destination is accepting visitors. With rising Coronavirus cases, many countries have closed their borders to tourism.

Even countries that are still open may require a negative test to enter the country. Some places enforce mandatory testing upon arrival and a quarantine period until you receive your results. Make sure you’re aware of all the latest news to avoid any surprises before departure or upon arrival.

Hygiene Requirements and CDC Guidelines

If you really want to travel somewhere, you should become an expert on how they’re handling the Coronavirus outbreak. At a bare minimum, you’ll want to travel in a place that respects the CDC guidelines. Controlling the spread of Coronavirus requires mask-wearing, social distancing, and frequent handwashing. You want to make sure that the surrounding people are following these guidelines wherever you choose to travel.

Travel to Remote Destinations During Covid-19?

Some people may think it’s safer to travel to remote destinations during Covid-19 because they think they’ll be more isolated. The problem with remote locations is that access to health care may be nonexistent.

You, or any locals that you infect, would have to travel to a large city to receive care. If so, this can result in significant costs to you and the rest of the vulnerable population.

How to Prepare for Your Trip

If you must travel during the Covid-19 pandemic, and you’ve done all your research, there are a few extra measures you’ll need to take before your trip. Of course, getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and the people around you. On top of that, here are a few things you should do to ensure you’re traveling in the most responsible way.

Isolate Before Your Trip and Get Tested

If choosing to travel, the responsible thing to do is to isolate yourself for at least 5 days before your trip. Now more than ever, in the time before your big trip, you need to be diligent about wearing a mask in public and distancing yourself from friends and family.

You should also get tested and produce a negative test result. In fact, some countries actually require a negative test for incoming travelers. Some clinics require you to pay out of pocket, while some regions will offer the test for free if you have symptoms.

Be sure to do your research and schedule your test in the correct time range before your departure time. Be sure to isolate yourself after the test to minimize the chance you catch the Coronavirus afterwards.

Create an Emergency Plan

Choosing to travel or go backpacking during Covid-19 requires that you go above and beyond to think through what you would do in an emergency scenario:

  • What if you test positive upon arrival? You will be required to quarantine in your destination, potentially on your own dime. Make sure you have enough funds to pay for at least 2-weeks in a hotel, plus time off from work or the ability to work remotely. Quarantine is very strictly enforced, some tourists who have broken their quarantine have been penalized with fines or even jail time.
  • What if you need to get home urgently? Make sure you have the funds to do so at the last minute. Make sure you take out a travel insurance plan that will reimburse you for a change in plans. 
  • What if borders shut down, and you’re unable to leave? Make sure you have the funds and flexibility to stay put until the travel restrictions are lifted.

How to Travel Safely During Covid

If you must travel, be sure to follow these guidelines during your trip to ensure the safety of yourself and others.

Follow CDC Guidelines

Travel Safety Tips in the age of Coronavirus

Follow the CDC guidelines even if the local population doesn’t. Keep your distance, wear a medical-grade mask, bring travel-sized hand sanitizer with you and use it frequently, and consider bringing disposable gloves.

Make sure you book accommodation that follows CDC guidelines around hygiene standards. To help with this, Booking.com has added a search filter to find accommodation that has committed to Covid-safe practices. And Airbnb has implemented a set of guidelines that hosts and guests must follow during the pandemic.

Embrace the Great Outdoors

Avoid indoor activities, stick to outside activities whenever possible like hiking or biking. A warmer destination will be more conducive for this.

Minimize Contact with New People

You can minimize contact and prevent a super-spreader situation by staying put in one location. Consider renting a car so that you can avoid public transportation, and get a private room when possible. If you’re on a budget, HostelWorld is your best bet to find a private room for an affordable price. 

Don’t Take Unnecessary Risks

One of the reasons we’re urged to stay home is to keep the hospitals cleared for the high priority Coronavirus patients. If you must travel, try to be as careful as possible. Maybe save that adrenaline-fueled bucket list item for a later date.

Trip Ideas for Responsible Travel in 2022

The safest place to be during this pandemic is in your own house in your own community. However, there are certain types of travel that are more responsible for 2022. Remember that even if you’re planning to be in the middle of nowhere, the logistics of taking a trip will put you in contact with the outside world. Be sure to follow CDC guidelines when visiting a market, public bathroom, or gas station. 

Hiking

Ultralight backpacking without a stove

What better way to get away from other humans than to take to the trails? Hiking in solitude is one of the best ways you can socially distance during this global pandemic.

Staycations

Take this time to explore your surroundings. Pick up a travel book for your own town or nearby city. There are likely things to do in your own community that you have yet to experience. Now’s the time to explore your own backyard!

Camping/RV

Camping in the great outdoors, cooking for yourself with your own roof over your head is a great option for socially distanced travel. If you don’t have your own RV, you can rent one on RV Share – it’s like the Airbnb for camper vans.

The Open Ocean

If you can afford it, now would be a great time to go on a sailing trip. Get far away from the mainland in one of the best ways to socially isolate.

Bikepacking

Bicycle-backpacking is a growing trend among adventurous travelers. With a couple of side-saddle bags, you have your transport, your accommodation, and everything you need on your own 2 wheels.

Consider Postponing Until the Situation Improves

It should be clear by now that traveling during a pandemic involves all sorts of risks and ethical decisions. Not only that, but even if a country is technically ‘open for travel’, the pandemic has changed life as we know it in all corners of the globe.

It’s very likely that certain attractions will be closed, meaning that you might not get the same experience you’ve been dreaming of. If you’ve been saving for your dream trip, consider the fact that it might be more worthwhile to postpone it until things return to normal.

We know that this pandemic has been tough for travel-lovers, but everyone around the world has had to adjust their lives to the new normal. It is our opinion that leisure travel should wait until it is really safe to travel again.

Nevertheless, if you have to travel during the Covid-19 pandemic, be sure to follow these guidelines to reduce the risk to you and to the people around you.

If you are planning a backpacking trip in the near future, then it is vital that you prepare yourself to ensure that you are completely safe while travelling. To ensure you have a memorable and enjoyable time on your trip, you should take a look at the following travel safety tips for backpackers. This will provide you with all the information you need to feel secure when abroad. 

Always plan ahead

One of the most important steps for safe travel should occur well before you step on the plane, starting with your passport. Before you do anything, make sure you check the expiry date on your passport, as an out-of-date passport will not be accepted in any airport around the world.

Checking your travel documents is one of the most important travel safety tips

Some countries require travellers to have at least six months left on their passport from the entrance date. If your passport has run out or you have less than six months until the expiry, make sure you apply for a new passport at least three months before travelling to be on the safe side.

You may also require a visa to gain admittance into the country you are visiting. Of course, this will depend on where in the world you are travelling to, as some destinations are more lenient than others.

One country that does require a visa is the United States. If you are taking a backpacking trip to the US, you will need to obtain an ESTA before your trip. This applies to 38 countries, including the UK, EU countries, Australia, New Zealand and more. If your country is not listed, you will need to apply for a B-2 tourist visa which will grant you six months of travel access across the US. 

Protect yourself

When backpacking, you protect yourself at all times. This is especially important right now, with the COVID pandemic spreading around the world. While travel is restricted, there will be a time when borders are lifted, and backpacking trips will begin again.

When this occurs, you need to ensure that you maintain excellent hygiene standards by washing your hands regularly and keeping a compact hand sanitiser nearby at all times. It would help if you looked up the guidelines regarding COVID for each place you visit by checking the destination’s government or embassy website.

Travel Safety Tips in the age of Coronavirus

By sticking to the guidelines and maintaining good hygiene habits, you can significantly reduce your chances of getting sick. However, we are all human beings, and sometimes we get sick, especially when travelling, as this could result in reduced sleep, which may affect your immune system.

To prevent any problems with illness, you should purchase travel insurance which will cover you if you need to visit a doctor or require medication. It will also protect you financially if you suffer an injury such as a broken ankle. If you are hospitalised and miss a flight, having travel insurance will be a God’s send, as this will prevent you from splashing out on a new flight.

Watch what you eat and drink

It may seem like obvious advice, but maintaining a balanced diet is one of the most important travel safety tips when backpacking. Sometimes the distraction of sightseeing and meeting new people can result in missed meals or an unhealthy diet, which can leave you feeling lethargic or even ill.

Some people may think eating a balanced diet means you must eat healthy at all times, but this is not the case after all your backpacking trip should be all about fun and treating yourself to local food is part of that. However, you should try to be careful, especially if you have a weak stomach, as some foods may not agree with you, resulting in sickness.

Staying hydrated is also a massive must, especially if you are travelling to hot destinations. To ensure you keep on top of your water intake, you should pack a few reusable water bottles which you can put in your backpack or clip to your side while hiking, exploring and sightseeing.

Travel Safety Tips and COVID

Now you have all the travel safety tips you need for an exciting and super secure backpacking trip, why not look at our article on COVID-19 and backpacking. This guide will offer all the tips you need to stay sane before you can start travelling around the world again.

You may want nothing more than to book a getaway for this year. Due to the pandemic, many of us had to postpone or cancel holidays in 2020 as travel restrictions put our wanderlust on hold. However, with the rollout of vaccines, many are feeling much more positive about booking an adventure this year. Whether you’re planning to stay and explore parts of the UK or head away for some sun, sand or even snow, here are some top tips to help you with planning a holiday in 2021.

Check advice from the Foreign Office

Before you book anything, you’ll need to check the Foreign Office travel advice page. If they warn against any non-essential travel to the destination you’d like to go to, it’s likely your trip will get cancelled and your insurance won’t cover you.

Take a look at the advice available before you book and keep an eye out for any changes that may happen. If you’ve booked a trip months in advance, the travel provider will most likely wait until a week or two before you’re due to depart before cancelling, just in case the advice changes before then.

On the FCDO page you’ll also see whether the country you’re travelling to is on the travel corridor list, and whether or not you’ll need to quarantine on your return.

Make sure your booking has a flexible booking policy

Let’s face it, the world can change in a moment’s notice. During the pandemic, most travel providers, airlines and cruise ships introduced more flexible booking rules. These allow you to amend the details of your holiday at no extra cost, for example if you want to change the departure and return dates.

Many airlines have also temporarily waived their flight change fee too, which means you’ll be able to alter these details if the pandemic forces you to stay at home a bit longer. It’s well worth checking that your holiday provider has a more flexible booking policy in place, as changing information can be quite costly!

Consider a package holiday

A package holiday can often offer much more reassurance and protection where your money is concerned. Many companies have ATOL-protected holidays. This means that if the firm you’ve booked with goes under, you’ll be refunded your holiday cost.

Check your travel insurance

Travel insurance is a must at the best of times, and even more right now. Many policies will have changed or been amended during the pandemic, factoring in a whole host of new things such as medical costs related to COVID-19, or if you have to quarantine.

Most companies will cover some coronavirus situations, but make sure you check the fine print or speak to a member of their team to clarify everything in writing before you travel.

Flexibility is everything

Let’s face it, whether you’re staying in the UK or travelling abroad, we’re all going to have to be more flexible. Not only with where we holiday to, but what dates we pick and what type of accommodation we stay in.

The world of travel is changing every day, and it’s important to make sure you’re prepared. Whether that means you step up your financial preparation, or that you have more documentation to take with you than in previous years, there will be plenty to think about before planning a holiday in 2021.