Travelling abroad for your holidays? Here are our top tips to keep your holidays COVID-free

In this article we’ll share with you some of our top tips on how to keep your holidays COVID-free when travelling abroad.

Summer is usually the time of year when people travel and explore different parts of the world, however in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic people are, understandably, hesitant to travel. So how can you get your summer vacation fix while still staying safe? Here are some guidelines you should follow while travelling during a COVID-19 outbreak. 

Check the status and government guidelines in the country you’re traveling to

There is a general recommendation that all non-essential travelling should be avoided, however some countries are exempted from this recommendation. Check if your travel destination is on the list of “safer” countries. Find out the entry requirements and the local government guidelines for the country you are going to visit, you might risk having to stay in quarantine.

Use a car and avoid public transport if possible

The safest way to travel at the moment is by car as it limits contact with other people. Flying and any other form of transportation that brings you closer to people holds more risk. Onboard of the airplane is pretty safe as HEPA filters capture 99 percent of microbes, however be mindful of keeping a safe distance in check-in queues, whilst boarding and in crowded areas. If you can, choose a window seat as far away from the restrooms as possible and keep the overhead vent open and aimed towards your face. According to Dr. Farley Cleghorn, global health practice head at Palladium, an international impact consultancy firm, this will help you stay safer as the constant airflow creates a “wall” that can somewhat restrict exhaled air from other passengers.

Tips for staying safe in hotels this summer

There are a few things to keep in mind that can make your stay at a hotel or other accommodation safer. For example, research the accommodations plan to keep guests and staff safe before booking your stay, what is the accommodations plan for if someone falls ill with covid during their stay, decline housekeeping (as it minimizes the amount of people in contact with your room) and make sure to vent out your room and sanitize it upon arrival. However, do not fret! Infectious disease specialist, Dr. Joel Kammeyer, says not to worry too much. He says that travellers that are committed to using masks and keeping social distance from others will be fine regardless of what accomodation they choose. 

Follow general recommendations

The most important part of travelling during a COVID-19 outbreak is to follow general recommendations regarding cough etiquette, personal hygiene and keeping at least one metre distance from others. Remember to:

  • Make sure to keep your hands clean, either by washing hands with soap and water (for at least 20 seconds) or using alcohol-based hand gels. 
  • When sneezing or coughing, cover your mouth with a flexed elbow or tissue paper. Then immediately dispose of the tissue and perform hand hygiene. 
  • Do not touch your mouth or nose.
  • Wear a mask if the country or situation you are in requires it (in some countries one will have to in public spaces, on public transports, etc.).