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Everything you need to know about travelling over 2020 holiday break
A look into the ins and outs of travel amidst a pandemic
December 17, 2020
As the year comes to an end and the holidays approach, you may be hesitant about your plans for winter break. Whether you’re staying home or spending some time away, it’s essential to keep safe.
While traveling may be unlike what we’ve seen before, here are some tips to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect yourself and others.
The CDC website has a great list of safe travel tips:
- Check travel restrictions before you go.
- Bring extra supplies, such as masks and hand sanitizer.
- Know when to delay your travel. Do not travel if you or your travel companions are sick.
- Wear a mask to keep your nose and mouth covered when in public settings.
- Avoid close contact by staying at least 6 feet apart (about two arm lengths) from anyone who is not from your travel group.
- Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol).
- Avoid contact with anyone who is sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
To ensure your safety through your travels, be sure to wear an effective mask. The most effective masks are N95 masks, which unfortunately are only available to healthcare professionals; however, there are some effective alternatives for the general public.
The next best mask to wear is a tightly fitted cloth mask. In these masks, the more fabric layers, the better. Studies have found that multilayer cloth masks can block between 50% and 80% of droplets and particles, according to CNN. Therefore, masks with two or three layers will be the most effective for yourself and others’ safety.
When wearing a mask, please be sure to find a tightly fitting mask that covers both your mouth and nose!
Another good option is a face shield combined with a multilayered mask, especially on public transportation such as airplanes, rideshare vehicles, buses, and trains.
During your trip, do your best to avoid mass gatherings, public transportation, and being in crowded places.
If you are traveling via airplane, it is important to note that each airline has handled the virus differently. Some reduce capacities on flights, and others are entirely blocking out the middle seat in each row. Educate yourself beforehand on the practices of your chosen airline.
However, there is cause for some hope when it comes to traveling via airplane. According to the CDC website, “Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes.” Despite this, however, “social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and sitting within 6 feet of others, sometimes for hours, may increase your risk of getting COVID-19.”
Ultimately, travel over winter break this year will look very different from what we have seen before, so please do your best to adhere to safety guidelines on your travels. Have fun and be safe this holiday season!
To get more information about COVID-19 cases,