The holiday season is upon us! A lot of families are excited to take that much-needed vacation or travel to family.
Given the rising cases of COVID-19 in the U.S., air-kissing your family and friends over Zoom is a wiser option. However, if you will still travel during this time, it is still possible to lower the odds of getting infected by planning every detail and carefully considering the COVID-19 risks and hazards at every step of your journey.
Your Dallas dentist would like you to consider these holiday travel safety tips to make sure that you don’t pick up unwanted souvenirs along the way.
Regardless of the precautions you take and where you’re going, traveling during this special time carries some risk. It would pay off to know the local infection rate. If you are considering traveling via plane from an area with a high number of cases, there is a big chance that a passenger near you will have the disease. This means that your infection risk is higher, and there is a likelihood that you may infect any family or friend that you are planning to visit.
Identify your destination’s COVID-19 rate. You can check this via the website of its local public health department. You can also go to the comprehensive website Global Epidemics to check the color-coded risk level of your destination.
According to the CDC, older people, as well as those with underlying conditions (kidney disease, diabetes, cancer, heart conditions) are more likely to catch the virus and require hospitalization.
If you are considered high-risk, going to a crowded place or flying on a plane will be very risky. However, driving to an isolated vacation spot is safer.
It is wise to do this, since getting a negative result will lessen the odds that you will unknowingly contract the virus.
Plan ahead – it may take a few days to get results from a PCR test. As a further precaution, it would be wise to self-isolate 1-2 weeks before your trip.
It’s comforting to know that there are a lot of business establishments that are paying close attention to sanitize common areas and rooms. If you are planning to stay in a hotel, talk to the management beforehand and ask about their safety procedures.
If you are staying with family, it is a good idea to wear a mask whenever you are indoors.
Bringing in takeout or cooking your own food while traveling is safest. Eating al fresco is relatively safe. Also, be sure that the restaurant is following safety protocols, such as making sure that the tables are situated far apart to allow for social distancing.
It’s relatively easy to feel that the limitations of your “regular” life don’t apply when you’re on a vacation. But never let your guard down; it is essential that you follow the guidelines set by CDC at all times. Wash your hands regularly, keep social distance, avoid touching your face as much as possible, and wear a mask at all times in public.
It’s best if you look for outdoor activities that keep you distanced from others. Look for venues that offer safe, creative entertainment, like drive-in concerts and movies. During this special time, every activity requires meticulous forethought. Keep in mind these holiday travel safety tips, and remember, staying home is still the best way to protect yourself, your family, and others.