Travel during COVID: 5 things to consider before takeoff

By The Health News Team | June 8, 2022
Family traveling in an airport

Summer is here and just about everyone seems to have the travel bug. However, taking a trip is a bit different during a pandemic. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends these 5 things before your next vacation.

  1. Know your group’s COVID status. Does anyone in your group have — or may have — COVID-19? If so, they should not travel if they have COVID symptoms, or for a full 10 days after testing positive for COVID. Even if a person has simply been exposed to someone with COVID-19 before their trip, travel is not recommended for five days after their last exposure, and they should get tested before leaving home. Visit the CDC website to determine exactly how long to isolate or quarantine before your trip in the event of exposure or testing positive.

  2. Pack face masks. Although masks on public transportation are no longer required, the CDC recommends wearing a well-fitting mask on airplanes, buses, trains and ferries, as well as in airports, transit stations and seaports. Consider wearing a face mask in crowded indoor locations or if someone in your travel group or at home is at risk for severe illness.

  3. Look up COVID spread in your destination. The CDC provides a risk assessment for destinations worldwide based on the level of COVID-19 spread in the area. Locations are ranked from Level 1, where the COVID risk is low, to Level 4, where people should not travel at this time. All destinations within the U.S. are currently ranked Level 3, where COVID-19 risk is high, and travel is not recommended for people if they are not fully vaccinated.

  4. Know your vaccination status. Regardless of the COVID risk level at your vacation spot, it is recommended that each member of your travel party is up to date with COVID-19 vaccine and booster doses. Everyone age 5 and older should get a COVID-19 vaccine and people age 12 and older should receive a booster dose. Those over age 50 are also eligible for a second booster dose.

  5. Plan out activities. Activities and adventures that take place outdoors rather than indoors are safer, especially if loved ones are at risk for severe illness or under age 5 and not yet vaccinated. Avoid places with poor ventilation or that are too crowded. And don’t forget to consider the vaccination status and health practices of all the other people you’ll be spending time with during your travels.

Wherever your destination and whichever activities you choose to enjoy, make sure to protect yourself, your travel partners and others. According to the CDC, getting vaccinated is the best way to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Get COVID-19 vaccine information and access to COVID-19 resources from Sharp.

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