It’s probably safe to assume that the main thing helping you cope with the COVID-19 pandemic are the many daydreams of all the traveling you’ll do once things return to normal-ish.
With the virus still threatening the public’s health and safety, it might be a while before you can enjoy another getaway. However, this also means that you have plenty of time to plan your next big adventure.
If you find yourself eager to start traveling again, then here are some useful travel tips to help you plan for your next big getaway in a post-COVID-19 world.
Put Safety First
In an effort to combat the virus, many states implemented stay-at-home orders. Even now, as restrictions ease up, there are still many cities that are maintaining strict social distancing and mask policies. The fight against COVID-19 is far from over.
Due to the highly contagious nature of COVID-19, there exist a plethora of public health implications that come with easing state lockdowns: overwhelmed hospitals, higher spread rates, and unfortunately, a growing death toll. States are doing what they can to reopen safely, but for the most part, until a vaccine or effective treatment is available, people are still in danger.
This is all to say that when planning your next getaway, it’s important to keep in mind the risks that come with traveling within the next year or more. Part of being a responsible traveler is understanding when it’s better to stay home instead of putting yourself and others at risk.
While you don’t necessarily need to cancel all of your plans, it is better to research the areas you’ll be vacationing in and consider the impact it could have on your health and the public’s health. It’s also important to tailor your plans to better fit within COVID-19 safety regulations. Perhaps this is the year that your getaway involves hiking through a national park or visiting the Grand Canyon.
Create a COVID-19 Friendly Bucket List
While we might not be able to enjoy certain getaway activities such as roaming the streets of Seoul or touring the Palace of Versailles, there are still a lot of ways to enjoy your next vacation. Even if your ideal travel plans are out of the question, for the time being, it’s still worth finding alternatives.
There are several scientifically-proven benefits of spending time outside, such as improved mental health, enhanced creativity, and lower blood pressure. Try creating a travel bucket list that mainly consists of social-distancing activities. There are plenty of beautiful lakes, rivers, and oceans all around the world that are not only breath-taking to visit but some even allow fishing. We’ve already discussed the possibility of hiking but you could also try activities such as kayaking or camping to get you out of the house and enjoying those outdoor health perks.
Of course, getting down and dirty in the wilderness might not be everyone’s cup of tea. If not, you could indulge yourself this year and spend a little extra money on a luxury hotel with a nice, large patio for sunbathing or a private hot tub. You are likely to be saving some money from not spending as much on typical travel activities like shopping or dining out so take the extra funds and invest in a place that still allows you to enjoy the many perks of vacationing.
Be Prepared for Worst-Case Scenarios
At the end of the day, your next getaway will definitely have to involve some creativity and plenty of flexibility. While preparing, you should be thinking of a plan B, C, D, and so on. Be aware that many businesses and public areas, such as beaches, will be closed. What activities could you do in place of others should they not be available or open when you arrive? By having several plans ready to go, your next getaway won’t suffer due to unknown or sudden closures.
Additionally, travelers insurance, especially medical, should be a no-brainer in the following travel months. Having a well-detailed plan if you do get infected is also essential. If necessary, do you have enough money to quarantine for two weeks or more wherever you’re going? Are there any health risks or concerns you need to consult with your doctor about prior to leaving? What are the deal-breakers that will cancel your plans? Do you have your emergency contacts updated with all the correct information? How will your presence affect the local population?
Putting in the right safety nets should be as second-nature as packing an extra pair of socks during this unprecedented time. Not only for your own health and enjoyment but to help minimize the spread of COVID-19 so that we can all one day return to our favorite cities and vacation spots without serious risk.
When getting ready for your next getaway, all of your preparation might ultimately bring you to the conclusion that there’s not going to be a getaway this year or even the next — and that’s okay. Your favorite getaway spots aren’t going anywhere and they will be waiting for you once the dust has finally settled. In the meantime, use this as an opportunity to prepare for the best vacation of your life.