By Team Tomorrow
Published July 28, 2021
72% of Americans skipped summer vacation last year, and many of us are looking to plan a trip or two make up for it. This summer:
The pandemic isn’t over yet, but there are still many ways to enjoy a safe, enjoyable summer vacation. In this post, we will cover:
Via President Biden’s promise, the US is scheduled to fully reopen on July 4. However, you should still take some traveling precautions. The last thing you want to do on vacation is catch COVID-19 or risk giving it to someone else. Here are a few ways to minimize your risk:
This should be obvious, but it’s worth repeating. The best way to protect yourself from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. According to Stat News, the Pfizer vaccine is 95% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID infection 14 days after your second dose, and is “more or less equally protective across age groups and racial and ethnic groups.”
The Moderna vaccine is 94.1% effective and is believed to be just as equally protective demographically. Meanwhile, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is 66% protective against moderate to severe COVID infections 28 days after getting your shot.
If you do get COVID-19 after being vaccinated, your risk of hospitalization and death is substantially lower than those who aren’t vaccinated. Fully vaccinated people also have a lower chance of transmitting COVID-19 to unvaccinated people.
Know the vaccination status of the family and/or friends with whom you’re traveling. It’s much riskier to travel as an unvaccinated person, especially if your summer vacation involves a heavily populated destination, like a major city or Disney Land. It’s even less safe if they have a compromised immune system or a pre-existing condition.
If you’re traveling with people who haven’t been vaccinated, consider vacationing somewhere sparsely populated. Go camping, rent a cabin, or take a road trip. You should avoid planes, buses, trains, and other indoor crowded indoor spaces.
Avoid areas experiencing an outbreak. Not only does your risk of catching COVID-19 increase, but there may also be limits on what you can do in those destinations. If you’re traveling internationally, check out the US State Department’s website to view an area’s positivity rate. You can also check by area domestically on the CDC’s site.
Even if you’ve been vaccinated, you should get tested before your trip just in case. If you test positive, stay home. Even if you’re currently asymptomatic, you may develop symptoms later on. Either way, you’ll put others around you at risk of catching the virus, and their symptoms may be more severe than yours.
Put yourself in isolation and wait until you’ve fully recovered. Most airlines and hotels have flexible cancellation policies due to the pandemic. You may also get your trip postponed to a later date.
28% of US adults plan on traveling in the country multiple times this summer. Domestic travel may not sound as glamorous as a three-week trip to Europe, but this is the perfect time to do it. Here are a few reasons why:
While more than half of US adults are vaccinated, many other countries are still struggling to manage their outbreaks. By staying in the US, you won’t risk accidentally transmitting the virus to someone in a country where vaccines aren’t widely available.
The domestic travel industry lost $492 billion in 2020 compared to 2019. Local businesses all throughout the US were pummeled when they had to close their doors — some of which never opened again. By traveling domestically, you can help support the many US businesses still recovering from a dire fiscal year.
Plane tickets are one of the most expensive aspects of vacationing. Flying internationally can cost hundreds, even thousands of dollars. Save that money by going on a road trip or taking the train. You can use the money you save on other aspects of your trip, or even plan a second trip this summer.
The continental US is 3,119,884.69 square miles. That doesn’t even include Alaska and Hawaii! From the Grand Canyon to Joshua Tree to New York City, there’s so much to explore. Whether you want to get away for a couple of weeks or just take a weekend trip, there’s so much to discover in our own backyard. Get out and explore our 50, nifty United States. You’ll be glad you did.
The CDC strongly recommends against traveling internationally unless you’re fully vaccinated. If you are, there are more than 75 countries that currently allow US citizens to visit. However, some restrictions may apply.
Check the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Level for the country or countries you want to visit before planning a trip. The Risk Assessment Level chart is rated one-to-four, with one being low risk and four being very high. As of this post, here are where some destinations stand. Be mindful that you may not be able to visit some of these countries as this time:
The US currently requires everyone flying back into the states has proof of a negative COVID test within 72 hours of their flight home. Find a place for you to get tested and schedule an appointment advance. We recommend getting tested 48-72 hours before your flight, so that you’re sure to get the results back in time.
If your test returns positive, you’ll have to make arrangements to stay abroad until you can test negative. Some hotels abroad have made special arrangements for guests who have tested positive. While your stay will become more expensive, you’ll at least have somewhere to rest while fighting off the virus. Check your lodging’s guidelines before traveling internationally.
Since the virus can remain dormant for up to 14 days, we recommend getting tested three-five days after your trip if you’re fully vaccinated. If you’re not fully vaccinated and decide not to get tested, the CDC recommends you quarantine for ten days to avoid transmitting the virus.
56% of all adults plan to venture more than four hours from home when traveling. As a flight, flights, AirBnBs, and hotels are becoming almost as popular as before the pandemic. Here’s how to remain safe:
In February, TSA began seeking to hire over 6,000 airport security screening officers to better protect our nation’s transportation systems. To ensure that COVID safety protocols are being met, the TSA has upped its cleanliness game by routinely disinfecting surfaces, bins, and other equipment. They’ve also made changes to the screening process.
You must wear a mask at the airport and while on a plane. The only exception is when you’re actively eating or drinking. We recommend bringing hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes on board with you. Even though the planes are fully disinfected after each flight, it never hurts to give your seating area a once-over.
Despite being in proximity to other passengers, the air on a plane is relatively safe. Newer airplanes recirculate their air 20 to 30 times an hour, and have filters that capture 99.9% of particles, including bacteria, fungi, and bigger viruses. For extra safety, you still need to wear your mask.
AirBnBs updated their cleaning policy since the pandemic started. All guests and hosts must wear masks and practice social distancing when interacting with one another. Hosts must also follow AirBnB’s five-step enhanced cleaning process. If they fail to do so, they will receive warnings, suspensions, or risk being removed from the site altogether.
Because travel is up this summer, you should book lodging as early as possible. According to AirDNA and Money.com, summer bookings for short-term rentals surged 127% between April 5 and May 18. The highest surge occurred in “rentals near the beaches of Alabama, Georgia, Taxes, and the Carolinas,” where booking is up over 968%.
Hotels have also upped their game during the pandemic. Many hotels now offer contactless online check-in, check-out, and payment options, as well as mobile room keys. Some hotels have also cut down on housekeeping and food and beverage services to limit the contact guests have with hotel staff.
While cleaning protocols have been updated, it doesn’t hurt to disinfect common area surfaces in your room. We also recommend packing your own food, getting room service, or ordering delivery, rather than eating at your hotel’s restaurant and bar. If you decide to eat at your hotel’s restaurant, check to see if they have outdoor seating.
Whether you’re traveling domestically or abroad, here are a few more things to consider:
No one can predict the future, but we can help give you peace of mind.
Before you travel, download the Tomorrow app and update your will, trust, power of attorney, and life insurance. Life is the ultimate reward, so you should be ready for any risk, just in case.
Finally, have an amazing summer vacation! You’ve earned it.
Don’t have Life Insurance? Well we made it easy for you to apply for reliable life insurance through our simplified and streamlined online application process. No exam | No waiting | No hassles | Fast, free quote!