Everywhere I turn, people are talking about whether or not they should be travelling. Next week is Spring break and I have gone back and forth many times about what to do about our vacation. I have been doing a lot of research about around what I need to know when it comes to travelling. Should I be going? What should I be doing to stay safe? What should I be bringing on vacation? Here’s what you need to know about travel during the coronavirus outbreak.
Should I cancel my trip?
As I mentioned, this seems to be the most popular question. Things have progressed quickly and now the advice being given is not to travel. All non-essential travel should be avoided to protect yourself and others. If you absolutely must travel, use the tips below.
Should I go on a cruise?
Whether you are tempted by the price or not, now is not the time to go on a cruise. PHAC is recommending that people avoid all cruise ship travel. It is difficult to know where people on the ship are coming from or where they have been and the risk appears to be high when it comes to contracting the virus on a cruise ship.
How do I stay safe on the airplane?
Because the virus is still so new, we don’t know enough information just yet. With that said, we do know that the virus lives on surfaces and is passed on through droplets such as sneeze, entering your into your eyes, nose or mouth. When you get on an airplane, make sure that you are equipped with disinfecting wipes and wipe down the surfaces at your seat. Make sure to wipe down the tray table, the arm rests, the tv screen, buckles, the headrest and the window if you are in a window seat. Simply put, if it is a hard surface, wipe it down, if it is soft, don’t. Most importantly, everywhere you look, you are being advised to wash your hands frequently for a minimum of 20 seconds. This is your best line of defence against the virus. If you are using hand sanitizer in between washes, make sure that it has an alcohol content for at least 60%.
Where is the best place to sit? While you may prefer the aisle seat, it is safer to sit by the window. Sitting on the inside next to the window will keep you a bit more sheltered from all the passengers walking by. You will also be further in from the passengers on the other side of the plane. Keep this in mind when you pick your seat.
Should you wear a mask when you travel?
This is a question that has likely crossed your mind at one point or another. From what I can gather, the answer to that question is no, you should not wear a mask. Wearing a mask when you are healthy, will not protect your from the virus so there is no need to wear one when you travel.
Other tips for airplane travel
I for one don’t like the air blower on the plane. I am not a fan of it blowing in my face however a microbiologist on CBC mentioned that by pointing the air blower towards you, you are creating a barrier and helping to prevent any droplets from someone else’s cough or sneeze from getting into your eyes, nose or mouth. Make sure to be aware. Be aware of the people around you on the airplane. If someone is exhibiting signs of a cough and fever, let the flight attendants know. Remember to wash you hands frequently, before you eat, after you go to the bathroom and after touching anything on the airplane.
If you are travelling, be safe.