What to Expect from Travel in the Future

With COVID-19 turning the travel industry upside down, would-be travelers are unsure of what it will be like to book their next vacation — or re-book a trip that was cancelled due to the pandemic. Additionally, the big question of “when” weighs on everyone’s minds.

While everyone is sheltered-in-place, it’s easy to let the mind wander to far off destinations and check flight prices to see what could be. The low fares right now are obviously tempting and some people, usually skewing younger in demographics, are a bit more tempted than older demographics to take advantage of these deals.

There is no immunity to the virus; the best case scenario, if you do catch it, is that you’re asymptomatic and don’t feel sick. That being said, traveling does impose some risks and you may be more likely to touch a surface that is infected with the virus than if you stay in your home and practice social distancing. There’s plenty of room for error, no matter how cautious you are.

Eventually, the curve will flatten and we’ll see travel restrictions lifted; the west coast states have banded together to form a pact to open their territories once signs of the virus waning are apparent. TO that end, east coast states, including New York, are adopting similar strategies. When those restrictions are lifted, we’re likely going to see a steep increase in travel bookings as people will feel freed from the cages of their homes.

When that happens, expect prices to reflect the demand – they’re going to go up quickly. Those with additional extra income will snap up the plane seats and hotel rooms quickly, while those still recovering form the pandemic will pass for the time being until we reach stasis again. Though the travel industry is down now, it has always made incredible comebacks once medical emergencies, like COVID-19, have subsided.

An easy and cheaper way to travel, once the ban is lifted, will be to take your car and head out to your destination. Gas prices likely will go up to meet demand, but it will still be cheaper than airfare as more people try to book seats, including the middle ones.

As we’ve written, it may be in your best interest to book early while prices are still low, but if you’d rather play it safe and see what happens first, there’s no harm in that. Regardless, we’re here to help you book your next trip and are happy to lend a hand and continue to inform you of travel advisories, tips, and tricks.

Tips for Avoiding the Coronavirus

There is nearly a 0% chance that you haven’t heard about Coronavirus and the dangers surrounding it at this point. Many cities and states are in lockdown to try to contain the spread of this highly infectious disease, and your local grocery store is probably out of toilet paper (for some reason). It’s a scary time for some; for others, they don’t see the reason for the hype.

The truth lies somewhere in the middle, but closer to the worrisome end of the spectrum (but really, no one needs that much toilet paper). For many, they fear leaving their own homes as we are all told to practice social distancing, which we absolutely should. The Coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, is spread through droplets in saliva, normally produced from coughing, sneezing, and even sometimes talking. By staying at least 6 feet away from people, you seriously minimize the chances of those droplets getting on you.

There are a number of other ways to protect yourself from contracting COVID-19, or spreading it. Some will say they feel fine and go out into the world, as if nothing was different and we weren’t in the middle of a pandemic; you should know that you can be asymptomatic (not show any symptoms of the virus, but have it and be a carrier) and spread it, but you can still go out. Realistically, it’s mostly okay to go out. If you need to travel, you absolutely can. We understand travel and we don’t want to put anyone in harm’s way of contracting this virus; it is safe to hop on an airplane right now. All companies are taking extra precautions to disinfect every surface and limit large gatherings to mitigate the spread of the virus.

In order to protect you, if you choose to travel, or not, we’ve compiled a simple list of tips to keep yourself safe.

  • Wash your hands after being in public, or touching common surfaces, such as doorknobs. Wash your hands in hot water, with soap, for at least 20 second.
  • If you have it, carry hand sanitizer and use it.
  • Disinfect common surfaces in your home.
  • Only wear a face mask if you are sick, or show symptoms. Do not wear them if you aren’t sick as you have effectively taken it away from someone who is. The face masks are meant to stop the spread of the virus for people who are already sick, they won’t protect you.
  • If you need to go to the grocery store, go during off-peak hours to limit the amount of people in the building.
  • If you are able to (especially for work), stay home. The less you go out into public, the less chance you have of contracting and/or spreading the virus.

If you need to travel, you should, but if you are immunocompromised, then you should definitely check with your doctor to make sure it’s okay. If you are under 60 and healthy, you face less risks of contracting, or severely suffering, from the virus as of current opinions from medical professionals and researchers.

If you have any additional questions about upcoming trips, for family vacations, or honeymoons, contact us immediately and we’ll be happy to help and review your itinerary. Stay safe.

US Virgin Islands Sunscreen Ban

By now, you’re likely tired of being cooped up in quarantine and the last thing you want to hear, or read, is anything related to COVID-19. Well, we’ve got good news (twice, actually), we’re bringing you an eco-friendly update that has nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic.

The US Virgin Islands just put a sunscreen ban into effect. Now, it’s not what you might be thinking. They banned the use of octinoxate, oxybenzone, and octocrylene, otherwise known by their catchy and sinister name, the Toxic 3 Os, in any sunscreen products. Why, you might ask? Well, these harmful chemicals, popular components of your average sunscreen are detrimental to the health of coral and people. The ban aims to restore the fragile coral ecosystem in the ocean of this popular tourism destination.

This simple measure will help restore the vitality of coral in the oceans that has otherwise been abused via chemicals for decades. Hawaii and Florida will also issue sunscreen bans early next year to join the fight to protect and restore the coral in their oceans as well. We’ll bring updates and additional travel notices regarding the sunscreen ban(s) as they become available to help you prepare for your vacations.

Should You Travel During the Coronavirus Outbreak?

If you turn on the news right now, within 10 minutes, you’ll likely hear more about the coronavirus that is sweeping the globe and infecting people left and right. Travel industry professionals are worried about the virus, it spreading, and infecting them and/or others around them. Related to this, people who need to travel for work, or leisure, are terrified of contracting the virus as it’s fairly contagious.

As such, people are cancelling trips left and right, missing out on long expected opportunities, vacations, getaways, and honeymoons. Is it best to cancel your trip, or would it be a waste of investment and you’d miss out? Well, as you might expect, the answer is a bit complicated.

You need to look at the severity of the location in terms of the outbreak and how likely you might be exposed to the virus. China is still a hotbed for the virus, and though the Chinese government just lifted the travel ban from Wuhan, the city where the pandemic first emerged, you might still want to postpone any trip to China for a while. A tropical getaway in the Caribbean? Well, the chances of finding the coronavirus there are much lower, though cruises to the Caribbean have been cancelled by most lines through at least all of April.

With a little research and assistance from our travel experts, you will be better informed to make the right decision regarding the health of yourself, your party, and/or your family.

If you decide to go through with your upcoming trip, after careful consideration and assessing the likelihood of catching the coronavirus, you should still take some precautions to guarantee your well being during your travels and stay.

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and hot water
  • Try to maintain social distancing of at least six feet from others, if possible
  • Avoid anyone who coughs, sneezes, or seems ill in any way
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes as much as humanly possible
  • While advisable, you don’t need to wear a face mask when traveling; it is highly advised for people who are already showing symptoms of being sick to stop the spread of any potential virus

If you have any questions or concerns about upcoming travel plans, contact us so we can advise you and go over the pros and cons, as well as the risks, to traveling or canceling. Your health is important as we face this worldwide crisis, but that doesn’t mean you need to throw away dreams of a getaway. Call us today to learn more.

States Issue Travel Restrictions

Many towns, cities, and now states have ordered and continue to order shelter-in-place ordinances to flatten the curve and stop the spread of the Coronavirus, otherwise known as COVID-19. Some cities and states are enforcing these measures through fines — and even imprisonment — if you are found to break the quarantine.

Some states, such as New York and Massachusetts, have also issued measures that if you travel in from other states, you need to quarantine and self-isolate for 14 days in order to determine whether you’ve contracted the virus or not. It should also be noted that some people are asymptomatic carriers, in that they don’t get sick themselves but can pass on the virus to others who can (and likely will) become sick.

For those fortunate to be able to work remotely, now is a cheap time to travel, but it obviously carries great risks and you may be forced to go into lockdown depending on where to travel to or from. Currently, the government and CDC say that it’s best to stay put in your home, and we may wander into territory where you are questioned about the essential nature of your travel while we try to quash this pandemic. If you need to travel, or really want to (which is your decision), do so wisely, wash your hands, shower after reaching your destination, and avoid touching your face.