The year end holidays are just around the corner and with Christmas decor screaming at us everywhere we go, I bet many of us are already in a festive mood. Plus, with the lifting of the travel bans in Malaysia, everyone will be racing to get their fill of a vacay before 2020 ends.
You may be itching for a view beyond your four walls, but before you put the pedal to the metal and drive right out of your homes, here’s what you can do to travel safely during the holidays with the COVID-19 still here.
1. Make a packing list
Get organized and write up a list of medicines you may need on your trip and any essential safe-travel supplies. So, when it's time to pack for your trip make sure you don’t forget these:
- Cloth face masks
- Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol)
- Disinfectant wipes (at least 70% alcohol) for surfaces
2. Considerations for people at increased risk
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Anyone can get COVID-19, but older adults and people of any age with certain medical conditions are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Conditions that increase your risk include cancer, serious heart problems, weakened immune system, obesity, and type 2 diabetes
Travel increases your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.
3. Hotels and other lodging
The hotel industry recognizes that travelers are concerned about the COVID-19 and safety.
Therefore, there are new protocols in place in the event that a guest becomes ill, such as closing the room for cleaning and disinfecting. They're also highlighting their commitment to following public health guidelines, such as using masks and gloves when cleaning, and building in a waiting period between guests.
Once you arrive at your room or rental, disinfect high-touch surfaces, such as doorknobs, light switches, countertops, tables, desks, phones, remote controls and faucets. Wash plates, glasses, cups and silverware (other than pre wrapped plastic items) before using.
4. Car travel
You may prefer to drive, which also gives you more control over your environment. You'll still need to be smart and plan out any stops you make.
- Organize your stops so you can as few stops as possible.
- Pack cloth face masks, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes in an easily accessible spot.
- Prepare food and water to take on the trip.
- Should you need to top up on petrol, use a disinfectant wipe on handles or buttons before you touch them. After fueling, use hand sanitizer.
5. Stay safe when you travel
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends following these steps to protect yourself and others when you travel:
- Maintain a distance of 6 feet (2 meters) between you and others.
- Avoid contact with anyone who is sick.
- Limit contact with frequently touched surfaces, such as handrails, elevator buttons and kiosks. If touching is unavoidable, use hand sanitizer or wash your hands afterward.
- Wear a face mask.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Although all the extra prep sounds like a hassle, make sure to follow our recommendations especially during this unprecedented time. Do also make note of the current states of your travel destinations so you can plan on where you would be able to visit! Most importantly, prioritize your hygiene and keep safe!