Coronavirus and Travel: what you need to know during this period


As of March 2020, Coronavirus has devastated the world. Millions have fallen ill, hundreds of thousands have lost their lives and entire economies have been shut down. In just a few weeks, entire countries completely shut down and closed their borders to visitors.

For the first time since World War II, travel - an industry that relies on human movement and uses 10% of the global workforce - has come to a complete halt.

As the months went on, we saw some countries reopen and then return to lockdown, while other destinations did well and reopened for tourists.

This process creates a lot of questions. There are a lot of variables and the rules are constantly changing.

  • How do you know which countries are open?
  • How do you find out new visiting rules?
  • What will the flight be like?
  • Do hotels and guesthouses offer safety?
  • What attractions are open?
  • Should you travel now?

The list of open countries changes every week. Some are open to all international visitors, while others are only open to neighbouring countries. Some countries, such as the US, Iceland and Bulgaria, ban visitors from certain countries, while countries such as the Bahamas require tourists to submit a negative test result within 5 days of flying.

On the other hand, Cambodia requires a USD 2,000 deposit to cover any COVID expenses, while Albania, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Mexico have virtually no restrictions and are completely open.

In short, there are a lot of different rules to follow.

How to find out where and how you can travel

You can download trip planning apps or recent trip restriction updates. Some of them are great, as they will allow you to sort airlines by their policies, let you know what airports are doing, and contain information about health checks.

If you want to travel to Europe, there is an official map of the European Union which will let you know which countries are open.

Alternatively, check the government's official foreign office or tourism board as they will have the most up-to-date information.

If you're not sure how to find those sites, simply Google "(country name) ministry of foreign affairs" or "(country name) official tourism office." In addition, "(country name) COVID travel update" will give you a good list of official sites as well. They will have the best information about quarantine rules, testing requirements and other restrictions.

What do airlines do?

Flying in the future will be very different. Currently, most airlines require passengers to wear masks, although implementation is difficult. The boarding process has also changed to reduce interactions and support physical separation.

Only a few airlines do not reserve middle seats to maintain a safer distance between passengers. Most airlines operate as usual, which means you could be on a full flight with fewer flights available, and many of the most popular routes are fully booked.

Travel tips

If you fly or travel with other people, here are some important hygiene tips:

  • Wash your hands frequently (or consider wearing latex gloves).
  • Wear a mask.
  • Refrain from touching your face.
  • Wipe down your seat or seating area with disinfectant wipes, as airplanes can be quite messy.

On the plus side, many airlines have changed their cancellation policies, which means you can often change flights without penalty. Check the airline to see if they have this option before you book.

Book your trip: logistical tips and tricks

  • Book your flight

Find a cheap flight using Skyscanner or Momondo. These are my two favorite search engines, as they search websites and airlines around the world, so you always know that no stone is left unturned.

  • Book your accommodation

You can book your hotel using because they consistently return the cheapest rates for hostels and hotels.

  • Don't forget travel insurance

Travel insurance will protect you against illness, injury, theft and cancellation. At times like these, it's a necessary protection in case something goes wrong.

Times have changed, so has the way we travel and that's why it's very important to be informed at all times to be prepared when you want to go on holiday.

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