Traveling may seem like a possibility that is very far from reality right now, but many people are venturing back out of their house, their hometown, and even their state just so they can be somewhere else for a little while. While cross-country and international travel is mostly at a halt, domestic travel may be a viable option for people who still want to get away for a while, especially as other states are lifting their travel restrictions and are reopening.
So if you’re going to take the plunge and go out on vacation or business travel soon, here are a few things to consider for domestic travel.
To fly or to drive?
Distance is the key when you’re deciding how you’ll travel domestically.
If you are traveling several states away from your current location, flying may be a consideration for you, as long as you take precautions and follow the airlines’ different requirements. (For example, several airlines are strongly recommending or even requiring masks of their passengers.)
However, if you are traveling one or two states away, or even within your own (large) state, driving may be the less expensive option. Gas is at its lowest prices in decades, which means you can fill up a tank for as much as half of the price we were paying several years ago.
And if you need to travel sooner than you feel comfortable with, you can save a lot of money and stress by driving your car, which would only incur the cost of gas and maintenance compared to the generally more expensive airline tickets.
Driving will also give you the freedom of choosing what to bring on your road trip. You can get stopped by the TSA for bringing household items that you know are not harmful, like your favorite drinks or a special dietary cooking oil, but in the car, you can carry what you’d like. Additionally, your choice of food is unlimited on a road trip. You can even save money by buying grocery items for sandwiches, compared to buying from higher-priced fast-food restaurants at airports.
It’s easy to avoid public transportation
Avoiding public transportation is valuable for so many reasons. You can use a rideshare, cab, or your own car, and be fairly secluded from large crowds, which reduces your chances of getting sick. While there are guidelines to follow, the best way to avoid getting sick is by staying away from other people as much as possible.
If driving your own car around a city is not an option, consider using a ride share service like Lyft or Uber, a taxi, or even a rental car. Many ride-sharing drivers and taxi drivers are being cautious about their vehicles, such as bringing sanitizing wipes or hand sanitizer to wipe down surfaces after they’ve been in a public place or carried other passengers.
Wear A mask whenever possible
There is a lot of information about surgical masks on the internet, what they protect from, prevent, and can do. While there are plenty of strong opinions about wearing a mask, the general consensus is that wearing a mask can help prevent spreading germs to people around you, especially if you’re carrying germs but aren’t showing any symptoms.
If you need to fly, just know that there are options for you to help avoid large groups and reduce unnecessary contact with possibly contaminated surfaces.
For example, use your airline’s mobile app for mobile check-in, rather than touching the check-in kiosks (which are some of the dirtiest surfaces in an airport). Download your boarding pass to your phone and use that to clear security and get on the plane instead of printing a paper pass. Carry snacks with you, like a sandwich or piece of fruit, rather than standing in line at an airport restaurant. And carry some sanitizing wipes for your hands and your phone, and be sure to wipe it down whenever you feel it’s necessary.
If you choose to travel domestically in the near future, you can protect yourself and your family if you just take a few precautions to avoid being contaminated or spreading germs yourself.
Are you going to start traveling? What are your plans? What precautions are you taking? Tell us about it on our Facebook page, or on our Twitter stream. You can also find us on our Instagram page at @TravelproIntl.
Photo credit: Erika Wittlieb (PXHere.com, Creative Commons 0)