The deadly coronavirus continues to take over the world and countries with reported new cases and deaths every day. Therefore, to tighten people’s travel restrictions, concerns have become increasingly complicated about where to fly and whether it is safe to do so. As a measure, many countries have sealed their borders to contain the spread of COVID-19 and locked down the cities to curb the infections. On Friday, the United States has restricted all the non-essential travels with Mexico following an agreement to close the border with Canada. We will tell you that How to Travel Safely under Coronavirus Outbreak.
Besides, the State Department of the USA raised its global travel advisory to level 4, recommending that U.S. citizens do not travel to any other country because of the outbreak’s global effects. This is the highest advisory from the department. We advise you to stay informed and tried to answer some pressing questions below as to how safely you can travel in this situation.
What is Level 4 Travel Advisory issued by the US State Department?
When you are flying, a level 4 warning is given when the State Department determines that there is a “greater possibility of life-threatening risks.” It is the highest level of alert that can be provided by the federal agency, which comes during an emergency, where the federal government may be very restricted to assist you on the way. The advisory advises that residents of the United States either stay at home, return home as soon as it is safe to do so or live there.
What if I have a Personal Emergency Such as a Death in the Family?
In case of any family death, take shorter flights and avoid contacts with co-passengers or others at the airport and on the plane. If your trip is three hours long or less, staying in your seat during the entire journey is the best option to curb contact with fellow passengers and crew members.
We also recommend you, if possible, to use the terminal toilet rather than using aeroplane toilet as the terminal bathroom is likely to be bigger than the one on the plane and the terminal toilet is washed frequently, thus reducing the chance of virus spread.
When you experience the worst-case scenario in which someone is sneezing or coughing less than six feet away from you (or within the next two rows), you can ask the flight attendant if your seat can be moved to another section of the plane. If that is not feasible, the flight attendant could also be told to advise the sick passenger to wear a mask.
Is it wise to Cancel the Booking for April/May?
Experts have suggested that the situation will not improve any soon before July or August. Therefore, if your travel plan happens to be in the next two weeks, you better not travel as per health expert’s advisory. If you don’t fly until or after late May, don’t worry about making the decision right now. Wait for your “go, no go date,”- the last day you cancel without penalties from your travel providers.
One thing that works for you is that many airlines, hotels and other travel companies have loosened their cancellation policies to give more flexibility to travellers during the pandemic.
Is Domestic Travel Safe? Is there any restriction on domestic travel?
There could be restrictions on regional travel inside the USA, apart from the ban on travel from Europe, though the US authority has not yet discussed the subject. Some hard-hit states like Washington, California has declared a public health emergency, but they have not restricted air travel or cancelled domestic flights. If you are travelling with older people- the section of the population which is sitting on a higher risk, be careful to travel with them.
Is Driving Safer Instead of Flying & Travel Safely under Coronavirus Outbreak??
It does not matter if you are flying or driving to your destination. The whole idea of avoiding non-essential travel is to promote social distancing and stay confined at home to stop spreading the outbreak. Though you are safer in-car than in the airplane, getting out of the car will not give you the guarantee of safety.
In Case You Cancel Your Flights, Will There be Any Penalty or Refund?
In general, to change or cancel the flight tickets, airlines charge penalty unless those are fully-flexible. But in the present situation almost all the airlines including Delta Airlines Tickets, United and American have been walloped, so as a result the airlines are loosening their booking policies and suspending cancellation or rescheduling fees. As the circumstances are not normal and favorable to the airlines, and they are observing that the customers are not booking the flights, so they are offering commercial flexibility. We hope the above information and the factors will help you understand what you need to do and how to travel to this pandemic situation. Unless an emergency, you are always advised to remain at home instead of venturing outside. So, these are some important topic related to Travel Safely under Coronavirus Outbreak