(CNN) – In the midst of the dim light at the end of the seemingly endless pandemic tunnel, there are visions of travel that reconnect us with loved ones or take us into a happily new environment.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to urge Americans (even those who have been vaccinated) not to travel, despite a recent rise in the number of passengers screened at airport checkpoints. of the United States indicates that people travel again in greater numbers.
Therefore, in many cases, we can move forward. But there is no doubt that interest in traveling and making future plans is growing, raising many questions about how to safely navigate the new travel landscape.
Each country has its own mess of rules and restrictions, so almost any trip will require in-depth pre-trip research.
Here’s what you need to keep in mind because the pandemic is slowing down:
Even if I can travel, right?
Restrictions vary widely around the world and for many people it is possible to travel nationally and internationally. However, many public health officials would advise against it. As noted, CDC recommends not traveling right now.
“We’re very concerned about the transmissible variants. A lot of them have gone through our travel aisles, so we’re being very cautious right now with travel,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told Anderson Cooper from CNN on March 11th.
Walensky noted that each time the trip increases, there is an increase in coronavirus cases, citing Independence Day, Labor Day and the winter holiday season.
City officials in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, plan a large crowded spring break this month.
Joe Raedle / Getty Images
Can I travel within my own country?
Regardless of where you are, it is important that you check regional and national websites and resources for guidance and travel restrictions.
Do I need a Covid-19 negative test to travel internationally?
In many cases, yes, you will need a Covid-19 negative test before traveling to another country.
A traveler takes a photo of a Covid-19 test poster at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in February 2021.
Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images
Do I need a Covid-19 negative test to enter the United States?
The requirement includes U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents returning to the United States.
Non-essential travel is restricted to the U.S. land borders with Canada and Mexico.
Travelers arrive at a hotel in Melbourne, Australia, to be quarantined in December 2020.
WILLIAM WEST / AFP / Getty Images
Will I have to quarantine?
Some countries require all travelers to be quarantined and have strict restrictions on acceptable reasons for entering. Others have no quarantine requirements (Mexico, for example) or are much less restrictive.
Many popular tourist destinations in the Caribbean and elsewhere have adopted testing standards that allow international arrivals to avoid quarantine requirements with negative results.
It is important to check the specific requirements for your destination and to return home.
Do I need to get vaccinated for international travel?
Some countries allow vaccinated travelers to avoid entry requirements they would otherwise have to meet, such as negative Covid-19 tests and quarantines. For example, travelers to Belize can skip the Covid tests before departure.
Therefore, although vaccination may not be a requirement for travel, the vaccination test could significantly smooth the trip.
But getting vaccinated is far from a carte blanche. Some countries only host vaccinated travelers from specific areas, such as the European Economic Area. And many have yet to make any decisions about vaccinated visitors.
Therefore, even if you get vaccinated, you need to make sure that your destination will accommodate inoculated travelers from your location.
International air travelers are likely to share health information in the future through new apps.
Daniel Slim / AFP via Getty Images
How can I share test results and vaccination status with travel providers?
The confusing mess of Covid regulations continues.
In the United States, incoming travelers must submit a “verifiable test result” to their airline. “It must be in the form of written documentation (paper or electronic copy) of a lab test result,” according to the CDC.
Whenever possible, take electronic and paper copies wherever you travel.
The process for sharing test results and vaccination status varies by destination, and in some cases are only valid in specific languages.
There are a number of digital applications (commonly known as “vaccine passports” or “vaccination certificates”) under development that aim to streamline health information so that it can be shared securely across borders.
Tourists line up to board a boat in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, on March 3, 2021. Mexico has some of the loosest travel rules in the world.
Daniel Slim / AFP via Getty Images
I plan to travel. What can I do to reduce the risk of contracting or spreading the virus?
The mitigation strategies you use at home apply to the road. Vigilant hand hygiene, social distancing, and the use of masks are key, as well as avoiding crowded interior spaces.
The advanced air filtration used in commercial aircraft, in addition to the mandates of masks on aircraft, helps reduce risk during flight.
Limiting stops and contact with other people during road trips, social distancing, and opting for contactless check-in at hotels are important ways to reduce risk. As well as focusing on outdoor activities and avoiding close contact with people outside of their bubble.
Hopefully, in the coming months, our worlds will expand far beyond our bubbles, with warm country-by-country calculations.
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