We just came back from the beautiful Dominican Republic, July 2021. One of my favorite places to visit. Ever.
But this trip was different. It came with it’s own set of challenges. Including extra steps to ensure we made it there and back, safely.
Here are some things you need to know if you plan on travelling internationally during and/ or post COVID.
Lower your expectations.
The service isn’t what it used to be. Most people are edgy, mean and not as friendly as before. Of course there are exceptions but the few can really put a wrench in your mood. You can still have fun but expect a lot of waiting, slow service, and rude people.
Book your hotels/ packages in advance.
Airlines are changing their flights daily. So be prepared for adjustments. Not every airline but because of staffing issues, the flights they booked may not be the flights that are going out.
Invest in an actual mask.
KN95 masks are recommended by CDC and all airlines. But on our trip there were only about 2% of people who either wore an appropriate mask or mask on their face properly. I just don’t understand. If you want to travel, follow the rules so we can all get back to normal.
Do not travel until you are fully vaccinated.
This is just my personal recommendation. It makes sense for any time you are travelling. My husband and I got a booster shot a few years ago when we were travelling abroad to protect ourselves. This isn’t any different. Protect YOU and those around you. Plus you will go through customs faster and if stopped for questioning, won’t be detained for a COVID test.
Take a COVID test in the USA even if the visiting country does not require it.
Which leads me to testing. If you test yourself before you leave, you have a peace of mind knowing that you did not bring anything with you. It’s just another form of assurance for yourself and again, if stopped you have done everything and won’t be detained for additional testing at the airports.
Read up on COVID rules and restrictions for USA and visiting country.
Rules are changing every single day. Do your part and learn about the changes before you go. Not only for your home country so you know what you are coming back to but especially for the visiting country, so you are prepared. Take the appropriate tests. Hawaii for example won’t take just any COVID test and you will not enter the plane without the appropriate negative test.
Fill out all of the paperwork prior to arriving at the airport.
Every country is different but there is a lot of paperwork. Some online but some needs to be printed and presented at check in and gates. Make notes and keep track. You don’t want to miss anything and ruin your trip.
Arrive to airport extra early.
All of the stories you have read online about airports being slow and packed, are in fact true. My mom and brother in law both work at two major airports in the USA and they can attest to that. Plus we saw it ourselves first hand. Not only did the PreFlight where we parked our car, not have enough drivers in the morning, the line at Frontier check in was at least 2 hours long. So plan accordingly.
Triple check all of the Covid testing rules for the visiting country but also for your arrival back home.
Once you are at your destination, find out when you have to test to go back home. Make arrangements/ appointments. Set aside time for more paperwork and testing. Schedule your back to home COVID testing as soon as you can so you don’t miss out on appointments. Everyone else is doing the same and you may not have enough time.
In conclusion, travelling internationally post COVID can be just as beautiful and fun if you take a few extra steps. It can also be overwhelming if you are not organized or are travelling with kids. Either way, you must have your ducks in a row because one wrong move can set you back. This isn’t the time to wing it.
Do you have any trips planned or have you traveled recently? What was your experience?
If travelling internationally isn’t your thing anyways, check out my 5 Staycation ideas.