The Coronavirus: Travel Guidelines & Advice | My Late Deals
coronavirus disease

16th March 2020 by Algene Cutamora

The Coronavirus: Travel Guidelines & Advice

The World Health Organization has declared the spread of the coronavirus known as COVID-19 to be an official pandemic. Having originated in Wuhan, China, the virus has since spread to almost every country in the world, where the high rate of infection has resulted in the mass closurte of restaurants, schools and cinemas, the banning of large public gatherings and high numbers of people placing themselves in isolation—a practice known as social distancing.

But what does the coronavirus mean to travel industry and what guidelines should you follow if you have an upcoming holiday or trip overseas. My Late Deals is here to help provide you with all the latest advice!

Coronavirus and the Travel Industry

The spread of coronavirus around the world has left worry and fear in its wake. As the number of confirmed cases and the death toll continue to rise, national governments have responded by enacting quarantine in an effort to slow the infection rate and give local medical professionals a chance to help those most vulnerable to the illness. 

Because of the enforced lockdown and community quarantine, with some countries even closing their borders, the travel industry has been greatly affected and some airline companies have already ceased their local and domestic flights. As a result, many disappointed travellers have had to cancel their plans for the holidays or even business trips. At the same time, some hotels and resorts have decreased or stopped operations due to the low number of guests booking accommodation.

covid statistic

But while it is important to respect the need to temper the flow of the virus by practising social distancing and avoiding the hardest hit countries, some states and cities that are still open for travellers wishing to enjoy a trip away from home.

Certainly, the safest thing you can do is stay home until the virus infection rate passes its peak; but if you still decide to travel in the upcoming days or weeks, be mindful of taking the necessary precautions to protect yourself and others.

Guidelines for Travellers

Remember, the coronavirus is highly contagious, so you must be extra cautious when it travelling by sea, land or air. Whether you intend to visit a nearby city or journey overseas, you should follow these guidelines to minimise the risk of getting the disease. Even if you are not considered a vulnerable person, and even if you do not show symptoms, you may pass it to someone who is more likely to suffer severely due to their age or other pre-existing health issues.

COVID-19 Outbreak World Map
Map of the COVID-19 outbreak as of 19 March 2020. Be aware that since this is a rapidly evolving situation, this map will likely be out-of-date shortly after publication. Refer to the primary article 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic or the World Health Organization’s situation reports for the most up-to-date case information.

At the time of publication, these are the countries around the world currently on lockdown (i.e. that have closed their borders to foreign visitors):

  • Italy 
  • Spain
  • France
  • El Salvador
  • Ireland
  • Belgium
  • Colombia
  • Albania
  • Bulgaria
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Honduras
  • Hungary
  • Kuwait
  • Malaysia
  • Mali
  • Pakistan

The lockdown may be lifted at any time, depending on the circumstances of each nation. Meanwhile, some countries, such as New Zealand and Australia, are still open to international visitors, but incoming travellers (whether residents or foreigners) will be required to undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine.

Furthermore, some cities and towns are imposing curfews, severely limiting the movement around these locations or the establishments that are open. Take note that the rules and regulations regarding this matter may vary from one place to another. As such, the best thing you can do before booking a trip is to conduct your research before leaving. Learn more about the destination by visiting its local government or tourist web page and collect the latest information available concerning their Covid-19 laws or guidelines. Furthermore, some cities and towns are imposing curfews, severely limiting the movement around

Tips to Remember

As of March 2020, there is still no vaccine available to prevent the spread or transmission of the coronavirus disease, and there is unlikely to be one for some months to come. This is the primary reason why people are being urged to observe the mandated community quarantine in different areas, particularly as it is deadly to vulnerable people (and takes 7 to 14 days for a healthy/young person to recover).

covid tips

So, to stay safe and healthy during the pandemic, we strongly advise following the expert advice:

Below are the other tips that can help you stay safe and healthy during the pandemic:

  • Wash your hands (for at least 20 seconds) as often as possible, especially after going out into public spaces. Soap and water is the best way to break down the virus before it can infect you or someone else.
  • Carry a bottle of alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 70% alcohol) wherever you go so that you can disinfect every now and then.
  • Avoid touching your face if you have not yet washed your hands.
  • Keep your distance from other people, not only for your own protection but also for their protection.
  • Sneeze or cough into your elbow instead of your hand.
  • Be respectful and mindful of the people within your surroundings.
  • Wear a facemask in public places.
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