Covid 19 Makes Senior Travel Dangerous

travel and the coronavirus

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If you are a senior with plans to get out of Chicago during the coronavirus pandemic, you should seriously consider the risk. With the addition of new travel restrictions almost daily, you may have no choice but to cancel plans and re-schedule but if you’re determined to go anyway, there are precautions you’ll need to take.

To date, the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus has resulted in around 170,000 cases globally, with Europe recently declared the epicenter of the pandemic following China getting a grip on the situation in Wuhan and a surge in cases in Italy and Spain.

Following the sharp rise in the number of cases in Italy and Spain, their respective governments imposed nationwide lockdowns and have restricted travel even within their own territories.

Meanwhile, the UK has opted against such measures so far. However, the British government is reportedly considering ordering people over 70 to self-isolate at home for the next four months, as the government looks to curb the virus’ spread in vulnerable elderly communities.

With regard to the US, the escalation of the outbreak, which was formally declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) earlier this month, prompted the federal government to suspend travel to and from Europe, with a few exceptions for Americans looking to return home.

However, it is still possible to travel within the United States and abroad to the many locations which aren’t restricted (for now, at least.)

But, should you?

There are a number of considerations to make and ponder before setting off, and having contingency plans in place is equally important.

Is Your Destination a Hotspot?

If you have already booked a holiday in advance and are considering if you should still go, it is important to check how badly the outbreak has impacted the area.

For example, you should avoid travel to Italy, Spain, or South Korea unless the circumstances are exceptional or some sort of emergency.

However, if your destination is indeed a hotspot, it is likely the government has already cut off travel to and from that location, so proceeding with your holiday might not even be an option anyway.

Are You Vulnerable to Covid-19?

If you or someone you will be traveling with is vulnerable to the Covid-19 virus (for example, a senior citizen or someone with an autoimmune ailment), you should seriously consider not traveling, even if the city you plan to visit has only a handful of reported cases, given the increased risk of death if the virus is contracted.

Furthermore, it is advisable for everyone, regardless of their condition, to practice good personal hygiene when traveling, regularly washing their hands and using alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Is the Outbreak Sharply Rising in Your City?

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected different countries to varying extents, and there is even significant variation intra-country, from city to city. If you live in a region, city, or neighborhood which is being hit particularly hard by the outbreak, it is worth considering moving elsewhere for a few weeks or months.

This might sound extreme, but it should be carefully considered as an option, especially if you are a senior citizen or suffer from an autoimmune condition, as these are both factors that significantly increase your chances of death if you contract the Coronavirus.

However, it is important to be mindful of other people’s welfare when traveling, so if you are exhibiting any symptoms you should consider delaying your travel plans until you are tested, and strictly self-isolate to avoid spreading it to others in the meantime.

Quick Summary

  • The Covid-19 pandemic has prompted a number of countries to ban intra-country travel, while the US has cut off transportation links with many countries, including the whole of Europe.
  • It would help if you considered several factors before traveling, both within the US or abroad.
  • For example, is your destination a Covid-19 hotspot? Are you or someone you’re traveling with particularly vulnerable?
  • If so, you should strongly consider canceling or postponing your trip.

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