It’s official — we’ve finally made it to summer after what seems like an extremely long winter and spring. With summer comes new travel guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In a telebriefing earlier this week, Dr. Jay Butler, the CDC’s director of infectious diseases says, “We know the pandemic is not over.” As a result, there are new guidelines that the CDC’s director, Dr. Robert Redfield refers to as “common sense suggestions.”
Of course washing your hands, wearing face masks, and social distancing are still strongly suggested by the CDC, but there are also new tips to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
Here’s what you need to know:
Prior to arriving at the restaurant, make sure to check the restaurant’s website or social media for COVID-19 safety regulations. Make sure that you will be dining in a safe environment by inquiring about whether or not the workers are wearing cloth face masks.
When at the restaurant, it’s best to sit outside and stay at least six feet apart from other patrons. If you need to go inside for any reason, always wear a cloth face mask and maintain a distance of six feet from other people.
If you’re taking the bus or train, make sure to social distance with people who do not live with you. Try to limit the amount of times you touch surfaces and use hand sanitizer frequently.
Much like when dining at a restaurant, it’s important to check the hotel’s policies beforehand. Things to question are if employees are wearing cloth masks and if rooms and surfaces are being cleaned and disinfected frequently.
If you can, choose to check-in online so you can limit interaction with others.
When in common areas, maintain a social distance of six feet, and when ordering room service, request that it’s left at the door.
If possible, choose the stairs instead of the elevator and if you must take the elevator, always wear a cloth face mask.
Try to avoid touching surfaces inside of the vehicle and use hand sanitizer after opening the door and putting on your seatbelt. Use touchless payment methods when available and try not to ride with people who do not live with you.
Ask the driver to open the windows to circulate fresh air inside of the vehicle. When getting out of the vehicle, use hand sanitizer, and wash your hands for at least 20 seconds after arriving at your destination.
According to the CDC, “Air travel requires spending time in security lines and airport terminals, which can bring you in close contact with other people and frequently touched surfaces. Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes. However, social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and you may have to sit near others (within six feet), sometimes for hours. This may increase your risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19.”
We can’t stay in the house forever but if you can, try to choose outdoor activities, which allows you to easily social distance from others.
When entering public indoor spaces, wearing a cloth mask can reduce your chances of contracting the disease tremendously.
The CDC recommends carrying tissues and hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol when leaving your house.
When paying for items, try using contactless payment systems such as Apple Pay, Venmo, Paypal, Cashapp, etc. If you must pay with cash or credit cards, place them on the counter instead of putting them in someone’s hands.
Lastly, remember to frequently wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or more.