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Travel Shaming Is At An All-Time High, Especially Now
As we enter month 9 of this global pandemic, some travelers have found safe ways to get back to the one things they love— seeing the world. While many destinations still aren’t open, we have seen the influx of travelers heading to Mexico, or similar destinations that will grant American travelers access inside their borders.
Like anything else, those that are traveling again are posting about their experiences on social media and the internet. But, it seems to be drawing some backlash and tons of criticism.
Welcome to the world of travel shaming!
Over the years we’ve seen other forms of shaming including body shaming and slut shaming, but with a deadly pandemic sweeping the world we have now entered this new realm with travel shaming.
Some popular influencers have gone as far as making posts openly saying they will not engage or support any travel content during this time. Their reasoning is, they feel they are supporting the idea of people not following the rules and ultimately spreading COVID-19.
Is this reasoning correct?
There have also been travelers, who have personally shared that they are hesitant to post any upcoming travel out of fear of being shamed.
What many seem to be missing, is that you can travel as long as you are smart and safe in the process. We would never condone people traveling to crowded places, not wearing masks, or even traveling with the possibility of being sick. That’s just a no-go. Life as we know it will never be the same, so we ultimately have to find ways to do the things we did pre-COVID, in a safe way.
How to travel safely during the pandemic
If you are a traveler that has been on the fence about traveling, we wanted to offer a few tips to prepare you for any future trips.
- Ensure that you are not sick (it’s not enough to just not present symptoms) and/or get tested prior to traveling. Sure, you can’t control those around you, but you can ensure you are doing your part. Most testing sites can get results back in about 2-4 days. Some in under 24-hours. If your destination requires proof of a negative test, be sure to give yourself enough time to get the required negative result back prior to departure.
- Travel with your own arsenal of Clorox wipes, lysol spray, and hand sanitizers. At the height of the pandemic it was nearly impossible to find any of the three. But now shelves are starting to stay stocked with them all. I personally pack a Ziplock bag full of Clorox wipes, if I can’t find the actual ‘On-the-go’ packs. I also stock up on the travel-sized lysol spray or I pack a full-sized one in my checked luggage. I also pack spray and gel hand sanitizers for easy access, when moving around.
- Mask up, period. No matter where you go, whether home or traveling, a mask should always be something you wear. Also, please wear it properly. This means covering your nose and mouth. It is smart to pack several masks, too. One may get dirty, or you could lose it and you never want to be without one. Most hotels now also offer welcome kits with extra masks and sanitizer in them.
- Follow any social distance and limited capacity rules. Sure, some people may miss mingling or going to a bar. But, times have changed. In order to not add to the problem, and to keep the world from completely shutting down, we have to follow the rules. Turning up at a club is not worth your health and life, nor is it worth putting someone else at risk.
If you’re someone that’s been travel shaming, stop! As long as people follow rules, they have every right to create some sense of normalcy (and self-care) in their life. This pandemic has been rough on us all, so don’t be that person adding to someone else’s mental stress.