Many Americans were looking forward to a summer vacation this year, but as with so many other planned events recently, thoughts of vacation have been upturned by the pandemic. While you may have cancelled your original plans, you may be wondering if it’s safe to go anywhere – a weekend road trip or camping at a local park?
Unfortunately, current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) means that your safest bet is to stay home. Different parts of the country are experiencing different levels of COVID-19, so traveling could increase your exposure to the virus – if you are exposed, you would then expose those around you to the virus when you return.
With that being said, you may still decide that you need a getaway after months of being at home. If you choose to travel, follow these precautions:
- Wear a mask in all public places and continue social distancing.
- Be prepared for public restrooms to be closed; try to find out ahead of time where you will be able to access facilities.
- Pack enough food and water to minimize stops on the way to your destination.
- Pack extra hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and masks or face coverings.
- Right now, the safest places to visit are parks and outdoor recreation areas where you can explore at a safe distance from others. Crowded parks, pools, or beaches are not recommended at this time.
- To minimize your risk, only travel with members of your household, and avoid all travel if you are feeling sick or are at higher risk of contracting COVID-19.
In spite of these recommended restrictions, taking time off to relax and unwind is more important than ever. According to one study, Americans only use 54% of their allotted vacation days. We have experienced unheard of levels of stress and uncertainty in the past several months, so take some of that vacation time! Maybe working on a project around the house is relaxing to you, or maybe you need some alone time while your spouse takes the kids to the park. However you are able to safely give yourself a break, make sure to take care of your physical and mental health as we navigate these uncertain times.