Travel is different, not impossible. It's what I tell anyone who inquires about travel, whether it's today or they are planning for the future. Travel will look different for a while, possibly even forever, but it will not be impossible. I have traveled internationally during this pandemic and I would like to share my experience as well as offer some advice and insight for when you decide to travel again.
Airport Security and TSA
One thing you can always count on when traveling by air is TSA or the Transportation Security Administration. Everyone goes through TSA and I was pleasantly surprised that at least that experience hadn't changed - shoes off, laptops out of cases, belts and cell phones out of pockets, etc. Yes, you are required to keep your mask on even through the metal detector.
Most airlines are now boarding back to front for both convenience and to minimize the need for flyers to be all over the plane at once. Now it is possible to put your carryon in the overhead compartment above your own seat and not rows behind or in front of you. This is a great convenience, especially for those that are traveling with family or small children.
COVID testing requirements are different everywhere. For example, most US states do not require a negative COVID test while others do. Alaska and Hawaii are two states that require a negative COVID test before arrival, among others. Most international destinations including the Caribbean and Panama will require a negative COVID PCR test as well before entering into the country. Countries like Aruba, which I visited in October, require additional steps to ensure that you have taken a test and receive your results before arrival. It is crucial that you understand the requirements of your destination before booking any travel. I stay up-to-date with border closings and openings as well as all entry requirements and would be happy to consult with you on what to expect for your desired destination.
On the Plane
For some, the time spent actually on the plane will be the most anxiety ridden portion of their travels. This is because you can expect to be in an enclosed space with more people than you have probably (hopefully) been around since the start of the pandemic. Unless eating or drinking, everyone is required to keep their mask over their nose and mouths while on the plane as well as in the airport. Over my mask, I also wore this face shield while on the plane. Don't worry about looking silly! I was grateful to see other people on my flights with the same shield over their masks, plus you can't really be too safe right now.
At your Destination
Each destination will have their own regulations regarding health screenings, indoor dining, mask requirements and more. I implore you to do your research (or work with a travel designer like me) and know what to expect while you are on your trip.
Travel will be different and probably like what I have just described for a while. But you can still enjoy the beach, lounge by the pool or take in the sites in a new city (preferably a city that has control of COVID and with strict regulations for travel).
Have you been anywhere since pandemic began?