Should you go ahead with your travel plans or dream vacation with the growing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus? As the cases of coronavirus are exploding across the globe, it is okay to worry about your personal safety, especially when you have an impending trip. The good news is that Girl Let's Go has some reassuring advice and helpful information that can assist you in making the best decisions within this period.
Rest assured that The Professional Travel Managers of Girl Let’s Go, LLC are actively managing health and safety related issues with our travel suppliers and industry experts, and will keep you up to date on the enhanced measures they are taking concerning your existing bookings and future travel. You can also find more information on the industry’s response by visiting the CLIA the Cruise Line International Association, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or the website of your chosen travel supplier. There, you'll typically find travel advisories on the home page that will quickly guide you to information impacting your travel plans.
So, What Is The Novel Coronavirus?
The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is a serious health issue that has spread to over 50 countries in the world. Since it originated in Wuhan, Hubei Province in China, (and the date of this article) it has killed over 3,000 people. Scientists are not yet aware of everything about how the origin of the virus, its cure or method of transmissions; but has made some observations that we'd like to share with you.
This is a global issue, not just an "I'm going on a cruise issue"
You should always consider the health and safety advisories put out for the particular countries you visit, but in doing so it is important to realize that the spread of COVID-19 has yet to be contained, so it is as much as an “in your back yard” issue as it is a traveling traveling abroad issue. As of 1 March, the majority of coronavirus cases are found in mainland China (79,928). However, it has also spread to the following countries:
· South Korea: 4,335
· Australia: 33
· Bahrain: 47
· Canada: 24
· France: 130
· Germany: 150
· Hong Kong: 100
· Iran: 1,501
· Iraq: 21
· Italy: 1,704
· Japan: 274
· Kuwait: 56
· Malaysia: 29
· Norway: 19
· Singapore: 108
· Spain: 120
· Switzerland: 24
· Taiwan: 41
· Thailand: 43
· U.A.E.: 21
· United Kingdom: 40
· United States: 88
How To Protect Yourself From The Virus?
According to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Individuals can practice everyday prevention measures like frequent hand washing, staying home when sick, and covering coughs and sneezes.” And further states “Currently a vaccine is not available for COVID-19. Community-based interventions such as school dismissals, event cancellations, social distancing, and creating employee plans to work remotely can help slow the spread of COVID-19” can help. In addition, cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces to combat the viral pathogens outbreak. Click Here to Download a List of Known Household Chemicals that can Assist with your disinfectant efforts.
Click picture for more information on Personal Protective Equipment form the CDC website.
How Are Travel Providers Keeping You Safe From The Virus?
Most airports and cruise lines have included new, enhanced, and rigorous screening procedures to ensure the safety of passengers. Some cruise lines are already offering 100% refunds or future credits to areas or itineraries where the outbreaks has posed a threat to scheduled itineraries or passengers. Many entities have amplified their pre-screening processes and are also denying boarding to people who traveled from, visited, or transited via airports in China, Hong Kong, and Macau and other locations within 14 days of embarkations. Having said that, you should prepare to arrive early to your departure locations to provide ample time for any delays for the enhanced health and safety measures. Also, wash your hands frequently, pack sanitizer and cleaning agents. Some labels will also indicate properties that help prevent the spread of the virus. As far as wearing personal protective gear, we are not the ones to tell you not to, but if you're going to purchase these items you should make sure that they are up designed to assist your specific needs. There is a full article on this found at ********** but we will stress the part that states:
CDC does not recommend the routine use of respirators outside of workplace settings (in the community). Most often, spread of respiratory viruses from person-to-person happens among close contacts (within 6 feet). CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, such as avoiding people who are sick, avoiding touching your eyes or nose, and covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue. People who are sick should stay home and not go into crowded public places or visit people in hospitals. Workers who are sick should follow CDC guidelines and stay home when they are sick.
Should You Cancel Your Trip?
As with any situation concerning your health or safety, regardless of the information provided, we believe that the only one that can make that decision is you...until (or unless) your travel provider steps in and makes that decision for you by canceling your trip. Until then, we insist that you keep up the basic hand hygiene rules, cough etiquette and avoidance of ill individuals to stay safe, and protected from the virus. Overall, you should strive to remain well informed about updates and situational reports on the state of the coronavirus around proposed destinations.
* This map included in this article represents cases detected and tested in the United States through U.S. public health surveillance systems since January 21, 2020. It does not include people who returned to the U.S. via State Department-chartered flights. For the most up to date information you should visit www.cdc.gov