COVID-19 Travel Tips
Prior to 2020, articles about the best COVID-19 travel tips would’ve confused most of us. But as we’re all quite familiar with the pandemic now, this is our current reality. And we have to say, COVID-19 travel tips are certainly different than our usual ones!
Since May, Europe’s travel industry has been slowly reopening. Yet many are wondering if it’s even safe to travel during COVID-19. After months of sitting at home, many are feeling the need to get out and explore. You’re probably one of those people and that’s why you’re reading this post, right?!
So, the short answer to the burning question? Yes, it is safe to travel! But preparation and taking precautions when necessary will be key to staying healthy.
We’ve done our research and some travelling, and want to share our advice with you! So without further ado, here are our COVID-19 travel tips!
Pick Your Destination
This might be the trickiest part! While it’s nearly impossible to predict how the virus will spread, you’ll certainly want to avoid hotspots. Our first of many travel tips during COVID-19 is to start by researching destinations where infections are low. Most of the European Union is now open to tourism, but some regions in countries are considered risk areas. With that in mind, it’s rather imperative to do your research well.
For the most up to date information concerning risk assessments and COVID-19, please visit the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. We suggest you check this site regularly for any new information that could impact your travel plans. After all, the point of travelling is to relax and enjoy yourself!
You’ve decided on a destination – great! Our next COVID-19 travel tip is to get familiar with the local travel laws. This is truly one of the most important travel tips we can offer! Each country in the EU has their own COVID-19 safety laws, and it’s possible your destination might have unique plans.
Some countries require proof of a COVID-19 test upon arrival, and others have implemented mandatory testing and quarantine (until results are determined) for those travelling from risk areas. If you want to ensure you’re well prepared for your destination, we recommend checking out the ReopenEU website! This is where you will find all relevant information on what you need to visit your destination.
Airlines, trains, and busses all have varying rules and new standards as a result of the pandemic, so be sure you’re fully prepared to adhere to new regulations.
Now that all the hard and unpleasant work is over, it’s time to start planning your vacation! Whether you consider yourself a veteran traveller or a complete newbie, it’s likely you have little experience travelling during a pandemic. But don’t stress, because that’s what we’re here for!
Hostels have done well in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, so they shouldn’t be dismissed as unsuitable for safety standards. Hostels have reduced capacities in dorm rooms, and have outfitted their locations in order to ensure both staff and guests are kept as safe as possible. But if you’re not keen on staying in a dorm room, keep in mind that hostels also typically offer private rooms if this makes you more comfortable while travelling!
As for choosing activities for your destination, this might take a bit more planning than usual. Whether you’ve chosen a nature or city break, you might want to do some research on what you can actually do versus what you would normally like to see. While most things are open, there are restrictions on times, capacities, and entrance times (meaning you have to book tickets in advance). This can certainly restrict your itinerary so it’s better to do your research before you arrive!
What to Bring
Packing for travel during the COVID-19 pandemic might also look a little different than usual, so here are our essential items for travelling:
- Face masks (reusable/washable are best for the environment)
- Hand sanitiser
- Disinfectant wipes or spray
- A pen (to fill out any contact forms)
- Any relevant medical documents (your destination may require proof of a COVID-19 negative test)
- If relevant, ensure you have proof of a quarantine plan
In order maintain social distancing measures while on your trip, there are some other items you might want to consider bringing. Remember that time you were in Venice and you wanted a photo by the canals, so you asked a random stranger to take your photo? That might not be so easy while travelling in the COVID-19 pandemic. Bringing a travel size phone tripod will help you get all those shots you’d normally rely on friendly strangers for!
Asking for directions if you’re lost is also a bit difficult when social distancing measures need to be kept. If you can manage to connect to wifi to search for directions, Google Maps will work offline as you make your way to your destination.
Last but not least, remember that everyone has been impacted by the pandemic differently, so travelling with intention and patience is key. This is probably the most valuable of all the COVID-19 travel tips. While you might be tired of hearing it, we are in this together, and keeping this mindset while seeing the world is part of being a responsible traveller. With that, we hope our COVID-19 travel tips have been helpful and we wish you incredible adventures!
If you’re looking for great and safe hostels for your travels, check out the destinations with Europe's Famous Hostels!