If you’re trying to figure out how to travel responsibly in the near future, you’re not alone. There’s currently a lot of buzz that this summer is shaping up to see a huge tourism boom. Given that most people have spent the past year abstaining from travel, there’s little wonder why.
But of course, the pandemic is still ongoing across the world, so we can’t yet travel as we used to. If you’re planning an upcoming trip (and you should while prices are still low!) it’s important to practice responsible travel. A huge element of that right now is choosing your trip location wisely.
If possible, it’s best to stick to domestic trips right now. The main reason is that it will be easier for you! Many countries with low rates of COVID-19 shut down their borders to stop the spread of disease and still have tight entry restrictions. You’ll also be helping to stop the spread by traveling a bit closer to home.
Many states do not have restrictions or only require a negative COVID test. Here are some examples:
- Hawaii: You can easily go on a tropical vacation as long as you get a negative PCR test at a Hawaii-approved testing partner 72-hours before your trip and upload it to the state’s travel portal.
- New York City: If you want a trip to the big city, New York is no longer requiring domestic travelers to quarantine upon arrival.
Of course, no matter what the state’s requirements, the most responsible thing to do is to get tested both before and after travel. Think of it as an excuse to kick back and relax in your hotel room for the first couple days of your trip!
If you have your heart set on adding a stamp or two to your passport, don’t fear – there are currently more than 50 countries where Americans can travel.
However, you should know that a lot of the countries that are currently open without restriction also have extremely high rates of infection and are generally considered risky for travel by the CDC. Even if you’re not worried about getting sick yourself, to travel responsibly, you must consider the very real possibility that you could get someone sick upon your return to the United States. Additionally, you should keep in mind that many of these countries are underdeveloped and you have privileges that many of their citizens do not have. Ask yourself whether it is fair to locals for you to potentially further strain their country’s health infrastructure so that you can take a vacation.Instead, we recommend you choose your country responsibly by picking a destination that’s ranked less risky by the CDC. You can use this CDC webpage to find destinations that are ranked either Level 2: Moderate or Level 1: Low and then cross-examine those destinations with this handy, searchable guide to entry requirements. Hint: You’ll have the best luck finding low-risk countries that allow American tourists in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean.
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