This summer has been unlike many others in years past, with trips being cancelled due to COVID-19 and plans being rearranged. Depending on what area of the country you live in, you may be able to make some summertime plans for you and your family. With kids out of school and looking for things to do, planning a vacation seems like the perfect way to focus on some fun, family bonding and use some of your vacation time before it runs out.
To fly or drive? Although planes are operating, there will be less travelers, which will make it easier to socially distance yourself from others. Airlines are requesting that passengers wear a mask during flights, and this may be difficult for younger children. Unfortunately, airlines are not receiving direction from many of the governed agencies that usually step in during a pandemic. The Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Labor and Department of Transportation, for example, have not created policies for the airlines to follow. So even though airlines are requesting that masks be worn, be prepared for the off-chance that these guidelines may not be heavily enforced.
If you’d like to enjoy a quick getaway, it may make more sense to drive to your destination. Even if that airline ticket was a great deal, being able to road trip with your family in the comfort of your own vehicle may be the better option this summer.
Vacation homes and hotels. If finding a vacation home a mere two-hour car ride away sounds like a dream come true this summer, you’re right! Many travelers have decided to stay a little closer to home, renting out cabins at the lake or enjoying local campgrounds. Just keep in mind that many vacation homes are also booked back-to-back, fulfilling summer travel plans for many of us that want to be closer to home and practice social distancing in a slightly different setting.
When you arrive at your vacation home, make sure you take disinfectant spray and/or wipes and clean common areas, even if the property has already been cleaned. Try to avoid touching your eyes, mouth and face and wash hands often. If you are sightseeing, wear a mask in public and practice social distancing. Also, be aware of restaurants and other activities that may not be open for business before you go. If you want to make dinner plans, it’s safer to enjoy outside dining or even cooking at the vacation home whenever possible.
Pools, public places and more. Some pools are beginning to open up, depending on how many cases of COVID-19 are documented. It is believed that chlorine can kill the coronavirus. Protect you and your family by keeping a safe distance from others when enjoying any of the public recreational areas. If you can’t social distance, please wear a mask. Also, instead of using drinking fountains, use water bottles and do not share them. Take hand sanitizer with you that contains at least 70% alcohol. Hand sanitizers that are “all natural” may not be as effective.
Beach precautions. Beaches are a pretty safe bet this summer because they offer plenty of space and fresh air. Stay at least 6 feet away from people outside your household and minimize your exposure to public restrooms, parking lots and food vendors. Planning on going for a boat ride or renting a boat or paddleboard while at the beach? Just make sure any rental equipment is disinfected and allowed to dry before you use it.
Summer 2020 looks a little different than the others, and it should be a top priority to keep you and your loved ones safe from the virus. With a little extra forethought and planning, you can still have an enjoyable, safe vacation. Pack your sunscreen and sun-gear, drink plenty of fluids and make sure you grab that favorite book to read by the beach or pool! And this year, don’t forget your hand-sanitizer and face masks, too.
Please give us a call at 618-235-2311 to set up an appointment or physical with Dr. Kellow. If you have questions about us or want to learn about our practice, you can also visit our website at https://childcarephysicians.com/. Enjoy your summer and be safe!