Have you started planning your first post-vaccination trip yet? What’s that one place that you have always wanted to see, but never did… before the pandemic? I’m wondering if I was the only person secretly hoping to see a mini travel show after exiting the vaccination clinic to help me pick my next destination. The free hand sanitizer bottle they gave me was a nice touch, but why not have an airline there? Or a cruise line? It could have been fun… (but maybe too many people would have complained about refunds and vouchers…?)
A Canadian Perspective
But first, there was more bad news. With travel restrictions and advisories remaining in effect across Canada, I’ve had to cancel my motorcycle trip to the West Coast for next month. That means I cancelled another 3 weeks of hotel nights, with mostly independent hotel and business owners… so much for supporting local business owners. I could fly there, but going by motorcycle turned out to be impossible. Maybe the air traffic is controlled by federal government, the roads by provincial government? How is sitting together in a domestic plane ok, while going socially distanced by motorcycle (in full protective gear) is now, near the end of the pandemic, a problem?
While every government has made their mistakes in handling this pandemic, so far I thought Canada was doing at least an above average job. Canada is still a little behind on the US in terms of vaccinations and not all my required steps are in place before travelling again. Meanwhile, some destinations have already started to welcome travellers back. For example, the Bahamas have dropped their COVID entry protocol effective May 1 for fully vaccinated travellers. That’s nice, but Canadians still can’t go anywhere as the Canadian border remains closed for non-essential travel.
No matter where you’re traveling from, everyone now alive will have COVID-19 in common forever. We’re all exited to get going again. As travel slowly ramps up, we’re starting to think more about the return to travel. Let’s make some post-pandemic plans and get ready to travel again. After a 15 month break, even the most experienced travellers will need to re-learn how to travel again. There will be some hurdles to overcome. To help you prepare for when we will travel again, here are some of the issues you may run into.
Your Passport Expiry Date
Check the expiry dates of your travel documents. Of course your passport, but if you have a Nexus membership or other trusted traveler card, ensure that one is still valid is well. The same goes for other travel related memberships, like a lounge pass or car rental program you participated in but may have forgotten about. And if you’re living abroad like me, double check your visa or permanent resident card as well. Do this now: don’t wait until the day before your next flight to find out a document is expired. Replacing it on short notice may be impossible or expensive.
Using Your Travel Credit Card
In the past, most credit card providers required a quick phone call before a trip to let them know you were travelling somewhere. The “travel note” on your file prevented your card from being flagged as stolen or fraudulent when used in a location other than your hometown. That call has since been replaced by algorithms picking up on suspicious patterns. It’ll be interesting to see if the algorithms will be smart enough to pick up on the ramp-up of revenge travel after the pandemic. Depending on where I’m going, I may give my card providers a call before I leave, just to be on the safe side.
Bring Your Covid Supplies
Testing and vaccinations will likely be part of your travel experience for a while. So will the need to wear a mask and wash your hands more frequently. While the requirement to wear a mask will be dropped eventually, you may wish to continue to do so for your own safety and peace of mind. The same goes for washing your hands and sanitizing frequently touched surfaces. Bring masks, hand sanitizer, and travel size packs of sanitizing wipes just in case.
Phone chargers and cables
Before the pandemic, I used to have a bag permanently packed with my travel necessities. That way, I’d never find myself without a phone charger, camera cable, or anything else I may need on the road, away from my usual setup at home and the office. The same goes for my noise cancelling headphones. As home and office have become the same, I used some of those things at home more: the noise cancelling headphones definitely got some additional use. Before heading for the airport, check to make sure everything is fully charged, and you have the required chargers and cables to use everything on-the-go.
Meeting all travel requirements
In addition to the usual visa and other entry requirements, ensure you meet all the Covid19 specific travel requirements as well, both as they apply to your destination as well as to your own country for the return trip home. Before picking up on COVID-interrupted travel plans – these are my 4 Required Steps Before Travelling Again:
- Destination entry requirements dropped so you have no issues or a mandatory quarantine on arrival.
- Getting fully vaccinated and receiving both shots (if applicable)
- Departure border to re-open so you can leave the country
- No more quarantine requirement when you arrive at your destination or return home.
Learn Travel Hacking
Last but not least, ensure you’re ready to enjoy a better travel experience next time you go somewhere and learn travel hacking. Don’t let anyone tell you that travel hacking is only for frequent flyers or big spenders. What matters is having a system and following it consistently. Even while we still can’t travel all that far right now with the Canadian border remaining closed, we will travel again.
Traveling more 6-12 months from now starts today. Do you want to have more and better travel experiences next time you go somewhere? Learn my legit, proven travel hacking system to book free airfare, get hotel room upgrades and much more.
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