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How to best ensure your safety if you're traveling this holiday season

Posted: 3:13 PM, Oct 06, 2021
Updated: 2021-10-06 18:15:07-04

BALTIMORE — With the holiday season around the corner, individuals and families alike may be traveling around the state, across the country and even possibly overseas.

Dr. Theodore Bailey, the Chief of GBMC's Division of Infectious Diseases says one of the most important thing to do is be prepared.

"I think anytime that you're talking about travel in the age of COVID, the two things you have to ask yourself that are immediately relevant to safety are what are you going to do when you're there and how are you going to get there?" Dr. Bailey said.

You have to ask yourself what you're going to be doing when you're there, who will you be with, etc. Those are the biggest impacts on what risk that trip would entail for you.

The more people you're around, the more time you spend around more people and the certainty or lack of certainty you have about their vaccine status will all affect how hazardous that is to come into contact with COVID and potentially become infected with it.

Dr. Bailey explains that we should still be sensible and take precautions when planning their trips.

"I would say this, there's absolutely no consolation to having avoided COVID infection for a year and a half, and then getting it in a sense, then what did you do the year and a half of caution for?" he explained. "You know, we are still at risk of acquiring it and therefore still at risk of getting sick from it. So if you want to sort of see that through, you know, this price is you want to plan, you want to be smart about what you're doing."

You wouldn't drive safely for 20 years and then one day say "hey I haven't had a car accident, I'm just going to start texting and driving 120 miles per hour", Dr. Bailey detailed. So why would you stop being cautious when it comes to COVID?

Aside from planning for being safe during your trip, another is making sure you have a plan set in place if you do get COVID on your way back.

"So you really want to think about and look into 'if I'm traveling there and this is my way to travel back, what's my worst case scenario. I get COVID while I'm there, how will that affect me? Can I get back?'" he continued. "Do I have to find an alternative way to get back and what would be my healthcare resources?

You really want to think about what your access will be to travel and to healthcare in the worst case scenario, where you or someone in your traveling group actually gets infected with COVID.

Overall, there's no issue with overplanning or being overprepared and taking the steps ahead of time to insure your safety will only make you more prepared in the long-run should you or someone you know get infected.