The Bird’s Word Blog
What Do I Need to Know About Travel and Coronavirus COVID-19?
The world is grappling with the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. The uncertainty of the timeline for the virus in any particular location leaves curious humans of the world wondering how to adjust their longterm plans. We may be grounded for the present time, but can we continue to make plans to experience the planet in the future? What do you need to know about travel and coronavirus?
At Journeys International we are certainly not medical experts. We are, however, travel experts, and we are committed to providing information and insight to help you make travel decisions. Here are some FAQs regarding travel and coronavirus COVID-19 to help you plan your upcoming adventures.
Should I avoid travel because of the coronavirus?
At this time, you should not travel. New countries are closing their borders to visitors daily, on very short notice. Airlines are canceling more and more flights, making it increasingly difficult to move about the world. The United States has issued a very rare Level 4 Travel Advisory requesting that Americans not travel, and advising that any Americans abroad return home immediately or plan to stay where they are for at least several weeks.
Will I be quarantined on my arrival in a destination, or on my return home?
Health screenings are pervasive. Every country has its own positions about which travelers are considered categorical risks, and these positions are evolving daily. You will need to review information from the border control or health agency of your destination. If you would like help finding this information for a specific country, please contact our office. In general, we have noticed that most (if not all) countries, including the United States, are relying on self-quarantine measures and not using remote quarantine facilities.
How long should I plan to be grounded?
Honestly, we don’t know. At Journeys we are not yet canceling any departures beyond May 31, 2020. For new bookings, it may be prudent to look further into the future – to autumn and beyond. Rest assured that if you do make plans that turn out to be too soon, it will be easy to postpone with no penalty.
What happens if I can’t make the trip I have planned?
Everyone in the travel industry is on your team in wanting to give you a positive and healthy experience. So far we have seen airlines, hotels, and tour companies all demonstrate flexibility in working with travelers to rearrange their plans in the face of this pandemic. Because Journeys works with so many different suppliers in so many different destinations, we must consider each situation on a case-by-case basis. Our goal is to preserve as much as possible of the money you have paid as a credit toward rebooking your travel in the future.
Will travel insurance cover me in the case of a coronavirus outbreak?
Everyone’s policies are different, and we are not insurance vendors nor insurance experts. It’s best to consult your insurer with specific questions. Generally, a travel insurance policy will cover medical expenses required for the treatment of a condition contracted while traveling. But generally, trip cancelation related to the coronavirus will not be covered. More specifically, cancelation due to fear of conditions, new travel advisories, or even sites becoming inaccessible because of closure or quarantine will usually not be covered reasons for cancelation. The exception may be if you purchased a “Cancel for Any Reason” policy, in which case you may be able to cancel at your discretion with advance notice, and recoup some portion of your expenses.
Check out these resources:
- CDC travel advice
- Daily Situation Reports from the WHO updating numbers and details around the world
- New York Times Coronavirus Travel FAQ
You can also contact us about questions specific to Journeys International at any time.