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Is Travel Safe During the Pandemic this Holiday Season?

It can be safe if you’re fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but officials say people who haven’t gotten the shots should delay travel.

Posted: Nov 23, 2021 11:15 AM

Is travel safe during the pandemic this holiday season?

It depends. It can be safe if you’re fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but officials say people who haven’t gotten the shots should delay travel.

Regardless of vaccination status, all travelers should keep taking precautions like avoiding indoor, unmasked crowds, says Dr. Keith Armitage, an infectious disease expert at Case Western Reserve University.

“The delta variant has really brought us back to an earlier time in the pandemic,” he says.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says not to travel if you’re sick, or if you tested positive for COVID-19 and your isolation period isn’t over yet — even if you’re fully vaccinated. Unvaccinated people who decide to travel should get a COVID-19 test one to three days before travel and three to five days after returning.

All travelers must still wear masks on trains, planes and other indoor public transportation areas, the agency says.

Airlines say plane cabins are low risk since they have good air circulation and filtration. However, there is no requirement for vaccination or testing before domestic flights, and passengers can remove their face masks while eating or drinking.

Hotels aren’t risky for the vaccinated as long as they wear masks around strangers, Armitage says. More fraught are family gatherings with unvaccinated individuals, particularly for those who are older or have health problems.

Health experts suggest looking at the case levels and masking rules in the place you are visiting before you travel.

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Wow!!!! It's cold!!!! After a trace of snow in Evansville and some highe amounts to the south, we're waking up to temperatures in the mid to upper teens across the Tri-State. Thankfully, road crews did a fantastic job treating the roads to keep conditions from getting slick. However, the northerly winds gusting as high as 15 to 20 mph has dropped wind chill values into the single digits and even below zero in our western communities. There won't be much of an improvement in temperatures this afternoon. With the strong northerly wind flow and dry skies our highs will only reach the mid to upper 20s. Winds will stay quite breezy keeping the wind chill factor in place through the day.
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