The COVID-19 global pandemic has had a tremendous impact on the travel industry. Between wanting to stay healthy and complicated international travel restrictions, people have found it difficult to travel for both work and leisure. Fortunately, widespread efforts are underway to administer COVID vaccines to as many people as possible. This means traveling will soon be much easier for people who have chosen to protect themselves and others by getting vaccinated.
Travelers may have a difficult time proving that they have gotten their shots. There is currently no widely accepted verification method, such as a digital vaccine passport, although the airline industry is pushing for the creation of one. Currently, residents of the United States are just given a paper card to prove their immunization status. This document can easily be damaged though, so USA Today recommends getting a copy of it laminated to protect it. People who have a World Health Organization Yellow Card from previous international travels can also ask the medical professional who administers their vaccines to record them on their Yellow Cards. It is important to keep in mind that there is no official vaccine identification, and the companies that offer to provide certification for a fee are doing so illegitimately.
Once people who have been vaccinated start traveling again, they will need to follow the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) science-backed guidelines to do so as safely as possible. According to National Public Radio (NPR), those guidelines include wearing a mask, continuing to socially distance, and frequent hand washing. The CDC says that fully vaccinated people who take appropriate safety measures will no longer need to get tested or self-quarantine for travel unless they are required to do so by their destination.
The lifting of COVID-related travel restrictions for vaccinated passengers is making it easier for people to plan future trips for both work and pleasure. Not needing to set aside time to quarantine makes it possible for people to use the vacation time that they have built up over the last year. COVID testing that was previously required on both ends of a trip was an expensive barrier that prevented people from traveling. As restrictions that were put in place to protect public health continue to ease, the future of travel is bright.