Travel After Quarantine: What to Expect

Alright, it’s time for some real talk, how are you surviving quarantine? What is it like in your part of the world? Are you ready to start traveling again or are you still fearful of its repercussions?

Looking out over Whistler in Canada, a place I plan to travel after quarantine

The COVID-19 pandemic closed borders around the world, spread panic amongst travellers trying to get home and forced millions of people into self isolation.

Most of us have been practicing social distancing since the beginning of March (making it just over 2 months now). With some countries pushing to slowly open up their economies, many of us are wondering when will it be safe to travel again. If travel opened back up tomorrow, would you feel comfortable traveling?

This blog post will dive into some of your most asked questions since isolation and what life will look like after quarantine for the travel industry.

Sitting on my Away luggage in a cafe in Montreal

When Will We Travel Again?

It comes down to what country you live in, so keep in mind that I am based in Canada and most of this will be based on what North American experts are saying.

But what happens if countries loosen confinement restrictions too quickly? Already experts are predicting a second surge of cases to happen in the next month or two. I’m in Canada and experts say it could be 18-24 months before travel picks back up.

Staying home in Canada while not able to travel during quarantine

Trust me, I’m as antsy as anyone to start exploring again. However, when that time comes, there are some destinations I had planned for this year that I will probably save for 2021.

I was particularly excited about a European summer. It’s been years since I’ve revisited Italy, and I had planned to spend a few weeks revisiting the Almafi Coast and Cinque Terre.

As someone who is an extrovert and who’s love language is physical touch, social distancing has been a challenge. There is a long list of things I miss: brunch dates, girls nights, feeling creative both behind and in front of the camera, family pool parties. I long for the day when we can hug and it won’t feel like we are breaking the law for showing a sign of affection.

Lisa Homsy and Mel Vandersluis at the salt flats in Salt Lake City, Utah

How will the air travel experience change?

In the meantime, the travel industry will undergo some very big changes. Airports will likely enforce new kinds of security measures to screen travelers. Temperature checks at airports could also become part of our new norm.

People who choose to travel, get ready for a very different experience. Potential changes could include:

Onboard protective gear – Airlines may now require passengers and crew to wear masks for the duration of the flight.

No longer being able to assign your own seat – Many airlines are now discussing leaving middle seats open or adding plexiglass. Assigned seating may no longer be an option. This would leave it in the hands of the check-in agents to respect social distancing.

“Immunity passport” – This would be a document issued to anyone who has recovered from COVID-19, as their immune systems would theoretically have developed the antibodies. However, I just read this is speculation and that it’s still too early to speculate about the possibility of such “immunity cards” here in Canada. The other thing to consider would be that the implementation of such a card could create a huge divide between the haves and have-nots.

Lisa Homsy in an airport with a broken ankle
Traveling with my broken ankle

Additional screenings – When entering the airport, it’s likely we will start to see more thermal scanners and disinfectant tunnels. Non-flyers will likely no longer be able to enter the airport. Due to all these extra security measures that could be implemented earlier arrival times to airports are likely.

Touchless cabins – meaning no more inflight magazines which I’m fine with personally. I’ve seen this with a few airlines already, but I’d like to see all airlines make the shift to being paperless. The TVs can essentially act as a Kindle for in-flight magazines and menus.

Touchless check-in – this also means touchless boarding passes. Most airline already offer the option of your boarding pass being on your mobile, but could you imagine if they now required facial recognition?

Lisa Homsy with Away Luggage in Paris, France

Hopefully, with all these extra steps in place, the airlines will also enforce a deep cleaning of every cabin before planes can take off again. I know this might be an unpopular opinion as it will significantly slow down the turnaround time.

However have you ever learnt about how little they clean planes? Trust me, I’d rather wait and have the aircraft properly cleaned, especially if you’re in it for a long haul flight. I’ve even seen sanitizing robots in some airports!

Many airlines are still canceling international flights through the summer and into fall. With fewer flight paths, it’s possible that many of the less popular routes will get canceled entirely. This means more connections and longer travel to get to some destinations.

Lisa Homsy at a cafe in Montreal with Away luggage

Summer 2020: The Summer of Road Trips

That’s why I predict staycations are the next vacations and road trips will become the preferred method of travel. With all of us stuck indoors, people are dying to get moving and reconnect to the outdoors.

But with so many of us struggling with reduced income, affording lavish trips seems unrealistic. That’s why there is no better time to plan the ultimate road trip and experience your own country if you haven’t yet discovered it!

In Oman on a road trip in the desert
On a road trip in Oman

Personally I know that I have seen more of the world than I have of my own country. I’ve lived in both Vancouver and Halifax and visited many of the top cities, but I haven’t really discovered each Canadian province.

I’ve always wanted to do a cross-Canada road trip to spend time camping and enjoying nature. And it seems like there is no better time than now. International travel will likely be on hold until the end of summer/early fall, so if you’re looking for adventure, consider your own backyard!

I’m working on a blog post featuring some of the world’s best road trips, so if you’re looking for inspiration stay tuned! In the meantime, you can find tips for road trips in Utah, Iceland, and Oman already on the blog.

Driving a Jeep in Hawaii
Driving a Jeep in Hawaii

Which Countries Are Open & Safe to Travel to?

Despite the spread of the Coronavirus, Sweden is one of the only countries in the world to not have imposed any mandatory stay-at-home orders.

As of today, May 14th, there are only about a dozen countries that are open for travel. I’ve found this site extremely useful as it updates its information daily. It has been a great resource when researching this section.

Here is a list of the countries you can still travel to/borders are still open as of the date of publication: Austria, Belarus, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, Mexico, Iran, South Korea, Ethiopia, Zambia, and Barbados.

Lisa Homsy in Tulum Mexico

Is It Worth It to Take Advantage of Coronavirus Travel Deals?

Many airlines and hotels now offering major discounts to try and convince travelers to book a future trip. But before booking any good deal, there are a few things to consider.

Look at the cancellation policy. Does the hotel or airline give refunds? Are there any penalties for canceling? Do you lose your deposit? Is there travel insurance available that allows cancellation for any reason? Does your personal travel insurance cover you?

Another factor to consider is who to book with. Booking directly with hotels and airlines will make it easier to get refunds right now than booking through a third-party site.

Lisa Homsy on the beach in Australia

Many of the US carriers seem to have insane flight deals going on right now with great cancellation policies, but keep in mind it isn’t the same for every airline. If you decide to book something, make sure to select the flex fare.

As for booking goes, I wouldn’t be booking any international flights before September. I don’t foresee any of us traveling internationally in the near future.

Lisa Homsy in Peru

I’d love to hear your thoughts and predictions on what to expect for travel within the next year.

Stay safe, stay sane!

xx Lisa

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Trying to figure out when to start traveling after quarantine? Planning a trip and wondering what to expect? Trying to figure out which countries are open for travel in 2020? Find out all of this and more with these travel tips for after quarantine. #travel #traveltips #travelguide | travel tips and tricks | travel tips airplane | travel tips international | travel tips 2020 | travel the world tips | world travel tips

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16 Comments

  1. Darinka
    May 14, 2020 / 1:33 AM

    You can travel to Croatia too

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 14, 2020 / 8:51 AM

      Ohhh interesting! It wasn’t on the list from the site. It said it still had travel restrictions. Thanks for sharing that! I’d love to revisit Croatia

  2. May 14, 2020 / 9:34 PM

    Omg had no idea about the Immunity Passport, such an iteresting article! Loved all the information! Btw, just came back from Ireland two weeks ago and they were in full lockdown and super strick. Airport was completely empty and they require to self-quarantine for 14 days on arrival. They also have a travel ban for citizens of certain countries. So crazy how things have changed in a few months. Stay safe!

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 16, 2020 / 8:24 AM

      I heard that!!! Insane! Why did you still go then? So you had to spend 2 weeks in a hotel doing nothing before you could go explore??? I would imagine that would get expensive

  3. Jules | Casual And Up Close
    May 17, 2020 / 1:09 PM

    Thanks for your blog post! This is so helpful and i cant wait to start travelling again and following your amazing experiences on your blog! xxx stay safe

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 19, 2020 / 11:28 AM

      Thank you so much!! I really appreciate that and I cannot wait to be exploring again soon!

  4. May 17, 2020 / 7:44 PM

    Great article! Check out and follow my new blog and insta @instaphotojo

  5. May 19, 2020 / 9:13 AM

    This post was so helpful! Your Utah road trip post definitely inspired me! I’ll probably be doing a lot of camping this summer:)

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 19, 2020 / 11:29 AM

      Exactly! Me too!! I’m really excited about that

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 19, 2020 / 12:11 PM

      Yes me too!!! I can’t wait for that

  6. Pam
    May 21, 2020 / 11:20 PM

    Any advice for pre-covid international booked trips? First time ever traveler and don’t know whether to go if flights open this summer.

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      May 23, 2020 / 8:03 PM

      Like I said I wouldn’t book anything before September but to be honest I’m not jumping on any travel myself just yet

  7. Elizabeth
    June 9, 2020 / 8:26 AM

    Hi there
    I am a travel agent and owner of 3 travel agencies in Canada…there is a A LOT of misinformation in this post. I would be very cautious on speaking about this topic unless you are in direct contact with all the airlines on a daily basis, as well as the tour operators and hotels.
    My advice, book with a travel professional, they are kept up to date in real time, and legally have to know the exact protocols and procedures.

    • lisahomsy
      Author
      June 9, 2020 / 10:28 AM

      Hey Elizabeth,

      Thanks for the feedback on this post. This was all the information I gathered from speaking with people in the industry and reading numerous articles on the travel industry and what to expect that was current one month ago. I realize that information is changing daily and differs within countries. I’ve linked all the resources I used to help with this article and as stated all the info was based on data from May 14th.
      I hope this helps. xx

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