While international travel has yet to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic, experts say travel interest and trip planning is starting to take off again.
“We have not yet seen the bounce back in international travel, but I can tell you the number of people I’ve talked to and the feedback from companies like Sunwing in Canada, suggest that there is going to be a really good uptick in our winter vacations,” travel consultant Ron Pradinuk told Global News.
“I think going to a sun destination is going to be huge; I call it, ‘desperation travel’. Right now I think Manitobans and most Canadians, they’re desperate to, ‘get me out of here and I’ve already been through one winter I don’t want to go through another’.”
But Pradinuk says there are numerous items to cross off your checklist while making travel plans. Determining airline requirements as well as vaccination rates, testing and self-isolation requirements of the country you want to travel to are the first points on the checklist.
“You don’t want to get to a second airport and find out that the airline won’t even let you on,” Pradinuk said, adding that the federal government’s website is a good source of information.
Pradinuk also says you’ll also what to ensure the vaccines you’ve received are accepted in your destination country.
“If you’ve got double vaccinated, which many countries are going to be requiring, have you got vaccinations of the same kind? Because some countries are going if (you) have an AstraZeneca (and) Pfizer as a second shot, it doesn’t count,” Pradinuk said, adding that you’ll also want to do homework on accommodations.
“What are the cleaning protocols of the hotel chain, property you’re going to be staying at? Because that becomes pretty important at some point in time.”
He also says it’s caused an increase of interest in online home-sharing services, like AirBNB.
“The home-sharing seems to allow people to walk in, (do) their own cleaning if they want to do so, and not run in to as many people,” he said.
While Pradinuk said the checklist for travelling between provinces in Canada is much shorter, you’ll still want to take extra precaution, he added — something echoed by chief provincial public health officer Dr. Brent Roussin, who encouragers travellers to follow the same fundamentals.
“Staying home when you’re ill, washing your hands, maintaining physical distancing from other people, especially if you don’t know their vaccine status, wearing a mask in indoor public places, I think overall those are still good recommendations moving forward,” Roussin said.