Facing travel challenges in the shadow of Covid-19

Anda’s white sand beaches can rival Panglao’s. Anda and Panglao are both in Bohol. (Photo by Delora Sales-Simbajon)
Anda’s white sand beaches can rival Panglao’s. Anda and Panglao are both in Bohol. (Photo by Delora Sales-Simbajon)

FOR those of us who love to travel or whose work involves travel, we already marked our 2020 schedules with local or international trips by mid-2019 or even earlier.

Back then, we had thought that it would be travel as usual. That is, until the Covid-19 pandemic came onto the scene. And just like that, our travel plans and expectations for the year were altered.

So how are you coping in this reduced or even zero travel season in your life? Perhaps you have gained a deeper appreciation of how technology has made it possible for you to work from home and how it serves as a bridge for you to connect with loved ones in this time of social distancing. It certainly is true for me.

This lack of a travel agenda has freed me to revisit some unfinished tasks like polishing some of my poems and updating my blog. It also has nudged me to explore new ways of doing things like using online means when I do counseling or life coaching for others. And when I yearn for the view, sound or taste that a trip can bring, I revisit my past travels. I do this by looking at past travel photos, read or watch what I can about a dream destination or jot down future travel plans. And to remind me of life’s bigger perspective in the midst of the uncertainty that this health crisis has brought, I spend time to quiet my soul, my spirit. Praying and reading from the Bible and inspirational books have been helpful.

There are really plenty of ways to cope during this lack-of-travel season in our lives. We just need to get a bit creative.

Travel will likely forever change after this crisis. Sources say it may take years for the global travel industry to fully recover. This can have ramifications on our future plans.

As of this writing, different parts of our country are still under enhanced community quarantine and we are still in the dark as to when these places will be ready for our wandering feet to step on their streets or on their shores. This is also true in different parts of the world.

Looking beyond

Various sources reveal that some expected changes for post Covid-19 travel may include: less passengers allowed on buses, trains and flights; mandatory wearing of face masks; and stricter health checks in some places we visit. Having less people on a bus, train or flight can mean higher fares for us travelers. While we hope that this won’t be true, we need to be prepared for this. We may have to rethink what is essential travel for us. Wearing face masks during a trip may not be ideal, but if required, we just have to accept it as the new normal. As to stricter health checks, this is a reminder for us to always take good care of our bodies to ensure that we are always fit enough to travel.

This crisis might indeed mean facing new changes and challenges in our future travels. In the end, we need to embrace them so we can soar the skies or sail the seas again to reach our desired destination.


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