You probably have noticed that traveling has become a pretty concerning action in the last couple of months, with the global spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). People are canceling booked trips and have been warned by health officials to minimize contact with already affected countries.
But do you have an international trip which you booked months ago and have been looking forward to in ages? Or maybe you would like to take advantage of the sudden slash in plane ticket prices these last couple of months. If you have decided to travel, for whatever reason, how can you keep yourself safe from the Coronavirus? And will travel insurance cover you if you do catch the disease while abroad?
Is it Safe to Travel during the Coronavirus Outbreak?
Unfortunately, no one can tell you that traveling during the coronavirus outbreak is entirely risk-free, regardless of your age, health, or travel destination. While the COVID-19 fatality rate appears to be relatively low, and you may even return from your trip unscathed and in great health, there are some things you should consider before you travel:
The elderly, especially those over the age of 80, are the ones most endangered for complications of the coronavirus disease, whereas ages 10 – 39 have shown relatively low fatality rates (approximately 0.2%). That does not mean that you have a lower chance of infection if you are younger, only that you have a lower chance of the disease becoming fatal. You can still become infected and spread the disease around.
Your medical history
People with pre-existing conditions are also more susceptible to become seriously ill from the coronavirus than those who were previously healthy. If you suffer from any respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, etc, you should reconsider traveling.
The country you will visit.
There have been nearly 130,000 reported cases of the Coronavirus worldwide, and the numbers are constantly on the rise. The majority of the cases are in China, where the virus first originated, but there are other “hot zones” with thousands of reported cases as well – most prominent are Italy, Iran, and South Korea. So, as a precaution, the CDC has warned against travel to these countries, unless it is essential. That is not to say that traveling to countries with a smaller number of reported cases is completely safe as well.
Moreover, chances are you will have to go into self-quarantine for two weeks after returning from a high-risk country, even if you are not infected.
This article was first published on VisaGuide.World