What you need right now is a vacation. And nothing sounds more appealing than crisp mountain air or your toes in the sand. But is it safe to move forward with summer vacation plans? Many of the experts are suggesting it can be safe, especially with increased numbers of Americans getting their COVID-19 vaccines and vacation hot spots reopening to the public. But before you make reservations or book your flights, you might want to consider a few other safety tips. Be mindful of these suggestions before you hit the road to really give yourself the memorable and relaxing vacation you need.
Plenty of Domestic & Smaller Summer Vacation Options
You might not be able to go on that backpacking trip around Europe or book an African safari right now. There are still international restrictions in some countries, and others still have 14-day quarantines for visitors. Since no one really wants to spend their summer vacation cramped in a hotel room, here are a few safer, domestic destinations to consider. And many of these closer-to-home options are more affordable, as well.
National Park Camping
Avoid the crowded tourist attractions and find your summer vacation adventures in one of the 423 national park sites. The National Park System sprawls over more than 84 million acres, complete with campsites and parks worth visiting. Pack up the tent or rent an RV for a truly amazing experience in nature.
Vacation Rentals Somewhere Refreshing
You don’t have to venture very far away to find a unique experience in a vacation home rental. Spend a week by a remote lake or pack up the family for an oceanside experience. Check out Airbnb or VRBO for some of the affordable options near and far from home, with a new view. Spend a brief weekend in someone else’s house or go on a memorable road trip across the country to stay in one. Either way offers an adventure away from home this summer.
Big Hotel Chains Are Open for Business
Don’t be afraid to splurge and book a stay at one of the big hotels somewhere fun. The hotel industry is primed for a pandemic rebound and offering incredible deals. And the various chains have invested heavily in new, sanitizing procedures to ensure guest safety and socially distance experiences. Sometimes a relaxing stay at an upscale hotel or resort is vacation enough.
Be Flexible with Your Plans
Despite your best intentions, you may experience hiccups with your vacation plans. It’s important to be flexible with whatever you decide to do. Some restaurants or tourist attractions may have to close suddenly due to employee virus exposure, for example. Instead of letting it ruin your vacation, consider carving out a “Plan B” to ensure you still have a good time in a safe way.
If the Beach Closes, Find a Pool
Before you officially embark on your journey, take a closer look at the map. Check for second choice options nearby, should your primary destination become unavailable. If the beach closes, find yourself a poolside relaxation spot. If the pool closes, find a nearby park to enjoy with a good book. Be flexible, and don’t let minor upsets ruin your trip.
If the Restaurants Close, Have a Picnic
You might have your vacationing heart set on visiting a local restaurant or dining favorite. But don’t be discouraged if, upon your arrival, you find that spot closed. You can still create a fun adventure by packing up for a picnic lunch at a park, a beach, or in your hotel room. And should some restaurants close, there are still plenty that offer curbside pickup or delivery, too.
If the Sites Close, Rent Bikes for a Self-Guided Adventure
If you ultimately decide to spend your summer vacation somewhere centered on a specific attraction, have a backup plan. Should those first-choice venues close, look around for other historic sites or unique places to explore. Or you could rent bikes for the whole family and explore a city or nearby town yourselves. Just don’t forget to bring the camera to document that “Plan B” bike trip.
What to Pack to Stay Safe
Whether you’re flying somewhere exotic or packing up the car for a road trip, there are some things you can take to protect yourself. Make sure you have what you need to be safe wherever you venture. Pack up these extras before walking out the door.
Bring Your Masks
Regardless of how you feel personally about mask mandates, pack your masks before heading out on summer vacation. Rules can change in different parts of the country at different times. And it would be a shame to miss out on something fun because you didn’t bring a mask. Wearing your mask in crowded or indoor adventures is probably a good idea, too.
Pack the Hand Sanitizer
You’ll be grabbing door handles and railings in entirely new places on vacation. There will be elevator buttons, restaurant menus, and plenty of new-to-you bathrooms along the way. Play it safe by packing the extra sanitizers, including the smaller, travel-sized bottles. Apply to your hands regularly when you’re out exploring.
Take Your Lunch
Pack up your own snacks and sandwiches when you can. Not all restaurants will be available when you need them. And you might feel like avoiding huge crowds on your trip. Having what you need in your car or stored in a hotel refrigerator can keep you safe and help you avoid taking too many risks when you’re hungry.
Now is a great time to start planning those summer vacations. And hopefully, you can make your adventures safer with these few tips. Don’t forget, too, to make sure you have ample health insurance to protect you in the event of accidents or vacation-related injuries. There’s a special enrollment period happening right now, meaning you could find a better plan via the Marketplace. Browse with W3ll today to explore your options and make sure you have enough coverage to be safe when vacationing this summer.