Spring Break season is here, and families around Johnson County may be making plans to travel or get away.
They may also be wondering about how to safely enjoy time on holiday with the COVID-19 pandemic continuing.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention still warns that traveling can increase the risk of contracting COVID-19.
The agency does not recommend the public take trips at this time. Still, if families choose to travel, there are some things they can do to lower the risk of spreading and contracting the virus.
Below is guidance from the CDC on how to safely travel this Spring Break, if you choose to do so. The Johnson County Health and Environment says it has nothing to add to these recommendations.
Check local travel restrictions.
- There may be state, local and other restrictions that could require quarantine upon arrival or testing requirements when you return. Here is the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s current list of travel restrictions.
Consider how you’ll travel
- After checking travel restrictions, consider your mode of transportation. The CDC says all means of travel — airplane, bus, train, car or RV travel — each pose their own potential risks. A more detailed look at each can be found here.
Get tested (or vaccinated) before you go
- Get tested for COVID-19 1 to 3 days before your trip. If you’re eligible, the CDC also recommends you get fully vaccinated prior to traveling. The CDC also says individuals should not travel if positive for COVID-19, and should isolate immediately.
Masking, social distancing, sanitizing
- Properly wear a mask — meaning it covers both the nose and the mouth — when in public.
- Avoid crowds and maintain social distance from anyone who didn’t travel with you.
- When at bathrooms and rest stops, be sure to practice good hand hygiene and use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
- For getting gas while traveling on the road, use disinfectant wipes on handles, buttons and other surfaces at gas pumps prior to touching. Use hand sanitizer after using the gas pump, and wash hands with soap and water once you arrive at your destination.
- As for food, the safest bet is to take your own. Otherwise, use drive-thru, delivery, take-out and curbside options before dining in a restaurant.
After you return
- Get tested once again three to five days after returning from travel.
- The CDC also says people should self-quarantine for seven full days after a trip — even if they get a negative test result.
- If you decide not to get tested on your return, the CDC recommends staying home and self-quarantining for 10 days after your trip.
- Follow all state and local requirements and recommendations after traveling.