If you travel frequently, you might probably have mastered the art and science of packing. You’ve memorized what and what not to bring depending on where you’re going, how long your vacation is, and what your trip’s purpose will be. You know how to pack for leisure trips, business trips, local trips, overseas trips, weeklong trips, overnight trips — name it and you’ve already got it.
But if there’s one kind of trip you might have been unaccustomed to, that would be a trip during the pandemic era. Whether you’re road-tripping, flying, staying in a hotel, or just leaving the house for a short-distance trip, you need to take a lot of additional precautions.
So if you’re planning to travel soon now that the travel industry is starting to recover, here are 14 post COVID-19 travel essentials you should add to your arsenal.
1. Hand sanitizers
Hand sanitizers nowadays are as essential as your phone and wallet. You need to sanitize your hands every time you touch common items, like public transit metal railing, ATMs, grocery items, and more. Look for alcohol-based rubs or sprays that contain at least 70% solution.
You should also make sure it can be grabbed easily when you need it. Wear clothes with pockets or store it in a small sling bag wrapped around your body for easy access.
2. Anti-bacterial soaps and hand wash soaps
Are you going to stay in a hotel? While the hotel’s free beauty bars are fragrant and moisturizing, they might not be enough to expel germs and viruses from your hands and body. Amp up your protection by bringing travel-sized anti-bacterial soaps and hand washing liquids.
3. Mask and face coverings
Cloth face masks with quirky patterns may look cute but they’re not advisable for traveling, especially if you’re boarding a closed, cramped mode of transportation. Invest in medical face masks like disposable surgical masks, N95, and N99. You should also consider wearing face shields, goggles, and glasses for eye protection.
4. Vitamins and medicines
Face masks and sanitizers might not save you if you have a poor immune system. Make sure to pack vitamins and medications designed to boost your immune system and combat communicable diseases.
5. Disinfecting wipes
Give yourself some peace of mind by wiping down the common areas and high-touch surfaces that you might encounter during your travels. These include doorknobs, light switches, phones, airplane trays, tabletops, and remote controls.
Your go-to wet wipes may not be enough to kill the virus, so go for legit disinfecting wipes like Clorox or Lysol brand. You can also use a napkin and spray it with isopropyl alcohol.
6. Lysol/ multipurpose cleaner/ detergents
Cleaning your hotel room or vacation rental might not be the most enjoyable thing to do (because you went there to relax, right?) but it’s necessary. Pack travel-size Lysol disinfecting spray or other all-purpose cleaners, and give surfaces a quick wipe down. Don’t forget to bring disposable gloves.
You should also bring detergents for your laundry. Remember that the virus may stick on clothes too.
7. Napkins/paper towels
With all the wiping stuff going on, you’re going to need a lump sum of napkins or paper towels.
8. Pandemic era-approved clothes
The best outfit is lightweight, comfortable, and easy to remove. For instance, you may opt for button-downs, maxi dresses, tops with zippers, loose tops, and other pieces of clothing that won’t touch your face when you try to remove them.
The more skin you bare, the better. It may sound counterintuitive but here’s the thing: If you expose your skin, it would be a lot easier to wash it and you’re more likely to stick to your routine. The virus tends to stick longer on surfaces that aren’t regularly sanitized.
When coming home or arriving at your hotel after a day of traveling, we advise getting rid of your clothes immediately and taking a shower. No hugging or sitting down on furniture until everybody gets to change their clothing.
9. Tumblers, utensils, etc
Even if your lovely hotel in Ostend is equipped with clean glassware, tableware, and cutlery, it might still be safer to eat and drink from your tumblers and lunch box. Use personal utensils too. The same goes for dining in a restaurant.
10. Ziploc bags
Aside from protecting your items from being wet, ziplock bags can also be used for storing clean face masks as well as the used ones.
You’re going to sign a lot of documents throughout your journey, including contact tracing forms on hotels, restaurants, and borders. And for sure you don’t want to use a pen that’s been touched by hundreds and thousands of people before you.
12. Proof of negative covid-19 result
Research your destination as well as the places you’ll need to pass. In most cases, they may require documents that prove that you’re free of COVID-19. If you’ve recently undergone swab testing, make sure you bring your certificates to avoid inconvenience.
Even if you feel well, most establishments won’t allow you to enter if your temperature is higher than the recommended. To avoid inconvenience, check your own temperature before embarking on a trip and make sure you’re fit and healthy.
14. Snacks and packed meals
Pre-coronavirus, we always opt for packing light, which may include buying food along the way instead of storing it in the luggage. Today, we’d highly recommend packing your own grub and avoiding roadside takeaways to minimize contact.
Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is a passionate content writer who loves traveling, discovering new food, taking photos, and of course, writing. She’s got a lot to say about travel, dining, cultural appreciation and lifestyle. To know more about hotel and tourism tips, you may visit Leopold Hotel Ostend.