It’s been the biggest vaccination push in history.
Despite all of us having some VALID questions and concerns… and more than a few hiccups along the way… Americans are now getting vaccinated for COVID-19. And it’s being done more quickly than we could ever have imagined when this crisis began.
America’s seniors certainly did their part. They rolled up their sleeves and got the shot in record numbers and in record time. And there are a whole lot of sore shoulders to prove it.
But many of us are left wondering, “So what NOW?”
We thought we were getting vaccinated so we’d be protected. But now, we’re left with a long list of confusing and sometimes contradictory rules. And messaging from the feds and public health officials that’s, frankly, as clear as mud in some cases.
If you’re like a lot of folks I’ve talked to, all you want to do right now is FINALLY book that trip to see your kids and grandkids again. So the number one question people are asking is, “Now that I’m vaccinated, when can I safely travel again?”
Keep reading for some REAL-LIFE travel advice you can actually use.
The CDCs latest flip flop is causing confusion
In the past few weeks, the CDC did its most head-spinning turnaround since last year’s mask fiasco. You remember that one. In a matter of weeks, they went from “masks don’t work!” to “everyone should wear a mask!”
Now, they’re at it again. And this time, it’s travel that’s in their crosshairs.
Just a few weeks ago, the agency claimed that getting the vaccine doesn’t mean it’s safe to travel. But once again, the right-hand doesn’t appear to know what the left one is doing.
Because they’ve ALSO told us that…
- two weeks after our second shot, we’re fully vaccinated
- the dual shots are over 90 percent effective
- airplanes aren’t considered a major source of outbreaks
And that left a bunch of folks with questions. Like, “Why in the world can’t a fully vaccinated senior finally travel to see their loved ones?” And, “Why weren’t the ‘follow the science’ guys even bothering to follow their OWN science?”
Well, it would appear that the feds finally got the message. So now they’ve flip-flopped and admitted that it IS safe for seniors to travel once fully vaccinated. However, they’re still hedging their bets and urging everyone to avoid any “non-essential” travel.
But here’s the reality that WE all understand, and the CDC just doesn’t seem to get. Life is short. Past a certain age, you may not have too many more chances to see distant loved ones.
So you want to travel as soon as you can so that you can make the most of every year, hour, and day you have left on this Earth.
In other words, in a very real way, this IS “essential” travel.
Lower risk travel IS possible
The CDC stopped short of recommending travel right now. But the agency’s advice also does say you can do it once you’re fully vaccinated. That would be two weeks after your second shot or two weeks after the first and only Johnson & Johnson dose.
You do still have to wear a mask while traveling. And you should try to keep that six-foot distance in the airport whenever possible.
That may sound like a downer at first. But look at it this way: you’ll automatically also get protection from all the OTHER nasty germs floating around in airports and on airplanes. Which means you could be avoiding everything from the common cold to the flu.
In fact, travelers from other countries were already taking these precautions long before the COVID-19 pandemic. Masks, distancing, and hand sanitizers have been used for years as a way to assure folks are just as healthy when they arrive at their destination as when they leave for it.
For the moment, with some common sense and careful precautions, fully vaccinated folks CAN travel with a far lower risk than before the vaccine rollout.
Of course, the virus situation continues to change daily. Plus, there are variants out there that threaten to turn everything upside down all over again.
In other words, nothing ANYONE says… including me… is set in stone. So keep an eye on the headlines, read up on the latest virus news both at home and where you’re going, and then make the best travel decisions for yourself and your family.