The novel Coronavirus, or COVID-19, is spreading globally at an alarming rate. In India, there are currently 31 confirmed cases of the virus, with 3 in Kerala and 14 Italian tourists, among others, as confirmed by the Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday. So far, 438 persons in India have been reported as suspects, of which 225 have completed 28 days of surveillance and 189 are still under observation.
Image Courtesy: LA Times
Things To Consider Before Cancelling Your Trip
If you’re among the ones who have travel plans coming along during this period and are thoroughly scared and confused as to what to do, here are a few things to consider before you cancel your travel plans.
- The country you are visiting: First, one needs to check if the country one is visiting comes under the list of countries for which travel advisories have been issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Affairs. The circular clearly states that Indian citizens are advised to refrain from travel to China. People travelling to China will be quarantined on return. In lieu of this, most flights from India to China have been suspended. Indian citizens have been further advised to refrain from non-essential travel to the countries of Singapore, Republic of Korea, Islamic Republic of Iran and Italy. The Centre for Disease Control (CDC) has also issued travel notices for countries and grouped them into Levels depending on the number of reported cases in the country.
- Work trip or a vacation? Do you have to travel for work to South Korea? Or you are travelling for a vacay to Indonesia? Is it an essential or a non-essential trip? Can it be postponed? These are questions one needs to ask if one wants to decide on the cancellation.
- Your health: Ensure that you yourself do not have a weakened immune system. Have you been on medication or have you been suffering from flu-like symptoms? It is important that one gets checked for the same. Inadvertently, if you are travelling with children, older people, or people suffering from chronic diseases, they could be at a risk of getting infected by the virus and hence, it is best not to take them along.
- Hygiene practices: In case you do end up travelling to country with no travel advisory issued, have you already incorporated health and hygiene precautions in your normal routine? If not, please start NOW!
- Cruise or air travel? While the risk of getting an infection on the airplane is low due to the air being filtered, you should avoid contact with passengers exhibiting flu-like symptoms and wash your hands/use a sanitizer. However, according to the CDC, travelling on a cruise could put a lot of people on risk as you are enclosed in one huge space. The story of the Japanese cruise Diamond Princess is evidence enough to cancel your cruise tickets.
- Refundables: Is your air ticket refundable? Do you have travel insurance? Would you heave a sigh of relief if you are getting a refund? That’s a sign you need to cancel your trip or postpone it.
The Million Dollar Question To Ask Yourself Before You Cancel Your Trip
The most important question one needs to ask yourself is: Would you really enjoy your vacation? There is no use travelling if you’re constantly going to be worried about infecting yourself and checking your phone to update yourself about the scary numbers. After all, a vacation is taken to let go of all your worries and inhibitions, unplug and relax.
Canceling a trip is purely a personal choice. However, one needs to take all these factors into consideration if you want to cancel your trip.