During a flight early last year (long before “Coronavirus” was in our daily vocabulary), my seat mate did something I hadn’t seen anyone do before. Before she sat down, she took out her cleaning wipes and proceeded to wipe down every surface — pull-down table, headrest, chair arms and seat. I’m pretty diligent with hygiene, especially when I travel. However, I’d never thought to take that extra step. Needless to say, that changes now.
I will always travel. I can’t wait to get back out there and experience the world beyond my porch again. I do plan to approach travel differently, though. I already practice some of these steps in my normal travel routine, but I’ll incorporate a few more in future trips.
Keep your immune system strong even before your trip.
At the risk of sounding like your mother…take your vitamins! Also, make sure to get enough sleep while you travel. Regular exercise is important in a strong immune system, too. You don’t have to spend hours in gym. Daily walks or frequent low impact workouts can improve your health.
Pack your hand sanitizer.
One of the most effective ways to avoid getting sick is to practice good hygiene. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), hand sanitizers with 70 percent alcohol kill 99.99 percent of germs — including COVID-19. The downside to that — alcohol can really dry out your hands. Look for a hand sanitizer that includes a skin conditioner like aloe vera and vitamin E. Real Time Hand Sanitizer + Skin Conditioner is a good bet. This antimicrobial gel contains aloe vera, vitamin E, glycerin and chamomile for ultimate skin conditioning benefits.
Wipe down surfaces.
Take along a travel pack of cleaning wipes and use them often. Use them on everything from airplane seats to restaurant tables.
Wash your hands often.
Think about this: How many times do you hold the railing of stairs, touch a door knob or press buttons on the key pad to make a purchase?
Don’t touch your face.
This is such a hard one for me to adhere to! Even though I know better, I sometimes find myself biting my nails. You might touch a surface that has a virus and then touch your face. The mucous membranes around you nose, mouth and eyes are more likely to pick up the virus.
Cover your face.
Some airlines are requiring that passengers wear masks, while some don’t. Even before the Coronavirus changed how we fly, I wore a scarf on every flight. If anyone sitting around me coughed more than I thought they should, I wrapped my scarf around my face.
If you’re sick — stay home!
Do everyone a favor and keep your cold or flu to yourself.
Do you have health tips or practices you adhere to when you travel? We’d love to hear about them! Email us at GoMagazine@AAACarolinas.com.