You’re no doubt making plans for summer travel and getaways. But a spike in COVID-19 cases could have you worrying about the risks of traveling domestically and/or abroad. Read on for advice from our health pros about how to safely drive, fly, and adventure to your destination of choice.


Now that mask mandates have ended on airlines and in airports, you may have concerns about how COVID-19 spreads on flights. But Delaney Gilbert, a Physician Assistant at Summit Health, says airplane filtration systems keep the risk of in-flight transmission of COVID-19 low.

“You should also be proactive when traveling to protect your overall health in general,” Delaney says. “Stay well rested and drink water. While it may be tempting to have a glass or two of wine, water is the safer bet to arrive at your destination hydrated. Wash your hands regularly before eating or drinking and put on sunscreen before you step outside.”

If your flight is longer than two to three hours, reduce the risk of blood clots by circulating the blood in your legs.  Every hour, stand up and walk down the aisle or pump your calves by moving feet up and down at the ankles.

Traveling Abroad`

As we see COVID-19 numbers climb again, check the requirements for entry before you visit an international destination, explains Delaney. “Most people book two months out, and things could change in two months. Other countries will have their own policies,” she adds.

As far as catching COVID-19 abroad, Delaney says, “if you are up to date on your vaccinations and wash or sanitize your hands regularly, then the risks of contracting illness of any kind is greatly diminished when you travel domestically or internationally.”

Whether in the air or at the destination, Delaney says, “it’s all about minimizing risk. You, as the traveler, can only control what you do.”

What to Wear and Pack

Hygiene while traveling is always a concern, whether driving or flying. “Make sure you wear comfortable clothing that breathes and consider adding extra layers,” Delaney recommends. “Plan ahead and bring extra sanitary products with you for the road, too.”

Finally, all the physicians recommend packing a health kit. This can include Covid-19 tests, acetaminophen, or other pain/fever reducers, disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer, a thermometer, antihistamines, and antidiarrheal medication.