Hey y’all! I hope you’re all doing well out there. Isn’t this such a crazy time? I decided to write today after having several friends and family members reach out to me over the last few months and weeks to ask about traveling this summer. So, I thought I’d share my thoughts and feelings. But remember, I’m not a health expert!
Personally, my family has canceled/rescheduled 6 planned vacations since March. I’m not going to lie, it’s been hard on me! Traveling and planning our next trip has always been therapeutic for me. And having a countdown or some big adventure to look forward to just seems to slow down life, I guess because my family is so excited and ready to go. Most of our trips were actually canceled for us, we didn’t have a choice. Of course, that made things much easier, especially when it came down to telling the boys! But we also made some hard decisions for this summer.
We had two big trips planned, California – Yosemite, The Redwoods, & Monterey in June and Cabo San Lucas planned for July. We decided to cancel those and will reschedule for a later date, probably summer 2021!
Here’s my advice to anyone reading this:
First, listen to your gut and do what’s best for your family! If you have a feeling that you should stay put for a little longer, then stay put! If you feel safe traveling, go for it and have the best time!
Next, really think about what traveling looks like, not just the amazing pictures, but the “getting there/getting home” part. Will you fly or drive? Do you feel comfortable on an airplane or in airports with a large crowd? If you’re planning to road trip, what are your thoughts on gas stations, public bathrooms, hotels, and restaurants?
Then, be sure to do your research on your destination! There are so many restrictions and rules that have been implemented due to our current pandemic. Some places require masks, others have specific capacity restrictions. Most National/State Parks require tickets to be purchased in advance and there’s a limit on those ticket sales. It appears that most places are opening back up, but of course its being done in phases. So please, do your research before you leave! If you see different sites showing different information, call the place you’re visiting directly and speak to an employee to get the most accurate and up to date info.
Have you considered a Staycation or taking a fun day trip closer to home instead? We recently did this with our boys! We traveled to Glen Rose, TX which is about a 2 hour drive for us. We packed a picnic lunch and practiced social distancing at an outdoor park and then were in our car feeding animals while driving through a wildlife zoo.
Does it make sense for your family to reschedule your trip for a later date, like in the fall or next summer? We are planning to reschedule all of our trips and I’m excited to have a year to plan Yosemite, it will be our first time visiting there! Maybe you can use the summer to research and put together an epic itinerary for your destination!
Are current travel prices, like cheaper airfare, appealing to your family? Are prices low enough now that your family can take that special trip that you might not be able to afford later on? This has been hard for me, I want to book all the $50 flights I see!
Should you travel within your country or internationally? Again, do your research and make sure you know what’s open, what the requirements are, and if there’s any restrictions or required quarantines for that destination.
Should you travel with groups? I can’t really answer that, but personally we’re choosing to travel with only our family of 4 at this time. We have a 2 night trip to Robbers Cave, OK coming up. My mom is battling breast cancer, so I have to put her health into consideration, too. While we’re getting out a little more now and seeing friends & family, we likely won’t be traveling with them like we love to do! Next summer though…
Finally, just remember that this decision involves you and your family. So once again, you have to do what’s best for you! Try to put your feelings aside and really look at the situation from all sides. My husband really does not want to have our children on an airplane or in airports right now. He’s really against leaving the country, just in case there’s another spike and things begin to shut down again. I was actually traveling in Virginia over spring break with our boys when the world began shutting down. I think he was worried about us getting back and being healthy and just doesn’t want to take any risks right now! So while I’m ready to go, go, go and see the world, I really had to pause and consider his feelings. And I know in my heart, if we travel in a way that he’s uncomfortable with, he will be anxious and worried and then we won’t be having any fun!
I know I’m probably missing some key points, but this is what I’ve been telling my dear friends and family when they ask for advice! I’d love to hear, or read, your thoughts on traveling this summer! Whatever you decide to do, I hope you have a great summer. Be safe, healthy and kind out there! And remember, no matter what you decide this summer, we will travel again!