Given the strict, global lockdowns as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, many of us are pining for a vacation, no matter how brief. The biggest issue is that, paradoxically, a shorter stay seems to air more on the side of caution, yet it’s riskier because you could be forced to unexpectedly quarantine. Likewise, countries with low cases seem like the place to go, yet, they’re often the most restrictive places (hence why their cases are low…).
It’s confusing, but here are some of the best places that you’re most likely going to have a good opportunity in entering and exiting (like this global map of restrictions courtesy of Omio), as well as being relatively safe from Coronavirus.
Cyprus – For Europeans
Cyprus is a beautiful European island situated in the far east of the Mediterranean. Most EU countries are concerned about the number of current (past 14 days) cases per 100,000. On this list, Cyprus is sitting at the bottom with a mere 4.1 cases, compared to Spain’s 265.
Not only is Cyprus a safe place to visit right now, but it’s welcoming of tourists. It understands how important tourism money is, and although they’re taking precautions, it’s not too difficult to enter. They’ve even offered to cover the cost of holidays that are affected by coronavirus, for example free healthcare, food and so on for those that test positive. Basically, every European country is categorised into three types: A, B, and C.
Type A countries are considered low-risk and will thus not have to have a test or quarantine. The majority of countries sit in type B, and have to perform a COVID-19 test in order to enter, but do not have to do a 14-day quarantine. Type C countries may have issues entering if it’s not essential.
Bear in mind, Cyprus’ cases are so low that your own country will likely not require you to quarantine when returning home.
Barbados – For Americans
Americans will struggle to enter many of the EU countries, because they’re letting only limited tourism in with other EU countries having a priority. Much of South America is either highly restrictive, or there’s a dangerous amount of cases (i.e. Brazil). Likewise, Asia has low cases but is very restrictive.
So, that leaves us with Barbados. It’s nearby, and it reopened to tourism midway through June. Of course, tests are encouraged before travel (it’s difficult to know if this is 100% required, but it’s better to be safe than sorry).
They’re actually encouraging tourism, so much so that they’re offering a 1-year work from home programme. Within the island, restaurants, retailers and parks are all open. Wearing a mask is encouraged, and there’s a 1-meter rule, which is less than most of the world. You should also complete a customs form 24 hours prior to travel.
Travelling isn’t encouraged during a pandemic, but there are ways in which it’s actually safer than staying at home. Testing negative and getting on a flight to a low-case country isn’t harmful in any way, though, it’s not good enough for many countries. The most important thing to note is that things change fast. So, don’t book anything too far in advance. If you want to travel to Greece for 3 weeks, for example, only book the first week accommodation at the most, to ensure less money is at risk regarding a cancellation.
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