People are getting on the road again

By DAISY WASHINGTON / Community Columnist

Although it didn’t feel much like it, March 21 marked the official start of the spring season. For many, it is one of the most pleasant of the seasons. Just a week before the arrival of spring, Daylight Saving Time began. With each day getting longer by a few minutes every couple of days, time advanced at a snail-like pace.

Now, it seems that each new day is extended by one minute. Despite summer’s official arrival date of June 20 being another seven weeks away, it seems to be in a real hurry to get here. Longer daylight means more time outdoors—more time for work, but also more time for leisure.

According to a January 2021 American Express Travel survey, 78 percent of people said they want to get away this year to relieve stress from the pandemic. And a T-Mobile survey found that 68 percent of grandparents plan to travel in 2021, often because they’ve missed seeing their grandkids during the pandemic. (source: Nextavenue.org/travel-vaccinated/). The bottom line is that many of the country’s vaccinated seniors are willing and ready to hit the road…any road.

If you’re planning to travel at all, it’s best to consider booking vacations domestically. However, if you’re determined to travel internationally, plans should mean securing flights as early as possible. Due to previous steady decline in airline travel, ticket prices have increased significantly since March. Before making lodging or transportation reservations, confirm what the company’s COVID-19 cleaning procedure is, whether there’s a face mask and vaccination policy in place as well as cancellation procedure.

Another way to vacation safely is consider mostly outdoor vacations. That’s because you’ll be safer from contracting the coronavirus outdoors than indoors. Camp sites that include RV owners and cabins and cottages, yurts or tents are excellent vacation destinations.

Although the Smithsonian Institution museums and its National Zoo in Washington, D.C., are closed, 12 of the 13 Smithsonian gardens in the nation’s capital are open. There are even safe options for booking a Cruise within the U.S. The 13 small ships of American Cruise Lines travel water routes such as the Great Lakes; the Mississippi, Snake, and Columbia rivers and the Chesapeake Bay of Maryland and Virginia or take an organized, guided trip with Tauck Tours with land journeys, family tours and small-ship cruises.

Finally, before you go, remember to pack your vaccination card (or duplicate), wear your mask, stay your distance and wash your hands. Happy travels!