06 Mar Coronavirus: What You Should Know
*The outbreak is moving quickly and some of the perspectives in this article may fall rapidly out of date. Many countries have currently closed their borders. To see which countries have closed their borders, please click here. This article reflects our perspective as of March 20, 2020.
What is the Coronavirus?
While the coronavirus seems like a “new” disease, different types of the virus have in fact been around for a long time. The coronavirus lately televised in the media is called COVID-19 and is “the most recently discovered coronavirus”. (World Health Organization) According to the World Health Organization, “Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans. In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases….” Common symptoms included a dry cough, fatigue and fever. For information on how to prevent contracting COVID-19 or how to treat it, please check out the CDC recommendations here.
What to Do If You Already Booked a Trip
If you have already booked travel and you are concerned about contracting COVID-19, talk with your travel agent and check the CDC website for their recommendations on travel cancelations or postponements. The most important thing is not to rush canceling your trip reservations as you may not get a full refund. Until information has been given by CDC and State Department officials, it is best to wait.
To get a list of destinations with current CDC travel notices, please click here. CDC also includes guidelines for cruise ships and airlines.
What to Do If You Want to Book a Trip
When deciding where to travel, please refer to both CDC and State Department travel advisories. Please be aware that if you have visited certain countries within a set amount of time, you may be denied boarding a cruise ship or denied access into another country.
Many airlines, cruise lines, tour companies and other travel suppliers have not only made changes to their itineraries, but to their cancellation and refund policies as well. The good news is that there is no harm in booking a trip with a refundable deposit. However, many booking deposits, specifically cruise line deposits, eventually become nonrefundable. It will be important to read through the cruise line or tour companies cancelation guidelines regarding the coronavirus.
For all travel decisions, refer to the frequently updated information given by both CDC and the State Department. Consider purchasing a travel protection plan that allows you to cancel for any reason for all future travel arrangements.
Please click on the resource links below to get the most up to date information on the Coronavirus.