I can’t speak to all travel, but I can tell you what ours looked like.
First, let’s rewind as to why we chose to travel. Eben was coming to the USVI to do a sewing job for a friend of ours. We were fully prepped for him to go. The girls and I were planning on staying in Todos Santos. With our beaches having been reopened after the initial 3-month Covid closure, I figured we’d just be at the beach EVERY SINGLE DAY. That was what I was planning would keep me sane while Eben was away.
But then they closed the beaches again!
The thought of staying in TS without Eben, without the beaches, being advised to “stay home”, it hit me. A wave of emotions and tears. I knew that while he was away there is no way I’d put myself in any scenario where I could get coronavirus, being that I was the sole parent to care for the girls.
All I could picture was 3 weeks, locked in the house. It was too much.
12hrs before Eben was set to fly we booked flights for the girls and me to go too.
What we packed to travel during Covid-19
We were prepped. I bought extra face masks, so we had our regular ones and some extra KN95 masks in case we needed them. We had small bottles of hand sanitizer in every bag. And I had a big pack of disinfectant wipes to wipe everything down.
I may have looked a little crazy wiping down every armrest, table, and seat we came across, but I figured I’d rather look crazy and reduce risk than the opposite.
Cabo San Lucas Airport
We were all stunned at how crowded it was in there. The airport usually has 2 terminals running (International and Domestic) but when we were flying out Terminal 2 was doing some remodeling, so all flights were going out of Terminal 1. There were A LOT of people. Social distancing wasn’t even possible.
Prior to going through security, we all had to fill out a form asking if we had experienced any symptoms of the Coronavirus, and where we had been staying/visiting in Mexico. When they checked our forms there was also some camera device (that if I understood right from the video playing on a loop on the airport television) was taking our body temperatures as we walked passed it.
We tried our best to stay away from people. We stayed huddled as a family and told the girls repeatedly not to touch ANYTHING.
But wow, there were lots of people.
PHX, MIA, and STT
I felt that the Phoenix airport was doing really well. Most of the stores inside the airport were closed. There weren’t a ton of people, and those we came across were ALL wearing masks and keeping their distance. It wasn’t overly stressful being there. I still used our disinfectant wipes on everything!
And it was hard to gauge how the Miami airport was since we were there for about an hour. Just enough time to get off one flight, grab some bagels at Starbucks, and hop on our next flight. From what we saw in our gate switch, it was quiet, but not everyone was wearing masks.
Upon arrival in St. Thomas, USVI we were sorted into lineups and everyone’s temperatures were taken. After that, a second person asked guests whether they had symptoms, where they were coming from, and where they were going to stay on the island.
On The Planes
We flew with American Airlines. We flew basic economy (because we’re cheap!) so they assign seats upon arrival. They did a good job of leaving empty seats between people, and on some of our flights, there were even empty rows between people.
It is mandatory to wear a mask for the duration of the entire flight. I was extremely impressed with one of the flight attendants who was going through the plane reminding some guests that “masks go over your nose too”.
I was happy to have those extra KN95 masks on hand. Eben switched to one early on, and I switched to one on our 3rd flight. Having to wear a mask for 3 flights was starting to make the back of my ears hurt, so it was nice to have these other masks with the thinner elastics.
Due to covid-19, the flight attendants were not going down the aisles passing out food and drinks, instead, when we boarded the plane we were each given a to-go style bag with pretzels and a water bottle in them. We had also brought plenty of snacks of our own to tide us over.
All in all, we felt that most people were taking the right precautions, wearing masks, and social distancing. My extra precautious self was still happy to have the disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer with me. We hand sanitized SO MUCH!
In just over a week we have to do the same flight pattern in reverse, for our trip back home. Here’s to hoping it all goes just as smooth.
We went to Wyoming in July and many people thought we were crazy. Our rational was we are very careful at home and are mask wearers. Once in Wyoming, we were going to be alone and outside.
We also flew American and felt comfortable on the very full flights. Our biggest challenge was finding food during a long layover.
I have been travelling with hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes for 15 years so masks are the only new thing for me.