It is very normal to become extremely concerned about your travel especially, air travel when an outbreak strike. And, nothing could be more alarming than when there is a serious new virus-like Coronavirus that is circulating.
Since its conception in China, the virus has spread to two dozen countries at an alarming rate. And, what makes it more concerning that it’s the flu season too! In the UK, at the moment there have been 116 reported cases out of which 1 patient has already died.
And, it becomes more concerning on the flight since you are strapped with a seatbelt inside a metal canister. Therefore, as the best travel agency in London, we thought we will make a comprehensive article for you to read on how to protect yourself, especially during air travel.
Let Us First Look At How Can Coronavirus Actually Spread On A Plane?
Scientifically, if a person who is infected- coughs or sneezes, they shed droplets of saliva, mucus, or other bodily fluids. And, if any of those droplets fall on you—or if you touch them and then, say, touch your face—you can become infected as well.
Since not much is known Coronavirus at this stage, but it is confirmed that the virus causes serious respiratory illnesses. So, this virus can spread through the surfaces upon which the droplets land—like aeroplane seats and tray tables.
One might ask as to how long those droplets last. So, it actually depends both on the droplet and the surface—mucus or saliva, porous or non-porous. Viruses, in general, are known to dramatically last from hours to months.
Also, it’s another known fact that respiratory viruses can be transmitted through the air in tiny, dry particles known as aerosols.
So, now you may ask as to how does it actually affects the aeroplane. According to The World Health Organization, the virus transmission is defined as contact with an infected person as being seated within two rows of one another. But it just cannot be the case that you will be just sitting during flights. You might have to visit the bathroom, stretch legs, and grab items from the overhead bins.
So, here what we would suggest you consider before your air travel:
Consider your RISK TOLERANCE
Those people who are on lower tolerance should avoid non-essential travel. Postpone your trip. It would be advisable to book through a travel agent so that its easy scheduling and rescheduling your air travel plans.
LIMIT EXPOSURE – WEAR A MEDICAL MASK
Limit close contact with people as a respiratory illness like COVID-19 or flu spread through close contact. Planes have more effective air filtration systems. Nevertheless, you never know about a passenger who’s coughing or sneezing may still be exposed to airborne germs. If you’re worried about contracting a respiratory infection from another passenger, wearing a face mask may help lower the risk.
Practice GOOD HAND HYGIENE
It’s basic. Hand-washing is the single most important way to avoid the spread of infection. WHO advises travellers to wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after assisting or touching anyone who’s sick. If soap and water aren’t available then you can use alcohol-based sanitises.
Get RECOMMENDED VACCINATIONS
Get your flu shots. It might not protect you but will definitely reduce your chances of getting any kind of respiratory illness virus. Consult your doctor before you travel.
Let A Doctor Know IF YOU ARE SICK
Here comes the social responsibility too. If you develop symptoms of respiratory illness or another disease while travelling, you need to keep a check for yourself. Maintain a distance from fellow passengers. Self-isolate. Contact the cruise crew or flight crew. Take the advice and follow the instructions.
What Are The Symptoms Of Coronavirus?
Since it’s a lot like flu but not flu, here are the first symptoms of coronavirus
- You’ll get a fever, cough
- Might experience some gastrointestinal distress
- Later could develop pneumonia or kidney-related issues.
Which Countries Are Impacted By Coronavirus?
From mainland China, with over 78,000 confirmed cases and 2,747 deaths, the virus has spread to Macau, Hong Kong, South Korea, Italy, India, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, the US, the UK, Latin America and more.
Should I Cancel My Trip Because Of The Coronavirus Outbreak?
To feel secure about any upcoming travel plans, communicate with your travel agent or hotel or airline directly. When you book through a travel agent, you can get free monitor updates and alerts for the current information in your destination.