Here are two COVID-19 maps you need to keep handy if you plan to travel –

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There is so much confusion surrounding the questions of where, when, who, and how people can travel today. We found two maps that can help answer many questions for both the domestic travelers and the international traveler. The first map is provided by United Airlines and is a domestic map of the U.S.A. that shows COVID-19 requirements and restrictions entering states.CLICK HEREfor U.S.A. map. The second map is provided by IATA and is an easy to use map that lists COVID-19 restrictions for countries around the world.CLICK HEREfor the international map.

 

Some hotels are now requiring COVID testing from travelers arriving from states with a COVID positivity rating of 5% or higher – Last week Executive Travel received information from a corporate travel manager that some hotels in certain states are now requiring that travelers arriving from a state with a COVID-19 positivity rating of 5% or higher must provide a negative COVID-19 test on the traveler with the reservation or essential work travel letter from the company prior to the traveler checking in at the hotel. The hotel involved was a TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Rhode Island and the traveler was from New Jersey. It appears this requirement may be city, county, or state-based. It is important to make travelers aware they may face new safety processes when traveling in the future. We recently have been able to identify a web site to assist with at-home testing for COVID-19 at the following URL: https://www.goodrx.com/treatment/coronavirus-test  Some tests are FREE based on the level of testing required. Pixel by Labcorp also has an easy to understand site to explain the at-home testing process: https://www.pixel.labcorp.com/at-home-test-kits/covid-19-test. There is much confusion about where people can find COVID-19 positivity ratings by state however, some people have suggested that the Johns Hopkins University website has a page that indicates COVID-19 testing positivity by State. You can find that page here: https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/testing-positivity

 

Germany plays a key role in opening up Europe for Americans – For the past six months, Europe has been closed down by COVID-19 for American travelers. It was great news to recently find out that Germany has designated trade shows as essential travel. Basically they are saying that travelers from the U.S. and other countries can soon travel to Germany to attend a trade show (with proof of attendance). This is a major opening of travel to the E.U. and may become the key event to start opening up international travel to Europe.CLICK HEREto read more.

 

The few people who are flying tell me it is a very positive experience – I get to hear a lot of feedback from travelers who have been flying the past several months and almost all of them tell me that the experience was very positive. They compliment the airlines for their cleaning processes. Those airlines that keep a middle seat open (Delta and Southwest) are really appreciated. People also enjoy the no-hassle experience of very empty airports and often times half full airplanes. Limited service at airports (restaurants and shops) has been a small inconvenience. The bottom line is people tell me they feel safe flying today. Some even say they enjoyed the experience.

 

Airfare sales continue to offer amazing value – Every week there is a new airfare sale. Airlines are dropping some flights to as low $49 one way. Many domestic flights are around $200 RT which is half the price from what we saw a year ago. It is fun to see people take advantage of low airfares and hotel prices this fall. Call one of our friendly travel advisors at 402-435-8888 to take advantage of these great prices.

 

I decided to be a guinea pig and test out how long it will take me to get my passport renewed – For the last several months I have been whining to you that my passport expires in January 2021 and as such, I cannot travel outside the U.S. as most countries require that a passport has at least 6 months prior to your return flight before they will allow you into their country. My complaint was that the U.S. Department of State has not yet fully brought back their staff from the virus and as such, they are saying no new or renewal passports are being issued unless it is an issue of life or death. After my article ran last week two people dropped me a note and said they actually got their passports renewed in only a couple of months each.  With that encouragement, I decided to give it a try and I filled in the forms along with two pictures and my $110 check for the processing fee and sent the package in via USPS last Wednesday, September 16. Let’s see how long it takes for me to get back my new passport.

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