4 COVID-Smart Tips for Traveling in Arizona

As most Americans get their COVID-19 vaccine and cases lower, many U.S. states like Arizona are reopening their recreation areas to allow tourists to visit again. Before you grab your luggage or pack your bags, you need to remember that traveling during this time has changed. Aside from considering how to maintain your baggage within the weight allowance, you also need to prepare for new safety regulations in Arizona to make sure you won’t be removed from your flight or receive penalties. Here are some ways you can ensure you’ll have a worry-free and enjoyable trip to the southwest. 

Keep Yourself Informed

Before traveling, visit the websites of the local health department to get the latest information. Since most states follow the recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for people traveling across the United States, you can refer to their website as well. Take note that they have different recommendations for people that are vaccinated and unvaccinated.

If you have received your COVID-19 vaccine, make sure to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth while inside planes, trains, buses, and other forms of public transportations when traveling within the United States. You also need to wear a face mask while indoors at US transportation hubs like airports and terminals.

Unvaccinated people need to undergo testing one to three days before traveling and three to five days after the trip. They must also continue to wear masks, especially in enclosed spaces, but unlike vaccinated individuals, those who have not been vaccinated need to self-quarantine for a full seven days after travel, even if they tested negative or do not show any symptoms. In case they did not get tested, the quarantine period will be 10 days after travel.

Check Local and State Requirements

Always check the health department to see if they have additional requirements. This way, you can prevent the inconvenience of getting penalized or being denied entry. In Arizona, all passengers, visitors, and employees entering Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport or Tucson International Airport must wear a mask covering their mouth and nose. They also need to keep wearing their masks while on commercial flights, on airports buses, or when onboard the Phoenix Sky Train, and in the rental car center. Keep in mind there are some exceptions, including children below two years old or persons with disabilities that prevent them from wearing a mask. Temporarily removing a mask to verify identity is also permitted, as in removal of masks for eating, drinking, or taking medication. Finally, hearing-impaired individuals who rely on hearing aids and lipreading  may request that masks be removed to allow them to communicate with others.

Practice Responsible Recreation

Arizona is a popular destination for tourists who enjoy doing outdoor activities. Some people visit this southwestern state to marvel at the natural scenic views of the desert. This is why people in recovery also choose to stay in a drug rehab Phoenix residents go to rather than other treatment facilities, so they can have amazing sights of nature while undergoing their treatment. To make sure you stay safe while enjoying the natural wonders of Arizona, here are some practical tips while exploring the outdoors. 

Call Ahead

Even with the relaxed restrictions, some businesses have chosen to remain closed or modify their hours. To verify their operations schedules, check the website or social media sites of the public attraction, national park, or resort you want to visit. Better yet, call ahead just in case you have other questions.

Continue to Follow Safety Protocols

To fully enjoy your leisure time, the Arizona Department of Health Services advises practicing these safety precautions when traveling.

  • Stay home if you feel unwell or are showing COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Regardless of your vaccine status, wearing masks is still required in government buildings and transportation hubs like bus terminals and airports, as well as on trains, buses, and other public transit.
  • Practice social distancing by maintaining a distance of at least six feet from other people.
  • Avoid crowded locations and gathering in large groups.
  • If you will engage in group activities, limit it to members of your household.
  • Follow the CDC guidelines on personal hygiene like frequent washing of hands with soap and water. In situations where water is not available, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Use touchless payment whenever you can. If handling money or cards, use hand sanitizer right after settling payment.

Self-Monitor After the Trip

Whether you have been vaccinated or not, you need to ensure you remain healthy after traveling. The CDC recommends self-monitoring. Remember to get tested and isolate in case you develop common symptoms such as:

  • Cough
  • Chills
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Headache
  • Fever 
  • Muscle pains
  • Sore throat 
  • Loss of smell or taste

With the more relaxed travel restrictions, you can now visit and explore your favorite Arizona attractions. Just remember to check the local requirements and follow safety protocols. This may mean making additional preparations, but it can also help make your trip more memorable. More importantly, you’ll be able to do your part in stopping the spread of the COVID-19 virus. 

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