My husband and I took our first to Indiana a few weeks ago. In an effect to be extremely safe during COVID-19 we have not flown or taken any type of trip since we returned from Disneyland and Chicago on March 10, 2020.
As a Travel Agent and frequent traveler, the last few months have been very emotional, hard, scary and sad. I love, love, love to travel and experience new things and always up for a new adventure. But since COVID we have been sheltering in place at home. So when my husband had a short work trip to Indiana and asked if I wanted to go, I had to really consider if it was a good and safe idea to travel plus stay in a hotel.
First, I thought about how safe a 5 hr. road trip would be. Since we could be take our fuel efficient vehicle (very few gas station stops would be needed), could take food & drinks (no need to stop at restaurants along the way) and stop at rest stops (for bathroom breaks), I decided the actual drive was low risk.
Staying in a hotel was a little scary to me. A few things were important when selecting which hotel to stay at. I wanted a hotel that added new COVID-19 cleaning procedures and a contactless check-in option. For this trip, we settled on a DoubleTree by Hilton. The maker of Lysol & Dettol and Hilton have teamed up to develop the Hilton CleanStay program. Also, the location was in walking distance to several take-out dining restaurants and had self parking (didn't need to use valet).
Packing for this trip was very different than a normal road trip as I made sure to include additional supplies to re-clean the room upon arrival, even through the hotel has updated their cleaning policies. The room appeared to be very clean but it made me feel better once I did my own cleaning.
I placed hand sanitizer by the door so we could use it as we walked in and out. Liquid hand soap just makes me feel safer than using the hotel provided bar soap. I normally don't bring dish towels and Dawn dish soap but wanted to have something to wash our coffee mugs, drink cups and masks.
I packed several masks for the trip and used a different mask after each stop/interaction with other people. This may be unnecessary but made me feel better. Once we arrived back at the hotel, I washed the masks in the sink and hung them to dry with plastic hooks.
We opted to decline housekeeping while we were there as it was only 2 nights. It was another way we could keep our distance from others.
I had hand sanitizer and wipes with me at all times and used them very often.
All meals were takeout and we ate in the hotel room. This is not different than what we do at home.
During COVID traveling is very different and takes a lot more planning. Going forward I will continue to evaluate future travel based on what I feel is safe based on type of travel (airplane or car), number of nights, type of accommodations (family member, resort, cabin or hotel), lodging proximity to take out restaurants, type of parking, COVID numbers in the area and reason for travel.
IMPORTANT NOTE: These are the things I did to keep us safe while traveling. Please check with the CDC to view their travel recommendations.