How to Keep Track of the Facts on Coronavirus
As news of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) becomes more readily available, the volume of information has become overwhelming for people to make decisions about travel plans. We've been answering a lot of questions from clients and readers as they plan their trips. Perception and tolerance of risk is different for each person, so the decision to travel is highly individual.

The uncertainty gives people concern of whether they should cancel their vacations. As we have seen with epidemics in the past such as H1N1 pandemic in 2009, they eventually go away. If deciding to cancel a trip, consider available options to postponing final payment, requesting payment to be applied toward a future trip or rescheduling the trip to a future date on a different itinerary. There are always other destinations around the world where the risk is small.

It has been fascinating to see different reactions from different people. We have travelers wishing to cancel their trips such as those to Southeast Asia and Japan while others move forward in their upcoming journeys to Alaska in June and the Mediterranean in August. We've received trip requests for Israel and Jordan in September and Egypt and Botswana in October. They figure things will be under control by then and take advantage of small nonrefundable deposits. This way, when they do have to make large nonrefundable payments they already have their travel plans in place. They also would not have to compete with other travelers for best pricing and availability when demand for travel is likely to rise once the scare subsides.

We understand this is a difficult time for you. We are always available to answer your questions and talk through your concerns.
As with any information, it is to our best interest to fact-check with reputable resources to differentiate facts from myths.
Coronavirus (formally known as COVID-19) is part of a large group of viruses. A common cold, for example, can be a coronavirus. However, the coronavirus known as COVID-19 is new. You can catch coronavirus from other people. The World Health Organization lists the following as symptoms of coronavirus:
  • Respiratory symptoms
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath


  • Everything you need to know from how the coronavirus spreads and prevention and treatment to situation updates with risk assessment by country.

  • A thorough list of travel advisories for each country is listed on the website. China is currently at level 4 which means do not travel to the country. Those most at risk for experiencing severe cases of the coronavirus include the elderly with pre-existing medical conditions.

  • Latest information compiled from The World Health Organization and researchers at John Hopkins University to include an interactive map on current cases around the world with data that is updated automatically.

Travel Protection Insurance
  • As a travel professional, I always advise clients to purchase travel insurance. It is a protection plan especially for unforeseen circumstances. Fear of infection is not likely considered a covered reason and you likely will not receive refund for your trip. Please search by insurance provider to learn the latest information. Click the following link for Travel Guard.

  • As the trade association for the cruise industry that includes more than 50 cruise companies, the website provides information on embarkation restrictions to how passengers are screened for illness.

  • COVID-19 has adversely affected the cruise industry. The website has updated cruise ship policies and cancellations as well as list of ports that are closed due to the epidemic.

  • Many airlines have taken steps to help travelers in adjusting their travel plans affected by COVID-19. Accommodations include flight changes and cancellations with fees often waived. Consult specific airline for your specific need- Delta, United, American Airlines, Japan Airlines, and British Airways.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds (sing "Happy Birthday" song from beginning to end twice). Rub them together, lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails. Rinse and dry your hands.
  • Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol when you can't use soap and water.

It can be scary when things are unknown. The information is provided with hope to help you locate facts and updates from credible sources with a convenience of all in one place. Ultimately, as a guide to help you make educated decision that will best serve your travel plans.

Stay informed. If you are uncomfortable traveling to a certain destination, together we can find another place for you to travel that can give you a similar experience. As your travel advisor, I can help you understand vendor cancellation policies and deadlines and talk through decisions about trips in the future.

We are here for you.

"It is essential to be hopeful but vital to be logical."

Happy and safe travels!
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