ALTHOUGH most of people have adjusted to the new normal for some time now and the availability of Covid-19 vaccines makes this season safer to travel than the previous two years, many are still facing the challenges of navigating various travel threats.
Along with coronavirus, the threat of seasonal viruses, including influenza and respiratory syncytial virus remain.
Perennial safety and security risks including extreme weather events and criminal activities such as scams, pickpocketing and stolen passports could also impact personal safety.
Those traveling during the holiday period should carefully consider the risks, especially when in crowded places, and take preventive actions to mitigate these issues.
“This year, people can celebrate the festivities safely, provided they use available resources including Covid-19 and flu vaccines, tests, avoid being around others when feeling unwell and continue to practice good hygiene. It is difficult to predict what will happen with Covid-19, but advanced planning can help us protect ourselves and each other over the holidays,” International SOS medical director Katherine O’Reilly commented.
In the Philippines, local crime remains a primary threat with rates of petty crime and hazards expected to increase during the holidays.
“It is imperative not only to look after one’s health but also the personal safety and security as well,” International SOS Philippines security manager Robert Villamor said.
Top travel safety tips that organizations can encourage for the festive season include being prepared, be Covid-safe, maintain flexible itineraries, good timing, be crowd-safe and eat, drink and be jolly informed.