The most recently discovered strain of the infectious disease coronavirus, COVID-19, is a topic of concern for most people, including those who travel frequently.
Travelers can take steps to help protect themselves from contracting coronavirus the same way they would protect themselves from catching any other virus. Here are a few ways to stay safe and prevent the spread of the disease:
Wash hands regularly
Frequently and thoroughly cleaning your hands with soap and water kills viruses that may be on your hands. According to the CDC, when you wash your hands, you should scrub for at least 20 seconds.
Use hand sanitizer
Rubbing hands with a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can also help travelers avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Hand sanitizer is portable and easy to carry, and a great option when making a lot of stops at gas stations or rest stops where travelers may come into contact with germs on surfaces like door handles and gas pumps.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth
Coronavirus spreads from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth which land on surfaces when a person with the virus coughs or exhales, and then another person touches those objects or surfaces. Once the hands are contaminated, they can transfer the virus to the eyes, nose and mouth, and from there, the virus can enter the body and make a person sick.
Don’t travel if you feel unwell
Travelers who are feeling sick or experiencing any symptoms, including fever, cough or difficulty breathing, should stay home and contact their health provider.
Take other preventative measures
Flu and respiratory disease season can last until late Spring. Taking other everyday preventive actions, including avoiding close contact with people who are sick, covering your mouth and nose, getting plenty of sleep, and drinking plenty of fluids, can also prevent the spread of disease.
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