Watch for travel advisory updates from the Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC). All travelers should practice good personal hygiene to help prevent picking up viruses and germs. Good personal hygiene is the most effective way to prevent getting the COVID-19 virus and the coronavirus disease:
Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use at least 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer and rub until it is gone. Wash after using the bathroom; before eating and touching any part of your face; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
Only touch your eyes, nose and mouth with washed hands.
Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or elbow. Throw the tissue away promptly and wash your hands with soap and water.
Clean and disinfect surfaces.
Avoid people who are sick.
American travelers to infected areas will be screened for fever and other symptoms and asked questions about their travel history and exposure. Restrictions may be placed on your travel depending upon your health and travel history.
If you return from an infected area, it can take up to 14 days for symptoms to appear. Take your temperature twice a day and watch for other symptoms. If you become sick, stay home and avoid contact with other people. Do not use public transportation.
The CDC DOES recommend that healthy people wear a cloth face masks when going out in public.
Most viruses and other germs do not live very long on airplanes due to the air circulation and filtering system. Bring antibacterial wipes to clean surfaces and at least 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer to clean your hands if soap and water are not available.
To reduce your risk of coming in contact with people with coronavirus symptoms or surfaces contaminated by the virus, the CDC recommends using the same prevention tips that you would at home:
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Don’t touch any part of your face with unwashed hands.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Wash after using the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
If you become sick on a cruise, stay in your cabin and inform the ship’s medical center know immediately if you develop a fever (100.4°F/38°C or higher), begin to feel feverish, or have a cough, runny nose, shortness of breath or sore throat.
This information has been reviewed and approved by Carrie A. Horn, MD, Charles L. Daley, MD, Gwen A. Huitt, MD, MS, Shannon H. Kasperbauer, MD (March 2020)
Learn more about COVID-19 and how it affects specific health conditions in these printable patient education materials.
Download COVID-19 Materials